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Unfair the Movie (Blu-ray) (English Subtitled) (Japan Version) Blu-ray Region A

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Unfair the Movie (Blu-ray) (English Subtitled) (Japan Version)
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YesAsia Editorial Description

Fuji TV's hit police drama series Unfair comes to the big screen, with Shinohara Ryoko reprising her memorable role as a tough female cop. Based on a Hata Takehiko novel, both the film and the drama are carried brilliantly by force of its strong female protagonist, whose fearless, peerless, no-nonsense demeanor is both refreshing and liberating. This crime action flick about a lone woman in a man's world throws a mean punch without forgetting the human side of the story. Kobayashi Yoshinori, who directed the television series, also helms this silver-screen adaptation.

Hardboiled, hard-drinking, and hard-hitting female detective Yukihira Natsumi (Shinohara Ryoko) has the best record in the police force, but it has come at a cost. Her fiercely independent personality and penchant to not go by the books has alienated her from colleagues, while her dedication, or perhaps obsession, with work has already cost her a marriage and custody of her eight-year-old daughter. Natsumi has no time for apologies and misgivings though when there is crime to be fought. She is forced to reconsider everything she knows, however, when terrorists take over the hospital her daughter is being treated at. How far will she go to save her daughter?

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Technical Information

Product Title: Unfair the Movie (Blu-ray) (English Subtitled) (Japan Version) Unfair the movie (Blu-ray) (英文字幕) (日本版) Unfair the movie (Blu-ray) (英文字幕) (日本版) アンフェア the movie 【Blu-rayDisc】 Unfair the Movie (Blu-ray) (English Subtitled) (Japan Version)
Artist Name(s): Eguchi Yosuke | Shinohara Ryoko | Osugi Ren | Shiina Kippei | Kato Masaya | Terajima Susumu | Narimiya Hiroki | Hamada Mari | Abe Sadao | Kato Rosa 江口洋介 | 篠原涼子 | 大杉漣 | 椎名桔平 | 加藤雅也 | 寺島進 | 成宮寬貴 | Hamada Mari | 阿部貞夫 | 加藤羅莎 江口洋介 | 篠原凉子 | 大杉涟 | 椎名桔平 | 加藤雅也 | 寺岛进 | 成宫宽贵 | Hamada Mari | 阿部贞夫 | 加藤罗莎 江口洋介 | 篠原涼子 | オオスギレン | 椎名桔平 | 加藤雅也 | テラジマススム | 成宮寛貴 | 濱田マリ | 阿部サダヲ | 加藤ローサ Eguchi Yosuke | Shinohara Ryoko | Osugi Ren | Shiina Kippei | Kato Masaya | Terajima Susumu | Narimiya Hiroki | Hamada Mari | Abe Sadao | Kato Rosa
Director: Kobayashi Yoshinori 小林義則 小林义则 小林義則 Kobayashi Yoshinori
Blu-ray Region Code: A - Americas (North, Central and South except French Guiana), Korea, Japan, South East Asia (including Hong Kong, Macau and Taiwan) What is it?
Release Date: 2012-03-21
Publisher Product Code: PCXC-50052
Language: Japanese
Subtitles: English, Japanese
Country of Origin: Japan
Disc Format(s): Blu-ray
Publisher: Fuji TV
Other Information: Blu-ray Disc
Shipment Unit: 1 What is it?
YesAsia Catalog No.: 1026082415

Product Information

タイトル:アンフェア the movie: 【Blu-rayDisc】


言語/音声:日本語:dtsHD Master Audio7.1chサラウンド


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YumCha! Asian Entertainment Reviews and Features

Professional Review of "Unfair the Movie (Blu-ray) (English Subtitled) (Japan Version)"

November 2, 2007

This professional review refers to Unfair The Movie (DVD) (English Subtitled) (Japan Version)
Based on a novel by mystery writer Takehiko Hata, the Fuji TV drama Unfair ran eleven episodes and even went on to spawn a television special. Perhaps taking a page from the Bayside Shakedown phenomenon, the series proved popular enough to make the rare leap to the silver screen in the form of the aptly-titled (if a bit unimaginative) Unfair: The Movie. For the film adaptation, Ryoko Shinohara once again takes on the role of Inspector Natsumi Yukihira, your typical no-nonsense, tough-as-nails cop - although in this case, there's a definite feminist twist.

