Rurouni Kenshin, Dear, Ai Ore! Love Me! Ushijima the Loan Shark, After School Midnighters, Anata E Trailers and the Japanese Movie Box Office Chart

Hyouka Chitanda RushI replied to Andina’s Liebster blog award, reviewed the awesome Korean thriller Desire to Kill, dug into the Japanese films and TV (Kiyoshi Kurosawa is there with his latest TV show!) at the Venice International Film Festival and posted a trailer for the 2013 film entry in the A Certain Magical Index franchise. Scotland Loves Anime announced their line-up and I will post about that tomorrow. Alua has a nice round-up. Just as I wrote that Strange Circus and Eureka were delivered by the postal service \o/.

What do the Japanese movie box office charts look like?

  1. The Avengers
  2. Umizaru 4: Brave Hearts
  3. The Wolf Children Ame and Yuki
  4. Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted
  5. Pokemon: Best Wishes 2012
  6. Total Recall (2012)
  7. Kamen Rider Fourze the Movie: Everyone, Space is Here!
  8. The Dark Knight Rises
  9. Fairy Tail: The Phoenix Priestess
  10. Eight Ranger
  11. Helter Skelter


Last week saw the release of Marvel’s The Avengers so there was only one Japanese film released last week. The dust has settled and The Avengers movie is at the top of the charts while Fairy Tail lies at nine. Umizaru and Wolf Children drop one place each to two and three respectively. Helter Skelter, Another and The Kirishima Thing – Erika Sawajiri and Ai Hashimoto!!! – remain in the top fifteen.

This week sees a flood of Japanese films released and all but one of them are based on manga.


Rurouni Kenshin                                              るろうに剣心 Poster

Romaji: Rurouni Kenshin

Japanese Title: るろうに剣心

Release Date: 25th August 2012 (Japan)

Running Time: N/A

Director: Keishi Ohtomo

Writer: Watsuki Nobuhrio

Starring: Takeru Sato, Emi Takei, Taketo Tanaka, Munetaka Aoki, Yu Aoi, Yosuke Eguchi, Koji Kikkawa, Teruyuki Kagawa

The live-action adaptation of Nobuhiro Watsuki’s classic chanbara manga Rurouni Kenshin is released today. The film stars Takeru Sato (BECK, Kamen Rider Den-O) as the titular samurai with Emi Takei (Ai to Makoto) playing Kaoru, Yu Aoi (Memories of Matsuko, Honey and Clover), and Teruyuki Kagawa (Tokyo Sonata, Sukiyaki Western Django). The film is directed by Keishi Ōtomo who directed a popular NHK historical television series named Ryomaden which featured Takeru Sato.

The early Meiji period in Japan is a time of rapid industrialisation and modernisation and a time when samurai like Kenshin Himura are being consigned to the history books. He was once an elite swordsman known as “Battosai” before taking an oath not to kill. He now finds himself as a wandering samurai offering aid to those in need as atonement for his past actions. During his travels he meets Kaoru Kamiya, an instructor at her father’s Kendo school. She offers Kenshin a place to stay at her dojo and their relationship begins to blossom but Kenshin’s past will soon catch up with him as he discovers that somebody has been using the name “Battosai” while committing murders in Tokyo.


Dear                                                                 Anata e Film Poster

Romaji: Anata e

Japanese Title: あなた へ

Release Date: 25th August 2012 (Japan)

Running Time: N/A

Director: Yasuo Furuhata

Writer: Seichi Ichiko, Takeshi Aoshima, Yasuo Furuhata

Starring: Ken Takakura, Yuko Tanaka, Koichi Sato, Tsuyoshi Kusanagi, Kimiko Yo, Haruka Ayase, Takahiro Miura, Tadanobu Asano, Takeshi Kitano, Mieko Harada

I can feel the emotion from this trailer. I’m getting a Okuribito feel from this film. It stars Yuko Tanaka (the voice of Lady Eboshi in Princess Mononoke), Koichi Sato (Starfish Hotel, Sukiyaki Western Django, Infection), Kimiko Yo (Villain, Ace Attorney), Haruka Ayase (Ichi, Cyborg She), Tadanobu Asano (Kids Return, Survive Style 5+, Bright Future, Vital, Last Life in the Universe), and Takeshi Kitano (Kikujiro, Boiling Point, Fireworks).

