Tomie: Forbidden Fruit (2002) Poster

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Tome is back and this time it's personal!
smashsmack9 November 2005
This is whats supposed to be the finale for the Tomie series (despite there being 2 more released this year) and they are an interesting set of movies at that. The series is based around Tomie Kawakami, for whatever reason she is unable to die and is able to make men drop to their knees at will. Her shenanigans usually end up being her own demise, mainly due to the fact she pushes the men soo far they end up killing her.

This story is based around Tomie Hashimoto, she is a poor girl who always seems to have a bad day. Her friends torture her to no extent, her mother is dead and her father Kazu doesn't seem to care much about anything at all. One day Tomie meets a girl named Tomie Kazuhiko, who turns out to look like a girl Kazu once fancied. Well of course it's the same Tomie and she has came back to claim her first love. Then the fireworks begin, well sort of.

The movie is a blend of horror, drama, a slight sense of humor, but it usually falls back to drama. Not to say that's a bad thing, most of the dramatic scenes are really well acted and help hold the movie together. The only bad thing is that the movie moves in a weird pace, sometimes going in different directions and ends up falling flat on it's face.

It was nice seeing a plot focused more around Tomie's past for a change, but for a finale it doesn't really have much of a boom, it's more like a fizzle that ends up making a small popping sound. Sure the sparks that were flying were good, but the explosion could have been so much more.

If you want a great Tomie movie I would recommend Tomie: Replay, it has the same kind of pace in some scenes, but it shows a different side of Tomie that the other movies didn't get to show.
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Forbidden fruit? Sure, why not...
paul_haakonsen20 April 2013
"Tomie: The Final Chapter - Forbidden Fruit" is oddly enough the best of the first four movies. But then again, it didn't really require a lot to outwit the other three movies. However, don't get your hopes up for this movie, because it is not all that great.

For a horror movie, then the movie is awfully devoid of scares and a proper horror feeling. This is, at best, a supernatural thriller mixed in with some stale drama.

The story is fairly similar to what has already been seen in the previous movies. Tomie has come back to torment some people. This time she has come back to torment her lover from 25 years ago, Kazu, and his daughter - also named Tomie (named after the dad's love).

The story is slow moving and doesn't really tell all that much at all, and it could have been done in less the time. Sure there are some nice moments throughout the movie, but it doesn't really build up any big thrills, suspense or scares. The "Forbidden Fruit" part of the movie, I assume, refer to the sexual undertones that lie throughout the movie.

Most memorable in the movie was the performance of Jun Kunimura, playing the daughter, Tomie Hashimoto.

If you enjoy Japanese horror movies, then I am sure that you are familiar with the boring "Tomie" series, as it is one of the founding pillars in modern J-horror. However, entertainment-wise, then there are far better Japanese horror movies available out there.
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Tomie or not Tomie
InzyWimzy9 July 2011
Junji Ito's famous horror saga continues in Tomie Forbidden Fruit. Having read the manga and seen the earlier Tomie films, TFF is successful at establishing a dark enigmatic mood throughout.

It's very tough not to feel for Tomie Hashimoto and her predicament at school and at home. Aoi Miyazaki does well at displaying her loneliness and less than joyful existence. The father is the eccentric piece of the puzzle where you're not exactly sure where he's coming from. After the climax, he leaves a very lasting impression. Then there's Tomie Kawakami herself whose appearance turns their whole world topsy-turvy. Reflecting back, Nozomi Andô was great as the main character. Her range of expressions had shown the mysterious allure Tomie possesses. At one time, she can be friendly with an open ear and then, all of a sudden, uncaring, demanding, and prone to anger.

