Genocidal Organ is another film from the Project Itoh Collection. Project Itoh, for the uninitiated, is a collection of manga that have received the anime treatment, with Genocidal Organ being the debut release. Another film from the collection is Harmony, which we’ve previously reviewed and can check out here.
Ok, so some back story about what’s going down in Genocidal Organ. It’s set in Sarajevo after a homemade nuke has decimated most of the city. The main protagonist is a military officer named Captain Clavis Shepherd who is alerted by his superiors about random acts of genocide occurring throughout the world while the United States seemingly goes untouched, by whatever is afflicting the rest of the globe. All these acts appear to point to a mysterious individual known only as John Paul and it’s this man that Shepherd is tasked with retrieving and bringing back to answer for his crimes.
This film, just like Harmony, is extremely word heavy with tons of dialogue. I remember watching Harmony and at the time waiting for the action to happen and that’s exactly what I felt with Genocidal Organ. There aren’t a lot characters to keep track of as it’s a small cast but considering the nature of the story, expect lots and lots of dialogue and talking scenes aplenty. It goes without saying that this is a very dark and mature film with random headshot executions taking place in the street, characters getting killed off in gruesome manners, littered with gore and buckets of blood.
The action scenes are really quite phenomenal and it’s where the film really kicks into gear. The choreography is stellar and the scenes are quite tense and realistic. The tech used in the film doesn’t seem so far away either, the film isn’t set that far in the future so it all seems like this could be happening soon. Setting the bulk of the action in Sarajevo was a smart move as the European landscape lends the film an air of authenticity and keeps grounded. A lot of the times when they’re set in Asia, it can almost seem futuristic but clearly the writers wanted to convey the grittiness and drama of war and in that, they achieved the atmosphere that war can bring.
One last note, and it may be a mild spoiler, however…..there are quite a few scenes where children are killed in extremely violent ways so if that’s something you can’t tolerate, you’ve been warned.
Thanks to Madman for the review copy.
Final score: 7/10