From 5 to 9 is surprisingly funny and - at times - just as surprisingly moving. I had my reservations before beginning this show, since I'm no fan of religiously oriented stories. Should you hesistate for the same reason, rest assured that, aside from the beautiful temple that plays as a setting and a few sutras read in the background, the monk hero is less religious than me - if possible. In fact, here's one of those rare examples in rom-coms where the leads have physical desires. That a monk has to take more icy showers than your average CEO to suppress his wordly lust is an entertaining concept. Not to mention that, if you're a fan of Yamapi you may find this habit of his very pleasing. As I said, there's a lot to laugh about while watching. Indeed, I'd say this is a rom-COM, where the comedic aspect wins over the romance. The romantic aspect, on the other hand, is seesawing, and I found myself laughing at the couple, hating the couple, loving the couple, re-hating it and re-loving it. There are in all respect more couples to enjoy here, even though I personally loved the side characters as a whole, not paired, if that makes any sense. Don't expect some deep characterization because, in perfect from-manga-to-live-action style, the stress is on the characters' present actions, rather than how they came to this point. Hints, however, are given now and again, and I personally found those touching and well played out. Out of the lot, I found the best acting performance to be that of Satomi Ishihara, solid, elegant and believable. A pity her character undergoes a few unwatchable tests that made me cringe on my womanly seat, but that's the plot and the actress won the challenge whether she had to be spunky or sad. Yamashita's character requires him to be hilariously robotic, something he does very well, since he manages to convey quite a lot through his eyes. I appreciate this trait of him and loved it here. This monk can stretch your patience to its limits, but it turns out he's truly endearing and I'm very happy at his decision by the end - and I'm not referring to the very end. Music? Nothing to talk about. I think I'll rewatch this one day, either because I'm a rewatcher by nature or simply because it managed to draw me out of a slump with some welcomed laugh and a deserved (?) Yamapi fix.
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