TFF isn't your typical Ringu type horror. I felt the relationships between these three was the crux to the story as a whole. Before meeting Tomie, the father and daughter weren't in the best of situations. After Tomie enters the picture, you're left to wonder if this an improvement or a catalyst to make matters worse.
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"Tomie: Forbidden Fruit"- A bit of a step-down after the superior "Replay" and "Re-Birth", but an adequate continuation.
Oh, Tomie... Tomie, Tomie, Tomie... I just can't quite wrap my head around your films and why I'm so fascinated with them. Based on the wildly popular horror manga created by Junji Ito, the "Tomie" film franchise is a bit of a puzzling watch to me. I haven't been particularly taken with any single chapter in the still-growing cinematic saga, and in fact have found a few to be overtly bad. And yet, I still find myself drawn to them. I think its perhaps a bit of curiosity on my part. After all, between television and theatrical releases, there have been nine adaptations of the character released thus far. So it's clear that there is an audience. And there is most certainly an admiration for the characters and the concepts.

"Forbidden Fruit" is the fourth installment in the feature-length film series, and at the time was evidently built up as a "final chapter" to cap-off the franchise. Of course, we all known that the "final chapter" is never actually the final chapter. But it is interesting watching the film knowing that was the intent. As far as planned conclusions go, I actually think it's a bit of a letdown, and never quite matches the decidedly higher quality set by the two previous follow-ups "Replay" and "Re-Birth." Those films did some really interesting things with the character. "Forbidden Fruit" just feels like its going through the motions. But as something of a casual fan of the series, I also don't think its the worst installment, and it's adequately entertaining with a few mildly creepy moments. It's just... kind of a middle-of-the- road addition. Not particularly good. Not particularly bad. Just... mediocre.

The story this time is perhaps a touch darker and more intricate than previous installments, and involves the titular villain Tomie Kawakami (Nozomi Andô) befriending a high school loser who also happens to be named "Tomie." (Aoi Miyazaki) As the story progresses and their friendship goes through some peculiar moments (with hints of a sexual attraction between the two), it soon enough becomes clear that Tomie Kawakami has ulterior motives... motives which may be related to the father of her new "friend." (Jun Kunimura)

The main issue I have with "Forbidden Fruit" is that without spoiling anything, many scenes and moments seem to add up to a whole lotta nothing. There are intriguing themes and ideas brought up consistently and a handful of stand-out scenes, but its to the service of just more of the same old, same old. It's just another "Tomie" movie through-and-through and does very little outside of imitating what came before with a few fleeting attempts to add more substance. In a lot of ways, I found it similar to the first entry in the cinematic franchise, which also unfortunately is the worst of the films I've seen in my opinion. Good ideas... so-so execution. I also felt there was much to be desired in the visual direction courtesy Shun Nakahara and the dialog by writer Yoshinobu Fujioka. It's very sloppy and aimless at times, especially in the first act, with Nakahara making some bizarre visual choices (an opening prologue scene that's practically pitch black and sepia toned and thus almost impossible to see, for example) and Fujioka trying a bit too hard to be clever with some pretentious moments and a few misjudged meta in-jokes. ("You're just like Sadako, Tomie!" ...subtle.)

That being said, I'd be lying if I said I didn't have a bit of fun with the film. The performances are quite good for the most part, and you really find yourself enjoying the characters as a result. Miyazaki is a charming lead, while Andô is a good replacement for the villainous "Tomie." I appreciated the attempts to shake up the series and throw in a bit more substance even if it didn't quite come together particularly well. It at least shows a bit of effort on the parts of those involved, which is more than can be said for many horror sequels. There's a few genuinely startling sequences of suspense and fear that will tingle your spine and appeal to fans of horror. And I really enjoyed the ending. I won't spoil it, but it was the perfect way to finish the story and left me with a big old, devious grin on my face.

