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The Tattooist (2007)

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A young artist unknowingly plays a role in releasing a deadly spirit as he attempts to learn tatau, the Samoan tradition of tattooing.


Peter Burger
4 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Jason Behr ... Jake Sawyer
Mia Blake Mia Blake ... Sina
David Fane ... Mr. Va'a
Robbie Magasiva ... Alipati
Ian Vincent Ian Vincent ... The Tattooist / Lomi
Caroline Cheong Caroline Cheong ... Victoria
Nathaniel Lees ... Mr. Perenese
Michael Hurst ... Crash
John Bach ... Lazlo McFadden
Matailiili Denzel Tuimaunga Matailiili Denzel Tuimaunga ... Osone
Glen Jackson Glen Jackson ... Cousin #1
Edmund Paongo Edmund Paongo ... Cousin #2
Fasitua Amosa Fasitua Amosa ... Dr. Lima
Lauren A Jackson Lauren A Jackson ... Triage Nurse (as Lauren Jackson)
Alison Bruce ... Charge Nurse


American tattoo artist Jake Sawyer wanders the world, exploring and exploiting ethnic themes in his tattoo designs. At a tattoo expo in Singapore, he gets his first glimpse at the exotic world of traditional Samoan tattoo (tatau), and, in a thoughtless act, unwittingly unleashes a powerful angry spirit. In his devastating journey into Pacific mysticism, Jake must find a way to save his new love, Sina and recover his own soul. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Evil in ink.


Horror | Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence, disturbing images, language and brief sexuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »




Release Date:

30 April 2007 (New Zealand) See more »

Also Known As:

O Tatuador See more »

Filming Locations:

Auckland, New Zealand See more »


Box Office


$3,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$141,146 (New Zealand), 2 September 2007, Limited Release
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Jake's Father: [on seeing his sons tattoo] Oh boy what have you done?
Young Jake Sawyer: It's a pentegram
Jake's Father: I know what it is... it's the devil's mark... you shame me
See more »


References The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King (2003) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Weird Horror Movie
10 August 2009 | by Claudio CarvalhoSee all my reviews

The American tattooist Jake Sawyer (Jason Behr) travels around the world researching tattoos and tattooing clients. While in Singapore, he steals a tool that belongs to the Samoan family of his acquaintance Sina (Mia Blake); however he has a problem with a client that expected that his tattoo could heal his sick son and Jake accidentally cuts his palm with the tool. Jake returns to New Zealand where he meets Sina again and has a cold reception from her family that knows that he has stolen their tool. They visit a Samoan family that has been living in shame since their missing son did not finish a traditional ritual with the tattoos. Sooner Jake finds that his recent clients are chased by a fiend that is somehow connected to the Samoan tool, and he discloses a dark secret in the Samoan community.

"The Tattooist" is a weird horror movie for those like me that are not used to the Samoan rituals and traditions, more specifically to the Traditional Samoan tattooing of the pe'a, body tattoo. I have found many articles about this subject in Google (for example, http://www.samoa.co.uk/tattoos.html) that helped me to understand the plot. Therefore, in my opinion, this movie fails for not providing a better clarification of the Samoan tattoo history. If the viewer clearly understands this matter, the horror makes sense and "The Tattooist" is an original movie of this genre. My vote is six.

Title (Brazil): "O Tatuador" ("The Tattoist")

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