Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Aozora Yell

Tsubasa Ono and Daisuke Yamada entered Shirato High School inspired by a Koshien baseball match that they watched when they were younger. Tsubasa dreams of supporting the baseball team as member of the band at Koshen while Daisuke dreams of playing for the baseball team and reach the Koshien. Tsubasa has an uphill task as she has never played brass before while Daisuke has to fight his injury.

The movie starts in an usual manner as both main characters are not childhood friends. Both of them happen to be looking at the display cabinet of the school trophies and make a promise to fulfill each other's childhood dreams. That is a kind and innocent friendship and not the typical chasing the dream for a relationship or "I am doing this for you" kind of thing.

Aozora Yells tries to cramp so many things into a movie and everything start to go downhill from there. Despite the 2 years time jump, things get repetitive first. At the beginning when Tsubasa and Daisuke are in first year, the focus in on Tsubasa's struggle in the brass band and Daisuke is supporting her. After the 2 years jump to their 3rd year, the struggle is Daisuke's injury and it is Tsubasa's turn to support him. Overall it still feels repetitive. Even the baseball matches are exactly the same: 0-0 score until the last inning and Daisuke will either make or break the match and the brass band competition is similar too.

I am not sure what the focus for the movie is. Relationship does not seem to be the thing as Daisuke 'rejects' Tsubasa in the first year saying he wants to focus in his baseball (how I wish in real life girls are the ones declaring their feelings to guys!), music is not the thing as the scores and performances are boring, sports is also not the thing as the matches are not exciting too.

I am disappointed because I was having quite a high expectation before watching this. I came to know this from Youtube's video of Kiseki by Whiteeeen. Kiseki is the theme song of Rookies and originally sung by Greeen. So I was curious who/what is this Whiteeen and when seeing the clip about baseball, I am hoping for something as good as Rookies too. Gosh I feel so old now that I actually watched Rookies in 2010 !!

Lastly, I think it is perfect to cast Ryoma Takeuchi as Daisuke Yamada. I never read the manga but when I looked for some images, I am surprised that the way he smiled is very similar to how the manga is drawn: a big happy smile. It is refreshing to see big happy grin as Japanese dramas tend to be somewhat mellow or flat in terms of the emotion. How I wish I can be someone with a big infectious smile to make the people around me happy when they see me. Wishful thinking indeed.

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