Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Otakus in Love (Koi no Mon-2004)

Ryuhei Matsuda ... Mon Aoki (as Ryuuhei Matsuda)
Wakana Sakai ... Koino Akashi
Suzuki Matsuo ... Marimoda
Kiyoshiro Imawano (as Kiyoshirô Imawano)
Hijiri Kojima ... Mejina
Shinya Tsukamoto ... Noro (as Shin'ya Tsukamoto)
Hideaki Anno
Moyoco Anno (as Moyoko Anno)
George Asakura (as Jooji Asakura)
Junko Emoto ... Kishimi "Shinja" Sagara
Kyonosuke Hanai (as Kyônosuke Hanai)
Jun Hanyunyuu
Kami Hiraiwa
Sei Hiraizumi
Somegoro Ichikawa (as Somegorô Ichikawa)
Noboru Iguchi
Hairi Katagiri
Katsuo Kawai
Fumiyo Kohinata
Miki Komori
Youssef Lotfy (as Yusefu Rottofi)
Koichi Masuno
Takashi Miike
Sarutoki Minagawa ... Seiki Abe
Hitomi Miwa
Seminosuke Murasugi
Toshinori Omi
Shinobu Ootake
Makoto Otake (as Makoto Ootake)
Kotobuki Shiriagari
Masaya Takahashi ... Kingo
Seiichi Tanabe
Mariko Tsutsui
Shungiku Uchida
Naoki Yamamoto

Otakus in LoveMon Aoki (Ryuhei Matsuda) is a down-on-his-luck manga artist who can’t seem to hold down a steady job, partly due to his hobo-like attire and partly due to his stubborn belief that one day his art will actually sell. The only problem with that belief is he doesn’t draw traditional manga; he paints on rocks and arranges them in wooden boxes, a method that hasn’t quite captured the imaginations of rabid manga fans as of yet. One day while trying to find his way to the next part-time job he spots a particularly manga-worthy rock on the ground. When he bends down to pick it up (after an overly-flashy slow motion dive set to up-tempo music, of course) a young woman’s heel comes crashing down on his hand. After a hearty yelp of anguish her eyes meet his and his eyes meet her panties. Yep, it’s love at first sight. The moment is interrupted however, because she’s late for work at Tsugino Happy Inc., a company where nothing is tolerated but happiness (and complete subordination).

As fate would have it Tsugino Happy Inc. just happens to be where Mon has his new part-time job. The girl who stepped on Mon earlier, Koino (Wakana Sakai), recognizes him right away and following some dressing-down from their perpetually-enraged boss it comes out that he’s a self-proclaimed “manga artisan”. Being a closet manga artist herself, Koino immediately becomes fascinated by this bit of information, and in Mon. Due to a mishap with a quibbling co-worker his employment only lasts a few hours but before he leaves Koino invites him to her place for drinks. She gets him completely drunk and he wakes up the next morning believing that she’s made a man of him. Instead, she’s made him into a cosplayer. To his horror he realizes he’s dressed up like Yunsung from Soul Caliber II. Thus begins their topsy-turvy relationship complete with the mandatory “will they or won’t they?” overtones and the random mishaps and misunderstandings you would expect in a romantic comedy, albeit appropriately much more ridiculous. Things are never really allowed to get too sappy because whenever things start to go that way something will miraculously interrupt it, whether that be random vomiting or a random nervous breakdown. This film has, as one of Koino’s fans would put it, “a gift for reckless plot twists”.

Hmm? I love my Ryuhei-kun. But this movie was sooooooo NOT him. It could have been but it was just too bubble-gummy. Stupid anime tricks galore does not make a Rhyhei-kun movie. I think if this movie had either been more comedic or more serious it would have worked but mixed together.....NO!

I will say this.....the story itself was cute. Farfetched....but cute. The end of the movie was, well, cute. I hate being repetitious but that is what this movie was. Okay, it was funny seeing Rhuhei-kun with a hard-on. And, he was a virgin. *shocking* LOL! Kissing scenes...well, hmmm *clearing throat*, were, well.....dreamy.

Matsuda Rhyhei
Matsuda Ryuhei

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