The story set within music industry depicts a love between 23 years old solitary composer Aki and high school student Riko.
Four high school classmates Aki, Shun, Kaoru and Teppei form a band [CRUDE PLAY]. They're set to make a major debut as soon as they graduate high school. However, just before debut, Aki suddenly withdraws and one year younger Shinya joins as a new member. The band achieves the highest popularity in the music scene. Meanwhile Aki, who after withdrawal from [CRUDE PLAY] works as a composer, continues to provide his music to them. Though he's tired of music business world and himself finds his present situation to be dull. One day, Aki on a whim asks a female high school student "Do you believe in love at first sight?". Riko, the schoolgirl, is charmed by Aki's humming and falls for him at the first sight. Aki starts to date Riko without telling her about his true identity… and she turns out to be a big fan of [CRUDE PLAY]. Riko possesses an attractive voice herself, she's in charge of vocal and guitar in the band which she put together with her classmates (Yuichi and Sota). Takagi Soichiro, a music producer who debuted [CRUDE PLAY], happens to hear Riko's singing voice and scouts her. Eventually, as realization of Riko's dream approaches the love which began with lies of Aki and Riko starts to develop….
Cast & Credits
This was the best Japanese romance production I have seen to date.
The acting was stunning. The fine skills exhibited by all the cast (also the support roles) was just brilliant.
Japanese productions tend to be either overly melodramatic or greatly exaggerated acting-wise. But this was neither.
It was just beautful from start till the end (and by that I mean the very end. The part after the credits...)
Story: Aki is the genius songwriter of CrudePlay, a band of highschool friends in which he formerly used to play. When he meets Riko, he wants her to like him as himself, not as the famous composer he is. So he lies. This is revealed when Riko is scouted by the same label. Will they overcome the obstacles of the industry and the rival from his own band?
Characters: I loved every single character in this drama. Aki, the tormented genious whos heart is slowly opening to the young and sweet Riko. Riko, the gentle singer who admires Aki as a composer and has a passion for singing. The chemistry between the leads was very real. I liked the way they interacted when the were on screen together.
Shou, the cool best friend. He's singer of CrudePlay and I think just as cool as Aki. His acting was very sophisticated, very detailed and perfectly portrayed the friendship between him and Aki. I think he is also my favourite character. And I am not (just) saying that out of 2nd lead bias. I just think he acting was so mesmerising.
And all the other loveable side characters.
Music: Well this is a music-themed film, so this only could be good, right? It's very light pop based. Not really catching, but definitely easy to listen to. I appreaciate that it is not one or 2 main songs that get repeated over and over like in many other dramas.
Rewatch Value: I don't rewatch much. But I may just rewatch this some time. You can probably pick up more details and emotions in this movie during a rewatch. You can look at the beautiful characters more closely and find new expressions that will make you like them even more.
Overall: I can highly recommend this drama to everyone who likes music-themed stories, a sublime romance, fantastic acting, loveable characters, and a magnificent story.
Acting/Cast: Satou Takeru has already blown my mind multiple times--and he carried the team well in this film. Apparently this is the lead actress's first work ever, having beaten out 4,999 other applicants. I think she beat them with good reason. Her singing voice and acting didn't leave me asking for someone with better skills in either arena. With manga adaptations it's quite common to see good-looking but subpar actors and actresses cast in the lead roles just for higher viewership, so I'm extremely glad that didn't happen here. I'm the type that will avoid a work if it has an actor/actress in it I don't think acts well (since it'll also detract from the drama/movie itself), so I'm, again, extremely happy with the cast and the acting.
Music: As a movie about music, if the music was bad there'd be no point watching it, right? Right! The music and lyrics were great--and most importantly, fit the story and the atmosphere. Maybe not something I'd listen to on my iPod forever, but quality enough to keep the movie believable.
Rewatch Value: I don't like rewatching, but maybe I'll rewatch the cute and sweet parts. ><!
Overall, a must-watch for even a cynic like me. Manga adaptations or high school romances are usually quite...silly? Shallow? And I'm quite skeptical of them as a genre, but I was pleasantly surprised with this one, despite the fact that overall development was lacking due to their movie-length time constraint.