– 機動警察パトレイバー PATLABOR THE MOBILE POLICE
– Mobile Police Patlabor: The Movie
– Patlabor – The Movie
– Patlabor 1
– Полиция будущего
– פאטלייבור: הסרט ה-1
– Patlabor – Mobile Police
– Patlabor: La Película
– Kidou Keisatsu Patlabor Gekijouban
– Patlabor Movie 1
– 機動警察パトレイバー 劇場版
Patlabor: The Movie (機動警察パトレイバー the Movie Kidō Keisatsu Patoreibā Za Mūbī) is a 1989 anime film directed by Mamoru Oshii, with an original story by Headgear.
The movie has a darker subject than on the TV or OVAs. Where the TV series is often goofy, the movie goes for the suspense and mystery vibe, with a touch of silliness. If you are familiar with Patlabor, this mixed themes may make sense. If this is your first exposure to Patlabor, the blending of the themes may feel mismatched.
The animation and art are crisp, detailed, and elegant. Unfortunately, there’s a lot of gorgeous scenes of people just talking. The film is dialogs heavy. There is a lot of expositions and people chatting through most of the movie. This part can be quite dull, even though the riddle behind the scheme is intriguing.
Surprisingly, or rather not surprisingly, all the crews of the Patlabor police force survive at the end. I won’t spoil what they went through at the end, but it is a marvel that they all survived such a situation. Despite how much the movie want to build up anxiety and uncertainty, Patlabor is not that type of a show. You’ll never have a sense of danger for the crew.
Despite my criticisms on the movie, I do love the Patlabor series. It is one of the few giant mech shows where science fiction is still moderately grounded in realism. You won’t see crazy Gundam type of mech here. It is an incredible world where it could conceivably be possible in the future. Well, at least possible only in Japan.
I do recommend this movie to fans of the Patlabor series. You may still enjoy it even if you’ve never seen Patlabor, but I would suggest seeing some of the TV or OVAs first to get familiar with the tone of the show. Patlabor contains some graphic violence. Intended for young adults.
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Photo by Nicolas LB, Jon Flobrant, and Yvette de Wit on Unsplash.