Patlabor 2: The Movie
"Patlabor 2: The Movie" is a 113 minute theatrical film from 1993, directed by Mamoru Oshii (“Dallos” , “Angel’s Egg”, “Ghost in the Shell”). It is the second movie in the Patlabor series of manga, OVAs, TV shows, and movies. I have separated out the cels from this film, but you can view cels from other animated installments in my general "Patlabor" section.
Taking place in “2002”, three years after the first Patlabor movie, Patlabor 2's world shows most of our favorite band of misfits from Special Vehicles Unit 2 have moved on. Noa and Asuma are testing a new Labor operating system in research and development; Ohta has gone into training new recruits; and Shinshi has moved up into supervision. However, Hiromi is still taking care of his tomatoes, and Nagumo and Gotoh are still heading the two Special Vehicles Unit 2 divisions ... but, now Nagumo outranks Gotoh as base commander.
Suppose ye that I am come to give peace on earth? I tell you, Nay; but rather division:
For from henceforth there shall be five in one house divided, three against two, and two against three.
A new, Bible quoting, villain has appeared to reap a horrible vengeance against the peace loving citizenry of Japan: Yukihito Tsuge. Once the head of a well thought of Labor school for research and development, he went AWOL and disappeared after a United Nations peace keeping mission left him stranded in the middle of a jungle in South East Asia, with orders not to fire, while he was surrounded by attacking enemies. Now, back in Japan, he's going to show the common everyday people just how fragile and ephemeral their peaceful lives really are. He teams up with a sub rosa Japanese government agency to turn an American military breach of Japanese airspace into a terrorist missile attack, by feeding the American pilot phony orders.
... I realized I must make people aware that all their certainties are illusions that can disappear suddenly, completely, leaving no trace. But, even when I put my plan into action, no one understood why. I guess even now they don't understand.
As the heads of Japan's Metropolitan Police and Self Defense Forces use the opportunity to blame each other for the attack to gain greater political standing and power, the American government threatens a second Occupation, if Japan isn't able to maintain order. In response, the police force surrounds the JSDF's bases, and the JSDF declares martial law and invades Tokyo, under the pretext of keeping the peace. Before all of Japan heads into either military dictatorship or American foreign occupation, the Special Vehicles Unit 2 must secretly regroup against orders, and expose and arrest Tsuge.
Commanders sitting behind the front lose touch with the real battle that's being fought. They become too optimistic. Decisions are made which have no bearing on what the facts of the battle might be.
But, Tsuge isn't just any mad-genius villain. He's Nagumo's mentor, and the man she still loves. Will her sense of duty and patriotism to Japan outweigh her love for her genius teacher -- especially when Japan's current leaders are undeserving, insipid, ineffective, and self-serving?
No matter how repulsive the peace, it is still vital to guard it. It may be an immoral peace. It may be an unjust peace; but, an unjust peace is still better than a just war.