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One positive side to the growing digitalization of cinema is the seemingly increased output of classic restorations. The latest is Josef von Sternberg‘s WWII drama (and final film) Anatahan, which has been restored by Kino Lorber. Along with assumedly a Blu-ray later down the road, Kino will release the film back into theaters for a limited run next month.

Sternberg’s last sole directing effort is set during the final days of the war, as a group of Japanese sailors are stranded on the island of Anatahan. Without the knowledge that the war has ended, a much more intimate one breaks out amongst the group over control of the island. The trailer features gorgeous, crisp imagery, and a perfectly fitting ’50s-style narration.

See the trailer below, along with a poster.

Inspired by an actual event during WWII, Josef von Sternberg’s Anatahan, tells the story of a dozen Japanese sailors who are stranded on the remote island of Anatahan during the waning days of the war. The war ends, unbeknownst to the men, and they engage in their own private war for dominance of their island domain and possession of the sole woman in their midst, Keiko (Akemi Negishi), the so-called “Queen Bee” of Anatahan.


The 2K restoration of Anatahan will have a limited theatrical run starting February 3 at New York City’s Metrograph, and then expands to more cities after.

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