PB 82 (Police Branch 82)

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“Dirty Harry with breasts. And angst. And a partner scared of roaches.”

Okay, pardon me if I’m confused. What the IMDB says is the plot for Metropolitan Police Branch 82 is actually Tokyo Blue: Case 1. However, there are multiple parts to the series, and I think that this tape from ADV may be the first. Or perhaps the second. Not that it’s important, but just so you know. :-) Mika (Inoue) is a cop with a liking for her Magnum, who loses her partner while capturing the criminal Nezu (Yamato). He then escapes, and she gets a new partner (Tayama), who is more concerned with fashion than the down and dirty world of criminal detection, and also hates cockroaches to the extent of unloading a full clip on one in the police station. Mika rolls her eyes a lot at this, but in Mika’s past lurks a dark secret when she shot first and asked questions later.

As they chase after Nezu and his accomplice (Lilico), there is a load of naked flesh, portrayed in the enthusiastic yet restrained approach typical of Japan. It probably isn’t worth your while, and you kinda wish they hadn’t bothered. In between times, there’s also a lot of the usual “mismatched cops” routine, and it’s no more fresh or interesting here, than in all the Hollywood movies which use it. However, the finale, set in a deserted amusement park, is well-staged and imaginative, with an underwater fight which makes you wish for more of the same. Inoue’s performance also lifts this one up a notch, doing a good job of the “hard case with a soft centre.” It’s still a cliche, but she brings enough life to it to deserve credit.

Dir: Daisuke Goto
Star: Harumi Inoue, Mamiko Tayama, Yukio Yamato, Lilico

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