MOVIEmeter
SEE RANK
Up 5,615 this week

Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence (1983)

 -  Drama | War  -  2 September 1983 (USA)
7.3
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 7.3/10 from 8,649 users  
Reviews: 64 user | 51 critic

In 1942 British soldier Jack Celliers comes to a Japanese prison camp. The camp is run by Yonoi, who has a firm belief in discipline, honor and glory. In his view, the allied prisoners are ... See full summary »

Director:

Writers:

(novel), (screenplay), 1 more credit »
Watch Trailer
0Check in
0Share...

Watch Now

From $3.99 on Amazon Instant Video

Related News

Av Pictures' Vic Bateman dies
| ScreenDaily
Review: The Railway Man
| Slackerwood

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 45 titles
created 15 Apr 2011
 
a list of 36 titles
created 11 Jan 2013
 
a list of 49 titles
created 10 months ago
 
a list of 35 titles
created 6 months ago
 

Related Items

Connect with IMDb


Share this Rating

Title: Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence (1983)

Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence (1983) on IMDb 7.3/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence.
Won 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 8 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Gohatto (1999)
Drama | History | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Set during Japan's Shogun era, this film looks at life in a samurai compound where young warriors are trained in swordfighting. A number of interpersonal conflicts are brewing in the ... See full summary »

Director: Nagisa Ôshima
Stars: Takeshi Kitano, Ryûhei Matsuda, Shinji Takeda
Drama | Horror | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

A young man has an affair with an older woman. He is very jealous of her husband and decides that they should kill him. One night, after the husband had plenty of sake to drink and was in ... See full summary »

Director: Nagisa Ôshima
Stars: Tatsuya Fuji, Kazuko Yoshiyuki, Takahiro Tamura
Documentary | History
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.2/10 X  

This movie documents the Apollo missions perhaps the most definitively of any movie under two hours. Al Reinert watched all the footage shot during the missions--over 6,000,000 feet of it, ... See full summary »

Director: Al Reinert
Stars: Jim Lovell, Kenneth Mattingly, Russell Schweickart
Drama | History | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

Based on a true story set in pre-war Japan, a man and one of his servants begin a torrid affair. Their desire becomes a sexual obsession so strong that to intensify their ardor, they ... See full summary »

Director: Nagisa Ôshima
Stars: Tatsuya Fuji, Eiko Matsuda, Aoi Nakajima
Max mon amour (1986)
Comedy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.2/10 X  

A French wife takes a zoo chimp named Max to be her lover.

Director: Nagisa Ôshima
Stars: Charlotte Rampling, Anthony Higgins, Victoria Abril
The Hit (1984)
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Ex-gangster Willie Parker has betrayed his former "colleagues" and now lives in Spain where he thinks he can hide from their vengeance. But one day, ten years later, two hitmen (Braddock ... See full summary »

Director: Stephen Frears
Stars: Freddie Stuart, Ralph Brown, A.J. Clarke
Bad Timing (1980)
Drama | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

The setting is Vienna. A young American woman is brought to a hospital after overdosing on pills, apparently in a suicide attempt. A police detective suspects foul play on the part of her ... See full summary »

Director: Nicolas Roeg
Stars: Art Garfunkel, Theresa Russell, Harvey Keitel
Just a Gigolo (1978)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.7/10 X  

After World War I, a war hero returns to Berlin to find that there's no place for him--he has no skills other than what he learned in the army, and can only find menial, low-paying jobs. He decides to become a gigolo to lonely rich women.

Director: David Hemmings
Stars: David Bowie, Sydne Rome, Kim Novak
Sci-Fi | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Thomas Jerome Newton is a humanoid alien who comes to Earth to get water for his dying planet. He starts a high technology company to get the billions of dollars he needs to build a return ... See full summary »

Director: Nicolas Roeg
Stars: David Bowie, Rip Torn, Candy Clark
Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

Two disgruntled restaurant employees (David Bowie, Rosanna Arquette) decide to rob their employers (Buck Henry, Andre Gregory).

