Merry Christmas Mr Lawrence (Double Play)


Reissue of Nagisa Ôshima’s serene POW drama

Falling somewhere between Cool Hand Luke and Empire Of The Sun, Nagisa Ôshima’s serene POW drama uses David Bowie’s alien aura well, as his arrival at a Japanese internment camp upsets captors and prisoners. It’s occasionally overwrought, but Tom Conti’s rueful performance gives heart to an intelligent, moving study of humanity in an inhuman situation. The restoration is a little soft; extras include a contemporary Making Of and an excerpt about Takeshi Kitano, who makes an early bow.

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