Baby Assassins

Part oddball slacker comedy, part effervescent action film, Baby Assassins is a delight

Film Review by Ross McIndoe | 16 Mar 2022
  • Baby Assassins
Film title: Baby Assassins
Director: Yûgo Sakamoto
Starring: Yukina Fukushima, Saori Izawa, Masanori Mimoto

Chisato (Akari Takaishi) and Mahiro (Saori Izawa) are looking for their place in the world after graduating high school and moving in together. Most of the challenges they face are pretty typical: working out how to pay their bills, hold down a job and share an apartment without falling out. On top of that, they also kill people for money.

Yugo Sakamoto’s effervescent action-comedy Baby Assassins is fuelled by the bubbling chemistry between this textbook odd couple. Chisato is a whirlwind of scatter-brained positivity while Mahiro is introverted to a nearly catatonic degree, wearily tumbling from one scene to the next. Their ever-so-slightly outsized, polar opposite personas combine to such magnetic effect that it’s easy to forgive all the murdering.

Baby Assassins plays everything too lightly to really worry about morality or mortality anyway, although it is genuinely interested in the issue of young people in the working world. Watching Chisato and Mahiro drag themselves through the nonsense and indignities of the customer service world, it’s easy to see why they’d gravitate towards a job that lets them shoot people in the face.

Ultimately, the lead pair are so charming that the film would work as an Office Space-esque slacker comedy even if all they did was hang out in their apartment together. Any time they do get off the couch, though, it accelerates into an absolutely exhilarating action flick. The two genres might make for as unlikely a pairing as Chisato and Mahiro, but the end result is equally delightful.

Baby Assassins screened at Glasgow Film Festival