REVIEWS by SULLYDOG


TETSUO: THE IRON MAN
a film by Shinya Tsukamoto

Tomoro Taguchi, Kei Fujiwara, Nobu Kanaoko and Shinya Tsukamoto. D: Shinya Tsukamoto

It's black and white, it's in Japanese with subtitles, it's ugly and revolting, and it has almost no plot.

You must see this movie.

Tetsuo the Iron Man is without a doubt one of the strangest pieces of cinematic art I have ever watched. Witnessed. Endured. Whatever. More of a protracted hallucination than a movie, this film will splatter your brains out the back side of your skull.

I wish I could tell you what it's about. Okay, let me try. Tetsuo is turning into a machine, an Iron Man. And so is This Other Guy, who is also sometimes a Woman. Tetsuo has cut himself shaving, and the rust in the metal shaver has fused with his cells. The process accelerates, and before long Tetsuo has become an amorphous heap of metallic garbage. The Other Guy, on The Other Hand, has apparently instituted this process voluntarily, by shoving a filthy metal rod into his maggot-infested thigh.

Then This Other Guy becomes the Woman, and she meets up with Tetsuo, and they Do It. Except Tetsuo's genitalia have now transformed into something Bruce Willis probably wished he'd had when he was drilling that hole in Armageddon. The results are....messy.

Then...some other stuff happens. Sick stuff. Strange stuff. Nasty stuff. Funny stuff. Scary stuff.

But that's not what the movie is about. It's about alienation. It's about the increasingly blurry line between man and machine. It's about sex. It's about guilt. It's about the New World that is swallowing humanity whole. It's about 90 minutes of wicked stop-motion animation propelled by a relentless, throbbing soundtrack. It's astonishing, hilarious, disturbing, terrifying, revolting, frenetic, and absolutely fascinating. You must see this movie. You must not see this movie on acid.

Eraserhead meets Akira.

Sullydog approves.

Reviews Index

Sullydog.com