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Funeral Parade of Roses on 2-disc Blu-ray and Digital in May

5 May 2020

Matsumoto Toshio's extraordinary Funeral Parade of Roses [Bara no sōretsu] will be released on a Strictly Limited Edition 2-disc Blu-ray this month with simultaneous release on iTunes and Amazon Prime. A BFI Player release will follow this summer as part of BFI JAPAN 2020, a major new season which will include nine collections of Japanese film being made available on the platform.

This kaleidoscopic masterpiece, one of the most subversive, intoxicating films of the 60s and a classic of queer cinema, is a headlong dive into a dazzling unseen Tokyo night-world of drag queen bars and fabulous divas.

Toshio Matsumoto, one of Japan’s leading experimental filmmakers, bends and distorts time, and freely mixes documentary interviews, Brechtian film-within-a-film asides, Oedipal premonitions of disaster, his own avant-garde shorts (eight of which are included on this release), and even on-screen cartoon balloons. Trans actor Peter gives an astonishing performance as Eddie, hostess at Bar Genet – where she’s ignited a violent love-triangle with reigning drag queen Leda for the attentions of club owner Gonda.

Funeral Parade of Roses Blu-ray cover art

Funeral Parade of Roses will be receiving its first ever release on Blu-ray in the UK on 18 May 2020 at the RRP of £24.99 and will simultaneously be available for rental and download-to-own on iTunes and Amazon Prime. It will be available on BFI Player’s subscription service later this summer as part of a major new collection of Japanese films, BFI JAPAN 2020, which launches on 11 May and continues until October. This 2-disc Blu-ray is a strictly Limited Edition of 3000 copies.

2-disc Blu-ray Special Edition contents:

  • New 4K digital restoration, presented in High Definition for the first time in the UK
  • Feature-length commentary by Chris D, punk poet, singer, actor, film historian and author of Outlaw Masters of Japanese Film
  • Original Japanese trailer (1969)
  • US theatrical trailer (2017)
  • Eight recently restored avant-garde shorts by Toshio Matsumoto made between 1961 and 1975 (105 mins total): Nishijin(1961), The Song of Stone (1963), Ecstasis (1969), Metastasis (1971), Expansion (1972), Mona Lisa (1973), Siki Soku Ze Ku(1975) and Atman (1975)
  • 2-disc edition only: a 34-page booklet with essays by Jim O’Rourke, the BFI’s Espen Bale, Hirofumi Sakamoto with Hiroshi Eguchi and Koji Kawasaki, notes and credits for the feature, the short films and special features