Sunday, May 29, 2011
Philosophy Of A Knife (2008)
Philosophy differs from other films based on the exploits of Unit 731 in the fact that the film has no social message or standpoint. Those familiar with movies like Men Behind The Sun are aware of how grizzly and disturbing these experiments were but at the same time those other films tend to be a patriotic Chinese cry of dispaire. Philosophy is the exact opposite and is a much deeper film. Its part documentary with narration explaining the war and Japans scientific advances. We have interviews from a man who was there as an interpreter and the film also claims to have uncovered facts that were previously unknown to the world. Then the rest of the film is pretty much all reenactments of the experiments that went on in Unit 731. For me the films down fault was that they tried to add in a small story line about a Japanese soldier who is falling in love with one of the Guinea pig, prisoners. I felt it was a waste of run time and the film was long enough without it. Then the director chooses to shoot entirely to much snow footage which does break up the horrible torture scenes but really doesn't serve much purpose and causes the film to run even longer then necessary.
After being subjected to the full 4 hours of these experiments I personally couldn't help but feel like I was tortured myself. If there is anything that Philosophy doesn't do it is glorify the violence. I have heard many call this movie a modern exploitation film with over the top gore. I don't know if I can agree with this statement because I felt the opposite. I felt the agony of those torture scenes and really couldn't wait for the film to end. It was just to much to handle and I have came back and watched the movie in full more then once to see if I found it as disturbing as the first time. The answer is yes. The movie seems to take a bit of your soul every time you see it and for that reason I feel that it is an important piece of cinema that needs to be seen. Now if you will excuse me I am going to go vomit!