Eiji Shimakura (Takakura) is a 53-year-old prison guard in Hokuriku. When he loses his wife Yoko (Tanaka) he receives a letter from her and follows her last wishes, which is to have her ashes spread in the sea next to her home town of Nagasaki. He is curious as to the reason why she wants her ashes taken there and decides to go Nagasaki n his homemade camper van.


Ai Ore! Love Me!                                                    Ai Ore! Love Me! Movie Poster

Romaji: Ai wo Utau Yori Ore ni Oborero!

Japanese Title: 愛 を 歌う より 俺 に 溺れろ!

Release Date: 25th August 2012 (Japan)

Running Time: 91 mins.

Director: Sakurako Fukuyama

Writer: Hisako Tohei, Sakurako Fukuyama (Script),Mayu Shinjo (Manga)

Starring: Ito Ono,Karam, Yuta Furukawa, Takuya, Shuto Yoshihara, Haruka Kawamura, Shishido Yuasa, Akira

This is the live-action adaptation of Mayu Shinjo’s popular 2006 music and high school romance manga. The fictional rock band in the manga/film Burauerozen will make their music debut alongside the film. The film stars Ito Ono (For Love’s Sake, High School Debut), Yuta Furukawa (Beck) and a bunch of K-pop chaps from the group “The Boss”.


Mizuki Sakurazaka (Ono) is a boyish looking girl who is the lead in a rock band named Burauerozen and treated like a prince at the all-female Seinoibara High School. Akira Shiraishi (Karam) is a girlish looking boy who is treated like the school princess at his all-male school. When he sneaks into a performance of Burauerozen  he falls in love with Sakurazaka and confesses his love.



Ushijima the Loan Shark                   Ushijima Loan Shark Movie Poster

Romaji: Yamikin Ushijima-kun

Japanese Title: 闇金 ウシジマくん

Release Date: 25th August 2012 (Japan)

Running Time: 112 mins.

Director: Masatoshi Yamaguchi

Writer: Shohei Manabe (Manga)

Starring: Takayuki Yamada, Yuko Oshima, Kento Hayashi, Hiromi Sakimoto, Kyosuke Yabe, Nana Katase, Yoshinori Okada, Tsuyoshi Muro, Asuka Kurosawa

Ushijima the Loan Shark gets a big screen adapation and it stars Takayuki Yamada (13 Assassins, Milocrorze – A Love Story, The Cat Returns!!!) reprises his lead role of Kaoru Ushijima from the 2010 television series. He will be acting alongside AKB48 Team K member Yuko Oshima (The Suicide Song), Kento Hayashi (Girls for Keeps), Yoshinori Okada (Fine, Totally Fine, Kamikaze Girls), and Asuka Kurosawa (Cold Fish, Himizu, Dead Waves).

Kaoru Ushijima (Yamada) is a loan shark who operates out of a business called “Cow Cow Finance”. One of his ‘clients’ is Mirai Suzuki (Oshima) who has taken it upon herself to pay for her mother’s debts and started work in a “Paid date café”. Another client is Jun Ogawa (Hayashi), an ambitious president for an event group who decides to renege on his payment. When Ushijima wrecks Jun’s business, Jun goes all out for revenge. 

After School Midnighters                                   After School Midnighters Film Poster

Romaji: Hōkago Midnighters

Japanese Title: 放課後 ミッドナイターズ

Release Date: 25th August 2012 (Japan)

Running Time: N/A

Director: Hitoshi Takekiyo

Writer: Yōichi Komori

Starring: Hiromasa Taguchi (Goth), Haruka Tomatsu (Mako), Kouichi Yamadera (Kunstlijk), Sakiko Uran (Miko), Minako Kotobuki (Mutsuko), Chafurin (Bach), Hiroshi Yanaka (Mozart), Dai Matsumoto (Beethoven), Hozumi Goda (Schubert)

The CGI film After School Midnighters is directed by Hitoshi Takekiyo who was behind the 2007 short which inspired this. It has been submitted for an Oscar in the best animated feature category. It stars the following seiyuu: Hiromasa Taguchi (Father in Kaasan), Haruka Tomatsu (Yunyun in CANAAN, Asuna in Sword Art Online), Minako Kotobuki (Yūko in A-Channel, Hamaji in Fuse: A Gun Girl’s Detective Story) and Kouichi Yamadera (Spike Spiegel in Cowboy Bebop). Thank you Alua for reminding me about this!


