04/19/2015  
The Strain: The Complete First Season on Blu-ray & DVD Jun 9A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night on Blu-ray & DVD Apr 21Science Fiction Theatre: The Complete Series on DVD May 12Rogue: Complete Second Season on DVD May 19That Man from Rio (1964) & Up to His Ears (1965) on Blu-ray & DVD Apr 4Masterpiece Mystery: Grantchester on Blu-ray & DVD Apr 7Interstellar on Blu-ray Combo Pack, DVD and On Demand Mar 31

follow us on twitter

dOc on facebook

NE News Editor

Rita Wilson diagnosed with breast cancer ...
Suzanne Somers on elimination from 'Dancing With The St...
The Strain: The Complete First Season on Blu-ray & DVD ...
20 of the Most Hated Women in Hollywood...
DWTS' Maksim Chmerkovskiy and Meryl Davis: Reunited and...
Barry Manilow Marries Manager Garry Kief ...
Gwyneth Paltrow and Brad Falchuk Were the Stars of Robe...
A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night on Blu-ray & DVD Apr 2...
James Best dies at 88; actor played sheriff in 'Dukes o...
Big Bang Theory: Christine Baranski, Laurie Metcalf Ret...



Share: email   Print      Technorati.gif   StumbleUpon.gif   MySpace   digg.gif delicious.gif   google.gif   magnolia.gif   facebook.gif
Permalink: Permalink.gif



Buy from Amazon

Buy from Amazon.com

Tartan Video presents
Tetsuo: The Iron Man (1988)

"I'm being punished. That must be it."
- The Salaryman (Tomorowo Taguchi)

Review By: Mark Zimmer   
Published: January 20, 2006

Stars: Tomorowo Taguchi, Kei Fujiwara, Nobu Kanaoka, Shinyu Tsukamoto
Other Stars: Naomasa Musaka, Renji Ishibashi
Director: Shinyu Tsukamoto

MPAA Rating: Not Rated for (gore, highly disturbing imagery, nudity, sexuality, violence)
Run Time: 01h:04m:11s
Release Date: July 19, 2005
UPC: 807839001716
Genre: cult


Style
Grade
Substance
Grade
Image Transfer
Grade
Audio Transfer
Grade
Extras
Grade
B+ BB+A- D+

DVD Review

There are few films that can equal David Lynch's Eraserhead for disturbing imagery and sheer audaciousness. But Shinya Tsukamoto's Tetsuo: The Iron Man is certainly in that territory. Another film that uses the cheap qualities of black and white film to excellent effect, Tetsuo has a visceral nightmarish quality that is haunting even in its perplexity. Its fascination with biomechanics echoes the interests of artist H.R. Giger and its central thesis of the metamorphosis of the body recalls the work of David Cronenberg, especially Videodrome with its fleshy mechanicals and metal-intrigued protagonists.

An unnamed salaryman (Tomorowo Taguchi) and his girlfriend (Kei Fujiwara), speeding along a road in an industrial area, hit a man (Tsukamoto) and then make love while he lies dying. Unfortunately for them, the victim was a metal fetishist who surgically implants rusty metal into his body. Soon the salaryman finds bits of metal erupting from his skin, alternately attracting and repelling his girlfriend as the metals begin to take over his body. Is it divine retribution? Hallucinatory guilt? Or something else altogether?

Driven by hyperkinetic cutting, wildly vibrating handheld camera work and a pounding industrial score by Chu Ishikawa (alternating with a lusty blues sax), Tetsuo is a fascinating piece of work that, like its central fetishist, is alternately fascinating and repellent. Mired in a post-industrial landscape, the fetishist seems to follow his interest naturally from the rusting metal that surrounds him, but the organic is also triumphant over him as the areas that he implants the metal become infested with maggots. It is this realization that sends him out in front of the salaryman's car and sets things in motion.

The picture is a festival of psychosexual derangement, with elements of hentai (one of the first transformations to afflict the salaryman is the eruption of a new phallus in the form of a massive rotating drill), castration anxieties, disease and corruption. Many sequences feel hallucinatory: characters die and come back to life, and nearly everyone morphs into the fetishist at one point or another. The metal growths alter in their nature and severity from scene to scene, which could be sloppy continuity or a manifestation of the dream world that the hero inhabits. At times the metal growths seem to be viral in nature, since they afflict a woman in glasses (Nobu Kanaoka) who sits on a bench next to the salaryman, leading to a horrific evolution and a chase of the salaryman through the subways. In one particularly nasty sequence, his girlfriend grows a long metal hose which she uses to rape him. The inclusion of a doctor giving an alternate explanation for everything may be the key to the film, or it could just be another in the set of hallucinations as the salaryman struggles for a rationalization.

