Hi! Christmas is coming and I’d like to write about a superb film I watched some time ago. It is called Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence (戦場のメリークリスマス in Japan, Furyo – Em nome da honra in Brazil, 俘虜 in China, and Furyo in most european countries).
The movie recalls the World War II, but not in a conventional way. Instead, the film focuses on a specific place: a Japanese prisoner of war camp in Java, Indonesia during 1942. Japan was occupying that area due to its influence expansion intents in Asia and due to natural resources.
The war gives place to human relationship in this movie, human relationship in war. For me, it is the main purpose of the movie and 大島渚 (Nagisa Oshima), director of the movie, achieved it in a touching and interesting way.
There are two musicians in the casting: 坂本龍一 (Ryuichi Sakamoto), a renowned japanese musician who also made the soundtrack for this movie. The music in the video above, called “Forbidden Colours”, is from he (composition) and Englishman David Sylvian (lyrics); the other is David Bowie, another english and worldwide famous musician.
Sakamoto plays the role of Captain Yonoi, a kind of conflicting captain and camp commandant. He is always with his sword and practice sword-fighting constantly. This reflects his bushido honor code, which is present throughout the movie. Bowie plays the role of Jack Celliers, an english soldier who is taken captive and sent to this camp.
There are also (among others) Tom Conti playing the role of Lieutenant Colonel John Lawrence and 北野武 (Takeshi Kitano, also known as ビートたけし) playing the role of Sergeant Hara.
It’s very hard to say much more without revealing something that might be a spoiler, so I let you with a Sakamoto’s performance. He plays “Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence”, the main theme of this movie. “Forbidden Colours”, aforementioned, is a vocal version of the main theme. This song is very very beautiful for me, and it’s addicting.
One of these days, I listened to this music in a radio! I was so surprised to listen to a japanese artist in a brazilian radio. Such things could occur more often.
So, I really hope you watch this one and enjoy like I do every time I watch it ^_^
Here are some images related (3 images) to this movie:
I wish you a Merry Christmas and a really happy new year! See you.