When midnight arrives a human anatomical model named Kunstlijk (Yamadera) comes to life in a school science classroom and goes on to have fun with a skeleton named Goth (Taguchi).

12 thoughts on “Rurouni Kenshin, Dear, Ai Ore! Love Me! Ushijima the Loan Shark, After School Midnighters, Anata E Trailers and the Japanese Movie Box Office Chart

  1. Rurouni Kenshin…. looking forward to that way more than I should.

    I watched the trailer a little while back for Ai Ore! Love Me! but… meh… not pulling me in. It feels like a not-so-high-quality manga adaptation for a very specific demographic to make money but with no real effort to make a film that lasts over time. You know… like a very light, ‘fast-consumption’ (like fast food) film that you’d maybe watch on a very bored Friday evening when your brain isn’t up to anything and someone so happens to give you the DVD for free.

    Anata e might be interesting, it wouldn’t be my first choice to see as I feel, ummm, still too young for it?

    1. I’m interested in seeing where Rurouni Kenshin lands in the charts. It definitely looks like fun. Ai Ore! Love Me! looks as bad as the last Ouran High School Host Club film – cheap and dull.

      Sometimes I miss out anime releases despite writing for an anime website. Thanks for the heads up.

      1. I mostly check for releases on asianwiki, which didn’t have After School Midnighters. But since I thought I should add a sentence or two after the film on my SLA line-up post (originally I didn’t say anything about it), I stumbled across that info.

        It’s easy to miss that kind of info. I’ve just been shaking my head at the BFI website which has no one page that lists all the films it’ll be screening next month. It’s like you literally have to go to the BFI building, walk in and pick up one of their monthly programmes! (Never mind that their search function for films that you know will be screening does not work properly either.)

        Haha, I’m glad you share my feelings on Ai Ore! Love Me! – you said it so much more succinctly.

        Looking forward to seeing how Rurouni Kenshin will be received. I’m not convinced about all the actors (female lead), but it could still be good.

      2. I used to use asianmediawiki but I’ve got a group of other sources because sometimes it misses smaller films/anime.

        If the BFI website announced the films now I’d probably book a holiday/transport/hotel/films to watch.

  2. Communi8

    I saw the movie Anata_e and fell in love with it. I am looking for two dialogues…wanna write it in my blog but unable to find it.
    1) the last scene when a peom of Taneda Santoka is said abt “I am alone”
    2) The differance between a drifter and a traveler…..

    I cant remmeber the full quotes. If you cd help. Arigato. 🙂

    1. I have not seen the film yet but I will try and help you!

      In fact I’m going to Japanese class tonight so I can ask my teacher about the difference between a drifter and a traveller and I will ask about the Taneda Santoka poem. I’ll let you know the results tomorrow.

      What’s your blog?

      Update: I’ll let you know soon.

      1. Well my Japanese teacher got back to me and while she wasn’t totally familiar with the poem or the film for that matter she did shine a bit of a light on it:

        I haven’t seen the film, so I don’t know much about it, but I searched for it and found,

        このみちや いくたりゆきし われはけふゆく

        is the poem (haiku) Taneda Santoka wrote which was shown at the end of the film. I don’t know the English translation because it is old style Japanese, so I am not sure about the middle bit.

        “This road xxxxxx I am going today.” I think.

        I don’t know about the drifter and traveller, maybe the film translated it as both? In the film, the main character had purpose to travel, so I think he is the traveller….


        ohoku~ eien~ [emonnosuke tsunayosi hen]
        おおおく ~えいえん~ 「えもんのすけ・つなよしへん」

        Thanks 先生! You proved far more helpful than I would have.

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