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Web ratings in China disabled for propaganda movie

At least two major entertainment websites in China have stopped allowing users to review the country's newest propaganda blockbuster on the ruling Communist Party.
/ Source: The Associated Press

At least two major entertainment websites in China have stopped allowing users to review the country's newest propaganda blockbuster on the ruling Communist Party.

The sites, mtime.com and douban.com, have removed their star rating system and disabled the function for user reviews for "Beginning of the Great Revival," which opened about three weeks ago to mixed reactions from audiences.

Users are still able to comment and review other movies on the sites, but is unclear exactly why the review functions were removed for the "Great Revival." Netizens speculate it was to block and prevent negative comments posted about the propaganda movie.

Calls to mtime.com on Thursday rang unanswered and douban.com did not respond to an email request for comment.

The movie was made to celebrate the Communist Party's 90th anniversary on Friday and traces events from the fall of the last imperial dynasty in 1911 until the founding of the party in 1921.

The makers of the "Great Revival" are following the successful formula used for an earlier propaganda epic "The Founding of a Republic."

That 2009 movie marked the 60th anniversary of the formation of the People's Republic of China. It made $61 million at the box office as young audiences weary of traditional propaganda movies flocked to get a glimpse of the stars.

China's state-controlled commercial movie industry has tried to ensure the success of the "Great Revival" by drawing in audiences with another star-studded cast and by barring theaters from premiering Hollywood blockbusters during its run.