Do not forget who
is in charge here yep it is
me not you… ye hear?
Well, once again I have found something I did not expect in my local library. Don`t ask me why as it has such a good film collection but I was very surprised to find Merry Christmas Mr Lawrence (1983, directed by Nagisa Oshima), a film based in a POW camp in WWII. It stars David Bowie. Don`t think I`ve seen him act before so this should be interesting and Takeshi Kitano (I have seen him of course). The composer Ryuichi Sakamoto also has a role in it. Speaking of POW films, I never did get around to watching The Railway Man. I want to rent it before I buy it. Some films I just buy but this won`t be one of them I don`t think.
Another film of Ozu`s lured me in last evening – What did the Lady forget? (淑女はなにか忘れたか). It is a `talkie` from 1937 and stars the father from I was born but… as the medical doctor with an overbearing wife. I wondered who the `lady` referred to might be and what she might have forgotten. Was it the controlling wife or the niece or both? I thought it was both as the husband makes the point towards the end that men are in charge despite women thinking they are. And the lady, however modern (the niece) or traditional (the wife) she is, she should not forget that. The 淑女 for lady is interesting though as the first character means graceful, nice, polite, and the second obviously means woman or girl. I have never seen that word for lady before so maybe it is old Japanese. This makes me think again about who the lady is. it could be any woman of that era who was expected to be graceful, nice, polite etc regardless of their natural personality but in charge only to the extent the husband lets her be in charge. As the husband explains why he apologised to his wife after slapping her, it is because he thinks taking the soft approach is better. Not because he`s any kind of walkover (being able to apologize is of course great but that undermined the apology for me). The wife is almost proud of her husband for slapping her and her friend is envious of her complaining that her own husband is too weak.