Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence

Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence

Nagisa Oshima

 
Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence (Criterion Blu-Ray)

Blu-Ray

1 Disc

SRP: $39.95

Criterion Store price:$31.96

+ Add to Cart
  • Japan, United Kingdom
  • 1983
  • 123 minutes
  • Color
  • 1.78:1
  • English, Japanese
  •  
  • Spine #535

In this captivating, skewed World War II drama from Nagisa Oshima, David Bowie regally embodies Celliers, a British officer interned by the Japanese as a POW. Rock star Ryuichi Sakamoto (who also composed this film’s hypnotic score) plays the camp commander, obsessed with the mysterious blond major, while Tom Conti is the British lieutenant colonel Lawrence, who tries to bridge the emotional and language divides between captor and prisoner. Also featuring actor-director Takeshi Kitano in his first dramatic role, Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence is a multilayered, brutal, at times erotic tale of culture clash, and one of Oshima’s greatest successes.

Credits

DirectorNagisa Oshima
ProducerJeremy Thomas
Based on the novel The Seed and the Sower bySir Laurens van der Post
ScreenplayNagisa Oshima
withPaul Mayersberg
Executive producersMasato Hara, Eiko Oshima, Geoffrey Nethercott and Terry Glinwood
Associate producerJoyce Herlihy
MusicRyuichi Sakamoto
Production designerJusho Toda
Director of photographyToichiro Narushima

Disc Features

  • New, restored high-definition master, with DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack on the Blu-ray edition
  • The Oshima Gang, a 1983 making-of featurette
  • New video interviews with producer Jeremy Thomas, screenwriter Paul Mayersberg, actor Tom Conti, and actor-composer Ryuichi Sakamoto
  • Hasten Slowly, an hour-long 1996 documentary about author Laurens van der Post, whose autobiographical novel was the basis for the film
  • Original theatrical trailer
  • New and improved English subtitle translation
  • PLUS: A booklet featuring a new essay by film critic Chuck Stephens and reprinted interviews with director Nagisa Oshima and actor Takeshi Kitano

    New cover by Lucien S. Y. Yang

Film Essays

Lawrence of Shinjuku: Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence

By Chuck Stephens September 28, 2010

“The past, again and again.” —Major Jack Celliers, Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence Nagisa Oshima’s filmmaking career began with the risen sun—or rather, with the promise of a sun soon to rise: . . . Read more »

Photo Galleries


Clippings

On Oshima

March 15, 2011

Fans of Nagisa Oshima will be interested to hear that critic Jonathan Rosenbaum has posted on his blog his entire 2008 Artforum essay “The Sun Also Sets,” which was also reprinted in his 2010 . . . Read more »


Clippings

Big-Screen Bowie

October 13, 2010

In a new Slate article titled “Cracked Actor,” critic Jessica Winter takes an enjoyable, affectionate look back at the film career of that slender shape-shifter David Bowie, on the occasion of . . . Read more »


Press Notes

Press Notes: Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence

October 05, 2010

Many of the great Japanese provocateur Nagisa Oshima’s films have long been out of circulation in any form, much less on digital home video. In recent years, Criterion has been doing its best to . . . Read more »


Film Essays

Lawrence of Shinjuku: Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence

By Chuck Stephens September 28, 2010

“The past, again and again.” —Major Jack Celliers, Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence Nagisa Oshima’s filmmaking career began with the risen sun—or rather, with the promise of a sun soon to rise: . . . Read more »