Hibana, The Lowlife, Kaiketsu Zorori Movie: ZZ no Himitsu, Full Metal Panic! Boy Meets Girl, A puzzle for you to complete, Cinema Kabuki Megumi no Kenka, Itazurana Kiss The Movie 3 Propose Hen, Anonymous Noise, Dear Girl Stories THE MOVIE 3 the United Kingdom of KOCHI Six Lords of Ryoma Japanese Film Trailers

Happy weekend!

I hope everyone has had a good week. I’ve been busy everyday with work and studying Japanese. I managed to practice speaking and writing both in and out of work. The good thing about my job is encountering Japanese tourists and I met a family from Nagoya. When not speaking directly to Japanese people, I’m speaking to myself, haha! Film-wise, I wrote about the release of Tag (2015) and published a review of A Normal Life: Chronicle of a Sumo Wrestler (2009).

The London International Animation Festival also launches next week so get hyped!

Winter is approaching but there are a lot of good films in Japan still coming out. Let’s take a look!

A Normal Life Sumo Wrestler Film Image

Hibana    Hibana Film Poster

火花 Hibana

Running Time: 121 mins.

Release Date: November 23rd, 2017

Director:  Itsuji Itao

Writer:  Itsuji Itao, Toshiaki Toyoda (Screenplay), Naoki Matayoshi (Original Novel),

Starring: Masaki Suda, Kenta Kiritani, Fumino Kimura, Shuji Kawatani, Masaki Miura, Ryo Kato, Tsutomu Takahashi, Yojin Hino, Shigenori Yamazaki,

Website IMDB

Synopsis: Actor and occasional director Itsuji Itao (Aroused by Gymnopedies) brings the movie version of Naoki Matayoshi’s award-winning novel to the big-screen, adding on to the Netflix-NHK drama which has already toured film festivals around the world.

The story starts when Tokunaga (Masaki Suda), an unpopular comedian, heads to a fireworks festival in Atami (a beautifu seaside city) where he meets a senior comedian, Kamiya (Kenta Kiritani), who is more popular and innocent and believes in the power of comedy. Tokunaga becomes an apprentice of sorts and the two further their careers.

Hiikari    Hikari Directed by Tatsushi Omori

光(大森立嗣監督) Hikari (Ohmori Tatsushi Kantoku)

Running Time: 137 mins.

Release Date: November 25th, 2017

Director:  Tatsushi Ohmori

Writer:  Tatsushi Ohmori (Screenplay), Shion Miura (Original Novel),

Starring: Arata Iura, Eita, Kyoko Hasegawa, Manami Hashimoto, Kaho Minami, Masao Adachi, Mayu Harada,

Website IMDB

Synopsis: Nobuyuki (Arata Iura) and Tasuku (Eita) were firm friends as teens when they both lived on the remote island Mihama but one evening, Nobuyuki had to commit a crime to protect his girlfriend Mika. The next day, a fierce tsunami struck the island and only Nobuyuki, Mika and their friend Tasuku (later played by Eita) and several adults, survived. 25 years later, Tasuku returns to the island to find that Nobuyuki is now married to Namiko (Manami Hashimoto) and has one child while Mika (Kyoko Hasegawa) is still damaged. All three are haunted by what happened…

This one was at the Tokyo International Film Festival 2017.

The Lowlife

最低 「Saitei」   The Lowlife Film Poster

Running Time: 121 mins.

Release Date: November 25th, 2017

Director:  Takahisa Zeze

Writer: Takahisa Zeze, Tomoko Ogawa (Screenplay), Mana Sakura (Original Novel)

Starring: Ayano Moriguchi, Kokone Sasaki, Aina Yamada, Shugo Oshinari, Ryu Morioka, Noriko Eguchi, Toshie Negishi,

IMDB Website

In recent years, there have been scandals surrounding women being forced into the Adult Video world and the police have been prosecuting people over the issue. Does Takahisa Zeze, a man with a background in AV brings a book by Mana Sakura, an AV actor, to the screen and shows the complexity of the issue.

