- "Madness. Terror. Murder."
A series of brutal murders start happening all over the Tokyo area. All are committed by different, unrelated people, but there are two connections: All the victims have an x-shaped wound on their throats, and none of the killers can remember committing the crime. A detective investigating the case comes across a mysterious amnesiac who seems to be near every crime...
This film contains examples of:
- Ambiguous Ending: The film ends with Takabe seemingly inciting a waitress to commit murder, suggesting that he has been hypnotized by Mamiya into continuing his work. However, it is unclear whether this is in fact the case.
- Arch-Enemy: Takabe has Mamiya, who spends the whole film psychologically tormenting him, and eventually drives him insane.
- Big Bad: Kunihiko Mamiya is responsible for all the murders.
- Brainwashed: Mamiya exposes other people to repetitive sounds to hypnotize them, implanting the suggestion to commit murders.
- Calling Card: Each victim has an "X" carved into their bodies.
- Defective Detective: Takabe is emotionally repressed and struggles to care for his wife, whose mental health is slowly deteriorating. This may have left him susceptible to Mamiya's manipulations.
- Downer Ending: Mamiya manages to completely break Takabe. This leads to the former's death, but the latter takes up his crimes.
- Faking Amnesia: Mamiya seems to exhibit short-term memory loss, and acts constantly confused. It's all a lie to disguise his sociopathy.
- One-Word Title
- Psycho Psychologist: Mamiya isn't a practicing psychologist, but he was a student, and currently uses his knowledge to hypnotize others into becoming murderers.
- Serial Killer: Kunihiko Mamiya, although he doesn't actually commit the crimes. Instead, he hypnotizes other people into doing so.
- Shout-Out: The first scene features Takabe's wife reading "Bluebeard."
- Slashed Throat: One of the only things tying the murders together is the "X" slashed across the throats of the victims.
- The Sociopath: Kunihiko Mamiya, an amnesiac Serial Killer who hypnotizes people into committing the most brutal of atrocities, and loves to play mind games with the detective pursuing him.