The Metropolitan Police Branch 82 (Japan 1995)

Rating: **
Alternate Title: Police Branch 82 (ADV Films)
Review Date: 9/20/99
Cast: Harumi Inoue

A pleasant surprise and yet another guilty pleasure. Yes, I'm a pig. And yes, I really enjoy watching attractive women running around in sexy outfits while playing tough and blowing things up. As absurd as it is to see a woman in a tight skirt and heels chase down a big nasty criminal with her trusty .44 Magnum, as long as the filmmakers are sincere in their approach, I find it thoroughly entertaining. The film opens with a brutal robbery, followed by police investigators Mika (Harumi Inoue) and Yuka trying to bust one of the criminals. He ends up killing Yuka, but Mika manages to apprehend him with a well placed shot from her mammoth hand cannon. Mika needs a new partner, so she is teamed up with a prim and proper young woman named Rin, who has an aversion to cockroaches (and shoots up the police station in an attempt to kill one). Naturally, these two girls don't get along and spend a lot of time bickering with each other. Meanwhile, the bad guy escapes from police custody and kills his former partners who were involved in the initial heist. He also tracks down Rin and kidnaps her to use as bait for Mika. The final showdown takes place at an amusement park, and both women manage to survive the ordeal and take out all of the bad guys.

The film is competently made and looks nice, but a couple of sleazy sex scenes spoil the otherwise lighthearted tone. The action sequences and effects are fairly decent, and the girls do a reasonably convincing job with their action scenes. The actresses who play Mika and Rin are very cute and spunky, and are a pure joy to watch no matter what they're doing. The filmmakers capitalize on this fact, and ultimately the film is just playful voyeuristic fluff with a little police action thrown in to spice things up. A fun and harmless way to fulfill a girls 'n' guns craving.