Emperor (2012) Movie Script

Japan has surrendered,
brought to its knees
by the most terrible weapon ever devised,
the atomic bomb.
The country is a smoking ruin.
Despite this, their ruler,
Emperor Hirohito,
is still worshipped
by his people as a living god.
We have placed
this Sacred Son of Heaven
on the protected list
until we decide
what to do with him.
I fear the Japan I fell in love with
will be scarred
beyond recognition.
I'm seeing
aerial reconnaissance photos,
but they only tell part of the story.
General Fellers,
the old man wants you up front.
General MacArthur, sir.
I'm told there will be
2,000 Imperial troops
lining the road
we'll have to drive, and, um...
We have 100 men, sir,
and the cars they've requisitioned
for us are not armored.
The snipers could take us out
at any point, General.
Sir, the Emperor rallied his people
in ways that were unimaginable
only a month ago.
He did so by ordering them
to surrender
without ever using
the word "surrender."
He simply asked that they
"endure the unendurable."
And I do not doubt
their allegiance to him,
nor to his order to surrender, sir.
Get through to Washington
and tell them
I've consulted my experts,
and there's nothing
to worry about.
That'll do.
Gentlemen, we will take
no weapons with us
when we step off this airplane.
Nothing will impress them more
than a show
of absolute fearlessness.
If they don't know
they're licked by now,
they will get the picture today.
Now, let's show them
some good old-fashioned
American swagger.
General! General Mac!
Welcome to Japan, Mac.
Good to see you.
This way, sir!
The worst war
in all history is over.
Now is the time to win
this fragile peace,
or impose it if we have to.
We are the occupying power...
but we must be seen
as liberators, not conquerors.
Not your usual surrender formation.
They avert their gaze
for the Emperor, too, sir.
They are paying you
the ultimate respect.
I know.
All right, let's move it!
- You two men at the top of the stairs.
- Sir!
Our headquarters is just across
from the Imperial Palace
in one of the few buildings
our B-29s missed.
The palace is strictly
off limits to our forces.
General MacArthur
has ordered me to arrest
and bring to justice
30 of the Class A war criminals
who are close
to Emperor Hirohito.
Take those down.
- Listen up.
- Attention, gentlemen.
I want all suspects arrested
in a one-hour window.
We cannot give them time to react.
We'll begin with former
Prime Minister Tojo at 2100 hours.
Let's go!
You heard him! Get busy!
Hustle it up!
The arrests must be made
as close to simultaneous as possible.
All right.
Let's move it out!
Let's go!
It's an island.
They're not going anywhere.
There's a long tradition
of suicide, General.
General Fellers?
I am Takahashi,
your driver and interpreter.
What did you say
your name was again?
Takahashi, at your service.
Follow me.
And you work for me, correct?
Exclusively, sir.
Move it!
It's a private matter.
Find her.
Let's go.
Go, move it.
Come on!
Watch for booby traps.
Check that door!
He's still alive.
Get a medic in here, now.
Shoots himself in the chest
and misses his heart?
What was he mumbling?
He was apologizing
for taking so long to die.
These people are barbaric.
They have different ideas of honor.
- Sir.
- Sector five, six, and nine.
I'll take care of it.
General MacArthur, sir.
As you were.
Come with me.
26 of the top 29 accused were
successfully detained, sir.
And the others?
Took their own lives, sir.
That is unacceptable,
What about Tojo?
but we got there in time.
Do not let that son of a bitch die
before we get a chance to hang him.
Our mission has changed.
The President has taken the Emperor
off the protected list.
He can be tried
as a war criminal if we want.
Clearly, it is what
the Justice Department wants.
But they have given me
all often days
to conduct an investigation
into the Emperor's role in the war.
- Ten days?
- That's right.
That's not feasible, sir.
But isn't there
a consensus already, sir?
The whole world wants
the Emperor damned to hell.
Thank you, Richter, that'll do.
Come in here, Fellers.
How long since you were here?
Five years ago, sir.
It's hard to come back
and see it like this, isn't it?
Yes, sir.
Well, we have a job to do.
There is a strong consensus
about the fate of the Emperor,
but it doesn't mean shit to me.
I won't be bullied
by those cretins in Washington.
My mission is to rebuild Japan.
Yes, sir.
If I arrest the Emperor,
I'll face mass suicides,
possibly open revolt.
