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26 January 2007 @ 05:04 pm
"I'm in love with my little sister" ~ 僕は妹に恋をする the movie  
Last Wednesday, I went to see the movie adaptation of a manga that I've liked for a long time, Boku wa Imouto ni Koi wo Suru. I've mentioned this manga briefly in passing before. Quite a long time ago, I picked up the entire 10-volume series on a friend's recommendation and fell in love with it from the get-go. So when I saw that it was becoming a movie, I was really excited.

The premise of the series/movie is that there is a set of twins, now teenagers, named Yori and Iku (Yori was born first). Ever since they were young, Yori and Iku have shared the same bedroom and slept in bunk beds. Which is a bit of a problem, considering that ever since Yori was a little boy and declared that he would one day marry his little sister, he has been madly in love with her. With the onset of teenage feelings and ideas, he's finding it harder and harder to resist the lures of his little sister, even though she's completely clueless.

That is, until one night..... One night, in both the manga and the movie, Iku's gone to bed and fallen asleep before Yori. Yori, completely smitten with how she looks in her sleep, sits down on the bed beside her. He finally leans closer, and closer, and closer, and kisses her. She wakes up, and after a lot of "what the....? What are you doing? I don't believe it!!" Yori confesses to his sister and forces her to choose. He says that he is so in love with her, he can't see her with anyone else. So he wants her to choose between him and all of the other boys in the world. And if she chooses him (so very sudden for her, this is out of the blue!), then she has to kiss him right there. And after much debate within herself and trying to talk Yori out of what she at first thinks is a joke, Iku mutters about how cruel he is, but she kisses her brother.

This is where the manga and movie differentiate a little bit, but I'm guessing that it was just for the sake of time. In the manga, it's left at that, and Yori and Iku have to ponder their feelings in the morning and at school. They don't have sex (!!) until much later (though they pretty much do everything else, if you get my drift). But in the movie, they appear to have sex right then and there, that night. It's only implied, since the movie cuts out after the kiss scene and the next thing you see if them waking up in the morning still in the same bed, 'naked'. So.... sex? I think. They act VERY quiet at the breakfast table, and their mother wonders whether they've had a fight or something, and talks about whether she should get them separate rooms finally. She's getting some very weird vibes here. (In the manga, if I remember right, their parents don't find out for quite a while about what's going on...) Later after they've left, she's cleaning their room and finds out that Yori's bed was made up as if he'd never slept in it, but Iku's was all messy and gets suspicious, though she never says anything.......

The movie goes on to tell a short interlude of their story, and the story of the boy and girl that are in love with Yori and Iku at school. One is Yori's best friend, whom knows of Yori's love for his sister. He's determined to take Iku from him though, since he doesn't think that it would ever work out between Iku and Yori. As he says to Yori, "you can't do this. It's only going to cause Iku pain. And not only Iku, but you too..." I thought that even though that scene took place in a normal place at school without any drama, his lines were very strong. The girl that is in love with Yori bugged me, until I realized that it was the same girl that played Sailor Venus in the Sailormoon drama a few years ago. It kind of ruined her for me after that, but well... it also might have been because she was kind of a bitch. She saw Yori and Iku making out in the empty science lab, but she only said, "That's weird, doing it with your sister. I'll date you even if you don't love me, because I know that one day, if we've spent all this time together, you might love me." (Kind of typical shoujo stuff there).

Since all of the movie takes place within a few weeks at most, it can't go where the manga does (it ends when they're grown up via a flash-forward), but... well, I was hoping for a happy end. Since most japanese movies about forbidden love end tragically (Boys Love anyone??) though, I didn't expect this one to end well. But instead of an ending, it was really... ambiguous. ^_^; I guess that's another japanese movie trait that I didn't think about. Sometimes it works out really well (Juon, for example), or really badly (this movie, for example). Basically, the end of the movie has Yori and Iku going back to the ruins of the house that they used to live in the country and playing a game where they play janken and the loser has to carry the winner on his/her back. Yori even loses when he sees that Iku is tired. But together, they walk away and that's the last that you see of them. They were very much in love.

I.... I can't say if I liked the movie or not. I liked the manga a lot. But the manga was well-drawn and well-paced, and very very smutty. The movie had some kissing and there was the implied sex, but the actors had NO chemistry. None, not even the slightest bit. I was reminded of when I watched Tokyo Tower and turned it off after a while, because Jun had no chemistry with any of the actresses. It wasn't very believable at all. I think that Jun is a really GREAT actor (I really loved him in the Kimi wa Petto drama especially), but when he gets into intimate situations, he gets all stiff and fake-looking, as if he's never had any experience with a girl. Maybe he's gay? It's really weird, because come on, he's been a 'famous' Johnny's boy since he was little, so how can he not have any experience, or know how to act like he does by now? O.o;; So yes, the intimacy, little as there was, seemed forced and flat. I was sad for that.

Then the filmography and pace. Gah. Shaky cameras when there shouldn't have been (sometimes it adds to the scene, but sometimes it just seemed like it was poorly filmed). And my god, all of the loooooooooooong pauses where a character just sat there and thought. No dialogue, no action. In other words, completely still shots, and there were a lot of them.

I didn't completely hate it. I do like the subject matter..... I really enjoy stories that are about taboo or unusual romances, so to speak. They can be really exciting if they're well done. But I don't think that this film was made or paced well (or acted well in that case). It was pretty much so-so all around. Fans of the manga will like to see it, but I don't think that others would be all that interested, especially if you can't stomach a story about an incestuous relationship. I did really like that since this was a simple shoujo story, I could understand 99% of what was said perfectly. (Compared to Death Note where I got about half) I know my shoujo vocab a lot better than any other, I guess. ^^;; (It comes from watching the Marmalade Boy anime over and over again when I was in High school, I think ^_^;;) So, yay for comprehension!! A halfhearted yay for the so-so movie. But I'm glad that I saw it. It inspires me to finish the manga (I read bits and pieces of it including the end before, but now I want to read straight through)

It did make me wonder, though... I really stories of forbidden love. I don't love my sister that way of course, the very thought is.. eww, no. But as a story I enjoy tales of incest or other 'forbidden loves'. What is your opinion? I was shocked, when looking around on the internet at the trailers, that people made so many comments about how "disgusting" and "disgraceful" and far worse, that the movie subject was. Sure, incest isn't my bag of tea, but it's just a story, right? And really, love is love, come on.
Pure Trancepure_trance on January 26th, 2007 08:14 am (UTC)
I'll have to pick up Vol. 1 next time I go to Kinokuniya. Like you, I have a think for illicit romances :D I prefer teacher/student (and maybe other december/may) romances to incest, but if it's done nicely then I don't mind :D

If you care for teacher/student romances you should pick up Otona no Toki which I refer to as "My favorite guilty pleasure". There are 6 volumes of it so far (Vol. 6 JUST came out) and it's published by Flower Comics :3
Rynnsnow_sayuki on January 26th, 2007 01:30 pm (UTC)
me too.. forbidden love all the way ~

oo i like teacher/student romances ^_^
i haven't heard of otona no toki, though... tried to look it up but couldn't find anythin on it... is it good?
do you have any other similar titles to recommend? :)
(no subject) - pure_trance on January 26th, 2007 05:16 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - snow_sayuki on January 26th, 2007 11:09 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Bethany☆彡 (べス)sourangel on January 26th, 2007 08:29 am (UTC)
What theater did you see this in? I'm coming down to Tokyo this weekend and want to see it since they're not showing it up here.
Hi-chan (火ちゃん)hinoai on January 26th, 2007 02:15 pm (UTC)
If you go to the movie site and click on the theaters link, I went to the theater that's listed in Shinjuku (I forget the name--- Shinjuku something something). It's really easy to find, it's just across from the east exit, in the same block as the Studio Alta. You can go in the door that has that delicious little bubble tea place and it's on the 3rd floor if I remember right. ^^
r j00 teh nwe pimp l0rdz?: neko samaryoko293 on January 26th, 2007 10:22 am (UTC)
A few weeks ago a dai Jun fan on my flist posted about how she hates to see Jun acting in such a movie that 'glorifies' incest and wonders if she could stand 'force herself' to watch bokuimo since Jun plays in it... What shocked her the most was when he stated in an interview that he hopes that the viewers -after leaving the cinema- will also want to feel such a wonderful and deep love for someone.
She never replied to my comment, I think she didn't wnat to argue...

Like you, I can't even imagine being in love with my lil brother, but you can't choose with whom you fall in love, right?
Chiakichiaki777 on January 26th, 2007 10:30 am (UTC)
Ohhh I loved the manga for that series... Hmmm I should check out the movie too then ^^
Kati: ★euploeamulciber on January 26th, 2007 11:13 am (UTC)
Hi~ ^^' I've been reading your entries for a year, so I decided that I probably should add you. I hope you don't mind. ♥
Your journal is really interesting, thank you for sharing so many pictures and experiences. m(__)m I hope I'll be able to move to Japan someday too, and reading your entries gives me.. new hope, I started to doubt if I should go there after all. (<- I was scared about how they'd treat me there, since I'm finnish(=blonde hair, I guess naturally blonde hair really stands out there? >_<) and really tall (not tall as you, though, 5cms shorter), but it seems that they treat you well -> I'm not so scared anymore.
Hi-chan (火ちゃん)hinoai on January 26th, 2007 02:19 pm (UTC)
I don't mind! ^.^ I'd add you back, but I hit my friends limit a long time ago and I can't add any more people. ;_____; I keep asking lj to get rid of the limit but they won't yet. ;___;

Don't worry! As long as you hang around good people in Japan, then you'll be treated well. ^^
C L O V E Ridyllica on January 26th, 2007 12:44 pm (UTC)
Wow. I like that manga already. It has a good plotline, but the movie sounds...good, but has its flaws. Shaky cameras? Gah. Long pauses? No imtimacy? Bah. No thanks. But, the plotline sounds great. I would read it. I like forbidden love although I'm not really in love with my brother or sister (or anything for that matter), but it sounds really interesting. :D

cryduchatcryduchat on January 26th, 2007 01:54 pm (UTC)
Funny, not too long ago I had a conversation with my friend about the nature of sexual taboos. Are they implimented purely for social survival? Biologically speaking, breeding through incest does not create birth defects, it merely increases the probability that your child would get defects that your family was already genetically predisposed to.

Are these social constructs in place to protect the innocent (ie, child molestation)? If we are 2 related and consenting adults, why is it a problem? The same argument can be made about homosexuality - it runs contrary to current social norms, why? What right do we have to condem what 2 consenting adults do? If they are not hurting anyone and the practice is as old as the history of man.

I agree with you that incest is not my cup of tea. However, it has a strong presence in mainstream pornography and has been widely practiced through history.

It is also amusing when people chose sexual partners who blatantly resemble family members, yet seem oblivious to it.
アナベル: Haru heehikaru_yui on January 26th, 2007 02:48 pm (UTC)
mmm o.o I need to watch it for make a real comment... >.>... but I like a lot Jun xDDD and the story like you said is only that and is love... so is not a big deal! xDD
Chazagichazagi on January 26th, 2007 03:14 pm (UTC)
I'm not too sure how I would like to read/watch a story like that (with sibling love) as I've never read/watched one. I could check this one out some time. Just for a try. I don't like the idea of sibling love like that but stories are stories. One of the main reasons I really liked Atashi wa Bambi was the fact of the guy liking his best friend. I don't read yaoi stuff as I don't like it but in this way I think it was really sweet.(I have nothing against gays/lesbians, I just don't like reading/watching stories of them. Shoujou for me, please.) That's pretty much my opinion. Little messy, but it's somewhere there.
Sherrysherryillk on January 26th, 2007 04:04 pm (UTC)
I've definitely seen the subject of forbidden love/incest around a lot. I wouldn't say it's one of those subjects that's hidden away off in some corner but it's not exactly huge either. But there is something likable to it to other people. Plenty of people I know would tell you that they don't believe in incest themselves and yet still love to read incest stories.

I don't see a problem with it personally. I think we all just have to make our decision on how to deal with the subject of incest ourselves. I do biology so I can't help but think of the biological consequences so that's why I'm against it. And since I'm against it, I think it would be right not to watch/read anything dealing with incest so I don't contradict myself. Most of the time, I just ignore it as "something I'm not into." But people can't help what they're interested in and if they feel it's okay, then that's their business not mine if they want to read about incest.

I think what I'm trying to say is that everyone can react to incest the way they think is right be it passing it over as I, giving a chance as you do, or blasting it online as some people have done. It is just a story but watching it, or not watching it, does say something about you as a person... And how to react to it is probably a better indicator.
dream_rainedream_raine on January 26th, 2007 05:12 pm (UTC)
wooh, Jun's signature...wow, thanks for the review..being an arashi fan I was quite curious about what the non-fans thot about the movie. When I saw the trailer, I wasn't very impressed with it..soo...and no one really raved about it...Jun should just move on and get better roles.

Hmm, Jun is quite a dork. He tries to be sexy but ends up being funny. I don't think he's gay but I observed that he has issues with intimacy. I think he has better chemistry with Inoe Mao (Hana yori dango) because even off camera, they play around alot while with Nana, both of them don't seem to be comfortable with each other even during interviews. Nana seems scared of him ...
Kyo-chan: Air Gear - Akito/Agito lovekyofujimiya on January 26th, 2007 05:25 pm (UTC)
We own Boys Love, and man, that was the epitome of tragic.

This kind of forbidden love is like a lot of things that people enjoy in writing and art. We're okay with it and can find it beautiful, even if we really wouldn't dream of marrying our own sister/brother/cousin/whatever. Some things like that are just portrayed in such an amazing way, that you don't really give a second thought to the ties of blood. Honestly, that happened to me when I watched FMA, because the dynamic between the two brothers felt very right. It's not something I come right out and say often, but since you brought it up... XD I think it's natural to look at taboo topics with special interest, I mean, Harlequin romance novels wouldn't sell so well otherwise...nor the Sleeping Beauty series that Anne Rice did. People take out of a writing or art what they will.
Hi-chan (火ちゃん)hinoai on January 26th, 2007 10:49 pm (UTC)
You do? =D Wow, that's awesome!! I didn't like the movie myself, but I seriously thought that the only people who were even interested Boys Love were Tenimyu fans, since the two stars are big Tenimyu people. lol I'm actually really happy to hear that it appealed to more people! (or that they even know of it!)

Sleeping Beauty by Anne Rice? I'll have to check that out! I've never read one of her books, but I've always wanted to since I loved the Interview with a Vampire movie.
(no subject) - kyofujimiya on January 27th, 2007 01:41 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - hinoai on January 29th, 2007 05:29 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - kyofujimiya on January 29th, 2007 05:33 am (UTC) (Expand)
Aya: Fujiiceblueaya on January 26th, 2007 07:01 pm (UTC)
I kinda want to check this series out.

I like stories with forbidden love because it doesn't happen often. And for that to happen in real life isn't pretty.
jean_kun on January 26th, 2007 07:06 pm (UTC)
I have a couple of friends who like this manga series, but I haven't read it myself. I do like reading stories about forbidden love or taboo relationships, as it's another perspective on life. Although I can't really read these things because of various things (home life, etc).

And oh! No wonder the main actor looked so familiar, he's from Johnny's! Isn't he in Hana yori Dango the live action too? I haven't seen it, but I heard the drama was good. Season 2 also looks promising from what I hear. Maybe I should find the time to watch them. Maybe after midterms XDDD
Hi-chan (火ちゃん)hinoai on January 26th, 2007 10:57 pm (UTC)
Yep, he's in Hana Yori Dango. In that and some of the other dramas that he's been in, I thought that he acted really well, which is why I was so surprised that he didn't seem to act well in this one. ;_; I recommend watching Hana Yori Dango, though. It's an old favorite manga of mine, but even if it wasn't, I really like the drama as well. =D
Firsa Asahiasahifirsa on January 26th, 2007 07:41 pm (UTC)
You should try "Tsumi ni nureta futari" when it comes to incest stories :) I really liked it a lot better than BokuImo, don't know why. The art was prettier and they were college age? Also they didn't grow up together and that's what usually makes incest so "ewww". It just makes more sense?

And did you hear about this?
Hi-chan (火ちゃん)hinoai on January 26th, 2007 11:15 pm (UTC)
I haven't heard of it.. I will look up that manga!! ^^

About the competition, yeah someone pointed me there a long time ago but I forgot... thanks for reminding me!! I might give it a shot. =^_^=