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Tetsuo (1989)

Horror | 67 minutes
3,31 434 votes

Genre: Horror / Scifi

Duration: 67 minuten

Alternative titles: Tetsuo: The Iron Man / Tetsuo, the Iron Man / The Ironman / 鉄男

Country: Japan

Directed by: Shin'ya Tsukamoto

Stars: Tomorowo Taguchi, Kei Fujiwara and Nobu Kanaoka

IMDb score: 6,9 (26.049)

Releasedate: 1 July 1989

Tetsuo plot

A respectable Japanese businessman accidentally rams his car into that of a cyberpunk whose hobby is to transplant metal parts into his body. After this meeting, the businessman inexplicably begins to turn into a metal cyborg. His identity and that of cyberpunk are slowly but surely interwoven into one.

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avatar van Finisterra


  • 15513 messages
  • 4302 votes

Saw it for the first time 9 years ago and thought it was about time for a review (an up-to-date top list is the rationale). When I first got into the movie world, I didn't quite like Tetsuo. An intriguing start with an amateurish-looking and completely over-the-top second part... This pretty much summed up my memory.

I must say that this thought certainly did not turn out to be completely wrong. Even now I liked the first part the best and the last 10 minutes started to drag a bit. However, the film now grabbed me as a whole much more. Tetsuo is a very impressive experience that grips you from the start and eventually knocks you out completely with a pumping soundtrack, high-contrast black-and-white images, strong camera work, effectively used stop motion and hypermontage. In all its displayed ugliness, Tetsuo is top-notch aesthetically. An amateurish look (especially the SFX) didn't bother me much this time, except for the very ugly foam used.

Tsukamoto tortures all your senses with this Tetsuo, making it almost literally a physical experience. A film that completely took me by surprise this time - except for the slightly too long transformation at the end. Filthy, at times terrifying but above all aesthetically very interesting.

dutch flagTranslated from Dutch · View original

avatar van umbra


  • 3728 messages
  • 3465 votes

Tetsuo, The Iron Man, was... 10 years ago fzo, madly in love with this Japanese masterpiece, love the sound and then the visual that Shin'ya Tsukamoto brings here, pure pleasure for all your senses. I hear a short, but extremely powerful film, an elongated industrial-electro video clip as a criticism, well if it is presented like that, in this way, then it is Art in all its facets. The evolution of the cyborg, wonderfully given and sublimely brought here. Also a film that stays with me for the rest of my life with 1 viewing and every so often fires another one at my senses. Top10 worthy and so this one back, put in my top10 for a change. Really need to see some other work by this gentleman urgently, shame me!

dutch flagTranslated from Dutch · View original

avatar van Shadowed


  • 8772 messages
  • 5482 votes

Pretty tasty.

Another movie I wanted to see sooner, but never got around to it. I used to never be able to find the movie in high quality or with subtitles, but YouTube brought that quest to an end, allowing me to see the movie more recently. It was well worth the wait, although I was hoping for something more.

What can benefit the film is the fast way of editing and its hyperactive course. The speed that action scenes take place within this film is a speed that is hardly matched by current films. It's certainly not for everyone, but I love that electric feeling in movies, and Tetsuo is a must.

I didn't find the acting that special and the speed of the film means that the viewer actually has to make an effort to follow the characters, but if you can look around that, a nice entertaining, weird and unique film awaits. I wasn't a fan of that weirdness alone, and the slightly slower sequences of the transformation in the house could have gone a bit faster, even though the film is not even 70 minutes long.

Cinematographically clearly on the cheap side but filled with a lot of love. Those fast scenes where the characters shoot through the streets are the ones you won't see often as a movie fan, which makes Tetsuo wonderful within its kind. Towards the finale, this trick may be repeated a bit too much, but otherwise an impressive piece of film.

The adrenaline is skilfully contained and the film is nice and short so that it does not take unnecessarily long to work out its wafer-thin story. I only found the middle part a bit tougher, because the hyperactive images interspersed with a somewhat calmer focus on transformations don't work quite well. Also a small topper, although it will not become a favorite.

dutch flagTranslated from Dutch · View original