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Tetsuo Iron Man

Kei Fujiwara , Tomorowo Taguchi , Shin'ya Tsukamoto    NR (Not Rated)   DVD
3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
Price: CDN$ 59.57
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Product Description

Amazon.ca

Shinya Tsukamoto draws on the marriage of flesh and technology that inspires so much of David Cronenberg's work and then twists it into a manga-influenced cyberpunk vision. A man (Tomoroh Taguchi) awakens from a nightmare in which his body is helplessly fusing with the metal objects around him, only to find it happening to him in real life... or is it? Haunted by memories of a hit and run (eerily prophetic of Cronenberg's Crash), the man knows this ordeal could be a dream, a fantastic form of divine retribution, or perhaps technological mutation born of guilt and rage. Shot in bracing black and white on a small budget, Tsukamoto puts a demented conceptual twist on good old-fashioned stop-motion effects and simple wire work, giving his film the surreal quality of a waking dream with a psychosexual edge (resulting in the film's most disturbing scene). The story ultimately takes on an abstract quality enhanced by the grungy look and increasingly wild images as they take to the streets in a mad chase of technological speed demons. This first entry in his self-titled "Regular Sized Monster Series" is followed by a full-color sequel, Tetsuo II: The Body Hammer, which trades the muddy experimental atmosphere for a big-budget sheen but can't top the cybershock to the system this movie packs. --Sean Axmaker

Product Description

Somewhere between a modern-day nightmare and a techno-fetishist's ultimate fantasy, this extraordinary film from Shinya Tsukamoto (Vital, A Snake of June) caused a cult sensation when first released. As a young man gradually mutates into a metal-being, the film takes a surreal journey into a dark and disturbing world where self-inflicted body transformations and post-human women form the fabric of a strange new reality. Likened to the work of David Lynch and David Cronenberg, Tetsuo: The Ironman molds explosive violence, bizarre sexual imagery and jet-black humor into a cinematic experience like you've never seen.

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Most helpful customer reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Social commentary in its own right Feb. 25 2004
Format:DVD
Watching this film reminded me of The Thing by John Carpenter. In that sci-fi classic, the man's body, taken over by the thing, is hideously twisted and transformed beyond our wildest imagination, which imparts a certain sense of sexuality to the proceedings.
In Tetsuo by Shinya Tsukamoto, the body is taken over by iron. Again the question of sexuality is high on the agenda as is evident in the scene where you see a male sex organ shaped like a huge iron drill spinning ferociously, hinting that love in our day often consists in the realm of the senses generated by genitalia and that a man's sex organ is nothing but a machine in such a context. We are just as inorganic as the machines that surround us and the iron and metals that make up those machines. As the man slowly transforms into iron, he experiences excruciating pains, to which we have grown so much numb. It seems to me that Tsukamoto's primary concern is the recoverty of the body, which in his case is almost always expressed with the imagery of sex, violence and pain.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Surreal Mechanical Horror... Jan. 15 2004
Format:DVD
Tetsuo is a surreal horror film about a hit and run accident where the driver begins to grow metal objects on his face. The metal objects are physical reminisce from the accident and it begins to physically haunt him. This metal curse grows worse, and the driver seem incapable of escaping his faith as he becomes dangerous for those around him. Tetsuo is a daunting cinematic experience with an interesting story and at moments the cinematography is remarkable. However, the very same cinematography uses several still shots put together to a continuous shot in order to create movement, which becomes repetitive and clumsy. This visual awkwardness creates a music video atmosphere that lowers the overall cinematic experience.
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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Ok....... Nov. 1 2003
By dxm
Format:DVD
Lemme see here. You have some weird guy shove a piece of metal in his leg, he sees maggots all over it (ICK) runs out into the street gets hit by a car, then thus the driver turns into.... An iron man basically while the dude who got hit by a car is planning his death or something. Man this film is one hell of an acid ride through his transformation into this iron man. Very bizarre and twisted with the constant slash off to the heavy pumped industrial score while you try to focus on what's going on, many times I thought this was to absurd and wanted to turn it off but I wanted to see where it was going. It's visually breathtaking and not a very pleasant thing to sit through, but I can't give this five stars because quite frankly I don't know who would. This is followed by equally messed up sequel "Body Hammer" but that one made no sense really.... This is made by Shinya Tsukamoto who is a very good director and actor as well, if you've seen Ichi The Killer he's in there as a character, I want to check out his movie Tokyo Fist but I'm kind of scared too...... This is worth checking out only if you handle it.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 3.9 out of 5 stars  81 reviews
24 of 25 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars New Tartan DVD sounds great, looks terrible! Aug. 12 2005
By Ronnie Sortor - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD
The rating is for the lousy transfer of the new Tartan DVD release. TETSUO is one of my top-ten favorite movies of all time. Purchasing this new release represented a quadruple-dip on this title. First was a bootleg vhs tape back in the early 90's followed by the official Fox-Lorber tape, then the first DVD. The main reason, other than my love for the movie, for buying again was for the new 5.1 sound mix because TETSUO has a great soundtrack. Tartan did a great job with the remix. I love it! It's really impressive in my home theater. But the image doesn't live up to the audio, especially projected on my big screen. It looks like they just did a cheap transfer of the PAL master (Tartan is a UK company, I believe) to NTSC because it's riddled with artifacts like ghosting during fast movements (there's a lot of that in this film) and the image is very soft and contrasty. The old Fox-Lorber DVD from '98 has more image detail, especially in shadows, and none of that ugly ghosting. I assumed that since it's 2005 now and most DVD companies have kept up with the state of the art, knowing that audiences are more discriminating about audio/video quality, Tartan would live up to our expectations. But, no.

