Japanese Movie Review: Ohkura Tadayoshi in “Clover” 「クローバー」


Photo credit to cinematoday.jp

On November 1st, the movie Clover starring Kanjani8’s Ohkura Tadayoshi and Emi Takei, was released in theaters! Both have starred in many movies and dramas, and have even acted together before!

I have been anticipating this movie for a while and it has been advertised pretty heavily the past few months in theaters and on television in Japan. The reason I have been looking forward to it is because it seemed different from the typical romance movies that have been coming out lately. Recently, it has either been sad love stories or cheezy high school romance stories, but Clover is different.

The storyline takes place in a Hotel, where the main character Suzuki Saya, played by Emi, works in the event planning department Ohkura plays her supervisor, Tsuge Susumu, and the character is very stoic with a poker face and is called “DoS”, which means a sadistic type of personality. Saya really doesn’t like him much because he is quite strict with her at work, but one day Susumu randomly asks Saya out. Everything starts with that and it spirals into a long distance relationship and a love triangle with Saya’s ex-boyfriend, and current crush, from Junior High School, who now happens to be a famous actor. The movie also dives into more adult themes by touching on the topic of work vs. love and how far you would go for work, which is different than the typical high school romance movies that have been around recently.

For the flow of the movie, it felt a bit long for the type of movie that it was (just under 2.5 hours long with previews at the beginning) but it was very detailed in the story and giving background information when needed and lots of character development. You can really see the change in Ohkura’s character as the movie progresses. Ohkura himself is a pretty decent actor, though not my favorite actor in Johnny’s or in general. I thought he was best during the romance scenes when he was being sweet. Emi on the other hand I thought nailed her role perfectly in this movie with all of the emotions that show through in her character.

I thought the music suited the movie amazingly well! It featured re-mixed versions of “Someday my Price Will Come” and “When you Wish Upon a Star” sung by JUJU, as well as the theme song “CloveR” by Kanjani8. This song was crafted very well to fit with the theme of the movie and a great coupling song, one of the best I think along with 「ここしかない景色」Koko shikanai Keshiki for Nishikido Ryo’s Movie 「県庁おもてなし課」”The Hospitality Department”.

If you would like a nice romance movie that has a decent story line and also adult romantic aspects to it, I would highly recommend Clover!

Thoughts on: Nishikido Ryo’s Movie “Kencho Omotenashi Ka” 「県庁おもてなし課」

A few days ago I decided to go and see Nishikido Ryo’s new movie “Kencho Omotenashi Ka”. I had seen some of the previews and had listened to the theme song (sung by Kanjani8) and I had a little bit of an idea of what it was going to be about.

Basically, this movie revolves around the Kochi Prefecture’s (one of the 47 prefectures of Japan) newly reestablished hospitality department、which is the title of the movie 「県庁おもてなし課」, basically translating to “Prefectural Office Hospitality Department”. The job of the department is to promote tourism in the Kochi prefecture and the movie revolves around Ryo’s character, Kakemizu Fumitaka, trying to recruit a famous author, who was born and raised in Kochi, to help promote Kochi for tourism. Instead of doing that, the author tells Ryo’s character to go to another person, Kiyoto Kazumasa, instead. it is soon realized Kazumasa had been forced to leave the Kochi Prefecture office previously for controversial ideas. The rest of the story revolves around the conflit of bringing Kazumasa on as an advisor to the hospitality department, with a little bit of subtle romance, and some other conflict along the way. Actress Hirokita Maki also is in the movie and plays a semi-main character, the part time worker in the Hospitality department, Myoujin Taki.

All in all, I thought this was a cute movie! It was heartwarming, and the point of the movie, I thought, was realizing the love you have for the place that you were born in and scenery that can only be seen in a certain place. Because of this, Kanjani8’s theme song 「ここしかない景色」”koko shikanai keshiki” (translated to “Scenery only here”) is a perfect theme song for this movie. The only parts that were bad, in my opinion, were some of the fly-by and scenic scenes were a bit too fast and kinda blurry and shaky at some points. I thought the acting was amazing and that the script was well written. The story flowed well and there weren’t too many slow parts or fillers. I would recommend people to see this movie if they are in the mood for a light hearted, pick me up kind of movie!