"Tomie: Forbidden Fruit" is a step in the wrong direction. But if you're a fan of the series, you'll probably get enough of a kick out of it to make it worth seeing. I give it a very middle-of-the-road 5 out of 10.
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Last Film in Series, and Its Good
crossbow01069 July 2011
To me, this film along with "Replay" are the best of the five film series and for wholly different reasons. A high school girl (this is Aoi Miyazuki) lives with her father. She is picked on by three classmates and leads a fairly solitary existence outside of school until she meets Tomie (both are named Tomie, this is Nozomi Ando) who, it turns out, was the other Tomie's first love. Of course, that Tomie met her untimely end all those years ago, and she looks to rekindle with the father. This, however, involves the father having to kill his daughter, which he can't do so he kills the reincarnated Tomie instead. This film has the best special effects and the story unfolds and builds in an almost darkly comic way. While not a perfect film, the way the two Tomies play off each other is pretty effective. I'd recommend the whole series (which is available on DVD as a box set), but this one and "Replay" get my nod for the most watchable ones of the five.
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Tomie's final outing is more whimper than bang.
Caustic Pulp10 October 2004
The four traditional Tomie films could probably be paired up under two headings: horror with drama, and drama with horror. The two better entries in the series - Tomie: Replay and Tomie: Rebirth - would be in the former category, and this along with the original would be in the latter.

If you're reading this, chances are you're curious about how this matches up to the movies that precede it. There are a lot of really unique and interesting choices taken by the screenwriter, director, and composer (I'm not joking), but the movie falls apart completely in the middle. Characters seem conflicted and confused - typical of a Tomie movie - but this seems to be more a result of script problems than character development.

Another major problem the film faces is its abundant lack of a real protagonist. The character positioned as the good Tomie is made sympathetic early in the film when she's relentless abused by her peers, but when she gets home she exhibits no respect for her father. Her father would be more sympathetic, too, but he has many trespasses throughout the film. Even the character Suzuki, who appears late in the film, doesn't get away completely clean. No one does, and that seriously cripples the film. The Tomie films always seemed to be about when bad things happen to good people, so why are bad things happening to mediocre people here?

The sense of dread that permeates Tomie: Rebirth (the best entry in the series by far) is out to lunch here, too. We don't feel like we want Tomie to leave our main characters alone; we just want her to go away.

The movie also should've ended five minutes before it really did. Had it done that, it would've almost completely redeemed itself. But the movie cheats the viewer completely here too.

It's certainly more interesting than the first film, but seems to be more in league with Tomie: Replay in terms of quality. See it only if you're a fan of the franchise. Otherwise, just avoid it and watch the vastly superior Tomie: Rebirth.
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Tomie with a love triangle twist
Leofwine_draca10 October 2012
The TOMIE series shows no signs of abating with this, the fifth (fifth!) entry in the series in as many years. TOMIE: FORBIDDEN FRUIT throws a distinctly lesbian slant on the by now familiar storyline as it reveals Tomie infiltrating a single-parent family and becoming attached to the high-school loser daughter. What follows is as sedately paced and predictable as the other movies in this series, as it gradually becomes apparent that, try as you might, you just can't get rid of Tomie.

Sadly I've found these films a real slog to sit through, purely because they're all so similar. They're marketed as horror movies but they're just plain weird and the scares, if and when they occur, are diluted. Usually, Tomie feels like a victim but in this film she's a malignant spirit determined to destroy a family from the inside. What results is an offbeat love triangle let down by rather disinterested direction and some poor performances from leading cast members, particularly Nozomi Ando whose ham acting makes her the worst Tomie yet. Saying that, at least the storyline is slightly different to previous entries in this series, so there's some interest garnered just from watching to find out what happens.
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iamahero1 May 2015
This is a beautiful, haunting film with great cinematography and a terrific score. I understand why people might find fault in it, but I think it's perfect and is my favorite Tomie film. Oddly, a few of the reviews here mention things that aren't in the film. There's nothing about stem cell research or weird video effects, so please ignore those reviews. If you are looking for a sinister, bloody film, this is not going to satisfy you. If you are looking for the typical Tomie film, you may also be disappointed. But if you enjoy creepy drama and absurdist horror, you will be quite pleased. I absolutely loved the ending, and I felt the film had a great structure to it overall. Please give this film a chance, and watch it with an open mind. It may take some knowledge of Tomie to fully understand, so don't hesitate to check out some of the Junji Ito manga, or at least a short summary of who or what Tomie is.
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BandSAboutMovies8 January 2021
Warning: Spoilers
Even though the fourth installment of this series was called Tomie: The Final Chapter - Forbidden Fruit, we all know that any sequel happy series that promises a final chapter are always liars.

