Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence

Nagisa Oshima
Japan, UK
123 min

30 October / 15:00

30 Oct / 15:00

Midlands Arts Centre

Midlands Arts Centre

19 September / 17:00

19 Sep / 17:00

Catford Mews

Catford Mews

David Bowie stars in Nagisa Oshima’s portrait of friendship and obsession among four very different men confined in a Japanese prisoner-of-war camp in Java during World War II. In 1942, British officer Major Jack Celliers is captured by the Japanese and taken to a camp overseen by Captain Yonoi, a man fixated on discipline and the glory of imperial Japan. As the pair become locked in an obsessive psychological battle, Lieutenant Colonel Lawrence, the only inmate with a degree of sympathy for Japanese culture, develops a friendship with Sergeant Hara, a compassionate man beneath his cruel façade. Oshima’s Palme d’Or-nominated masterpiece also stars the noted actor and director Takeshi Kitano, and marked the big screen debut of Ryuichi Sakamoto, who also composed the film’s BAFTA-winning score.

Introduction by Christopher Brown, University of Sussex.

Nagisa Oshima

Nagisa Oshima was a director and screenwriter, widely acclaimed as one of the greatest Japanese filmmakers of all time. He directed over twenty feature films, several of which were highly controversial for their ground-breaking depictions of sexuality and gender.

Additional Information

This screening is organised in partnership with the Japan Foundation, with support from Great Britain Sasakawa Foundation, Daiwa Foundation and Japan Society.

The screening in Birmingham is part of Japan 2021: 100 years of Japanese Cinema, a UK-wide film season supported by National Lottery and BFI Film Audience Network.