If I put him on trial,
I could be setting a spark
to a powder keg
at precisely
the wrong moment.
Your thoughts, Fellers?
There's always the question
of justice, sir.
And on the practical side,
there's Stalin.
Oh, that son of a bitch.
I don't want
the Communists in here.
But Washington wants
vengeance on the Emperor,
because their voters do,
and their voters have no fucking idea
what's good for them.
If the Emperor goes,
the Reds will enter.
Staving off the Communists
is the plight of our times, sir.
A plight that rests with you, Fellers.
I'm making this your job,
not Richter's.
Ten days.
I have confidence in you.
Sir, I am deeply honored,
but I'm not sure...
You know this country.
You love it.
You hate it.
Your thinking about it
has been dead on so far,
and I know you'll meet
their deadline,
because, like me,
you don't want those bastards
making our decisions for us.
The conclusion has to be ours.
Pardon the Emperor,
or depose and arrest him,
but make a decision.
Commit it to paper
for my consideration and approval.
You're right.
General, I have a Jeep for you.
I'll walk.
Ifs not safe.
On the night
of the 10th of March, 1945,
our bombers turned
the Japanese capital
into the largest crematorium
the world has ever known.
100,000 people were incinerated
in a single air raid.
The stench of burnt flesh
and rotting bodies still lingers.
This country is starving
and teetering on the edge
of total collapse.
It wouldn't take much
for their resentment
to ignite into revolt.
And the fate of the Emperor
could be just the spark.
Miss! Excuse me, miss.
You dropped these.
Thank you.
Keep it.
Let's do the Lindy!
Aya, let's go somewhere else.
Sorry, I didn't know
it would be so wild in there.
Let's dance here.
I've been wondering
how you got the nerve
to come so far
from home all alone.
Well, lam too,
how do you say...
outspoken for a Japanese girl.
Is that a serious flaw?
I checked the address
of her apartment in Tokyo.
It was hit in a bombing
three months ago.
The house was demolished.
She substituted
at a school near Shizuoka.
Contact her uncle,
General Kajima.
He'll know where she is.
Yes, sir.
our mission has changed.
We will investigate
the Emperor for war crimes.
The key players will go here.
We're dividing it
into three categories:
The military on this side,
Imperial staff,
and politicians.
Sir, the information you asked for.
All right.
We will detain and interrogate
as many as we can find.
Ma'am, do you speak English?
Tracking them down won't be easy.
Having a street address
is not much use
when whole streets
have disappeared
off the face of the Earth.
I don't anticipate
too much cooperation.
So these are the top
military commanders.
We now have 32 names.
These were the people that were
with the Emperor when the war started.
There's not enough time
to investigate them all.
There's no other way
to know which of them
might have critical information, sir.
None of our Japanese
so-called friends
are in the mix,
so they can't help us.
If our friends can't help us,
let's try our enemies.
They'll never turn
on their buddies, sir.
They have no incentive.
They might if it means
saving their Emperor.
Tojo was hand-picked by the Emperor
to be Prime Minister.
The order to attack Pearl Harbor
came from his office.
his attempted suicide,
he is being held
at Sugamo Prison,
awaiting trial for war crimes.
Our medics are keeping him alive
long enough to face execution.
You are going to hang,
Mr. Prime Minister.
Do you want the Emperor
to have the same fate?
I need three names.
That'll be all. Thank you.
General Fellers, sir.
Not now, Rogers.
Fumimaro Konoe.
Fumimaro Konoe was
replaced as Prime Minister
right before the war started.
There must have been
a good reason.
Set up a meeting.
Yes, sir.
How influential is his family?
So he'll consider suicide?
Yes, sir.
No need.
I'm surprised I wasn't arrested
with Tojo and the others.
Your name was on the list.
I removed it, for now.
You know the Emperor well.
As well as anyone
can know His Majesty.
Was he against the war?
His Majesty is against all wars.
He is a pacifist by nature,
very gentle.
Yet he gave permission
for Pearl Harbor.
When Tojo
and the militarists took power,
His Majesty was drawn in.
It was a national delusion.
Could he have stopped it'?
I don't know.
I was removed
from power by then.
Three months before Pearl Harbor,
I opened a secret channel
to President Roosevelt.
I said I would meet him anywhere
to find a way to avoid a conflict.
