Japanese murder mysteries, whether on the big or small screen, are typically puzzles, with the characters serving as pieces whose deaths mean little more than Col. Mustard’s in the board game Clue. The detective may be eccentric, hard-boiled or a combination of both, but he does not usually show emotion over an untimely demise — beyond an unshakable determination to find the perpetrator.

One glaring exception is “Rinjo: Gekijoban (The Last Answer),” a floridly melodramatic, if thematically original, mystery based on a popular TV Asahi drama in turn inspired by Hideo Yokoyama’s best-selling novel series. The hero is one Yoshio Kuraishi (Masaaki Uchino), a police coroner who, with his artfully tousled hair, stylishly casual duds and chiseled good looks, could have stepped out of a men’s fashion spread (though in reality he may have just rolled out of bed).

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