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Meitantei Conan
(Detective Conan)

Hitomi no Naka no Ansatsusha
(Captured in Her Eyes)

Copyright: 2000, Shogakukan Video, Yomiuri Television
Length: 100 mins
Rating: NR, Parental Guidance Advised
Format: Japanese Language (VHS, DVD)


dvd jacket

"Need not to know" - Shiru hitsuyouno nai koto

One after another, police officers are being targetted and killed. The police are keeping quiet about what has happened as there is a strong possibility that the suspect could be a part of or closely associated with the police force. When Satou keiji is seriously injured, Ran is the sole witness to the whole event. Badly shocked at Satou keiji being shot before her very eyes, Ran loses her memory of everyone and everything about her let alone the attempted murder of Satou keiji. However, the killer, knowing that Ran had seen his face, has no choice but to get rid of the one and only witness. It's up to Conan to unearth the truth behind the police murders and find out who the culprit is before he can get to Ran.

capsule review:

Lots of action and a sad and sweet character story all happen here in this fourth movie of the Meitantei Conan series. For those unfamiliar with the TV anime, starting with the fourth movie may prove to be a bit challenging because of the number of characters being introduced. And while there is an effort to recap key information from the TV anime, it can be a touch overwhelming.

Although the mystery itself is not the strongest, it is the character story being told which is truly interesting. Watching Ran go trying to regain her memory and struggling to stay positive (at least superficially) makes for a very touching story amidst the action and unveiling of the various aspects of the mystery at hand.

The one thing that struck me as a touch unusual in the story, is the constant reminders by the various characters of whether Ran remembers anything of her past. It seemed to put unnecessary pressure on the amnesiac. And while friends and family will undoubtedly feel depressed and want the amnesiac to remember their past, I just feel that this sort of constant reminder would be more stressful and harmful. I could be wrong of course.

Lastly, there are some points mentioned in the movie which make reference to events in the TV series or previous movies. These points while not important to the overall plot, may cause some minor confusion for uninitiated viewers.

The emotional aspects of the story of dealing with an amnesiac was very well portrayed. Particularly noteworthy are the voice acting efforts of Takayama Minami and Yamazaki Wakana who portray Conan and Ran respectively. Ran's quiet depression as she tries to regain her memories while having everyone around her constantly asking if she remembers anything is suitably detached and depressed. Likewise, Conan's determination to protect Ran and solve the mystery while struggling with his own inability to reveal his true identity as Kudou Shinichi let alone be Shinichi is solidly done. Unfortunately, that doesn't mean that all the voice acting is well done. Takashima, who portrays Kisaki Eiri, came across as a touch overacted, underacted, and even forced. However, most of the seiyuu are solidly in character and do a good job portraying their characters.

As the target audience of the movie is younger kids, more than representing reality, the action and adventure aspects are key. And of that there is plenty while we watch Conan solve the mystery at hand. With scenes varying from quiet, lonely depression to high action, everything comes together solidly. The music in this movie is also very well done and while we hear certain melodies repeated a number of times (including certain theme melodies), overall the music does an excellent job of augmenting the atmosphere of a given scene. Likewise, the final closing theme to this movie suits the movie's atmosphere very well and is one of my favourite j-pop tunes.

The animation quality in this movie is a bit of a mixed bag. With some very good detail and movement in backgrounds it is definitely much better than normally seen on TV as is to be expected. However, I found that Ran's character design, specifically her hair really annoyed me. Looking more like a single horn on her head, this aspect was rather distracting. Also, there is some artefacting, particularly in the lines of characters faces.

All in all, while not the strongest of the Conan movies, the overall storyline and the story being told of the characters from this popular TV series is decently done. This wouldn't be the best introduction to the Conan series for the uninitiated compared to other movies due to references to incidents in previous movies and TV episodes. For those already familiar with the series however, it makes for a fun movie and a sweet character story.
- JYN, 2001.04.24

café rating (original japanese):


3 star

[3 / 5] - Overall the storyline has some interesting ideas although the mystery itself is a bit weak. It's the "people story" being told that makes this a good watch.


4 stars
[4 / 5] - Overall well directed. Scenes come together well with slow scenes coming across solidly as well as those scenes of high action. Good variation in pacing


4 stars
[4 / 5] - A little stiff initially, but overall well done. Most seiyuu are solidly in character.


4 stars
[4 / 5] - Good details in the background as well as movement. Ran's hair really bothered me in this movie.


4 stars
[4 / 5] - Overall the melodies encountered here in this movie are well suited to the scenes and augment the viewing experience. Likewise, the end theme is very well suited to the movie.


[ N/A ] - based on the original Japanese version

Overall Rating:

3 star
[3 / 5] - Perhaps I'm being a touch harsh, but the story had some weaknesses which are a touch detracting. For kids, this would be a fun watch, and that is who this movie is aimed at.

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