Ray Harryhausen in a recent dOc interview noted that stop-motion animation can lend a nightmarish quality to film, since it looks real but unreal at the same time. Tsukamoto puts that aspect to good use here, with stop-motion wires writhing about, metal wrapping itself around characters and creating various other distortions of reality that give a definite dreamlike character to the proceedings. The fetishist is also wrapped in a foamlike cocoon at one point, also through the magic of stop-motion, setting up the metamorphosis to the next stage of being. With hardly any dialogue, it's virtually a silent film for most of its running time, making another connection of past technology to future nightmares. The gore is extreme, the sexuality perverse and the violence brutal: in short, everything one could ask of a Japanese cult film. Highly recommended for a select audience.

Rating for Style: B+
Rating for Substance: B

 

Image Transfer

 One
Aspect Ratio1.33:1 - Full Frame
Original Aspect Ratioyes
Anamorphicno


Image Transfer Review: The original full frame image (of what appears to be 16mm film) looks acceptable for the most part, with the softness inherent in the source material. No particular effort seems to have been made to digitally enhance or sharpen the picture, thankfully. The source print is in fine condition. The greyscales are a bit limited in places due to what seems to be very harsh lighting for effect. Overall, however, the film looks fine for what it is, and such grungy subject material doesn't demand a perfect picture in any event.

Image Transfer Grade: B+

 

Audio Transfer

 LanguageRemote Access
MonoJapaneseyes
Dolby Digital
5.1
Japaneseyes
DTSJapaneseyes


Audio Transfer Review: Three different Japanese audio tracks are provided, with the original mono, plus two pounding DD and DTS 5.1 mixes. The latter are really an immersive way to get into this film, which uses quite a lot of LFE for its impact. The audiois raucous, percussive and clanging for the most part, and the sax interludes have a nice vibrancy and immediacy that's startling.

Audio Transfer Grade: A-

 

Disc Extras

Static menu
Scene Access with 16 cues and remote access
Subtitles/Captions in English with remote access
Cast and Crew Filmographies
1 Original Trailer(s)
4 Other Trailer(s) featuring Tetsuo II: Body Hammer, A Snake of June, Oldboy, Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance
Production Notes
Packaging: generic plastic keepcase
Picture Disc
1 Disc
1-Sided disc(s)
Layers: single

Extra Extras:
  1. Excerpts of four films
Extras Review: The extras are fairly thin. They include short (2-3m) and context-free excerpts from four of Tsukamoto's other films (Tetsuo II, A Snake of June, Tokyo Fists and Vital), filmographies for him and two of the actors, and a brief set of production notes. Four other trailers are included, but only that for A Snake of June is anamorphically enhanced. The disc is a single layer DVD-5, the packaging's claim of DVD-9 notwithstanding.

Extras Grade: D+

 

Final Comments

A wildly imaginative and disturbing psychosexual extravaganza that should be a cult favorite everywhere. Definitely not for everyone.

 


Back to top

Search 10,000+ titles:

or Advanced Search

DVD REVIEW ARCHIVE


Get FREE Shipping on all orders at TimeLife.com! - 120x90

 



Microsoft Store

Keywords

celebrity, rita wilson, tom hanks, fish in the dark, larry david, television, abc, dancing with the stars, suzanne somers, tony dovolani, suzanne sizzles, horror, movies, angelina jolie, gwyneth paltrow, leann rimes, katherine heigl, jennifer lopez, photos, sway: a dance trilogy, maksim chmerkovskiy, meryl davis, music, barry manilow, gary kief, married, copacabana, brad falchuck, robert downey jr., glee, chris martin, jennifer lawrence, james best, died, sheriff rosco p. coltrane, the twilight zone, andy griffith show, gunsmoke, dukes of hazzard, big bang theory, christine baranski, laurie metcalf, sci-fi, kim kardashian north west, keeping up with the kardashians, kanye west, drama, joni mitchell, morgellons, joni mitchell: in her own words, mary leitao, comedy, cynthia lennon, john lennon, cancer, julian lennon, paul mccartney, ringo starr, movie, furious 7, paul walker, james wan, universal pictures, mystery, rolling stones, 15-city tour, keith richards, mick jagger, ronnie wood, charlie watts, san diego, cable, comedy channel, daily show, jon stewart, trevor noag, musical, one direction, zayn malik quits, 2015 lollapalooza, florence and the machine, sam smith, metallica, charlotte mckinney, keo motsepe, redfoo, rumer willis, valchmerkovskiy, action, the walking dead, noah, aiden, deanna, father gabriel, rick, carol, crime

On Kindle!
On Facbook!
digitallyOBSESSED!
digitallyOBSESSED!
Promote Your Page Too

Visit:

Zarabesque.com

Original Magic Dress.com

Susti Heaven

Become a Reviewer | Search | Review Vault | Reviewers
Readers | Webmasters | Privacy | Contact
Microsoft Store