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Patlabor 1: The Movie [Import]

Toshio Furukawa , Mîna Tominaga , Mamoru Oshii    Unrated   DVD
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
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Product Details

Product Description


This stylish science fiction detective story bears the stamp of director Mamoru Oshii (Ghost in the Shell). "Labors" are gigantic robots used for everything from construction work to law enforcement, but a massive land reclamation project in Tokyo Bay is threatened by robots going on unexplained rampages.

Patlabor cops Noah Izumi and Azuma Shinohara are called in to investigate, and soon find themselves trying to decipher the apocalyptic visions of E. Hoba, who wrote the operating system for the Labor robots and then committed suicide. Hoba introduced a virus into the software that could affect robots all over world and cause unparalleled destruction. In abandoned slum apartments and high-tech construction sites, he left clues about what he was doing--and why. But are Noah, Azuma, and their friends clever enough to second-guess a genius? And will their superior officers accept their conclusions?

The first Patlabor feature has a darker tone and look than the previous OVA series. Oshii assumes the viewer already knows the characters, and doesn't bother introducing them. But this powerful tale of the dangers of over-reliance on technology is far superior to ordinary mecha features. The recent attacks of powerful computer viruses give the story an added relevance.

Unrated; suitable for ages 10 and older: occasional profanity and robot vs. robot violence. --Charles Solomon

From the Back Cover

The year is 1999 and Tokyo's Mobile Police have a new weapon in the war on crime--advanced robots called Labors are used to combat the criminals who would use the new technology for illegal means. The suicide of a mysterious man on the massive Babylon Project construction site sets off a cascade of events that may signal the destruction of Tokyo. What is the connection between the suicide, the new mobile Police AV-XO Zero Labor, and a berserk prototype tank?

When Patlabor cops Noah Izumi and Azuma Shinohara investigate an unexplained wave of rogue Labors rampaging across the city, they uncover a sinister revenge plot to infect Tokyo's population of 8,000 Labors with the deadly BABEL virus. With the future of the city hanging in the balance and a typhoon poised to trigger the devastation, Noah, Azuma, and their teammates must destroy the source of the virus--the giant Babylon Project tower in Tokyo Bay--in a battle to the finish.

Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
* Fans of the PATLABOR anime series know the basic scenario:
in the near future, big robotic machines known as "Labors"
are common in industrial and military roles, and to combat
crimes performed by Labors a police "Patrol Labor" group is
set up. The heroes of the series are the personnel of
"Patlabor Division 2", a self-described "gang of losers" that
manage to get things done in spite of a maverick reputation.
The PATLABOR 1 movie involves Division 2 dealing with a rash
of Labors running amok, with suspicion falling on the operating
system for the Labors. Suspiciously, the chief designer of the
OS, an E. Hoba, committed suicide under bizarre circumstances.
The devious Captain Goto of Division 2 enlists (using a
little trickery) officer Asuma Shinohara to get to the bottom
of things, and soon a frightening plot emerges ...
The PATLABOR 1 movie is a reasonably well put together piece
of work, with good (if not extraordinary) production values,
and an intelligent (if not extraordinary) script. It is certainly
better than much of the indifferent anime that gets churned
out on a regular basis by Japan's animation studios.
However, PATLABOR 1 is basically just a scaled-up PATLABOR
TV episode, and the only thing it really brings to the party
is better production values over the TV show.
If you like the PATLABOR TV series, you'll probably like this
movie. If you were lukewarm on the TV series, you might not
find the movie very stimulating. In comparison to the
follow-on and outstanding PATLABOR 2 movie, it looks more like
a creditable practice exercise for producer Mamoru Oshii,
preparing him for better work to come.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A respectable series worth watching Sept. 30 2003
By Matic
If I wanted to introduce someone to the world of quality anime, this wouldn't be the title I'd pick. There ARE better out there...
BUT this is nothing to hoist your nose at, Patlabor has style and class. It's in my library and it's going to stay there. So if you are a fan of mechs or a good detective story and demand a higher level of quality in artwork and plot than most, this is a good choice. If you are on the edge of buying this let me tip you over to the "yes" side.
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By A Customer
this is a smart mecha tronic movie
i like azuma shinohara and noah izumi
this is a brilliant movie,even though i did not see the series
they say the 'd' word a few times but this movie is so cool!
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5.0 out of 5 stars An intellectual masterpiece Dec 18 2002
Patlabor 1 is a masterpiece. Set in Japan into the future, the characters (Patlabor Police) go through a sytematic search of why their mechs are going bezerk. A bug in the mechs Hyper Operating System (HOS) is suspected, but the Patlabor Police run into a wall of politics trying to cover up the scandle.
This is not for kids!
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5.0 out of 5 stars No gore here. March 17 2002
People looking for gore should turn to Ninja Scroll (my favorite movie, which I highly recommend). I think it's refreshing to see an anime that contains very little violence. It operates on detective work and technology.
The story takes place in the near future. Labors are robots that humans operate, and they're used for policing. The robots have been going berzerk; E. Hoba, the person who wrote the program for the labors, committed suicide, so it's not like anyone can turn to him. Also, it seems that Hoba was the one who created the bug in the labors anyhow.
Noah and Azuma take matters into their own hands and begin to investigate. They're basically only rookies, and it's hard for them to get approval from their superiors. It makes for quite the interesting story. I liked it a lot.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A great film, period Dec 8 2001
Anyone who likes anime owes it to themselves to see the Patlabor movies. The series itself is a lot of fun with it's quirky characters and off-beat approach to police drama, but the movies take this formula to a new level of poeticism. Oshii polishes his style, later institutionalized by Ghost in the Shell, with these two films. This first film concerns a new operating system for "Labor" robots that seems to have a few, less-than-accidental bugs. It is up to Division 2 to figure out what is going on before it is too late. Anyone not willing to pay attention to subtle dialog may get bored with this movie but everyone else will revel in it's beautifully presented, vaguely political drama. The disk is supposedly "digitally remastered". Maybe it is just me, but the picture seems grainy at times and even appears to harbor some color bleed and shadowing. It's a little disappointing for an otherwise visually stunning film. At least it is letterbox. The audio is Dolby 5.1 in English, stereo for the Japanese. This kind of dub is the reason fans beg for subtitles. The translation is ok, but obscures more often than it clarifies. The real trouble is the acting which just doesn't seem convincing for the characters. The best performance was probably Noa, the lead female character. At any rate, watch it subtitled for best results. Patlabor 1 the Movie deserves a disk that is as polished as the story and didn't quite get it. I give it 4 stars for the strength of the content, not package.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Great for non-anime or neo-anime fans Oct. 4 2001
If you're wondering where to start in investigating anime this is a great place to start. The plot is easy to follow, and very enjoyable, especially for westerners (who are not versed in the eastern mindset or oriental paradigms), yet it doesn't compromise when it comes to the dramatic asian animation style. As to the dialog: I wish DVD producers would offer two English dubbed versions: original and PG-rated so my younger kids could watch this.
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Most recent customer reviews
1.0 out of 5 stars Proof Manga Entertainment just doesn't make the effort! Bad!
This is a typical hackjob by Manga Entertainment , they have the licensed dvd release but don't buy it b/c it is damaged goods before you the consumer even view it! Read more
Published on June 12 2002 by "keseidel"
4.0 out of 5 stars Yet another wonderful Oshii Mamoru creation
Let me start by saying that the movie itself rates a 5-star. I'm giving this 4 stars only because I am fairly annoyed at the English dubbing because it is obiously aimed more at... Read more
Published on June 28 2001 by "da_sandman"
4.0 out of 5 stars Better than I expected
You know, in the days of fast cars, fast music(and fast lifespans for music), fast women, fast food, and any thing else that can be concidered fast(let me know if there is anything... Read more
Published on March 20 2001 by eightpointagenda
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply Breathtaking
A more than slight change (for the better) from the origanal tv series. I love this movie, the plot is so engulfing that once I started watching it, I couldn't stop. Read more
Published on Dec 25 2000 by Joseph T. Vessels
2.0 out of 5 stars Slow... Slow... and still slower....
I purchased this movie have never seen it before. I thought that it would be a safe bet because of all the stellar reviews of it. Read more
Published on Dec 9 2000 by M. Zolton
4.0 out of 5 stars Complex and Detailed Anime...VERY GOOD !
All positive comments are right on. Beware, there is not a lot of action but the caracters and plot are interesting enough to follow and enjoy. Read more
Published on Dec 8 2000
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