Exclusive: Rebels Turn the Tables in Action-Filled Clip from Warriors of the Rainbow, AKA Taiwan's Braveheart

In select theaters Friday is Warriors of the Rainbow: Seediq Bale, the epic historical retelling of a little-known uprising in 1930s Taiwan in which the indigenous Seediq people battled Japanese forces against all odds, suffering great losses but turning the tables on familiar ground — in the mountains. After the jump, watch Movieline's exclusive action-packed clip from the Oscar shortlist entry (dubbed the Taiwanese Braveheart) in which the Seediq warriors lure their enemies into familiar terrain and launch a full-scale ambush. With beehives!

Directed by Taiwanese filmmaker Wei Te-Sheng (Cape No. 7) and produced by John Woo (!), Warriors of the Rainbow stars Lin Ching-Tai, Umin Boya and Battle Royale's Masanobu Andō and is in limited release today. More info here.

Official synopsis:

Wei Te-sheng's epic film Warriors of the Rainbow: Seediq Bale reclaims an extraordinary episode from 20th-century history, which is little known, even in Taiwan. Between 1895 and 1945, the island was a Japanese colony inhabited not only by the majority (Han Chinese Immigrants) but also by the remnants of the aboriginal tribes who first settled the mountainous land. In 1930 Mouna Rudo, the leader of the Seediq tribe settled on and around Mount Chilai, forged a coalition with other Seediq tribal leaders and plotted a rebellion against their Japanese colonial masters. It was to begin at a sports day meeting where the assembled tribesmen were to attach and kill the Japanese officials and would then broaden to sieges on police stations and local government offices in the region. The initial uprising took the Japanese by surprise and was almost entirely successful. But the Japanese soon sent in their army to crush the rebellion, using aircraft and poison gas.


  • This has a good "look" to it--- real mountains and ravines, coming across as believably hot
    and humid, unlike so many WW2 jungle pictures shot on sets or in the sunny and dry mountains around Los Angeles.

    And wiping out an angry bee's nest with a grenade---makes sense to me! Friggin' bugs!

    Doo. Dah.

    • S.T. VanAirsdale says:

      The grenade-in-the-beehive bit makes this entire clip for me. "I'm gonna run up this tree, plug a grenade into this nest of swarming insects, and then run back down as it explodes behind me." GENIUS.

  • Jake says:

    This looks awesome. Can't wait. Thanks for the post, ST.

  • Jake says:

    err, make that, thanks for the post, Jen. Sorry 'bout that, Jen.