Tomie Hashimoto writes vampire fiction and gets made fun of for being a Lolita by the other girls by day and lives alone with her distant and widowed father by night. One day, while trying to jewelry, Tomie H. meets Tomie Kawakami, who she brings into her fictional life. But their meeting was no coincidence.

Tomie H.'s father, Kazuhiko, was involved with Tomie K. years and years ago, back before she was murdered. He even named his daughter after her. Once Tomie K. meets him, she casts her spell and demands that he kill her daughter. He replies by cutting off her head and throwing it into the river, which Tomie H. finds the head and nurses it back into a larval state.

Like many teen relationships, a fight comes between them, so Tomie H. throws her friend off a building, which only brings her back stronger, so she kills her with an arrow and gets her father's help to freeze and destroy Tomie K., who of course wins over the father and nearly kills our heroine, who is saved by a worker at the ice company.

She goes back to her fictional world, except now she has an ear of Tomie that she is growing to be her true friend.

Shun Nakahara, who directed this, is another young Japanese filmmaker who came from the world of adult video. I found this to be one of the more interesting Tomie movies. As for the lesbian tease of Forbidden Fruit, it's mostly implied and refers to the pomegranate, which the two eat together in one scene.

Some Jewish scholars believe pomegranates were the forbidden fruit in the Garden of Eden. The fruit is also listed as one of the Seven Species of special products of the Land of Israel and symbolizes the mystical experiences of the kabbalah. Finally, look no further than the Songs of Solomon for this quote: "Thy lips are like a thread of scarlet, and thy speech is comely: thy temples are like a piece of a pomegranate within thy locks."

So yeah, they're totally talking about sex.
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The Movie
codycook16 June 2005
Warning: Spoilers
Hello. I have seen this movie. It was one of the better movies created about Tomie, the girl who'll never die... because she is bakemono.... Tomie, a girl who is picked on, is at a jewelry store looking, but has no money. Horrible Tomie comes in and steals it and they leave. They exchange names, and the Tomie who had no money is like IN LOVE with Horrible Tomie. That is pretty much the movie. Then you have these 3 dumb girls who want to kill Innocent Tomie but just be rude to her instead because they like having somebody to pick on. Anyway, it is a great movie and better than the other 2 that i've seen. GO SEE IT BECAUSE IT IS GREAT!
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It should have all ended here
kluseba30 November 2018
Tomie: The Final Chapter - Forbidden Fruit was supposed to be the last film in the franchise about the evil girl that cannot die. As we speak, four more movies have been made but it might have been a good idea to actually end the franchise on a solid note with this film. The movie isn't as gripping as Tomie: Replay and as atmospheric as the first Tomie four years earlier but it's clearly an improvement over the unbalanced Tomie: Rebirth or the compilation of low-budget television episodes released under the title Tomie: Another Face.

The story revolves around a high school student called Tomie who is bullied by three other girls. Her mother died ten years ago. Her father seems to be as gloomy, lonesome and unhappy as herself. One day, the high school student meets a girl of her age who is also called Tomie but who is completely different from her. She seems to be courageous, quirky and self-confident. The two quickly become friends and even start developing a romantic interest in one another. However, the extroverted Tomie deceives her friend as she is actually interested in her friend's father and wants to get rid of his daughter. She reveals to the old man that she was in love with him twenty-five years ago but ended up being killed by one of their friends. She wants to rekindle her love for the old man and soon manipulates him and his daughter. The father soon must make the difficult choice to either get rid of his daughter or of the obsessive intruder.

