December 3, 2021

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Detective Conan: Scarlet Bullet review

Released today in theaters, Detective Conan: The Scarlet Bullet is the first of twenty-four feature films in the series to find its way into French theaters.

With 1000 episodes on the hour and 98 volumes spread over his 27 years of existence, Detective Conan is today an integral part of manga culture, not only in Japan but also in France. However, none of the twenty-three adaptations of the feature film series were eligible for release in French theaters. A heresy is coming to an end, with this week’s theatrical release of Detective Conan: The Scarlet Bullet, directed by Chika Nagaoka. The chance to find the smallest of the great detectives in a brand new and highly explosive new adventure.

For this new feature film, Gosho Aoyama’s cult work is not entrusted to just anyone. At the head of The Scarlet Bullet , audiences will indeed be able to find director Chika Nagaoka, who is already in charge of the latest film Detective Conan: The Blue Sapphire Fist , which was released in 2019. In the script, Takeharu Sakurai signed his fifth collaboration with a license, not to mention his previous participation in several episodes of the animated series.

We have to admit that the results are there. Entrusting The Scarlet Bullet to the regulars of the saga, this new feature film stands out brilliantly in the tradition of previous films. We clearly found the main characters from the animated series, but also some secondary protagonists that fans are familiar with. Apart from Ran and the Little Detective Club, Conan will indeed be able to count on powerful allies in this new adventure: the film does focus on the Akai family, and more specifically on Shuichi Akai, an FBI agent and sniper who first appeared in the anime episode. 230. In addition to this mysterious ally, the detective will also be able to rely on his female alter ego Ai Haibara, a former scientist of the Men’s Organization in Black, also transformed into a child after swallowing APTX-4869.

With respect to the secondary characters of the license, Chika Nagaoka and Takeharu Sakurai aim right, by offering fans a beautiful love letter to Conan Edogawa’s often gruesome adventures. This is also one of the criticisms that we can make against The Scarlet Bullet: by wanting to talk too much to fans, the film sometimes forgets that everyone doesn’t take the time to read or watch the entire series. (For your information it will take you less than 10 and a half days non-stop to watch 1006 episodes of anime). Despite the necessary direction at the beginning of the film, the script can sometimes miss a lot of beginners, especially regarding the relationship that exists between Conan and the Akai family.

If Detective Conan: The Scarlet Bullet doesn’t shun fan service, the new film’s screenplay moves away from the anime atmosphere, to take on the atmosphere of a Hollywood detective thriller. As Tokyo prepares to host the World Sports Games (fictional Olympics), Japan inaugurated the launch of Hyper Linear, an ultra-high-speed train similar to Virgin Galactic’s Hyperloop. A few days before the launch of this international event, several JMS sponsors were kidnapped. As he leads the investigation with Ai Haibara and the FBI, Conan realizes that the affair looks similar to events that took place 15 years earlier in Boston.

After Singapore in The Blue Sapphire Fist, director Chika Nagaoka this time plunges us into the cradle of freedom, voicing many American characters (in English in the original).Without doubt. Even if Detective Conan’s folklore is pretty much in itself, this exercise doesn’t fail. With its screenplay at 1000 km/h and plenty of action scenes, mainly supported by Hyper Linear, the film doesn’t innovate, but maintains its effectiveness. Puritans will no doubt lament the lack of some cult mechanics in the series, as well as some of Kogoro Mouri’s understated performances in the plot, but the results work. The same goes for the animation, which stays true to the anime, while offering some pretty unexpected scenes over Japanese Bullet.

We’re not going to lie to you by saying that The Scarlet Bullet revolutionized the saga. Quite the opposite: for nearly two hours, Conan Edogawa and his friends are happy to offer us what they can do best: investigate. Despite shifting slightly to the other side of the Pacific, the feature film picks up all of Shinichi Kudo’s investigative material. Without being a masterpiece, the result is sure to reach a mile. Because it is based on the nostalgia of the new Detective Conan film. In its 27 years of existence, the manga has found its audience,which values the license for its endearing characters as well as convoluted puzzles with eccentric resolution., sometimes bordering on kitsch. Especially at this point, the red bullet hits us right in the heart, like the Madeleine Proust we’ll probably never get tired of.