Juzo Itami

The Funeral

The Funeral

It’s death, Japanese style, in the rollicking and wistful first feature from maverick writer-director Juzo Itami. In the wake of her lascivious father’s sudden passing, a successful actor (Itami’s wife and frequent collaborator, Nobuko Miyamoto) and her husband (Tsutomu Yamazaki) leave Tokyo and return to their family house to oversee a traditional funeral. Over the course of three days of mourning that bring illicit escapades in the woods, a surprisingly materialistic priest (Yasujiro Ozu regular Chishu Ryu), and cinema’s most epic sandwich handoff, the tensions between public propriety and private hypocrisy are laid bare. Deftly weaving dark comedy with poignant family drama, The Funeral is a fearless satire of the clash between old and new in Japanese society in which nothing, not even the finality of death, is off-limits.

Film Info

  • Japan
  • 1984
  • 124 minutes
  • Color
  • 1.33:1
  • Japanese
  • Spine #1125

Special Features

  • High-definition restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray
  • New interviews with actors Nobuko Miyamoto and Manpei Ikeuchi
  • Creative Marriages: Juzo Itami & Nobuko Miyamoto, a short program produced by the Criterion Channel
  • Commercials for Ichiroku Tart by director Juzo Itami
  • Trailers
  • New English subtitle translation
  • PLUS: An essay by author Pico Iyer and, for the Blu-ray, excerpts from Itami’s 1985 book “The Funeral” Diary and from a 2007 remembrance of Itami by actor Tsutomu Yamazaki

    New cover by Tatsuro Kiuchi

Purchase Options

Special Features

  • High-definition restoration, with uncompressed monaural soundtrack on the Blu-ray
  • New interviews with actors Nobuko Miyamoto and Manpei Ikeuchi
  • Creative Marriages: Juzo Itami & Nobuko Miyamoto, a short program produced by the Criterion Channel
  • Commercials for Ichiroku Tart by director Juzo Itami
  • Trailers
  • New English subtitle translation
  • PLUS: An essay by author Pico Iyer and, for the Blu-ray, excerpts from Itami’s 1985 book “The Funeral” Diary and from a 2007 remembrance of Itami by actor Tsutomu Yamazaki

    New cover by Tatsuro Kiuchi
The Funeral
Cast
Tsutomu Yamazaki
Wabisuke Inoue
Nobuko Miyamoto
Chizuko Amamiya
Kin Sugai
Kikue Amamiya
Hideji Otaki
Shokichi Amamiya
Ichiro Zaitsu
Satomi
Nekohachi Edoya
Ebihara
Manpei Ikeuchi
Jiro
Haruna Takase
Yoshiko Saito
Chishu Ryu
Priest
Credits
Director
Juzo Itami
Writer
Juzo Itami
Cinematographer
Yonezo Maeda
Production designer
Hiroshi Tokuda
Composer
Joji Yuasa
Editor
Akira Suzuki
Executive producer
Shogo Hosogoshi
Producer
Yasushi Tamaoki
Producer
Yutaka Okada
Associate producer
Juzo Itami

Current

The Funeral: At a Loss
The Funeral: At a Loss

Juzo Itami’s tragicomic directorial debut has scandalous fun with the Japanese traditions governing death.

By Pico Iyer