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Comments about the soundtrack for Spy Game (Harry Gregson-Williams)

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incredible mistakes in the movie and soundtrack
• Posted by: Stewart Xu   <Send E-Mail>
• Date: Tuesday, November 23, 2004, at 2:27 p.m.
• IP Address:

Major mistakes in the movie refer to suzhou and China

I really hope someone can pass the information below to the director, Tony Scott, one of my favorite one.
All the informative is hundred percent true.

I love this movie. It is good, interesting and well organized. But, as an native citizen of Jiangsu province in which Suzhou is one of its major city for almost 20 years, I find so many mistakes about suzhou, the prison, the soldiers, and China, which is a very sad thing. Maybe to the non-Chinese audience, it is just some place like suzhou and china but to Chinese it is absolutely not.

1. At the beginning, it is said to be in Suzhou in 1991. But I can ensure it isn¡¯t. It is like some inland town in middle China in the 1970s.

2. The ambulance is not a Chinese ambulance. Chinese ambulance at that time did not have the English word ¡°ambulance¡± in front of it. At that time Chinese ambulance did not have any English printed at all! And it couldn¡¯t be a Volkswagen. After all, I¡¯ve never seen that kind of minibus in my country. Typical Chinese ambulance should print the Red Cross on its body.

3. The guard in Suzhou prison is another confusing thing to me. According to the uniform, it is some how close to the uniform of the People¡¯s Liberation Army officers (even the ordinary soldiers¡¯ uniform in the movie). But it isn¡¯t. All Chinese people know that it is the Armed Police Military Force that in charge of the defense of all prisons in China, not the national defender, PLA. Anyway, the uniform in the movie is strange that I have never seen in China.

4. The soldiers hold their guns and shoot follow the American way, that¡¯s funny:)

5. Chinese soldiers do not use AK-47 or sort of the guns in the movie. Maybe they use guns of Chinese 59 style in the prison, I don¡¯t know.

6. It is very strange to hear that people in China¡¯s eastern city Suzhou speak Cantonese, which the dialect is particularly spoken in south China¡¯s Hongkong, Macao and some other places in Guangdong Province. Cantonese is rather than a foreign language to suzhou people and vice versa. Neither do the people in suzhou speak Mandarin (Beijing dialect). People in Suzhou speak Chinese Wu dialect (which has the fifth most speakers in the world) which is particularly used in Southern Jiangsu Province, Shanghai and Northern Zhejiang Province (capital city: Hangzhou). More funny thing is that an interpreter interprets Cantonese into Mandarin to the ¡°American Spy¡±: )

7 The prison inside is not Chinese.

8. Suzhou is not a city near the sea. It does Not have a costal line. The nearest coast is in Nantong, the same province¡ªJiangsu, or in Shanghai.

8. The mountains and maps is not geographically like Suzhou.

9. If US marine wants to arrive Suzhou in helicopters, 40 minutes is just enough to them to fly from the coast line of Shanghai, one of China¡¯s most important metropolis. That¡¯s impossible for US military to have a kind of base there or nearby, or anywhere else just have 40 minutes helicopter trip to Suzhou.

Still, there are other smaller mistakes. If you have some comments, contact

Actually, all Mainland Chinese people know these errors, but maybe I am the first time to say it.

Stewart Xu
Graduate School, Southwestern University of Finance and Economics
Chengdu, China

Comments in this Thread:     Expand >>
  •   incredible mistakes in the movie and soundtrack  (4568 views)    We're Here
       Stewart Xu - Tuesday, November 23, 2004, at 2:27 p.m.

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