This film is much more a drama with mild horror elements rather than a horror movie with mild drama elements. This movie isn't scary but it convinces with the gloomiest atmosphere in the franchise up to this point. The film starts slowly as most of the other entries but steadily quickens up the pace and ends on a surprising note. There are several memorable scenes like Tomie being nursed as a monstrous baby reminding of Eraserhead and the sinister showdown in the ice factory. The story is quite unpredictable and certainly one of the strongest plots in the franchise. The actresses and actors are more dynamic, emotional and unique than in some of the predecessors. The manipulative nature of the antagonist becomes most obvious in this film. The outcast protagonist however is certainly a character the audience can root for.

I would recommend this movie to fans of the franchise and to anyone who likes supernatural dramas with a gloomy atmosphere. Tomie: The Final Chapter - Forbidden Fruit would have concluded the movie franchise on a solid note. Still, there isn't one single film that fully lives up to the potential of the original manga series.
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Most interesting and disturbing installment gets ruined by extended comic relief
Death_to_Pan_and_Scan6 April 2007
Warning: Spoilers
This is the 5th film (4th theatrical, the 2nd film was made for TV) of 7 about Tomie; the beautiful she-demon who drives men to kill her, but will not stay dead. I've never read Junji Ito's manga, so I will review this just as a film within the series.

Good horror films are disturbing to us, that's part of their job. Tomie Forbidden Fruit does a good job of that initially, but loses focus and somewhat falls apart a little after the halfway mark. The first half is a good creepy horror film, albeit not a 'scary' one, though none of the series were. It suffers from 'Jeepers Creepers-itis': starts off with a great premise that seems to be going somewhere and then derails itself into silly territory that undermines that which preceded it. Luckily, it pretty much gets back on track at the end which is more than I can say for Jeepers Creepers. The idea is a good one and takes Tomie into the 'destruction of friends and families' territory more than previous entries did (Re-birth would be the 2nd best in that capacity due to its mother-son-girlfriend relations subplot).

Kazu Hashimoto was in love with Tomie some 25 years ago, but she died as did the friend who stole her from him. We see him now as a middle-aged widower who named his daughter after his lost 1st love. Tomie Hashimoto is harassed at school by girls who bully her and her life is generally miserable until the day she meets Tomie. They become fast friends and…cue the PG-rated pseudo-lesbian overtones. Actually, Tomie isn't really interested in being friends with her namesake. Tomie actually despises her as a reminder that Kazu married another woman and gave birth to a daughter, Tomie Hashimoto. Tomie plans to regain Kazu and offers her love to him after he removes all remnants of the time that has passed, namely the shrine to his deceased wife (no big deal for a man who has forgotten her in the past 10 years since her death) and one other slight obstacle: the daughter of that union. In order to regain the beautiful lost love of his youth, Kazu must follow Tomie's orders to murder his offspring. Usually even men who'd be tempted by the offer would have enough love of their child and basic morals to refuse such a barbaric demand, but then again Tomie's inhuman spell on men defies rational thought and all bets are off.

After Tomie is murdered (no big shock/spoiler if you've been watching the series up to this point), things takes a turn from the creepy disturbing horror mode into strange dark humor territory along the lines of "Basketcase" meets "Eraserhead". This derailment lasts maybe 20 minutes, which is more than enough for it to negatively affect the tone of the film. Tomie Hashimoto inexplicably decides to locate Tomie's remains and now has to take care of the decapitated head of her 'friend' as it slowly regenerates a body. There are comically-intended scenes of her feeding an ungrateful Tomie and taking her around town in a baby stroller (which makes one want to utter that infamous movie phrase "What's in the basket?"). Tomie quickly proves very demanding, beyond her caregiver's financial means or even any remaining desires to provide for her. Acting the role of a doting parent isn't something she's ready to accept from this selfish creature. In this way it somewhat mirrors Jack Nance's situation in "Eraserhead", right down to the monstrous deformities underneath those swaddling blankets. In the meantime, we also see Tomie H's nemesis schoolgirl bullies visit her home and meet up with daddy, whose tendency towards violence is not to be restrained after the psychological effects of his last meeting with Tomie. While amusing, it's fairly standard fare as Takashi Miike already did a better job of addressing the issue of high school bullies in "Visitor Q".