We still could have stopped it,
but it was not in the interest
of the militarists.
So he does bear responsibility
for starting the war?
It's not
a black and white issue, General.
Millions of people died in his name.
Your skies were filled
with kamikazes.
Atrocities were committed every day
as he expanded his empire,
invading, conquering, decimating.
You incinerated two of our cities,
turning our children
into shadows on the walls.
We are both guilty.
Yes, we seized territory in China,
but did not Great Britain,
even Portugal, precede us?
Yes, we took Singapore
and the Malaya,
but we took it from the British.
We did not take the Philippines
from the Filipinos,
but from the Americans,
who themselves took it
from the Spanish.
If it is an international crime
to take territory by force,
who convicted the British, French,
Dutch, and American leaders?
And what is different with Japan'?
You see, General, we are
simply following your fine example.
I don't need a history lesson,
Your Excellency.
The only thing I know
for certain is,
during the war,
there was a fever over Japan.
I was part of that fever.
I cannot give you
what you want, General.
Then who can?
You must speak with Kido.
Koichi Kido,
Lord Keeper of the Privy Seal,
the Emperor's closest adviser
behind the high walls
of the Imperial Palace,
at Hirohito's side constantly
from Pearl Harbor to Hiroshima.
We contacted his entourage,
and he has accepted my invitation
to meet at a discreet location,
well away from our headquarters.
Evening, ma'am.
I'm hereto pick up Aya.
Avis not here.
We were supposed to meet.
Do you know where she is?
Aya went back to Japan
this morning.
Did she leave a note?
He's not going to show, is he?
No, sir.
He's afraid he'll get arrested.
You send him
a message from me.
When he sees his Emperor
hanging from the end of a rope,
it was Kids that hanged him.
Yes, Mr. President.
No, I think you've hit the mark,
Mr. President.
And thank you, sir.
You lying son of a bitch.
We're still looking for Kido, sir.
God damn it, Fellers,
if Kido is the key
to this investigation,
I don't care
what you have to do.
Perform a miracle if you must,
but do not come back
to this office
unless you are dragging him
by the balls.
Yes, sir.
Hell, he even wore a naval uniform
that day, sir.
I don't see
what else you need.
He might have known about it,
might have even signed
his name to it,
but did he want to start it
and could he
really have stopped it?
He's the Emperor, sir.
He could do whatever he wanted.
It might seem that way
on the surface,
but this is
a nation of contradictions.
I guess they escape me.
Does seem pretty
cut and dried, sir.
We need to focus
on the stepping-stone meetings
that led Japan to war.
Who were the key players
and how close
to the Emperor were they?
It is an intricate web of power
surrounding the Emperor.
The Chrysanthemum Throne
is a mystery,
even unto itself.
If I find the Emperor guilty,
Washington will be delighted.
They want him to pay
the ultimate price.
Who is this man, really?
Could he have stopped
Japan going to war,
even if he wanted to?
Konoe is right.
Nothing in Japan
is ever black and white.
There are a million shades of gray.
Hi, mister.
Aya, I hope you don't mind me
showing up like this unannounced,
but I was sewing duty
in the Philippines,
and I got an assignment
to come to Japan.
Since I was nowhere near
the neighborhood, I thought...
Please, go away.
Aya, I sent you so many letters,
none of which you returned.
You shouldn't have come.
Good morning.
Shimada Sensei...
They are going to call the police.
May I walk with you a little bit?
My father made me promise
one thing,
that I would never
marry an American.
When he became ill,
I came back to Japan.
He passed away.
I'm sorry.
You look as beautiful
as the first time we ever met.
Gentlemen, we won't be
dining on steak tonight.
This country is starving,
and if word got out
that we were feasting,
we would lose
our moral authority,
and, of course, moral authority
is what we need the most.
Ah, it looks
as if our dinner is ready.
Courage, men.
I intend to make Japan
the world's greatest experiment
in the liberation
of a people from military rule.
How is your investigation
coming, General?
I hear you're working
round the clock...
you and all the other
top Japan experts.
Excuse me for a moment,
You know, he's playing you, General.
MacArthur, like a fiddle.
MacArthur believes in honor.
And glory. His own,
of course, at your expense.
He wants to save Hirohito,
but he needs you to do it.
He doesn't need me.
He's the Supreme Commander.
