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Anime / WXIII: Patlabor The Movie 3

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WXIII: Patlabor the Movie 3 (also known as Wasted 13) is an unrelated side-story taking place somewhere between the first and second movies. It is directed by Fumihiko Takayama and produced by Madhouse with the screenplay by Miki Tori. The film barely features the main cast of Patlabor, though labors themselves are still visible in the setting and related to the plot.

WXIII follows Tokyo Metropolitan Police Department detectives Shinichiro Hata (Hiroaki Hirata) and Takeshi Kusumi (Katsuhiko Watabiki) who are investigating a strange chain of labor vandalism. They seem random at first, but eventually, the detectives figure out the pattern along with other things that only end up making the situation more complicated. Namely, a gigantic fish monster that later is revealed to be called "prototype 13". While on the case, Hata meets a female university professor called Saeko Misaki (Atsuko Tanaka) and develops feelings for her. Unfortunately, there's more to her than meets the eye and as the film goes on their relationship takes a turn for the worse.

Actors returning from the previous Patlabor films include Mina Tominaga as Noa Izumi, Toshio Furukawa as Asuma Shinohara, Michihiro Ikemizu as Isao Ota, Daisuke Gōri as Hiromi Yamazaki, Issei Futamata as Mikiyasu Shinshi, and Ryusuke Obayashi as Kiichi Goto. New additions to the cast include Takanobu Hozumi as Toshiro Kurusu, Shingo Hiromori as Shizuo Miyanomori, Junpei Morita as Goro Ishihara, and Masaru Ikeda as Captain Osumi.

The last and darkest of the three movies, Patlabor the Movie 3 falls heavily to the serious side of the Sliding Scale of Silliness vs. Seriousness. While Mamoru Oshii was only the producer instead of directly working on the film, it is much like Jin-Roh: The Wolf Brigade and Ghost In The Shell Innocence that he made around the same time, both being very moody and grim.

The film was released on March 30, 2002.

The DVD release includes three Mini Pato shorts which are hilarious ~30 minute animations done with paper cutouts on sticks that go into detail about things like Ohta's oversized revolver and its anti-labor ammunition.

WXIII: Patlabor the Movie 3 provides examples of the following tropes:

