For any fan of the long running series "Aibou" (Partners), a movie about Itami seems a little bit of an odd choice, as his work in the series is normally to appear for two or three minutes and annoy the two protagonists of the series. But being as popular as "Aibou" was in Japan (especially some years ago), it is not strange that they decided to make a movie about him.
The movie decides to take a different path from the show, and centers on cyber-crime and some danger to the Japanese banking system. It all starts pretty small, though, with just one man dying after falling from the top of a building. It is soon discovered that he was killed, and Itami finds himself working with (and hating) a member of the cyber-crime division. Will they be able to find the killer? Have they any chance of finding the truth of why he was killed? What and who is really behind the killing?
The movie is a little bit slow, as it goes for long long conversations about difficult topics (it is not easy to follow when they go into technical stuff), and that makes it drag a little bit, as there are some characters that could have been cut out (one of them the protagonist of the Aibou show, Mizutani's Ukyo Katayama, whose cameo only makes sense if you are a fan). Also the story is a little bit dense for a mystery procedural.
Nonetheless the relationship between Itami and his new partner (played by Kei Tanaka) is fun, and they balance each other quite well. All actors do a nice job (it is basically a manly movie, with only a couple of women, almost more as a token presence than real characters). And the movie enjoys remembering us how banks have power, and how little we may be able to control our lives.
If you enjoy Aibou, you will probably enjoy this little movie, even if the pace is a little bit different from the show. If you don't know the show, you will lose a couple of aspects, and the movie may seem a little bit too long (even if it is just one hour forty minutes), but it is enjoyable enough (just not much action and too much talking).
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