Apr 6, 2019
ActionManonAnime (All reviews)
Despite being very popular characters, Heiji and Kazuha rarely ever get a movie all to themselves. Whenever they are in a movie, they're usually side characters that are only relevant to that movie's story (specifically, movies 3, 10, 13, 14, 17). While fans had to wait for The Crimson Love Letter, the only film that prominently featured Heiji and Kazuha was Crossroad in the Ancient Capital. With the release of the 21st movie, how does this one hold up today?

Besides their lead roles, both movies double-down on their Japanese heritage. While Movie 21 focused on Karuta games, this movie implements elements from the legendary folktales of Yoshitsune and Benkei. On top of that, ancient temples and ritual party games are a part of this movie. While The Crimson Love Letter makes its heritage shine better with its updated art style, this movie still does its best with the talent they had.

What helped me enjoy this movie for the most part was the knowledge that this was Kenji Kodama's last film in the Detective Conan series. This man not only directed for shows like Lupin III and City Hunter, but also the first 7 Detective Conan movies. There's something very melancholic about seeing a director's last involvement with a series like this. Because of him, the Detective Conan movies were able to leave a big impression on people and go on to become the box-office hits that they are today.

Of course, it was thanks to this knowledge that I was able to persist through the parts of the movie that felt a bit drawn out. Depending on the type of person you are, you may watch this movie feeling either relaxed or bored. This movie is less like jumping into a pool and more like easing yourself into a hot tub. Not to mention the reliance on Japanese wordplay in this movie. When it was just used for the Professor's quizzes and minor clues, I was okay with it. But because Japanese wordplay plays a lot in solving the case itself, I felt very left out. If you know Japanese and are interested in a chill movie, then this is the one for you.

Even with The Crimson Love Letter out now, I would still recommend people watch Crossroad in the Ancient Capital first. However, if you are the kind of person that likes action and high stakes in their movies, then you may want to enter this one with caution.