Described by other characters in the film as a dangerous "loose cannon" known to leave a trail of bodies in her wake, Yukihira is, in effect, the Dirty Harry of the Tokyo Metropolitan Police Force. Her hardboiled attitude hasn't earned her many friends on the force and certainly won't win her any "Mother of the Year" awards anytime soon either. Raising her seven-year-old daughter, Miho (Mion Mukaichi) without a father has clearly been a challenge for Yukihira, as her dedication to her police work often gets in the way of truly "being there" for her child. Things don't improve any when a car bomb meant for Yukihira explodes, killing a teenaged babysitter and leaving poor little Miho seriously injured in the process.

As Yukihira attempts to catch the guilty party, Miho is taken to the police hospital for treatment. Not surprisingly, things go from bad to worse when a slew of masked terrorists (including NANA's Hiroki Narimiya) take control of the hospital and hold an important police official hostage. As it so happens, the hospital was designed to be an impregnable fortress, which is bad news for the police and for Yukihira. While Yukihira's boss Saiki (Yosuke Eguchi) and the negotiator assigned to the case (Susumu Terajima) try to resolve the conflict through official channels, Yukihira decides to go rogue and save the day - although not entirely by herself. With a nice assist from her pal Kaoru Mikami (a returning Masaya Kato from the TV series), the two strive to save Miho on their own.

The stakes are raised even higher, however, when the terrorists are able to procure a vial of anthrax conveniently stored within the hospital. The terrorists plan on releasing this biological weapon onto an unsuspecting Japanese populace if their demands are not met. But the threat becomes real when a certain policewoman's daughter ends up getting exposed to said anthrax, further complicating Yukihira's already difficult search-and-rescue mission. Oh, and did I mention that there's a traitor in the police department? Clearly, the odds are against Yukihira. But true to her lone wolf status, she realizes she can trust no one but herself. But can she really do it alone?

Considering the film's origins in a television series, one might expect Unfair: The Movie to really take advantage of the medium of cinema to differentiate itself from its prior incarnations. Having previously worked on the television show, Yoshinori Kobayashi once again takes on the directorial reins for the film adaptation. And while I can't comment on the quality of the original series, Unfair: The Movie really feels like a feature-length version of a television show - a bad one at that. The plot is yet another clichéd Die Hard retread with a touch of Hard Boiled thrown in for good measure, but unfortunately, Unfair: The Movie is sorely lacking in the thrill department. The action sequences are hardly cinematic, either pedestrian in terms of execution or just plain terrible to watch. Gunfights and action sequences are often dull and stagy. A standout example of this would be the scene in which Yukihira is punched in a close-up shot that looks about as real as a schoolyard game of cops and robbers. Sadly, this tendency towards artificiality and blandness extends to even the non-action sequences as well.

The film's saving grace is perhaps its cast, as the sheer number of capable performers salvages the rather clichéd material. Ryoko Shinohara makes for a compelling heroine; she is both beautiful and believably tough, although I really wish her character were given much more to do. Still, she is a likeable presence, as is Yosuke Eguchi as Yukihira's commanding officer, Jin Saiki. Playing perhaps the most interesting character in the entire film, Eguchi is particularly engaging as a surprisingly complex variation on the conventional "righteous police officer" type we've seen in Japanese cinema before. Rounding out the cast, Susumu Terajima gets a few laughs as the officer in charge at the scene, and Ren Osugi is serviceably smarmy as the film's requisite corrupt-as-hell bureaucrat.

Another appealing aspect of the film is its twisty plot, particularly in terms of its relationship to the overall theme of the franchise. That is to say, there's a reason the series is called "Unfair." In this iteration, the film explores the shades of gray involved in police work, as officers find themselves unfairly handicapped by bureaucracy and corruption. Should the police break the rules to serve the greater good? Or do we all lose something in the process if our proponents of law and order utilize criminal methods to achieve their aims?

Curiously, in exploring these ambiguities, the film actually ends on a cliffhanger of sorts, which one presumes is meant to suggest that another installment of the franchise is surely in the works. But does the film merit a sequel? Unfair: The Movie has its problems, but there's enough going on in the film to recommend it as an entertaining, if not wholly satisfying diversion. One hopes that if the next iteration of the franchise comes out in theatres, the filmmakers will actually take advantage of what the medium of cinema has to offer.

By Calvin McMillin

This original content has been created by or licensed to YesAsia.com, and cannot be copied or republished in any medium without the express written permission of YesAsia.com.
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