Battle of Changsha retells the turbulent events of the second Sino-Japanese war through the perspective of the Hu family, particularly through the eyes of a 16 year old girl named Xiang Xiang and her twin brother, Xiao Man.
Gu Qing Ming, is a strict Intelligence Officer in the Nationalist Army from a prominent political family. The feisty fun-loving Xiang Xiang and the arrogant Gu Qing Ming start off on bad terms, howevertheir romance blossoms as they constantly bump into each other. ~~ Based on the novel by the same name by Que Que.
Cast & Credits
The writing here is exceptional. Since we are going a painful time, the writing makes it not only bearable, but also addicting to watch, by balancing slice-of-life and comedy, yes COMEDY, with war and tragedy throughout most of the story. Romance is there, but in a very subtle manner, just like the way I like it. Though understated, the moment it surface, it brings out all those tingling feelings and excitement. The overall way the characters are written, they feel real, relatable, and more than just good or evil. A lot of times it felt like a character study, and the characters were always more than what they appear. The development was slow but apparent, and very realistic. I got to the point that I felt like part of the people there, part of the family, and was in it with them. Without knowing how it ends, I felt I wasn't gonna mind any ending chosen, and the more I watched , the stronger this feeling became. It goes beyond trusting the writer giving a satisfying ending, and more of me having to accept fate.
I can't help but talk about the characters and their relationship. Jun Shan, the brother-in-law, is the star here. He is one piece of work. My first impression of him was *WHAT THE HELL?!* He's bossy, he's pushy,he's uneducated, he's overbearing. But then I notice, he's loyal, he loves his family. I won't say more and let you discover more of him. Believe me that is just the tip of the iceberg of his character. His relationship with Xiang Jun was a highlight in the drama. Beyond love, there was a certain harmony in the relationship. Then there are the twins. I don't know where to start. They are childish, foolish, reckless, and they certainly need to grow. But they are fun to be around, lively, and sure know when to come through when it counts. Being of different genders, they're growth and maturity come at different pace, but the people we leave at the end of the drama may not recognize those we met in the beginning. A part of me wished they stayed how were, but we can't help but grow up. Specially during war, reality hits and you find yourself growing years at each passing day. Qing Ming is another interesting one. He is an educated soldier, always wanting to fight for his country. He can be pretty stubborn, to the point of acting childish. His view of life, of elders, and of women, is that they are all incomprehensible. Only when he starts to understand them he becomes the man he wanted to be. I specially appreciated Qing Ming's relationship with Jun Shan. One hell of a bromance they make. They couldn't be any more different but somehow understand each other well. Another highlight was the grandma. She is a strong, stubborn old lady, but when she's around, you always know that everything is going to be just fine. Xiu Xiu might have appeared as a sweetheart, and submissive, but I always knew she hid fearlessness to appear when needed. The list can go on and on, but I just wouldn't know where to stop. Lets the say, even the smallest roles have been given thought as to make them real, and their development authentic.
What to say about the acting. Brilliant! It turned the character into real human beings, and not just something written on paper. Everyone gave their all to their character, and I have zero complaint.
Honestly the music didn't stand out for me, but didn't ruin anything either.
If I have any complaint at all, is some side characters that appear later on in the drama that weren't given enough time or focus early on, so it was hard to make the connection. Overall though my satisfaction with this drama goes beyond any complaint. I would say that overall, it deserves a 9 or 9.5/10, but the delight it brought me deserves a 10/10!!
Honestly beside Huo Wallace I did not know any of these actors and I have to admit that they were all doing a great job and their portrayals were so convincing and natural.
I'm not going to dwell on the synopsis cause it already says the most important but we surely all know the damages Wars cause(d) and I think it's interesting to see how Chinese people were living during those terrible times and what they had to go through. The drama focuses on the Hu Family and their son in-law Xue Jun Shan, how they coped with the constant Japanese attacks in their Changsha town. And even if my knowledge about the Sino-Japanese wars is weak I think this drama was really well done even the music here fitted perfectly with the general atmosphere.
Many things crossed my mind when I was watching the drama, first I said it earlier but I have to repeat myself everything was realistic and that was my very first thought, I loved to see that even if the Hu family was living a pretty good life (without being super rich either) but they did not wear extravagant and exquisite clothes they simply lived in harmony , enjoying their life in their house all together, eating, working, taking care of each other etc.
Frankly speaking the character that surprised me the most was Xue JunShan, he seemed to be very harsh with his in-laws but actually that was the opposite he cared for them he protected them, he loved them to the point to sacrifice his life for them, he considered them as the most precious things in his life and that is the reason why I loved him so much and why he is my favorite character + I have to say it, I have a thing for older men I found something very appealing about them and that is the case for him too <3
Now it's time to say a few words about the Hu family, Xiang Xiang was my favorite especially the way she evolves throughout the drama and I think that war would change everyone and according to me she's the one who changed the most, she became an outstanding and respectable woman, I have nothing bad to say about her, definitely lovely, bright, cute and very strong but she has a weakness and that is her twin brother I mean their sibling bond is so deep and unwavering, at least that's how I perceived them and I guess that is probably the same with almost all twins of the world.
I loved rhe other characters too especially Gu QingMing( I seriously fell in love with Huo Wallace in this drama, I liked him before but this time he blew me away <3), the grandma, XiangJun, Liu Minghan Xiu Xiu and the rest( I will stop here so if you want to find out why they are fabulous people just watch the drama you'll surely like it as much as I did ). I can't even count the tears I shed for all of these characters, I felt like I was part of their family, that's why Battle of Changsha broke my heart even more than other dramas.
As for the theme song ''I'll remember you'' it is a pure delight, Yang Zi's voice blends so well with Huo Wallace's that we can't stop listening to it and we want more and more. Too bad I can't seem to find it anywhere ! Please If you know where I can download it, tell me :D
I would recommend this drama to everyone even if you're not into this genre because that is not my case and still I enjoyed every minute of this wonderful show. Furthermore this is definitely one of the best Family drama I've ever watched. Just only one thing you must know if you plan to watch it: the last four eps are not subbed and so you would have no choice but to watch it raw or wait but for how long?!
PS: the big plus is that the actors's voices were not DUBBED, what a pleasure !