12 February 2005 | DICK STEEL
A Nutshell Review: Bayside Shakedown 2
I've watched Bayside Shakedown 1 a few years back, and enjoyed it thoroughly, so there isn't any reason not to catch the sequel when it's in town.
For those who do not know, this show is set in a small Tokyo police precinct, where cops actually perform routine community policing without arms, and the sexy investigative stuff are always handled by the Metropolitan police. This devision of course gives rise to the exploration of politics within the police force, some of which are not subtly put across in the movie - which provokes thought.
However, the movie doesn't come across as preachy or heavy, as it's always lightened by the (sometimes one dimensioned) characters, the light hearted moments, and camaraderie amongst them.
As always, the movie starts off with its regular catchy theme song interspersed with footage of current going-ons. With murder being the main anchor of investigations, other sub-investigations include the biter, the family of pickpockets and a secret lover of the commander of the precinct. Naturally, all the loose ends will be tied neatly when they all come together at one point in the show.
Amongst the politics discussed here is on women leadership, in the name of equal opportunity - could we be biased and blinded by policy to allow the inept to lead? Even though in my opinion, this is a Japanese movie, and the culture at times may be chauvanistic, it does provide some thought provoking moments during the show, or did the producers/writers cop out at the end of it all? For those who do not understand Japanese, no worries, there are good subtitles, and it doesn't matter if you have watched the first part, or the drama serial - the good looking cast (male and female) should be able to sustain you through this enjoyable flick.