Director: Richard Shepard
Stars: Rosanna Arquette, David Bowie, Eszter Balint
The Ceremony (1971)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  
Director: Nagisa Ôshima
Stars: Kenzô Kawarasaki, Atsuko Kaku, Atsuo Nakamura
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  
Director: Nagisa Ôshima
Stars: Hiromi Kurita, Shôji Ishibashi, Lily
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
...
...
Sgt. Gengo Hara (as Takeshi)
...
Johnny Ohkura ...
Kanemoto
...
De Jong
James Malcolm ...
Celliers' Brother
Chris Broun ...
Celliers aged 12
Yûya Uchida ...
Commandant of Military Prison
Ryûnosuke Kaneda ...
President of the Court
Takashi Naitô ...
Lt. Iwata
Tamio Ishikura ...
Prosecutor
Rokko Toura ...
Interpreter
Kan Mikami ...
Lt. Ito
Edit

Storyline

In 1942 British soldier Jack Celliers comes to a Japanese prison camp. The camp is run by Yonoi, who has a firm belief in discipline, honor and glory. In his view, the allied prisoners are cowards when they chose to surrender instead of committing suicide. One of the prisoners, interpreter John Lawrence, tries to explain the Japanese way of thinking, but is considered a traitor. Written by Mattias Thuresson

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Java, 1942 - A clash of cultures, a test of the human spirit.

Genres:

Drama | War

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

| |

Language:

|

Release Date:

2 September 1983 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Furyo  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Gross:

SEK 1,627,497 (Sweden)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The closing credits only state Tom Conti's character's name as Lawrence even though it is mentioned in the film that his first name is John and his rank is colonel, thereby making his full name and title Colonel John Lawrence. See more »

Goofs

In the final scene in the prison cell, the cross belt of Lt Col Lawrence's Sam Browne is fitted back to front. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Sgt. Gengo Hara: [in Japanese] Wake up, Lawrence.
Colonel Lawrence: [in Japanese] What is it? Why so early, Sergeant Hara?
Sgt. Gengo Hara: [in Japanese] Hurry up!
Group Capt. Hicksley: What does he want?
Colonel Lawrence: [in English] I'll find out?
Sgt. Gengo Hara: [in Japanese] What?
Group Capt. Hicksley: You don't have to take orders from this man, you know, Lawrence.
Colonel Lawrence: Well, I'm the liaison officer, so I'm liaising.
Sgt. Gengo Hara: [in Japanese] What did he say?
[...]
See more »

Connections

Featured in 100 Years of Japanese Cinema (1995) See more »

Soundtracks

Rock of Ages
Written by Augustus Montague Toplady
Sung by the prisoners
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
What happened here ?
15 January 2006 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Loosely based on Lauren's van Der Post's trilogy 'The Seed and The Sower', Nagisa Oshima's English language film (1983) is set on the island of Java in 1942 (during World War II).

Written by Paul Mayersberg and the director, this film explores the situation of English prisoners of war held by the Japanese on the remote island of Java, offshore of Indonesia, and their Japanese captors.

In particular, it tells the story of Colonel John Lawrence (Tom Conti)

  • a man like Laurens van Der Post - who has a deep understanding of


Japanese culture, but is incarcerated like all the others. A powerful mediator between the English and the Japanese, John Lawrence helps the audience to understand this violent and often perplexing behaviour of their captors.

Captain Yonoi (Ryuchi Sakamoto) shows us the honest, understanding and straightforward face of the educated Japanese officer in these difficult circumstances. Sergeant Gengo Hara (Takeshi Kitano) helps us to understand the rather formal, misguided, traditional non-commissioned officer whose parallel is our own 'Sergeant Major' or 'Drill Sergeant'.

The crisis of cross-cultural understanding is heralded by the arrival of a British soldier who inadvertently conforms to the Japanese ideal of heroism - Major Jack Selliers (David Bowie). In Selliers, even Captain Yonoi, has to sit up and take notice. A very British sense of 'fair play' is somehow paradoxically engendered.

It's not hard to ignore the obvious pop stars, in this great film whose sweep and focus leads us inexorably to confront the painful conflicts of our parents or grandparents, because we cannot help but feel the keen emotions evoked by it.

How hard it is to bear the merciless execution of the violent Sgt Hara, when we truly understand how meekly he accepts it and why.

And what great good fortune that Ryuchi Sakamoto could have written such a haunting musical theme to the movie.. while he was only getting paid for acting !


32 of 36 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
What did Yonoi see in Jack? r5a
Gayness... agitpop
'Merry Christmas! Merry Christmas, Mr Lawrence!´ gubar
Celliers: British or Australian? Desert-Djinn
The Score!!! VariedMovieCollector
subtitles britgirl318
Discuss Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence (1983) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?