Today I've got another Ace Attorney review for everyone to enjoy. This time I'm reviewing the Gyakuten Saiban movie. This movie was released only in Japanese and I watched a subtitled version. First of all, I want to state that I cannot guarantee the accuracy of what I say as the subtitles may have been mistranslated in some cases. Also, I'm not going to hold back on spoilers here. If you don't want this movie to be spoiled for you, don't read this! With that out of the way, let's get started.
This movie is based on the first Ace Attorney game. The story was edited and changed here and there but I'll get to that in a second. For now I want to say that in some cases, this story changes created plot holes.
The story starts with a awkward spirit channeling scene. This scene made me wonder if I was watching the right movie or not. After sometime we see Phoenix presenting a table clock as evidence in court. When I say "Table-clock" I don't mean The Thinker that Larry made. It's an actual table clock. Here we find our first plot hole. Anyone who has played Phoenix Wright AA Knows how vital the fact the clock didn't look like a clock was as evidence. Here that fact has been thrown out the window. I wonder how movie Phoenix ( I'm gonna call him Phoenix Wrong because he was portrayed as a clueless Idiot while the in-game Phoenix is a genius and a defense attorney prodigy.) got this far in the trail when he had a flawless testimony on his hands. Anyway, he got stuck on how to prove the clock was running slow on the day of the murder when Mia suddenly enters the room and wins the case for him. Question: Didn't Mia usually give him hints on how to solve the case himself? Well, when the trail ends, Larry gives Mia The Thinker, which he makes and sells in his shop.
While all this is going on, we see Edgeworth in the steel samurai case prosecuting... Dee Vasquez? I'm just gonna with it! And we find that Edgeworth wants to have a flawless win record like Von Karma who, get this, EMPHASIZES FINDING THE TRUTH ABOVE A PERFECT RECORD! That one sentence goes against everything Manfred Von Karma is.
After some time we see Mia stealing DL-5.9 (Because of a plot hole related to this case, I'm going to call movie DL-6 DL-5.9.) evidence. A bullet to be exact. While leaving the scene, she tries to be like Carmen Sandiego and calls Phoenix Wrong telling him to get ready for a big case and stuff like that. She tells him to meet her.
We then see a failed joke that goes nowhere and then we see Mia using all her IQ trying to find out where to hide the evidence. She then asks Larry's Thinker to give her an answer. She suddenly gets the idea to break the thinker and put the bullet in the statue/clock. After she's done removing all the parts, she calls Maya and tells her to drop by her house and hold on to the evidence for her.
We see Mr.Wrong who was entering the building see Maya... I mean a mysterious girl in the elevator while the door closes. We then see the brutal murder of Ms. Fey and then we see Phoenix enter the room. He is horrified at the sight of Mia's dead body. He quickly picks up the murder weapon and looks at frightened Maya. He goes to call the police and finds the telephone broken. Suddenly Gumshoe bursts in the scene with group of police officers. He then arrests Maya saying that he has a witness, Redd White. Let me say, Reed White in this movie is what you'd get if you made a character who is 20% Redd White, 10% Mike Mikkens and 70% creepy. They messed up his character so much, that this guy and in-game Redd are two completely different people.
Soon, we see Maya hiring Phoenix as her attorney. In court Edgeworth and Phoenix comes face to face ( This isn't as exciting as you think it is.)! They throw holograms showing evidence data at each other in an anime-ish fashion. When Redd breaks down, summons a megaphone from nothing and screams in to it. You may notice that the audience of the court all look like guys at a cos-play. Of course, Wrong wins this case and we see Maya break down.
Then we see the monumental 4th case, turnabout good buys! Here almost everything is like the game with gourdy and lakes and Edgeworth and lakes and boats and lakes! Lotta Hart is not from Heartland here. She's a witness in court. Von Karma however, is actually nicer than he was in the games. Let's be honest, Movie Manfred sucks at being himself almost as much as Phoenix Wrong does. Everything plays out like the game and finally we learn what happened in the DL-5.9 incident.
Gregory Edgeworth lost a case to prosecutor Von Karma. He secretly entered the evidence room for reasons unclear to me. He was stealing a gun with 2 bullets in it's magazine when he was confronted by Yanni Yogi. A fight broke out, and Miles per hour interrupted. He was thrown off and hit his head. In the fight, Gregory dropped the gun and it was kicked towards Miles. He then picked it up and threw it at Yogi. The gun fired and Miles lost consciousness. You can probably guess what happened and Yogi was accused of the crime of murdering Gregory but was let off the hook because he was deemed not of sound mind. You probably noticed the huge plot hole here. If not then let me make it clear to you. HE WAS FIGHTING IN A VENTILATED EVIDENCE ROOM. HOW WAS HE NOT OF SOUND MIND??? Here, Polly is his wife and she commits suicide. He then becomes a creepy version of the game's boat shop caretaker.
At one point in this case, Phoenix cross-examines Larry and after asking an obvious question, everyone in the court room fails to do a classic anime fall. One thing the makers of this film doesn't understand is that you can't use anime actions in a film staring real-life people and expect it to be just as awesome. Anyway, after a long and tiring trial including one more anime fall and Maya playing the piano, the movie finally ends with Von Karma being taken away after a not-so-satisfying break down.
Now, this movie fails as a video game adaptation. But as far as other video game based movies go, it's not unwatchable.It is a much better movie if I consider it on it's own and I wouldn't stop anyone from watching this. Also, this movie was good in a so-bad-it's-good kinda way.
As a movie based on a video game, I rate this: 53/100
As movie in general, I rate this: 59/100
Thanks for reading!