New York, NY - January 10, 2012 - Kino Lorber is proud to announce the DVD release of two films by Koji Wakamatsu: Caterpillar (2010) and United Red Army (2007). These two powerful films, from one of Japan's most acclaimed filmmakers, were released theatrically by Kino Lorber earlier in 2011 and are now coming to DVD and VOD in the North American Home Media market.
Caterpillar (2010) tells the harrowing story of a disfigured veteran from the Second Sino-Japanese war in 1940. After losing all limbs during the war, Lieutenant Tadashi Kurokawa (played by Keigo Kasuya) comes back home completely disabled, forcing his wife to become his full-time caretaker. Besides feeding and bathing him, his wife (played by award-winning actress Shinobu Terajima) is also expected to fullfil her husband's sexual needs.
United Red Army is a sweeping epic that chronicles Japan's left-wing student movement from the 1960s. Incorporating archival footage from the period, the film tells the rise of the United Red Army amid the political unrest of the Cold War times. Combining elements of both documentary and drama, United Red Army ends with a controversial re-enactment of one of the country's most notorious hostage situations.
Both films come to DVD with a street date of January 17, 2012, and each title is priced at $29.95.
Winner of a Silver Bear award (Best Actress - Shinobu Terajima) at the 2010 Berlin Film Festival, Caterpillar tells the story of a village woman who is given the grueling task of looking after (and fulfilling the sexual needs of) her quadruple-amputee husband, a decorated solider tortured by memories of his war crimes.
Taking place during the Second Sino-Japanese War and based on a banned short story by writer Edogawa Rampo, Wakamatsu's latest film is a powerful indictment of right-wing militarist-nationalism - and a deeply affecting reminder of the pressures put on Japanese women during war and peacetime.
Part of a series of works that re-visit the country's fascist past, Caterpillar satirically deploys Japanese propaganda and successfully demystifies the glorification of the country's wartime past
"A masterpiece...has the blunt force of a tank rolling over naked flesh."
- Maggie Lee, Hollywood Reporter
"Unflinching...bravura performances bring a quietly devastating argument to the most intimate setting."
- The Wall Street Journal
Japanese with English subtitles
United Red Army (2007)
In this epic film, Japanese auteur Koji Wakamatsu brilliantly depicts the most troubling and infamous episode of the history of Japan's radical left-wing student movement. Interspersed with archival footage relating to origins of the political unrest of the 1960s, the film introduces the young men and women who will ultimately go on to become militant activists seeking to overthrow the established world order.
As two of the most radical student groups come together to form the United Red Army (URA) and head into the mountains to conduct a training camp, ideology devolves into despotism, and the URA's leaders begin to arbitrarily persecute their own followers, a harrowing ordeal which culminates in violence and murder.
Weaving together elements of both documentary filmmaking and drama, United Red Army
draws to a thrilling close when the remaining URA members break into a mountain lodge and hold a hostage captive - leading to an intense, climactic standoff with the police.
- Andrew O'Hehir, Salon.com
"Progresses from breathless history...to tense action thriller."
- Dennis Lim, The New York Times
"One of the best films of the decade!"
- Sight & Sound
Japanese with English subtitles
Street date: January 17, 2012