Great Moments In Cinema, IX

FOUR YEARS LATER. 1946.

Major Lawrence enters Sergeant Hara’s cell. Hara is looking out the window, then turns and smiles.

HARA
I knew you would come, Mr. Lawrence.

LAWRENCE
You’ve learned English.

HARA
Yes, very little. [indicating bench] Please? [they sit]

LAWRENCE
I very nearly didn’t get your message.

HARA
[solemn] It’s tomorrow morning.

LAWRENCE
Well if it was up to me, I’d release you today, send you back to your family.

HARA
Thank you. I am ready to die. But I don’t understand. My crimes were no different from any other soldier’s.

LAWRENCE
You are the victim of men who think that they’re right. Just as once you and Captain Yonoi believed absolutely that you were right. The truth is, of course, that nobody’s right. [pause] Do you remember Jack Celliers?

HARA
Strange. I dreamed of him last night.

LAWRENCE
Did you really? Captain Yonoi gave me a lock of Jack Celliers hair and asked me to take it to his village in Japan and dedicate it to his shrine.

HARA
It’s sad. That he was executed after the war.

LAWRENCE
Yes. It was as if Celliers, by his death, sowed a seed in Yonoi, that we might all share by its growth.

HARA
[smiling] Do you remember that Christmas?

LAWRENCE
[laughs] Yes. Yes. Yes.

HARA
It was a good Christmas, wasn’t it?

LAWRENCE
It was a wonderful Christmas. You were drunk.

HARA
May I go on and on being drunk!

LAWRENCE
Sake is wonderful.

HARA
Thank you. Father Christmas. Thank you. [laughs]

LAWRENCE
[rises] There are times when victory is very hard to take. [bows] Good bye, Hara-san. [Hara bows] God bless.

Lawrence crosses to leave the cell.

HARA
Lawrence! [grinning] Merry Christmas! Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence!

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One comment on “Great Moments In Cinema, IX

  1. Victoria says:

    That took me back… a rush of memories and emotions. Wow.

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