  • Artificial Family Member: Prototype 13 is revealed to have been created with Misaki's daughter's mutated cancer cells. She still sees the creature as her daughter.
  • Asteroids Monster: While escaping prototype 13 at the construction site, one of the security guards triggers several emergency doors to trap it or hopefully even kill it. Part of the monster's tail gets stuck under the door and is cut off entirely. It's later recovered and hauled off for biological inspection where it apparently rapidly mutated into a miniature version of the original body and killed the scientists examining it.
  • Bittersweet Ending: Misaki commits suicide in front of Hata and Kusumi, as the monster made from her daughter's mutated cancer cells is finished off by the Self Defence Forces.
  • Casting Gag: As with One Piece, Hiroaki Hirata voices a character who was a long-time smoker.
  • Cluster F-Bomb: The only reason why this film is rated R by the MPAA is because of an irate American film director who drops six F bombs, among other expletives, when the film he's working on gets disrupted.
  • Creating Life: Using mutated cancer cells.
  • Dark and Troubled Past: Saeko Misaki, definitely.
  • Darker and Edgier: This film is the darkest out of all the Patlabor films.
  • Darkness Equals Death: Hata and Kusumi notice a construction site with no lights on while driving back from a crime scene and go investigate. Prototype 13 had eaten all the workers and ends up eating the cops that were driving the car, while Hata and Kusumi barely make it out alive.
  • Demoted to Extra: Because of the story's main focus on Takeshi Kusumi, Shinichiro Hata and Saeko Misaki, the Special Vehicles Unit 2 members have considerably less screen time.
  • Driven to Suicide: Misaki commits suicide at the end of the film when her daughter is destroyed.
  • Eldritch Abomination: The monster's seafood platter looks & its origins in Mysterious Antarctica are rather evocative of At the Mountains of Madness.
  • Eyeless Face: Prototype 13.
  • Failure Is the Only Option: Hata wants to save Misaki from herself, but considering her backstory and what she did it becomes clear that Hata was doomed to fail.
  • Gone Horribly Wrong: Possibly subverted. The fish-like monster, the titular prototype 13 is initially dumped into Tokyo Bay because Misaki's employers thought it was programmed to die after a certain amount of time and they wanted to dispose of the remains in secret. Misaki never programmed it to die, and the monster grew in freedom like she wanted to. This ended up being a really bad thing for everyone BUT Misaki.
  • Gray Rain of Depression: The tragic conclusion at the dome.
  • Hybrid Monster: Prototype 13 is ambiguously lobster-like, has glowing lights on tendrils like an anglerfish and was injected with human cancer cells.
  • Imported Alien Phlebotinum: The monster was partly created from alien cells found in Antarctica.
  • Interquel: Takes place before the second movie, as Noah and Ota are still regular pilots and the Special Vehicles Unit hasn't upgraded to the AV-02 Clash Buster yet.
  • Irony: During Hata's time with Saeko, she smokes a cigarette and he mentioned that he was a former smoker. By the end of the film, Hata becomes a smoker once again.
  • Jade-Colored Glasses: Hata's character development seems to ultimately lead to this during the course of the film. His partner Kusumi has a different, more cynical although realistic world view, and Hata's potential love interest is revealed to be broken on the inside to the point where she created a monster she considers her daughter and kills herself when it is destroyed before her.
  • Kaiju
  • Keep It Foreign: In the English dub, the irate, sailor-mouthed director is Italian.
  • Kill It with Fire: After Ota wounds Wasted XIII with a cancer round, Ishihara calls in a platoon of soldiers with flamethrowers to deliver the coup de grace.
  • Mutant: Prototype 13.
  • No OSHA Compliance: The emergency exit of the shipyard requires swiping a keycard and entering a seventeen digit access code to unlock, which totally defeats the point of allowing people to clear the area quickly in the event of an emergency.
  • Odd Couple: Detective Hata is young, plays baseball and is often letting his emotions affect his policework. Detective Kusumi is middle-aged and snarky, preferring not to rush things or let his emotions get in the way of work.
  • Oh, Crap!: The JGSDF soldiers being forced to confront Wasted XIII when the plan to contain it begins to fall apart after being given orders to retreat before Noa and Ota began to subdue it again.
  • Police Are Useless: A mix of both. The Tokyo Metropolitan Police and its units are involved in a call when a cell of Wasted XIII evolves and kills off scientists examining it at a research lab, which is played with since they can't do anything against it (plus they didn't expect to confront a monster). The JGSDF calls in SV2 to help them and the JMSDF run an operation to kill it for good, so it's an aversion at the end.
  • Public Domain Soundtrack: Beethoven's "Pathetique" makes a prominent appearance at the end of the film.
  • Replacement Goldfish: Misaki created the 13th prototype from her daughter's mutated cancer cells, and saw it as her daughter being revived. It gets pretty disturbing when the monster occasionally screams with a human voice instead of generic roars, and just before it dies is revealed to have human breasts.
  • Room Full of Crazy: A Downplayed, but still surprisingly creepy version. While the rest of Misaki's apartment is plain, even barely furnished, Hata can immediately tell she has a screw loose when he sees a photo of her late daughter blown up to take up an entire wall of her bedroom.
  • Sliding Scale of Silliness vs. Seriousness: Just compare this to the series, or even the first movie.
  • Soundtrack Dissonance: Beethoven's "Pathetique" is playing while the Japanese Self Defence Forces burn a genetically mutated fish monster to death.
  • Take My Hand!: Poor, poor Misaki.
  • Technologically Blind Elders: Kusumi has an extensive classical record collection at his home. This actually provides a clue to cracking the case: analog records retain high frequency data better than digital recordings, which filter them out. The fact that one of the attack scenes was at a nightclub that used analog records instead of compact discs lets Kusumi and Hata figure out that high frequency noises enrage the monster into attacking.
  • Twisted Ankle: Kusumi has to wear an elbow crutch because of an accident he had just prior to the events of the film. He almost gets eaten by a giant monster because of it.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: Colonel Ishihara orders a JGSDF squad to fire an anti-tank rocket launcher to take out the disabled Ryujin for good in order to prevent their plan from falling apart. Goto sarcastically calls him out on it.