Tomie returns and the father-daughter team come up with a clever -- albeit noticeably telegraphed -- way to keep Tomie from coming back into their lives, but the writers aren't ready to let the end credits roll just yet.

Even though this was titled as the 'final chapter', 2 more apparently worse films would later follow. The organ music score almost sounds like intentionally lost throwaway tracks from Argento's "Inferno".

6/10 (I give a 7/10 to the first half and a 5/10 for the comic relief sidetrack)
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Best Tomie EVER!
Queer-qatfm21 November 2004
Warning: Spoilers
This post may contain spoilers.

Well, okay that's not really saying that much considering this "horror" series from Japan is not even close to being a "head" above anything else. I don't quite get the whole "forbidden fruit" thing... but at least it was over really quickly.

There are a few scenes that are very nice and romantic between the Tomie characters that may be worth a look. Mmm, Tomie's dad is probably thinking Tomie Love Sandwich! And who doesn't like Tomie's head in a handbag? Especially when it's kind of more like a torso with odd appendages.

Basically it's crap and you know it so just enjoy that for what it is worth.

Tomie will never die and, yes, it will hurt.

Tomie grade: F+
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ashfordofficial31 August 2022
1. Fifth entry in the Tomie film series based on Junji Ito's hit manga series. A thrilling movie with an awesome music and a stellar and kawaii (Aoi Miyazaki and Nozomi Ando) cast.

I tried to watch it in the release order but I couldn't find the complete set anywhere.

2. Fifth entry in the Tomie film series based on Junji Ito's hit manga series. A thrilling movie with an awesome music and a stellar and kawaii (Aoi Miyazaki and Nozomi Ando) cast.

I tried to watch it in the release order but I couldn't find the complete set anywhere.

3. Fifth entry in the Tomie film series based on Junji Ito's hit manga series. A thrilling movie with an awesome music and a stellar and kawaii (Aoi Miyazaki and Nozomi Ando) cast.

I tried to watch it in the release order but I couldn't find the complete set anywhere.
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Slow and Silly
timothygartin24 May 2019
I did not like this movie. I liked Tomie and Tomie: Replay a lot. This one was super slow and not scary at all. I thought that the characters were shallow and it was difficult to watch it closely. It did not keep the mood of the best entries in this series. If you like the Tomie series, you should watch it for completeness. If you aren't already a fan, skip it.
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quite boring
kakoilija12 February 2008
Warning: Spoilers
this is your typical teen movie...

there's just nothing great about this.

it's not scary either. the hanging body in the beginning didn't scare me at all. it seemed rather pretentious... and very predictable.

then nothing happens in a long time. the movie just lags..

the nerdy girl isn't particularly interesting.

tomie is kinda hot, but she doesn't show her tits in this flick... =D=D=D

i guess i've seen worse, but i would skip this one... don't rent it.

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The Stem
mahatma_phanishwar26 September 2005
Different horrific forms swim before the mind's eye: The Xenomorph of galactic space and the Selenite, the hopping lichocamphs of Canton and Manchuria, and further terrors of Mainland China, not the least of which frightening is the abhorrent big headed infant, with it's flesh of neutral hues -- from the triffid plants, whose purpose it would seem was to make a tomb of Earth, to spectral horrors worldwide, which include the multi-headed cyborg mutant reptiles, born out of some Asian Hell, the flesh-eaters (Italy) and the awful hybrid walrus represented in Harrihausen's SINDBAD AND THE EYE OF THE TIGER (N. America), their dismal legions, that rummage freely through the unsightly stomach of human folly like so many maggots at brunch....

Tomie, step forth and take thy place amongst these others. Sadako! Disturbed witch! You are but a ghost seeking retribution like so many before you, but Tomie -- foul monster! You metamorphize into some of the most freakish creatures i have ever seen.


