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Big screen classics

Merry Christmas Mr Lawrence

David Bowie co-stars in this drama about the experience of a POW in Japan.

Image from Merry Christmas Mr Lawrence

UK-Japan-New Zealand 1983
Dir Nagisa Ôshima
With David Bowie, Tom Conti, Ryuichi Sakamoto
Certificate 15

Based on Sir Laurens van der Post’s experiences as a POW in WWII Japan, Merry Christmas Mr Lawrence depicts a battle of wills between an imprisoned officer and his Japanese counterpart who pushes him to a point of no return. Of particular note are the arresting performances of Bowie and Sakamoto – who not only played the role of the conflicted Captain Yonoi but also composed a beautiful and moving score for the picture.


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