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Organ (1996)

 -  Action | Drama | Horror  -  6 July 1996 (Japan)
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Two police detectives Numata and Tosaka infiltrate a group of underground black market human organ dealers. Things go haywire during a raid on the group's surgical headquarters. Numata ... See full summary »



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Credited cast:
Kei Fujiwara ...
Kimihiko Hasegawa
Natsuyo Kanahama ...
Corpse of female high-school student
Kenji Nasa
Ryu Okubo
Tojima Shozo
Shun Sugata ...
Naka Nishi


Two police detectives Numata and Tosaka infiltrate a group of underground black market human organ dealers. Things go haywire during a raid on the group's surgical headquarters. Numata barely escapes, while a wounded Tosaka gets left behind. Through a series of surreal and gory events, the identities of the organ dealers are revealed as Numata plans his revenge. Written by Todd K. Bowman <>

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6 July 1996 (Japan)  »

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1.37 : 1
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User Reviews

Organ and our Hellish Human-condition
22 October 2005 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I'm astonished at some of the bad-reviews of this film--ignore them. If you love extreme cinema that explores the basis of the human-animal, you have found a home in the cinematic space-time continuum. Ostensibly, this is a Yakuza and detective film, with elements of film-noir and expressionism. It is not a purely genre film at-all, but an art-film with incredible complexity about what it is to be human. Fujiwara is best-known for her role in Tsukamoto Shinya's "Tetsuo: the Iron Man", and her relationship to his work shows here. The human-body is the battlefield, as well as the human-soul. Maybe it took an inspired woman to say this, and a Buddhist at-that. And in many-ways, this feels like a tale by Edgar Allan Poe! It has that feel to it, a very visceral, filth-covered psychology--what much real horror is. In-fact, I'd say it is on-par with Poe and his Japanese-analogue, "Edogawa Rampo" (a pen-name). This is a film I have watched several-times, and it always delivers a new-revelation. One-viewing is not enough to begin to understand it. If it is ugly, it is because life has ugliness. If it has beauty (it does), it is because life does.

There are roughly two narrative-paths in the film: first, the story of the outsider detective searching for his "dead" partner after their uncovering of a horrific black-market organ-smuggling ring run by Yakuza, and secondly, the story of the insiders of the ring, a brother-and-sister. The detective's-half reminded me strongly of Kurosawa's "Stray Dog" (aka "Nora Inu", 1949), and is probably a conscious-nod by Fujiwara. The brother has reanimated the lost-cop and is doing hellish experiments on him, while the sister--Yoko--runs the gang and fends-off the outside world. It's an interesting structure, which makes the film watchable numerous times, but the philosophical-themes of birth-and-death are even more rewarding. Yes, it is extremely low-budget, and shot in 16mm, but it is a well-executed film by a genuine maverick.

At the film's philosophical-center is the relationship with the surgeon-brother in the organ-ring, and the reanimated-cop. As grotesque as the half-dead cop appears, he is more human than the internally-diseased brother. In-fact, he is metaphor for the surgeon's remnants of humanity; Fujiwara makes it clear that the brother and sister were horribly-abused, the origin of their spiritual-decay and sadism. The reanimated-cop is hidden-away by the surgeon in a secret room, and they have an "internal-dialog." The other-half of the narrative is also very powerful, with the outsider detective's obsession with finding his partner taking a horrible-toll on his family. It seems that being a cop hasn't done him or his home any good--even before the body-snatching incident. Fujiwara paints life as-such: birth, mutilation at the hands of others, and finally, death. Sadly, this is the fate that awaits many human-beings in this inhuman era we inhabit. Out of this, one could surmise that Mrs. Fujiwara has a strong-ambivalence to motherhood. What is puzzling is why many women do not. This film is a contemporary-masterpiece. "Organ 2" has been completed, so expect more-of-the-same!

01.21.06 PS: It's hilarious how people don't get this incredible-film, but I believe it is still ahead-of-the-pack. American-audiences are used to a more linear-narrative structure, whereas audiences in Japan and Europe understand a film that is primarily thematic.

6 of 10 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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