Long unavailable in the U.S., Toshio Matsumoto’s subversive masterpiece “Funeral Parade of Roses” is now in limited release with a shiny new 4k restoration from Cinelicious Pics and The Cinefamily, crafted from the original 35mm camera negative and sound elements of the feature.
The film follows transgender actor Peter, who turns in an eye-opening performance as hot young thing Eddie, hostess at Bar Gene who enters into a violent love-triangle with reigning drag queen Leda (Osamu Ogasawara) and Gonda (played by Kurosawa regular Yoshio Tsuchiya).
As our Michael Nordine wrote in his review, the movie as “both a party and a procession,” adding that the “subversive drama starts like a dream, a black-and-white vision of bodies entwined in momentary escape, before reality intervenes: Eddie (Peter, also known as Pita) and Gonda’s (Yoshio Tsuchiya) love affair is an illicit one, and at risk of being undone by the fact that Gonda is already spoken for. That’s the central conflict in ‘Funeral Parade of Roses,’ but describing this transgressive take on “Oedipus Rex” purely in terms of plot would be as limiting as calling the King of Thebes slightly confused.”
You can get a glimpse of the unique delights of the film in our exclusive clip from the “Funeral Parade of Roses” below.
“Funeral Parade of Roses” is now playing in New York City, with Los Angeles opening this week and more cities to follow.