a.k.a. Meitantei Conan: Konpeki no Hitsugi Jolly Roger
A holiday trip to Koumi Island in the Pacific Ocean turns out to be much more exciting than Conan and his friends would have thought at first: The island is said to be the former hideout of the two infamous pirates Anne Bonny and Mary Reed, and professional treasure hunters are already looking for the loot they supposedly hid in an ancient ruin on the bottom of the sea. To the Detective Kids, everything is only a game at first, but when one of the treasure hunters is murdered and some more parties join the quest, things start to get ugly…
summary by Taleweaver
Highs: Well-chosen historical background; solid action sequences
Lows: Run-of-the-mill plot; weak whodunit; little character chemistry
Another Detective Conan movie with a strong educational background, Jolly Roger in the Deep Azure picks up the currently popular pirate movie trend and tries to weave an Edogawa Conan mystery case around it. While there are certainly a few ways doing this smoothly, this movie, unfortunately, chooses another.
The initial setup is quite exciting at first glance; most people with at least some interest in the genre should have heard of Anne Bonny and Mary Reed, the legendary female pirates. Jolly Roger succeeds in not bastardizing their story for the sake of the plot but actually making it an integral part of the main mystery. Adding to the excitement are a surprisingly large number of solid, well-directed action sequences, from underwater fighting scenes to subterranean survival action Indiana Jones would be proud of.
All the glitz and historical accuracy cannot hide the disappointingly weak plot behind everything. Eventually, everything comes out exactly as you thought it would from the minute it starts; there is not one original minute in Jolly Roger that would surprise even a casual viewer of the Detective Conan franchise. To add insult to injury, the murder that happens within the larger scope of the treasure hunt hardly deserves the moniker “whodunit”; without a doubt, most viewers will know the solution long before Conan reveals it in the end, and that’s a shame for an anime series that is known for its usually well-written mysteries. Even the solid and convincing voice acting doesn’t help this time around as the script hardly gives the characters enough time for interacting with one another – except for Sonoko and Ran, there is no chemistry between the characters whatsoever.
This eleventh Detective Conan movie is, very much like Captured In Her Eyes, a rather mediocre production where the nice visuals and the good directing hardly make up for a weak plot and a lack of character play. Trying to make the fans of Pirates of the Caribbean your target group would have worked if the script also had allowed some room for the usual strengths of the franchise, such as an intricate whodunit and a surprising conclusion. Jolly Roger in the Deep Azure isn’t a bad movie in itself but a disappointment in comparison with most of its predecessors.