IMDb > Philosophy of a Knife (2008) (V)

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Release Date:
8 July 2008 (USA) See more »
God created heaven, man created hell
The true history of Japanese Unit 731, from its beginnings in the 1930s to its demise in 1945, and the subsequent trials in Khabarovsk... See more » | Add synopsis »
User Reviews:
one word to describe it: deliberate See more (28 total) »


  (in credits order)
Tetsuro Sakagami ... The Officer #1
Tomoya Okamoto ... The Officer #2
Yukari Fujimoto ... The Female Nurse #1
Manoush ... The Female Nurse #1 (voice)
Yumiko Fujiwara ... The Female Nurse #2
Masaki Kitagava ... The Female Nurse #3
Reiko Niakawa ... The Female Nurse #4
Elena Romanova Probatova ... The Favorite Girl (as Elena Probatova)
Tatyana Kopeykina ... The Blond Girl with Toy Bear
Veronika Leonova ... The Brunette Girl
Irina Nikitina ... The Pregnant Girl
Dmitriy Skripnik ... The Captured Airplane Pilot
Alyona Strebkova ... The Dental Torture Girl
Vladimir Volodin ... The Syphilis Experiment Man
Irina Zenkina ... The Syphilis Experiment Girl
Svyatoslav Iliyasov ... The Male Nurse
Anna Subbotina ... The Insect Experiment Girl (as Anna Subotina)
Artem Seleznyov ... The Frostbite Experiment Man
Vladimir Kucherenko ... The Radioactivity Experiment Man
Victor Silkin ... The Old Surgeon
Victor Ludchenko ... The Decompression Experiment Man
Andrey Iskanov ... The Amputation Surgeon
Diana Petrashova
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Anatoly Protasov ... Himself
Stephen Tipton ... Historical commentary (voice)

Directed by
Andrey Iskanov 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Andrey Iskanov 

Produced by
Stephen Biro .... producer: Unearthed Films
Andrey Iskanov .... producer
Original Music by
Alexander Shevchenko 
Cinematography by
Andrey Iskanov 
Film Editing by
Andrey Iskanov 
Production Design by
Andrey Iskanov 
Makeup Department
Svyatoslav Iliyasov .... special makeup effects assistant
Andrey Iskanov .... special makeup effects
Dmitriy Skripnik .... special makeup effects assistant
Sound Department
Andrey Iskanov .... sound effects designer
Special Effects by
Andrey Iskanov .... special effects
Visual Effects by
Alexander Shevchenko .... digital effects artist
Svyatoslav Iliyasov .... assistant stunt coordinator
Andrey Iskanov .... stunt coordinator
Dmitriy Skripnik .... stunt performer
Camera and Electrical Department
Svyatoslav Iliyasov .... still photographer
Andrey Iskanov .... still photographer
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Tatyana Nilitina .... costume manufacturer
Other crew
Alexander Bakshaev .... translator
Hannah Barry .... translator
Eugeniy Prohvatilov .... gun master
Alexander Shevchenko .... title designer
Elena Aktanko .... thanks
Victoria Bilan .... thanks
Darya Bildi .... thanks
Roman Kim .... thanks
Konstantin Lugovkin .... thanks
Manoush .... thanks
Eugeniy Prohvatilov .... thanks
Anatoly Protasov .... thanks
Sergey Romanov .... thanks
Alexander Shevchenko .... thanks
Richard Shinderman .... thanks
Alexander Silkin .... thanks
Natalia Skripnik .... thanks
Stanislav Tcymzhitov .... thanks
Stephen Tipton .... thanks
Chris Vazquez .... thanks

Production CompaniesDistributors

Additional Details

Also Known As:
249 min (Unrated Director's Cut)
Sound Mix:
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

The film contains about 13,000 special sound effects most part of which is never used twice.See more »
Forgive MeSee more »


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17 out of 32 people found the following review useful.
one word to describe it: deliberate, 7 August 2008
Author: knifeintheeye from Canada

Obviously with a running time of 4.5 hours, this is not an easy watch, but considering that 3 hours of the movie is pure human atrocity, this will try both your stomach and mental capacity. I watched the opening 1.5 hours, went away and came back to finish the film—a pseudo documentary.

I had two complaints with the film. From the little I know on Unit 731, most of the experiments were carried out on Chinese prisoners, but the film only featured Caucasians. The other complaint was the effects. It's too bad they weren't better since the bodies often looked like plasticine.

The sound effects and music were perfect, and the last hour was an interesting touch (I won't spoil it, but I will say this: It was a complete left turn from the first three and a half hours).

If I had to pick one word to describe this movie, it would not be extreme, or gore, or sickening (but all three would make great descriptions), but simply: deliberate. Each scene is played out in deliberate excruciating detail. Case in point is the opening scene walking through the snow for five (?) minutes and the scene where the man is freezing outside.

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See more (28 total) »

Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for Philosophy of a Knife (2008)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
Exactly how hard is this to watch?? BlackLabInLove
May have been asked before but...(spoiler) ElPollodelaMuerte
Worth watching? djn497
Remake of Men Behind The Sun? fluffyninjabunnies
This is an enormous waste of time, really bad. toddly76
Russian Horror Director Andrey Iskanov Detained for 5 Days by FSB PittRipply
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