He's much more
ambitious than that.
He wants to be the next President
of the United States.
What do you think
all those photographs are for?
Are you finished, General?
He doesn't want to ruin
his chances of being nominated,
and he knows Americans want to see
the Emperor's head on a stake.
Have you stopped to consider
what would happen
if the Emperor were to hang?
This whole occupation
could blow up on us.
It's not a decision
I'll lake lightly.
I agree. It's a quagmire,
but justice should be sewed.
Revenge is
not the same thing as justice.
You play it how you want, General,
but if MacArthur finds a way
to save Hirohito
and blame it on you,
he'll do it.
He has no guarantee
that I will exonerate the Emperor.
He knows you share
his phobia of Communists.
Ifs precisely why he chose you.
He also knows you have
an affinity for Japan...
and Japanese women.
Don't let him play you, General.
Ready, Higgins?
Over here, Eichelberger,
for your moment in the sun.
There we go.
- Very good, sir.
- Very good.
That went quite well, I think.
I'll be sure you all gel a copy.
Where to, sir?
That document I gave you
on the woman,
where is it?
Right here, sir.
Did you let anyone see it?
Of course not, sir.
Here it is.
No, that's all right, you keep it.
I need a drink.
I'll take you, sir.
Did you find out
anything else on her?
I have not been able
to contact her uncle.
But she was teaching
at a school near Shizuoka,
but the town was bombed.
Bombed? Shizuoka?
Nine months ago.
That's impossible.
The damage was... extensive.
How far is it?
Three hours from here.
Let's go.
Made you smile.
You worked late.
While I waited,
I did some research
for this paper I have to write.
I learned a lot just walking
around your school.
How do you get your kids
to clean the grounds?
Keep the pressure.
The army is teaching kids
to hate foreigners.
Those pamphlets on the shelf,
they hand them out everywhere.
I hate what
it's doing to people.
Some of my students aren't
even allowed to study English anymore.
My class is so small now.
I am afraid, after all.
I'm afraid for...
their future.
I want to know
who survived this raid.
I would like a list.
I can get you a list
of the dead, sir.
Sir, these are the names we're
still trying to track down.
- Ready, Higgins?
- Yes, sir.
- Let's see, I think I'll stand here.
- Hold it.
All right. How do I look?
Very good, sir.
- Yeah.
- There you are, sir.
The baton is quite dramatic.
Very good, sir.
My uncle is a general.
He would be able to help you.
Come here.
Don't look at them.
Don't make eye contact.
I used to come here as a girl.
My uncle would tell me giants
lived in these mountains.
It's gonna be fine.
- Yeah?
- Yeah.
Ah, Aya-Chan...
It's a pleasure.
Please, come in.
Follow me.
Your Japanese is very good.
So is your English.
You're surprised?
I sewed two years at the Japanese
embassy in Washington,
Military Attach.
Please sit down.
I'm sorry.
It fascinated me.
These are my sons.
Eiji, Akio.
What binds
you Americans together,
beyond the colors of your flag?
You see, Colonel,
you will never understand
complete devotion
to one set of values.
Your culture is much older
and deeply rooted,
and I hold it
in the highest regard.
And yet...
you are trying to undermine it
with your oil embargo.
We'll speak of that tomorrow.
Tonight, we drink more sake.
- Would you like...
- Yes.
My niece tells me
you are writing a paper
on the mind
of the Japanese soldier.
You have much to learn.
Most of my books on the Japanese
army are in Japanese,
but some are in English,
French, and Russian.
You're welcome to read them.
The English ones are here.
If I may,
what role
does the Emperor play
in the mindset
of the Japanese soldier?
Above all else,
His Majesty is the reason
the Japanese soldier is superior
to the American soldier
in his sense of duty.
If we fight the United States,
we will win because
we follow his divine will.
I want to know
who amongst these men
works inside
the Imperial Palace.
These two, sir.
The most influential, I'd say,
Vice Minister Sekiya.
Call his office.
Ifs after 9:00, General.
Call tonight.
Call first thing
in the morning.
Send a messenger,
and then call again.
Yes, sir.
Yes, Fellers?
Here's what we got, sir.
Vice Minister Teizaburo Sekiya,
a high palace official.
Now, his office
is in the Palace.
I've reached out to him
through every official channel.
