Tattoo (2002)

Tattoo (2002)



Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.

Tattoo Photos

Movie Info

A dark and gruesome thriller reminiscent of David Fincher's Seven, this freshman effort from German director Robert Schwentke finds an unmotivated young detective roped into helping a seasoned veteran solve a case in which people are literally skinned for their tattoos and brutally murdered. Schrader (August Diehl) is a lazy, hard-partying cop who barely passed his academy training, only to settle in for an undemanding desk job upon graduation. His bid for the easy life is soon spoiled when Chief Inspector Minks (Christian Redl) blackmails him into working for homicide after catching him in possession of drugs at an illegal nightclub. Soon discovering a group of underground art enthusiasts who covet a series of 12 tattoos detailed by a mysterious and since-deceased Japanese artist, the duo subsequently discovers a heretofore-unknown 13th tattoo by the artist adorning the body of beautiful Maya (Nadeshda Brennicke). As Schrader enters into a dangerous and heated affair with Maya, the case tumbles headlong into a tense climax when the group discovers that their collection is incomplete.
Art House & International , Drama , Horror , Mystery & Suspense
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:


August Diehl
as Marc Schrader
Christian Redl
as Hauptkommissar Minks
Nadeshda Brennicke
as Maya Kroner
Johan Leysen
as Frank Schoubya
Monica Bleibtreu
as Kommissarin Roth
Show More Cast

Critic Reviews for Tattoo

All Critics (25) | Top Critics (10)

No excerpt available.

Full Review… | June 23, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

Stylish and engaging despite its over-reliance on the conventions of the thriller genre.

Full Review… | June 4, 2004
Washington Post
Top Critic

The premise of this film might be halfway original, but the execution is wholly derivative.

Full Review… | August 15, 2003
Boston Globe
Top Critic

An engrossing and original police procedural of bleak, steel-gray images and high style.

July 11, 2003
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic

A nasty, intelligent and complex thriller.

Full Review… | July 9, 2003
L.A. Weekly
Top Critic

For all its oversights, absurdities and unconnected dots, Tattoo succeeds in getting under your skin.

July 8, 2003
New York Times
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for Tattoo

Bizarre. A tattooed skin trade, with a hellish mystery. Really interesting movie with a very gripping, dark, bleak story. It's definitely well done though. Wonderful acting, and the storyline is just overall quite intense. I found this film to be filmed nicely and it kept me entertained and kind of thrilled all the way through. Just really entreating to watch. It's dreary and cold, as well. It is rather, a weird film, with some flaws, but nonetheless it was pretty good. The ending might be a complete mindf*ck.

Amanda Ø.
Amanda Ø.

Surprisingly generic - if it wasn't for the fact that it's in German I would have confused this for your typical Hollywood thriller. The direction by Schwentke (whose last name is spelled almost like mine, by the way) is admittedly stylish and does manage to pull off some great shock effects (such as the great the opening sequence) but the narrative is so derivative and the twists are so obvious that I thought there had to be something more to all of it... but alas there wasn't. Entertaining but sadly conventional.

David Schwenker
David Schwenker

Really good film, be warned it is sub-titles but the story is great.

Lady D'arbanville
Lady D'arbanville

Super Reviewer

Discussion Forum

Discuss Tattoo on our Movie forum!

News & Features