Review

by Darius Washington

Golgo 13 - Queen Bee

DVD

Review:
Golgo 13 - Queen Bee DVD
"He shoots and he scores..and he scores again...and again..."

This is a phrase I started thinking to myself after I saw the OAV Golgo 13: Queen Bee. I didn't only think this about the story's main character, but about the supporting ones as well.

Based on the gekiga (graphic novels) by Takao Saito, Golgo 13 depicts the exploits of high-priced hitman Duke Togo, which play out like a James Bond movie: cool gadgets, beautiful women, difficult targets. However, while Bond tries to have fun during his assignments (at least in the movies), Togo remains a cold, calculating machine who practices no pleasure in carrying out contracts.

In the current release "Queen Bee", Golgo 13 retains that demeanor as he's hired to terminate a drug dealing, femme fatale bent on asassinating a presidential candidate. However, as the story progresses, Togo discovers that the Queen Bee (who lives up to her name in EVERY sense) may have legitimate reasons to end the candidate's campaign trail. Those reasons lead up to the story's rather unexpected climax...

This video is well-made, but gets a slightly mixed opinion from me. The plot moves along at a faster pace than I'd originally anticipated, given the previous film, The Professional: Golgo 13. This is probably done to fit the format of OAVs as opposed to the movie format of The Professional. Still, one thing did bother me.

That thing is the amount of sex scenes in this piece: six in sixty minutes. This beats the ratio for an average porno movie. It's not just that these scenes exist, but they occur for seemingly no reason than just to move the video along, instead of enhancing a very harsh story.

Other than that, "Queen Bee" is a first rate piece of work. The visuals are incredibly crisp and smooth, with intermittent still shots of painted pieces for dramatic effect. These acentuate a style which breaks away from regular cartoon-like anime approaches to establish a deeper looking, almost American art form.

This is the method used by the video's director Osamu Dezaki, who produced the previous Golgo 13 movie as well as Tomorrows Joe, Rose of Versailles, Black Jack, and Mighty Orbots.

Queen Bee is the second Dezaki work to be released for American markets by Urban Vision. The first was Space Adventure Cobra - The Movie. Give them both a try to see a product from someone who works outside conventional anime methods.
Grade:
Production Info:
Overall (sub) : A-
Director:Osamu Dezaki
Screenplay:Akihiro Tago
Storyboard:Osamu Dezaki
Music:
Seiji Suzuki
Fujimaru Yoshino
Original creator:Takao Saito
Character Design:
Akio Sugino
Hiroshi Uchida
Art Director:Mieko Ichihara
Animation Director:
Akio Sugino
Hiroshi Uchida
Director of Photography:
Hajime Noguchi
Hirokata Takahashi
Producer:
Taka Nagasawa
Hitoshi Yoshimura

Full encyclopedia details about
Golgo 13: Queen Bee (OAV)

Release information about
Golgo 13: Queen Bee [Special Edition] (DVD)

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