– from Variety-
A Tetsuo Group presentation of a Kaijyu Theater, Asmik Ace Entertainment production. (International sales: the Coproduction Office, Paris.) Produced by Shinichi Kawahara, Masayuki Tanishima.
Directed by Shinya Tsukamoto. Screenplay, Tsukamoto, Hisakatsu Kuroki.
With: Erik Bossick, Akiko Monou, Shinya Tsukamoto, Stephen Sarrazin, Yuko Nakamura, Tiger Charlie Gerhardt.
Twenty years after making his breakout cult hit, “Tetsuo,” and 17 years after its sequel, “Tetsuo II: Body Hammer,” multihyphenate filmmaker Shinya Tsukamoto busts out the big guns again with “Tetsuo the Bullet Man.” Contempo-set pic doesn’t bring much new to the half-man-half-machine concept, but with its delirious editing and eardrum-crunching soundtrack, it punches above its weight and musters a certain retro charm with its old-school effects, all done on about one-hundredth of the budget of a “Transformers” movie. Fans of the franchise will have this in their sights and show support, but crossover potential looks iffy. Continue reading
An hour-long feature from Japanese director Shinyu Tsukamoto, Tetsuo (also known as Tetsuo: The Iron Man) tells a horrific, cyberpunk-influenced science fiction tale about the intersection of man and post-industrial technology. The central character is a Japanese salary man, an average office worker who is transformed by a brief encounter with a metals fetishist, a man who has purposefully implanted pieces of scrap metal in his body. The salary man soon begins sprouting pieces of metal from various parts of his body, a change which is accompanied by increasingly nightmarish visions and bizarre, metal-filled sexual fantasies. As the man evolves into a strange hybrid of man and machine, he also develops a telepathic connection with another of his kind: the metal fetishist, who has been undergoing a similar conversion, and may indeed be the cause of the salary man’s transformation. The two engage in a violent, destructive battle throughout the streets of Tokyo, accompanied by an appropriately industrial soundtrack. Shot on a small budget in 16 millimeter black-and-white, Tsukamoto reprised many of the images and plot elements of Tetsuo in a higher-budgeted sequel, Tetsuo II: Body Hammer.AMG Continue reading
In a big city, a wave of suicides catches fire. The modus operandi is always the same: the victims wildly stab themselves to death, cut their own throats and butcher themselves beyond recognition, without any apparent reason. The only thing the dead have in common is the phone number they call just before they perish at their own hand. Keiko, a crack policewoman, takes it upon herself to solve the case. Soon enough she reaches the conclusion that someone is entering the victims’ dreams and persuading them to take their own lives. She appeals to Kyoichi, a man known as a nightmare detective who can enter the dreams of others, to help. When Wakimaya, one of Keiko’s colleagues, falls victim to the killer, Keiko takes the risk and dials the number, though she knows that she may well be the next suicide on the list. Continue reading
Description: A man wakes up to find himself locked in a tiny, cramped concrete room, in which he can barely move. He doesn’t remember why he is there and where he came from. He has a terrible stomach injury and is slowly bleeding to death. He begins to explore the narrow confines of his prison and crawls around the maze-like room, only to see a horrible vision of hell waiting for him at each end of the room. Finally he gives up on the struggle and collapses in exhaustion. Then he begins to remember images from his past. Clinging to these images he creeps forward with the last ounces of his strength and meets a woman in a place that stinks of rotting corpses. The man and the woman both try to recall where they came from, but their memories are so uncertain that they are not even sure they want to return. The man is ready to give up but the woman insists on going forward. Neither of them can imagine the incredible end to the journey. Continue reading
A beautiful meditation on love, memory and mortality. After surviving a car accident which kills his girlfriend, an amnesia-struck student (Tadanobu Asano) returns to medical school and confronts his slowly emerging past on the autopsy table. An enthralling movie with probably the tenderest autopsy scene in movie history and engrossing interplay between Asano, his masochistic girlfriend (Kiki), the affected families, and his own past feelings of love. Continue reading
Worldly Desires (43min)
A couple escapes their family to look for a spiritual tree in the jungle. When the night falls, a song comes from somewhere. It speaks about an innocent idea of love and happiness and conveys a sense of guiltless freedom when being hot by love. The film is a little simulation of manners and dedicated to the memories of filmmaking in the jungle during the year 2001-2005.
Apichatpong Weerasethakul Continue reading
Carrying a gun
If there were awards for great titles then Bullet Ballet would surely be up for a gong or two. At once suggesting both violence and elegance, it sounds like the perfect Hong Kong era John Woo film, an all-action but balletic explosion of slow-motion gunplay that became the director’s trademark. But this isn’t John Woo, this is Shinya Tsukamoto, a director whose deeply personal style is a million miles from Woo’s slickly filmed action works. Tsukamoto’s concerns are far more localised, to the city in which he lives, to his neighbourhood, to his own body, and his cinematic style is far edgier and more dangerous. Which is not to knock Woo in any way, but nowadays when Woo is making the vacuous Paycheck, Tsukamoto is making the extraordinary A Snake of June. He is one of those rare directors who has never sold out and never compromised his vision. Tsukamoto is the very personification of a great outsider film-maker. Continue reading