In a Japanese prison camp on Java in 1942, two British officers, John Lawrence and Jack Celliers, encounter camp commander Yonoi and his sergeant Hara. Things had been going pretty well, until charismatic, rebellious Celliers arrived. Yonoi is a devotee of the samurai ideal; neither he nor Hara can understand the stoic way in which the British prisoners accept their situation of defeat. Lawrence speaks Japanese, and ceaselessly tries to mediate between...
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A Korean man is sentenced to death in Japan but survives his execution, sending the authorities into a panic about what to do next. At once disturbing and oddly amusing, Oshima's constantly surprising film is a subversive and surreal indictment of both capital punishment and the treatment of Korean immigrants in his country.