Saturday, July 11, 2009

Review: The Handsome Suit

Summary
Alternative Title: ハンサム★スーツ, Hansamu sutsu
Genre: romance, comedy
Release Date: Nov. 1, 2008
Starring:

  • Muga Tsukaji as Takuro Ohki
  • Keiko Kitagawa as Hiroko Hoshino
  • Shosuke Tanihara as Annin Hikariyama
Takuro has never had a girlfriend. After his mother dies, he takes over ownership of her diner. Everyone likes his food but his face and body aren’t so great. He falls in love with a girl who comes in the diner looking for a job. However, she is not attracted to him. When finding a tux for a friend’s wedding, Takuro ends up with the Handsome Suit, a suit that transforms the wearer into a good-looking guy.

Pros

Unique story: The number one thing I liked about this movie is it’s story. Only after learning about the story had I decided to watch it. There were some silly and far-fetched things in the story, but at least it’s unique compared to other romance J-movies I’ve watched. I’m getting pretty tried of the classic J-movie romance story about a boy and girl, boy-falls-in-love-with-girl, separated-somehow, girl-gets-deadly-disease, and love-isn’t-found storyline. The story in this movie is more like a blend of Zettai Kareshi and Densha Otoko.

Underlying message:
Another plus side for me was that the movie had an underlying message for viewers that love should be for what’s in the inside. It’s cliché, but the movie brings out the message well.

Good mix of romance and comedy: Being my first romantic comedy J-movie, The Handsome Suit has a good mix of both genres. There were some hilarious scenes, but that didn’t deter me from enjoying the romance part of the story. Overall, the teary-eye scenes and the funny scenes were done pretty well.

All-star cast: Most people wouldn’t consider this drama to have an all-star cast, but I do. This is partly due to the fact that the two main characters from Mop Girl (one of my J-drama favs) play leading roles in The Handsome Suit. There also a bunch of other actors that fans might remember from popular J-dramas Hana Kimi, Hana Yori Dango and Densha Otoko.



Cons

Story is a bit predictable: About a third way’s through the movie, you’ll probably get a very good idea as to how the story will turn out. I don’t think the story is entirely predictable, since there is a twist in the story that I didn’t see coming.

Some wackiness: Although not a huge annoyance for me, I have to admit that sometimes, the movie tries too hard to be funny. It just ends up being really dry and wacky, no humour at all.

Recommendation: I know a lot of people will hate this movie, but if you’re looking for a more unique romance J-movie then watch The Handsome Suit. I would also recommend this movie to those who enjoyed Densha Otoko or Zettai Kareshi.

Rating: 8/10

Video Preview
Note that this trailer does contain some minor spoilers. If you want to avoid them, just watch the first minute of this trailer.

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