7.3/10
12,490
75 user 75 critic

Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence (1983)

Trailer
3:17 | Trailer

On Disc

at Amazon

During WWII, a British colonel tries to bridge the cultural divides between a British POW and the Japanese camp commander in order to avoid bloodshed.

Director:

Writers:

(novel), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
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  

The new member of a samurai militia unit causes disruption as several of his colleagues fall in love with him, threatening to disturb the rigid code of their squad.

Director: Nagisa Ôshima
Stars: Takeshi Kitano, Ryûhei Matsuda, Shinji Takeda
Sci-Fi | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

An alien must pose as a human to save his dying planet, but a woman and greed of other men create complications.

Director: Nicolas Roeg
Stars: David Bowie, Rip Torn, Candy Clark
Biography | Drama | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.6/10 X  

A passionate telling of the story of Sada Abe, a woman whose affair with her master led to a sexual obsession which then came to a violent end.

Director: Nagisa Ôshima
Stars: Tatsuya Fuji, Eiko Matsuda, Aoi Nakajima
The Hunger (1983)
Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A love triangle develops between a beautiful yet dangerous vampire, her cellist companion, and a gerontologist.

Director: Tony Scott
Stars: Catherine Deneuve, David Bowie, Susan Sarandon
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
... Maj. Jack 'Strafer' Celliers
... Col. John Lawrence
... Capt. Yonoi (as Ryûichi Sakamoto)
... Sgt. Gengo Hara (as Takeshi)
... Group Capt. Hicksley
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
Rokkô 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  »

Edit

Box Office

Gross USA:

$2,306,560
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The distinctive music score and soundtrack in this film is notable. It was composed by Ryuichi Sakamoto and it is considered to be the breakthrough movie to which he and his music became well-known around the world. 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 »


Soundtracks

Brother's Song
Composed by Stephen McCurdy
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
What happened here ?
15 January 2006 | by 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 !


36 of 42 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 75 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Trending TV Series With Prime Video

Explore popular and recently added TV series available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial