Japanese language major at UC Berkeley (California)Celtic guitarist and novice shakuhachi-blower
enjoy watching rain and smelling incense
reading Dostoyevsky, Doyle, Mishima, Kawabata
i have dark circles under my eyes
my clothes are often second-hand but
kumonryu's drama votes (0)
User is not eligible to vote
kumonryu's artiste votes (0)
User is not eligible to vote
kumonryu's dramas (0)
No dramas listed
kumonryu's drama reviews (9)
Eien no ko [永遠の仔] emotionally affecting [Rating: 8/10] I wish more people knew about this one. I thought the first few episodes were the best... Nakatani Miki shows Yuki's isolation and pain very well, Watabe Atsuro did a fine job of portraying someone deteriorating into insanity, and Shiina Kippei's character was made thoroughly cold and hardhearted by the horrible things that happened in his childhood... The relationships between the characters could have developed in a different way; after such a melancholy beginning, i expected to be more moved by what would be the final tragedy at the end, which somehow didn't strike me as much as the things that led up to it. But, as a whole i thought the story and especially Nakatani's performace were excellent.
Kabachitare! [カバチタレ！] Superb Entertainment [Rating: 9/10] This is Tokiwa Takako at her most charming. The overall comedy is punctuated by emotional scenes and subplots that range from touching to ridiculous. Fukatsu Eri's character was delighfully sassy and tough. It looked like Yamashita Tomohisa was born to play this part; i thought Ryuuta was one of the coolest characters, and the way he approached the girl he would end up marrying was priceless. The friendship between Nozomi and Chiharu becomes so close that they are suspected of being romantically involved with each other; they actually look as if they are about to kiss before they are interrupted, and afterwards, the ending seems to leave many loose ends although some things are resolved. This is a superb source of entertainment, and the theme song is sweet.
Keizoku [ケイゾク] Intense [Rating: 10/10] This is my absolute favorite drama ever. (One of the links above is to my site.) It can be taken as a detective story--actually, some of the scenes are obviously directly influenced by Sherlock Holmes--but it can also be seen as an examination of the human condition, and as a commentary on very real issues facing Japanese society, namely deception, blind obedience and self-sacrifice. It is also very well-acted, well-directed, and well-produced--not a second of film is wasted--with smooth, indie-influenced cinematography that increasingly darkens the mood as through each sub-plot as the underlying story progresses. The comic relief throughout creates a fondness for the characters that grows and grows, leaving the viewer devastated at the tragic ending. No other drama has yet impacted me as much as this one.
LxIxVxE some good stuff [Rating: 6/10] Many of the characters were believable and their situations can be appreciated. It reminds me of my high school. The first episode was really cheesy and i thought i couldn't watch it, but it got more interesting with each episode. But then, the ending wasn't moving, at least for me, but maybe people who are younger are better able to appreciate it.
Manatsu no Merry Christmas [真夏のメリークリスマス] The acting was better than the story [Rating: 7/10] I was very much looking forward to the arrival of this one, to see for the first time my favorite actor and actress perform together. It's interesting to see Takenouchi Yutaka effectively play a street punk after seeing him as the perfect gentleman in Koori no Sekai; and Nakatani Miki did a great job as a ragamuffin. Not all the characters are particularly sympathetic, though, and the revelations regarding their families border on being unbelievable, and the ending seemed forced and predictable. For all that, though, i think it should be watched just to see what Takenouchi and Nakatani can do.
Saabisu [サービス] good story [Rating: 7/10] I thought Chiharu was very cute, and her emotonal strength was admirable. It would have been nice to have seen her find someone who could really care for her, but perhaps this was the tragedy of it. The ending was ambiguous, but somehow appropriate. Can two people really look as much alike as Saotome san and Chiharu's fiance?
Sarariman Kintaro 1 (TBS) [サラリーマン金太郎] Funny! [Rating: 7/10] This was actually the first Japanese drama i watched, a long time ago. The action and dialogue is very stylized, and indeed seems to be taken straight from a comic. Kintaro's personality is like that of a samurai, which is at once admirable and unbelievable, and Takahashi's voice for this part is very funny. All the women love him for his samurai spirit, but he remains faithful to his deceased wife, putting all his energy into the company. The plot and subplots are all fairly innocuous and simplistic, and the fight scenes look really fake, but on the other hand, it's a great demonstration of Japanese values, and taken with the energetic theme song, tells the viewer to Ganbatte! I would recommend this one to younger viewers.
Utsukushii hito [美しい人] one of my favorites [Rating: 9/10] I loved Tokiwa Takako's voice in this, especially in the beginning; Osawa Takao did a superb job as an incurably disturbed and pathalogical cop; and Tamura Masakazu seemed to fit this role perfectly, his appearance matching his persona as an extremely sensitive and somewhat effeminate gentleman. The central issue, though, that of Kyosuke changing Miyuki into the likeness of his wife seemed to stretch believability. There is also the difficulty of imagining Tokiwa and Tamura as compatible. However, the interesting connections tying the many characters together in multiple ways created many interesting subplots which added to the intrigue. A good comment on the human condition. And Jane Birkin's melancholy song at the beginning is excellent!
Yamato Nadeshiko [やまとなでしこ【大和撫子】] It bothered me [Rating: 1/10] Most of my friends loved this one, but i don't understand why even though they explain it to me. It seems like they "fell in love" for merely materialistic reasons--she for him because she thought he was rich, and he for her because she looks like Matsushima Nanako. So it was difficult for me to respect either of the characters or appreciate what they were going through. The woman treats the man terribly, enough to make any sane person quickly abandon the idea, but he continues to pursue her and she continues to reject him... Predictably, in the end they marry and live happily ever after. But, if so many people like it, it must be good; it's just beyond me.