Thursday, July 22, 2010

Let's Handsome! (レッツ, ハンサム!)

Now, I'm sure that you're all quite sick of my "diversification" nonsense, and would rather I get back down to the basics, as it were, and return to posting things that are a bit more sensible, like, say, movie reviews.

Don't think I don't notice that my readers trend downwards whenever I make a post like the other day's. Apparently, you all do not wish to cater to my whims, even though it's my blog.

And alas, I'm just not bringing in enough attention to fight you on this point.

...besides, movie reviews are easy, and I had no other pressing ideas.

Ha ha, now you see my true reasoning.

Oh well, all will out in the end, as they say. ( they say that? I think they do.)

Anyway. I'm sure that I have mentioned this movie before, simply because it is fabulous and very much deserves its own post.

ハンサム・スーツ (The Handsome Suit)

Oh yea, you know this is going to be good right from the get-go.

(Tagline on the side- There is a suit that can make you handsome just by wearing it.) (Roughly.)

This looks rather more like the billboard I originally saw outside the movie theatre while walking down 寺町(Teramachi) with Melon, and if I'm trying to convince you people to go and see this film, what better way than to use the very method that convinced me?

Ok, now, everyone have your best friend watch it, then tell you how good it is.

...Er. I guess that plan won't work after all.

Oh well, I guess I have to sell this thing the old fashioned way.

Let me start off by saying that I am biased; horribly horribly biased. I love this movie. Melon loves this movie. Everyone who I have shown this movie, loves this movie (ok, so that's only four people, but still.) Based on these odds alone, you should seriously consider giving it a look-see.


As you may have guessed from the rather informative posters above, not to mention the helpful title, this movie is, in fact, about a suit (of sorts) that makes a person handsome, regardless of how ugly or uncouth they start out. Somewhat cruel, in appearance? Yes. Fodder for an excellent and ultimately heartwarming movie? Absolutely.

The movie begins in the back-room of 洋服の青山 (Western Clothing, Aoyama, which is actually a real store--betting they paid big bucks to get their name in on this one), where an employee is giving the low-down (complete with video presentation) to his boss on the perfect candidate (of course describing our protagonist, Ooki Takurou, often called Butarou for his unfortunate looks and kanji), who is fat, ugly, lacking in social grace, a terrifier of women (especially when he sneezes), and who speaks, gasp, Kansai-ben, among other things.

(As you can imagine, I don't appreciate that last part. Stinkin' Kanto people. Kansai-ben is めっちゃかっこいいで!)

His boss is thrilled with this new prospect, and can't wait to get him into the shop, thinking that he is the perfect customer to try out the Handsome Suit. "What could that be?" we wonder.

Well, we soon find out.

After falling for a girl who comes to work as a waitress at his shop, Takurou becomes depressed, lamenting is unlovable person and of course heading to the park to be alone with his sorrows. (This happens a lot in Japanese media, I feel, which is even lampshaded by the movie itself.) There, our friend the video-presentation employee just happens to pop up (somewhat creepily, in my opinion) and hands him a flyer for "a suit that can change your life."

Cut to the next day, where Takurou (a) receives a wedding invitation from his two best friends and (b) totally blows it with that waitress girl. Like you didn't see that coming. Insisting that he is drawn by the need for some wedding attire, he heads on over to Aoyama, and that's when everything gets interesting.

He is led into the back by the boss-man, who of course knows that he doesn't really just want a wedding suit. No, no, he needs a Handsome Suit. We proceed to find out that a Handsome Suit changes your body (and even voice), leading to the transformation you see in the above promotional images.

(Pay attention for the Dave Spector joke, kids. And if you don't know who he is... find out.)

The movie continues on to chronicle Takurou's adventures in handsome-dom, which of course are filled with hilarity, amazing happenstance, and jealous models played by my darling Kayashima. (I'll remember his real name one day. But really; how did he go from cute, awkward supernatural guy in Hana Kimi to being constantly type-cast as bitchy side-characters? Poor dear.)

Despite its outward appearnces, though, the message this movie gets across is ultimately a very, very good one--I won't spoil it, of course, but trust me on this.

Aside from that, though, what makes this movie really work is the collaboration between the two actors who play Takurou (or rather, Takurou and Annin, since he needs a handsome name as well)--they matched their characterizations exceptionally well, which makes everything flow so well. You can really belive that they're the same man, and I feel that that was vital in making this movie so excellent.

I've said it before, I'll say it again--I simply cannot recommend this movie enough. Rent it, buy it, watc a friend's copy, I don't care; just see it.

This is one of those movies that I can watch over and over again, and anything that good deserves sharing. I'll even link you to the trailer, though unfortunately it doesn't have subtitles for all you English-speaking folk. The movie, however, should be out with them by now, so fear not!

But seriously, guys. Watch this movie. It's excellent.

This is Edo, signing off wondering just how persuasive a writer she is.

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