I know your order was
not to use weapons against the Palace.
My order is not to use weapons,
nor force of any kind.
There will be a time when the Emperor
will have to come to me,
and he will come to me.
We're talking
about the Vice Minister, sir.
I need access to him,
but I can't just walk in there.
The Imperial Guards are trained
to defend the grounds to the death.
Find another way.
I have, sir.
Request an extension
from Washington.
We are going to meet
their goddamn deadline,
and if you can't do it,
I'll find someone who can.
Then I require weapons, General.
I'll give you a weapon.
Prepare a letter
for my signature now.
Yes, sir.
"To the Imperial Household,
"as Supreme Commander
of all Allied forces,
"I order you to allow
Brigadier General Bonner Fellers
"to enter
the Imperial premises
"to meet with Vice Minister
Sekiya immediately.
Signed, Supreme Commander,
et cetera."
You may take
a small contingent
solely for your personal protection.
Now, go on.
Yes, sir.
Please, sir, you don't understand.
I understand.
This needs to be arranged,
General Fellers.
I'm going to arrange it
right now.
Tell him we are here
under the order
of the Supreme Commander,
General Douglas MacArthur.
I need to be in a room with
Vice Minister Sekiya in ten minutes.
Tell him!
Just you. No weapons.
Wait here.
Yes, sir.
It would be very helpful
to see something
that reflects the Emperor's
state of mind
before and during the war.
His Majesty does not record
his personal feelings and memories.
Did he write any letters,
messages to military or political leaders
regarding the war?
This is my own private record
of a crucial
Imperial Council meeting
three months
before the war began.
The Emperor broke all precedent
by unexpectedly addressing
the ministers directly.
His Majesty recited a gyosei
written by his grandfather.
A tanka poem?
It says, "It is our hope
"that all the world's oceans
be joined in peace.
"So why do the winds and waves
now rise up in an angry rage?"
That's not a strong vindication
of the Emperor, sir.
It was an extraordinary act
of courage
for His Majesty to recite it
at that meeting.
The Emperor does not
express himself directly,
as most men do.
Well, I'm going to express
myself very directly,
because 2,000 years
of your national identity are on the line.
Did the Emperor order
the attack on Pearl Harbor?
As I said, His Majesty
recited a tanka poem
written by his grandfather.
I'll be happy to recite it
again for you, General.
If you want to save the Emperor
from being deposed
and put on trial...
I'm gonna need more,
Mr. Woe Minister,
and I'm gonna need it soon.
General Fellers!
Leave me alone.
You are bleeding.
Please, General, come with me.
You want to give me that list,
The list of the dead.
I don't have it, sir.
Then go home.
Don't you have a family
to go home to?
Here, you should add that its roots
are in religious traditions
and can be traced back to Shinto.
If you understand devotion,
you will understand Japan.
There are two Japanese words
you should know.
the way things appear,
"honne, "
the way they really are.
When you look at Japan,
you see the most modern
and Westernized of Asian countries,
but that is a tatemae, the surface.
And the honne?
It is the true heartbeat
of my country,
which is more
than 2,000 years old.
It has nothing to do
with the West.
Japan runs on the ancient warrior code
of loyalty and obedience.
After an exhaustive review,
I can find no evidence
exonerating the Emperor.
As Head of State,
Hirohito cannot sidestep war guilt.
I have no choice
but to conclude that he is part of,
and must be considered
an instigator
of the Pacific war.
His arrest and trial may cause
significant internal unrest,
but it is necessary.
General Fellers, good news.
What? What time is it?
Midnight, sir.
Kido wants to talk to you.
I'm going to bed.
You don't understand, sir.
I found Kido.
I'm not doing this anymore.
Tomorrow I'll tell MacArthur
I couldn't give him his miracle.
But he is here, sir!
- Kidds here?
- Yes.
He is coming up.
General Fellers.
Hate to disturb you
at this hour, sir.
Aya Shimada.
She's from a prominent
semi-noble family
just outside Shizuoka City.
Her father is a major landholder.
They were at college
together in America.
Now, we know
he visited her in Japan.
These are the dates he was here.
There were no prohibitions
against traveling to Japan
before the war.
Forgive me, sir, but plain and simple,
he's a Jap lover.
That's the worst you have?
No, sir. The worst is right here.
