New York Times - 10/23/1987
"...A series of joyous contradictions....[Itami is] far and away the most exciting new fim maker to burst onto the international scene in a decade..."
Los Angeles Times - 11/20/1987
"...Wise, compassionate and slyly amusing....THE FUNERAL is as audacious in style as in its views..."
A warm, sensitive, and very funny look at a Japanese family, as the unexpected death of their father, owner of a brothel, brings together the older and younger generations.
In this hilarious black comedy, filmmaker Juzo Itami pokes fun at Japanese traditions -- in particular, the culture's strict Buddhist funeral rites. Wabisuke and Chizuko are a modern married couple who live in Tokyo. Their happy lives are turned upside down when her father -- a diabetic old bully -- unexpectedly passes away, and they must take on the hefty price tab and the numerous rules involved in planning his funeral. But the film's not over yet, because a gallery of annoying relatives and Wabisuke's young mistress are planning to show up for the occasion!
Family Interaction |
Co-produced by A.T.G. and Itami-N.C.P.
Shot in Fujicolor.
Shown at the Cannes Film Festival (Directors Fortnight) May 10, 1985.
Released theatrically in New York City October 23, 1987.
Additional cast: Kiminobu Okumura (Shinkichi Amamiya) and Chikako Yuri (Ayako).
First feature film for Japanese actor-turned-writer/director Juzo Itami.
Before becoming a director, Juzo Itami appeared in such international films as "55 Days at Peking" and "Lord Jim."
Actress Nobuko Miyamoto is married to the director, Juzo Itami.