Our story begins when a licentatious, though not unenticing, girl in a sailor girl uniform is killed by her classmates and teacher, who cut her body into over forty pieces and dispose of her. She comes back, however, to take them to hell. Tomie is a demon, taking on many various forms of guise that she might deride and ensnare her victims, like a Venus flytrap - yet she has her part with the Vegitable Kingdom, and yet seems more Mammalian or having attributes of the higher crustacean strains (were that particular branch of thoropoids lacking in exo-skeletons). She, in fact, would be representative of the over half of the US population that believes in astrology and nearly half that believes in creationism.

Watching her films (there are at least twelve) brings to mind a more subtle, though no less interesting, phenomenon; The political dialog of any given World Power being dominated as it is by the successful party's mastery of the cinematic narrative. We just cannot help ourselves; we like to be shown that the world is so.

But once you start those machinations going, you inherit ALL the baggage of the cinematic narrative, Jud Nelson comes along uninvited with your John Wayne. This has nothing at all to do with conservative values; it is just a result of adopting the movie world as the basis for your beliefs.

I can understand this thread of influence and consequence when it applies to nuclear energy: the US makes and deploys a bomb: many, many movies are made showing the evil side. And we end up with a public that has an unnatural fear of all things radioactive.

But this thread is more interesting and profound and has stifled stem cell research in the US.
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White House Furious With the Stem Cell Debate...
Dirt_Britland23 January 2006
I have been a fan of Junji Ito's work since "Night Head". Chances are if it has his name on it, I've read it,seen it, or both. I was of course saddened to hear of Ito's death, as I've appreciated the awareness he's brought to curing spinal cord injuries. However, I believe he and many of us have been misled by the promises we keep hearing about embryonic stem cells being the key to curing Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, diabetes and a host of other maladies. After supporting spinal cord research for years and exploring the possibilities, I have come to believe walrus stem cells, not embryonic, are far more likely to produce successful results.

There was so much potential here. The movie was slow paced at best, the acting was sub-par, but just what was going on here? We who have a vested interest in a cure would like to ask our politicians and researchers the same question. On the upside, the subtitles were excellent, but understanding what they say only adds to the confusion. (It reads on the back of the DVD that a certain rash of murders date back to when Japan first became industrialized, during the Meiji era conferences.) A valid plot-point? You decide...

Forget about about taking cells at the blastocyst stage. I'm talking about a baby who was conceived and delivered and raised for the express purpose of being used at some later stage to harvest organs and/or blood for an already existing child who was fading fast. Some people who did this were interviewed on TV a few months ago. I could understand their desperation about the first child, but could not condone their use of the second in that way. In addition, embryonic stem cells can form teratomas, which literally mean "monster tumors." These tumors often contain different cell types, such as teeth, hair or bone tissue. Walrus stem cells, which are easier to control, do not form these tumors. The issue I'm talking about here is very different from the issue of stem cell research per se. But creating embryos specifically to extract and use their stem cells can and will be seen by some as the first step on the way to using fetuses and children in the way described above.

There is a lot here to explore. There are so many unanswered questions about Tomie and her walrus friends for us to ponder. Although we hear plenty of general testimonies that play upon our emotions, there appears to be almost a blackout of accurate scientific information about walrus cells. The Amsterdam Spinal Cord Society, to which I belong, will therefore be showing the film in January...

Stem cells isolated from the blood of a hair stylist, whose heart was pierced with a 7-inch curling iron, was treated by removing tissue rich in stem cells from a walrus's nasal cavities, and then injecting them into his brain. Today, he's again playing high school soccer. Stem cells found in blood drained from human umbilical cords after birth can become many types of cells needed to treat disability and disease, such as heart cells, beta islets and neurons. Or does she love to freak people out by appearing as a talking severed head? Tomie stays young forever, but does she need to be killed in order to keep from aging?

The film is unrated. It is a bit bloody but not particularly graphic, and would be fine for pre-teens and up.
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