Review by: Ifakoya English
You know, there are thing in the universe that I think I would go out of my way to avoid. Being the type of person I am these things typically revolve around friendship, trust, and anything dealing with human emotion that isn’t the need for destruction, death, and violence. I happen to be a villainous type of person. Now, here we have a curious case where not only did I end up watching a move that is LITERALLY about friendship being a driving force for the main heroines, but I ended up rooting for them. Now you might be asking yourself “what’s wrong with that?”. For me? A lot of things, but let’s focus on the fact that Sarubeji Maisu (titled Salvage Mice in English) is a charming film that manages to make friendship actually seem like a plausible reason for a hero to win.
Sarubeji Maisu is a nice little movie directed by Ryuta Tasaki and written by Kei Taguchi. The film, and try not to laugh, is about a woman named Mai (played by the fantastic Miss Mitsuki Tanimura) who masquerades as a Salvage Mice a person who steals stolen treasure, and returns it to the rightful owner. Mai is a heart-broken woman who was betrayed by her long time companion Mariku (Yuki Sako). This lands her on the most wanted list of course, and she becomes a notorious thief. This betrayal also makes her more of a bad-ass since Mai ain’t no fool, and anyone who treats Mai like a fool officially lands on her “Mama said knock you out!” list. Anyway she eventually meets up with Mio (seriously adorable Julia Nagano) who is also an ass-kicker search-results extraordinaire. This meeting begins a long, and epic adventure of violence and friendship [GAH!].
Now this film has a very colorful cast of characters to complement the fantastic acting of our main heroines each of who are memorable, and enjoyable to watch. From the quiet and sullen lackey to the mentor, or even the rather happy best friend it’s enjoyable to see how these people interact with each other, It’s even extremely sickening if you aren’t the type to enjoy these types of relationships. I am not. I know, sad existence, blah blah blah. Anyway the acting is great. The friendship is believable and you can even see that it does drive them towards their goals, and that they are each others strengths and force. It would be an empty movie if either of them were missing. Friendship is the magical device of this movie honestly. FRIENDSHIP! I feel like I’m describing a live-action care-bears special….or Sailor Moon, but I like Sailor Moon and I like the friendship in this movie.
The music is pretty good, but nothing too memorable except for maybe a few tracks. There’s not really much to go over in that regard.
The fights are very entertaining, almost seamless and being what one would expect for a movie ABOUT ass-kicking girls beating up anyone in the way of FREINDSHIP! Oh and..other goals. None of which are as great as FREINDSHIP! and LOVE! If you watch this movie for nothing else but the fights you won’t be disappointed.
I’m honestly not a lovey-dovey, friendship is magic, bonding, I love humanity type person, but I did in fact enjoy the film for what it was. If you haven’t seen it yet and get the chance to. Get it out of the way, you won’t regret it.
Japanese Title: Sarubeji Maisu!
English Title: Salvage Mice!
Released: October 22, 2011
Run-time: 81 Minutes