Fellers had direct input
into the selection of targets in Japan
for Allied bombing raids
from August 1942 to July 1945.
And he attempted
to steer planners away
from targets in Shizuoka,
near where Aya Shimada
frequently worked as a teacher.
Excellent work, General.
I'll hold on to these for now.
By all means, sir.
And I will see to it
that you are rewarded
for your dedication, Richter.
Just doing what's right, sir.
Carry on.
You understand, this is sensitive.
Certain people won't appreciate
my speaking with you.
On August 9th, the Supreme Council
convened at midnight
to discuss whether or not
to surrender.
Fires burned throughout the city.
Three chief ministers from the council
spoke against the surrender.
The Foreign Minister,
the Navy Minister,
the President of the Privy Council
wanted to surrender.
It was three to three, deadlock.
And how did they break
the deadlock?
The Emperor began to speak.
"I trust the Allies," he said.
"I want to accept their terms.
"I wish you all
to agree with me."
The War Minister, Anami,
begged the Emperor...
"You must not surrender."
The Emperor repeated,
"I wish you all to agree with me, "
and then he left the room.
And what about
the fanatics in the army?
What happened?
What about them?
His Majesty knew
they would keep fighting,
so he decided to broadcast
his wishes to the people.
He made a recording,
and we were ready to send it
to Radio Tokyo for broadcast.
What time was that?
At 11 P.M.
A thousand soldiers
attacked the Palace.
They all came at once?
Six different times.
They were looking
for the recording.
They were also coming to kill me.
And I believe they would
have killed His Majesty.
We hid together
in a basement room.
They never found us,
or the recording.
At 8:00 A.M.,
General Tanaka arrived
and stopped the soldiers,
and many of the officers
shot themselves.
Then General Tanaka
went into his room
and shot himself.
Hours later,
the recording was broadcast,
and the whole nation
heard the Emperor
tell them in his own voice
that Japan had accepted
the Allies' terms.
I need proof that this happened
the way you just told me.
All records were destroyed,
and many witnesses
killed themselves.
You can believe me or not,
but that is the true story
of how Japan surrendered.
I only have his word.
How do I know it's
not blind loyalty to the Emperor?
Can I take you, sir?
I'll be all right.
I do want to apologize
for the things that I said.
No need, sir.
You don't have a family, do you,
Mr. Takahashi?
My wife died
in one of the first raids
to hit Tokyo.
How did you cope?
I didn't.
I thought I would die, too.
You must go.
The police are starting
to round up Americans.
Our countries
will soon be at war.
The car will take you.
They are watching the trains.
Where's Aya?
You're putting Aya at risk.
You must never see her again.
No. You can't do this.
What you want is impossible.
I need to say something to you.
I commanded troops.
Yes. I looked up your record.
You were at Saipan, Okinawa.
Bloody battles.
We did our duty,
but we lost our humanity.
You must understand,
we Japanese
are a selfless people,
capable of immense sacrifice
because of our complete devotion
to a set of ideals.
We are also ruthless warriors,
capable of unspeakable crimes
because of that
same complete devotion.
I cannot tell you if the Emperor
is guilty or innocent.
I don't know
if he brought us to war.
But he has brought us to peace.
He made a brave decision
against intense pressure.
I know you would do the same.
They were written for you.
You gave me such happiness,
but life is not so simple.
I hope someday
you will understand
that I only ever had one choice.
In the end, I am where I belong,
but my heart is with you always.
Yours, Aya.
She died with honor.
It is a fundamental American concept
that the people of any nation
have the inherent right
to choose their own government.
Were the Japanese
given this opportunity,
they would select the Emperor
as their symbolic head of state.
In effecting
our bloodless occupation,
we requisitioned
the services of the Emperor.
By his order, seven million soldiers
laid down their arms.
Through his act,
hundreds of thousands
of American casualties
were avoided.
His guilt or innocence in the prosecution
of the war is unknowable.
But his decisive role in ending
the war is beyond dispute.
If the Emperor were tried
for war crimes,
the governmental structure
would collapse,
and a general uprising
would be inevitable.
There would be
chaos and bloodshed.
It would take more than
a million American servicemen
to oversee the occupation
for years to come.
- Haul ass.
- Sir!
In conclusion, the people of Japan
have suffered greatly,
and it is in their interest
beyond all other considerations
that I strongly urge
allowing the Emperor
to continue on his throne
as the leader of his people.
