|Overall||Art||Animation||Character Design||Music||Series Story||Episode Story||Reviewer|
City Hunter: Secret Service
Sometimes as I review individual TV episodes of City Hunter and assign them letter grades, I wonder why I like this show so much, considering that I am handing out so many grades of "C" or "C+". I doubt if City Hunter: Secret Service will answer this question for me, since my initial impression is that it's quality is about equal to the average TV episode--not a good thing to say about a 90-minute movie. Indeed, I delayed viewing this one for a long time, because it had gotten rather pathetic reviews on the internet (Anime Meta Review gave it an average rating of only 43%). It made me smile at times, but not laugh out loud, and also grimace here and there as Ryo/Joe occasionally behaved like a jerk instead of the usual lovable girl-chaser. I can only imagine what someone who has never seen any of the various incarnations of City Hunter would conclude from watching this movie (probably that it would be a waste of time to watch any more of this stuff, which would be tragic). Halfway through I asked myself if I could think of any intriguing questions that were still to be answered within this movie, but none lept out at me. I hoped there would be some sort of surprise twist to the identity of who it is who is trying to kill Anna, but I wasn't betting on it. The issues Anna has with her father seemed so simplistic that surely they would be cleared up in about 30 seconds of airtime, probably by a little lecture from Ryo. As for the conclusion, there must be some sort of superstition in Japan that a "good guy" can run through a hail of bullets without needing to fear getting hit. The secret behind who was out to kill Anna and why seemed corny and contrived. It's as if the plot of an unexceptional TV episode had been stretched to fill 90 minutes. I'm labelling this as an acquired taste, since those familiar with the City Hunter genre might get a lot more of the jokes (the one really good one: what Saeko must do for her father, the Tokyo Police Chief, if something happens to Anna). Well, at least now I can say I've seen all five R1 licensed City Hunter animated "movies".|
So what are my recommendations in the unlikely event of anybody involved in the production of yet another CH movie visiting this website? Find the people who made the best movie, City Hunter: Goodbye My Sweetheart, and put them to work on the next one!
Last updated Friday, February 08 2008. Created Monday, September 27 2004.