I see that there are several sellers dumping their old discs here at Amazon. I recommend that you just pick up one of those rather than Tartan's shameless release...
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Disturbing May 9 2006
By Sasha - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
This bizarre film is disturbing, troubling me that the main character is in an irriversible predicament. Wishing he could shed the metal that kept growing on his body, I found meaning in his painful transformation. Seeing that his pain never went away and that he desired to continue pushing the 'normal' world away left me without the typical 'happy ending.' There is meaning to the madness of this film, but there are several scenes that will stay with you after turning off the DVD player.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars this is a special edition?? Nov. 15 2005
By Grand Plumper - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD
my somewhat lower rating is for the entire package - my perception of the total value of this release.I must admit i have kinda an issue with this being refered to as a "special edition".I was quite disappointed in the (lack) of supplements.You get the movie itself(just barely over an hour long),a few excerpts(?) from other Tsukamoto's films and some trailers for other Tartan "asia extreme" titles.You also get some basic text on the director and a few actors.The outer slipcase is cool,but is it worth an additional 10 bucks?

Bottom line,I feel that this is an important film,worthy of a special edition "treatment" but got short changed here.Even a brief interview with Shinya woulda been appreciated!
46 of 65 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A horror film about being gay in Japan... Jan. 14 2002
By Dan Seitz - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD
First of all, let me state something that nobody seems to want to say explicitly; this is one unnerving movie with some of the most unpleasant scenes I've ever seen, and that includes Cronenberg. Also, there's an undeniable homoerotic subtext to the whole thing (and I'm not inferring; it's pretty clear, despite the lousy subtitle job Image subcontracted out.)
As far as comparisons go, this is a lot like the work of Jan Svankmajer, in terms of effects and narrative feel (and I suspect Tsukamoto knows the work of Svankmajer well.) But the material is about as far from Svankmajer's social concerns as you can get.
I don't claim to know Japanese society that well, but I DO know it wasn't (and still isn't) nearly as tolerant as the US, and "Tetsuo" is a strong reflection of that. The main character is a man who is torn apart by guilt over a crime he has committed, and also for his failure to conform to societal standards. He is terrified of women, and he also resents them (epitomized in two extremely gory and unnerving scenes.) And because, one feels, that he's told that he's unnatural and inhuman, he BECOMES unnatural and inhuman, literally an iron man.
This is not a upbeat story; this is a story about a man who has destroyed himself and achieves the power to take the society that caused it down with him. Even finding love isn't enough for him. This is a movie about a man who is twisted and warped by society, and who will destroy everyone thanks to that society.
Personally, I found it fascinating, but unless you've explored Jan Svankmajer, David Cronenberg, David Lynch, and others extensively, I would be careful about approaching this. Put it this way; if you weren't bugged by "Crash" but found it interesting, "Tetsuo" won't be too much for you.
11 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars c'mon (saa koi) July 3 1999
By matt (mtchu@conncoll.com) - Published on Amazon.com
Format:VHS Tape
Testsuo: the iron man may be a difficult film for a lot of people. you will probably either love it or think in is trash. this film struck a deeply personaly chord within me, so it is difficult to write about it objectivly. as a teenager i dreamnt of a film shot in gritty black and white that would deal with terrifing and ghostly subjects. this film is it. tsukamoto is a genius for this film. the effects are low buget to the max, but when is the last time your nightmare had a big effects buget? the film actually follows a plot line somewhat resembling a Noh play, except very convoluted; the man runs the fetishist over with his car, and then has sex with his girlfriend in frount of the fetishist's broken body. because of this sexual arousal in the presense of machine induced death, the man is cursed with his sexual/physical merging with the machiene realm. the fetishist wants revenge. the visual effect of the film is beyond incredible, and the music is perfect. very few films incorporate music into the visuals as fundamentally as this one (bergman's Persona and otomo's AKIRA are also great examples). this film implanted itself into my brain like a shard of metal. keep an open mind when you watch this film, and don't jump to conclusions and judgements. if you can withstand the films attack, you will find it to be truly beautiful and rewarding.
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