The Japanese film director Shinya Tsukamoto has been creating low-budget horror films since the mid-1970s. The filmmaker has managed to attract a cult following with his uncompromising take on various sexual and violent perversions. The article establishes a connection between his breakthrough film Tetsuo (1989) and his two recent films Fires on the Plain (Nobi, 2014) and Killing (Zan, 2018). At first sight, it would appear that these two films tackle a very different genre, but it can also be argued that they mark a return to the director’s early preoccupations. The article argues that Tsukamoto’s filmography can be seen as a sort of a dramatic arc whose protagonist has recently returned to his starting point, even though he is now changed and considerably more tied to reality than ever before.

The integral version of this article can be found in the printed KINO!