Review: Galaxy Turnpike (2015)Review:
S: The Last Policeman - Recovery of Our Future (2015)
Nicholas Driscoll
November 18th, 2016
Note: review may contain spoilers

What if there was a cop who was so good at punching that he just wore some plates of armor on his forearms to block bullets and just whomped baddies with his fists of justice instead of using a gun? S: The Last Policeman - Recovery of our Future asks that very awesome question, and then answers it with a very disappointing answer: you would have a completely sucky action movie, thank you very much.

character in S The Last PolicemanThe plot: Okay, so there’s this super cool elite force of incredibleness called the National Police Safety Rescue and they are cool because they always make sure to capture super evil criminals alive. In that unit of distilled awesome, Ichigo Kamikura (Mukai Osamu) punches things real good (being an ex-boxer), and Iori Saigo (Ayano Gou) shoots stuff real good (being a sniper). Anyway, they will have to put their punching and shooting to the test when an evil bad-guy hijacks a tanker that has a nuclear device on it and threatens to blow up Tokyo. The baddy’s band of terrorists also capture a bus full of kids in order to blackmail the Japanese government into allowing the tanker to get close enough to go boom, and the government is dumb enough to march in lockstep to the evil baddy’s every demand. It’s up to Ichigo’s fists and Iori’s bullets to bring justice to the world!

Based on a manga and a continuation of a TV show and movie franchise, S: The Last Policeman - Recovery of our Future had a ton of backstory to unload—much like Unfair The End, which I also saw recently. S also gives a big info dump at the beginning, but unfortunately the rest of the film feels like a big dump as well. I did enjoy some of the early scenes of Ichigo basically pulling a Captain America with his arm-armor and running through gunfire to punch people, but when the plot really began to start, everything sort of went blaaaaaahhhhhhh. Almost everything throughout the movie felt forced or just plain dumb, like the characters were making obviously idiotic decisions so that the villain’s asinine plot could succeed. Part of the problem for me admittedly is that I didn’t know the history of the characters—the main bad, played with pickles and relish by Joe Odagiri, seems to have some kind of history with our heroes, but I never picked up what it was. He just seemed like a grandstanding royal donkey butt, but since I didn’t understand the relationships, I was never invested in the story.

character pointing handgun

The sense I got from the movie was that we were already supposed to care about the characters, but so little care was put into presenting them. Thus, with no buy-in for the characters, the action scenes became limp, especially because they required enormous leaps of illogical and mile-high suspension of disbelief. It’s not that the acting is bad in general (except from some terrible foreign “actors”), and there is some weeping and histrionics and drama… But again, because the events leading up to said displays of emotional messiness felt so contrived, the movie lost its intended oomph.

One rather bizarre bit I have to mention was the subtitle translation, which was apparently put together by a very conservative translator who has a thing against cussing. In other words, it reminds me of myself back in the day when I would cross out cusswords in my comic books. So, for example, the translator would translate “kuso” (which is an epithet that literally means “feces”) as “rubbish!” or “garbage!” when someone, say, misses a shot. (“Garbage! I missed!”) Or, at one point, the translator wrote “heck-bent” instead of “hell-bent.” For me, it was pretty amusing, but the translations obviously weren’t very accurate.

G-rated subtitles aside, watching S: The Last Policeman - Recovery of our Future was the most painful viewing experience I have had yet in 2016. By the time the characters are trying to shoot a giant nuclear reactor in order to turn that sucker off, this sucker had been turned off long before and I was mentally bellowing, “End! Ennnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnd!” Maybe if I had seen the other S films or read the manga my reaction would have been different, but as far as I am concerned, S stands for stinko in the case of this movie.