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Japan's role in World War II gets a whole new perspective in this consisting entirely of full color footage, including color films from Japan that were recently discovered. As the visuals of the world war take on a new vivid immediateness, the story of the rise of the militarists in Japan is told through the personal writings of the Japanese themselves. From the first overconfident tastes of victory, to the devastating losses that led to an unthinkable defeat amidst the ruins, the Pacific Theater of World War II is told through the Japanese's eyes.

It was assumed no color films existed in Japan until the victorious U.S. forces arrived in 1945. Now you can discover the story of a nation at war from its rare color films, plus letters and diaries from those who lived through it. Almost all the material in this color documentary has been recently discovered and allows the viewer to expereince Japanese culture and events from an entirely new perspective. Subject matter includes Imperial Japanese troops in 1931 Manchuria, remarkable domestic scenes of 1930s Japan, preparation for war in 1939, and images of occupation in 1940s Shanghai.

Japan's War in Colour (2004), narrated by Brian Cox. 


World War II | Colour Films (Youtube)

WW2 Timeline: 

Nation in war: 


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