General Fellers.
Now hear this. Now hear this.
Mine clearance is being
conducted in the harbor.
All small craft should remain
clear until further notice.
What the hell is this?
The conclusion
of my investigation, sir.
What investigation?
This is just your opinion, Fellers.
I don't see any evidence.
I have no concrete evidence, sir,
but it is what we must do.
Based on what,
your vote of confidence?
Based on the fact that we're here
to rebuild Japan,
and we will never...
I am about to make
the biggest decision of the occupation,
which will determine
the future of Japan,
and all I have is conjecture.
We will never know the extent
of the Emperor's involvement, sir.
If we had a thousand years,
we wouldn't know it.
We have to make up our minds.
I have made mine.
You want me to call
Washington and tell them,
I'm making my decision
because I trust General Fellers?
No, sir. You are making it
because there's nothing
that incriminates the Emperor, sir.
Sit down.
Sir, we promised Hirohito
that Japan would retain
the institution of the Emperor
if he surrendered,
and surrender he did.
We will never know
who started the war, General,
but we do know
who brought it to an end.
There is nothing,
absolutely nothing,
that could compromise my situation
if I were to absolve the Emperor?
There is no evidence for
nor against him, sir.
Fire in the hole!
In that case,
I want to meet him.
Meet who, sir?
This monarch in who I am
placing all of my faith.
Face to face?
That's right.
Before I call Washington,
I want to meet him,
shake his hand,
look him in the eye,
see what kind of man he is.
We can't extend
a last-minute invitation to Hirohito, sir.
I'm not extending an invitation
to anyone, Fellers, you are.
You didn't bring me the proof,
bring me the Emperor.
Then I request
you postpone the call, sir.
We are going to meet
their deadline,
and we are going
to meet it with aplomb.
We're a full day ahead, Fellers.
Today, here and now,
is still yesterday in Washington.
His Majesty will not come.
If I may, sir,
the Emperor won't come
to headquarters,
but he might come
to MacArthurs home.
A social visit, then.
A cup of tea to save
a 2,000-year-old dynasty.
His Majesty speaks
and understands some English,
but to avoid
all communication will be
through his translator.
Sit down, Higgins.
Yes, sir.
His Majesty's image
can only be recorded
by a court-approved
photographer from a distance.
His Majesty won't eat anything
or drink anything
during the visit.
Do you think we don't know
how to show hospitality'?
Of course not,
General Supreme Commander.
Supreme Commander will do.
You must understand,
a Japanese Emperor
has never called on a foreigner,
so there are certain proprieties
I'd better make you aware of.
You may not shake
His Majesty's hand or touch him.
You must never look
His Majesty directly in the eyes.
You may not step on his shadow.
When you sit down
with His Majesty,
you have to sit on his left.
You must never call
His Majesty by his name.
I've never met an emperor before,
much less a god.
What the hell do you say to a god?
General, before you make
your final decision,
there's something you should know.
You asked if there was anything
that could
compromise your position.
It's all here.
I should have brought it
to your attention before, sir.
Oh, yeah.
General Richter did his job
with his usual thoroughness.
He brought these by
the other night.
I steered planners away from targets
to protect someone, sir.
Tell you what, Fellers...
not a single American life
was lost in this operation.
I don't see the point
in rehashing it.
And what about General Richter?
After careful consideration,
I've come to the conclusion
that General Richter
can go piss up a rope.
General Bonner Fellers.
His Majesty says that it is a privilege
to meet you, General Fellers.
He thanks you
for your service to Japan.
Please, come in.
General MacArthur
is waiting inside.
It is indeed
a pleasure to welcome
you here, Your Majesty.
Thank you.
And thank you.
We have arranged for a picture.
No, impossible.
His Maj...
His Majesty and I
and his translator
can have a talk here
while the rest of you
get acquainted in the library.
But that wasn't the plan.
I come to you,
General MacArthur,
to offer myself as the one
to bear sole responsibility.
I wish that the punishment
will fall on me,
not on Japan.
I appreciate that.
Please be seated.
This has nothing to do
with punishment...
Your Majesty.
I need your help.
So let's see what we can do
to get Japan back on its feet.
Back to your hotel, sir?
We never did have
that drink, Takahashi.
Perhaps now would be
a good time.