Synopsis: Three people in Tokyo have one thing in common. A 34-year-old housewife named Miho (Ayano Moriguchi) wants to break free from her dull life, a girl named Ayano (Kokone Sasaki) who comes from a small town who wants to become a star, and a 17-year-old schoolgirl named Ayako (Aina Yamada) who has a domineering mother, they all get involved in the world of Adult Videos…

Full Metal Panic! Boy Meets Girl    Full Metal Panic! Boy Meets Girl Film Poster

フルメタル・パニック! ボーイ・ミーツ・ガール Furu Metaru Panikku! Bo-i Mittsu Ga-ru

Running Time: N/A

Release Date: November 25th, 2017

Director:  Koichi Chigira

Writer: N/A (Screenplay), Shoji Gatoh (Original Creator)

Starring: Satsuki Yukino (Kaname Chidori), Tomokazu Seki (Sousuke Sagara), Akio Ohtsuka (Lt. Cmdr. Andrey Kalinin), Daisuke Namikawa (Leonard Testarossa), Yukana (Teletha “Tessa” Testarossa),

Animation Production: GONZO

Website MAL ANN

This is the first of three films acting as a “director’s cut” version of the first Full Metal Panic! television anime series from 2002. The story centres on a mercenary group in a world where the Cold War did not end.

Synopsis from ANN: Sousuke Sagara, a seventeen year old military specialist working for the secret organization MITHRIL, has been assigned to protect the latest “Whispered” candidate Kaname Chidori. To complete this task Sousuke will have to deal with enemies from his past as well as the occasional panty thief. Unfortunately for Sousuke, the toughest part of his mission isn’t only protecting Miss Chidori but also getting used to living an average High School students life, no easy task for someone raised on the battlefield.

Kaiketsu Zorori Movie: ZZ no Himitsu    Eiga Kaiketsu Zorori Movie ZZ no Himitsu Film Poster

映画かいけつゾロリ ZZ(ダブルゼット)のひみつ Eiga Kaiketsu Zorori Movie: ZZ no Himitsu

Running Time: 70 mins.

Release Date: November 25th, 2017

Director:  Masaya Fujimori

Writer: Reiko Yoshida (Screenplay), Yutaka Hara (Original Creator)

Starring: Kouichi Yamadera (Zorori), Rikako Aikawa (Yuko Tani), Motoko Kumai (Noshishi), Kanako Momota (Zororita),

Animation Production: Ajiado, Sunrise

Website MAL

Synopsis: The “Kaitetsu Zorori” series of anime comes from a children’s book series which is very popular. This is the fifth of the original theatrical anime and it is scripted by the highly experienced Reiko Yoshida. In this original story the mysterious fox Zorori still wants to be the King of Pranks and ends up in a time-slip adventure and going to the past where he meets his mother, Zororimama (real name Zororine) and a legendary treasure hunter named Zorondo Ron who he teams up with to rescue Zororine when she is swallowed by a mysterious monster …


Anonymous Noise    Anonymous Noise Film Poster

覆面系ノイズ Fukumenkei Noizu

Running Time: 116 mins.

Release Date: November 25th, 2017

Director:  Koichiro Miki

Writer:  Rie Yokota, Koichiro Miki (Screenplay), Ryoko Fukuyama (Original Manga),

Starring: Ayami Nakajo, Jun Shison, Yuta Koseki, Erina Mano, Hayato Isomura, Yosuke Sugino,

Website IMDB

Synopsis: Every day, a young girl named Nino Arisugawa (Ayami Nakajo) goes to a beach and sings a nostalgic melody. Her song is inspired by the memories of two heart-wrenching partings when she was only a child and promise made with her two childhood friends—her first love, Momo Sakaki (Yuta Koseki), and a boy who composed music, Kanade “Yuzu” Yuzuriha (Jun Shison). Having never met each other, the boys both individually promised that if Nino was ever separated from them, her voice would be the beacon to reunite them once again.

Six years later, destiny has finally placed Nino, Momo, and Yuzu in the same high school. However, the passage of time has changed many things in their lives—Yuzu belongs to the band “in No hurry to shout” and this attracts Nino Arisugawa who is tempted to sing for them. With their contact, Yuzu’s feelings for Nino resurface. Meanwhile, Momo wants to avoid a reunion. He is now a music composer but feels guilty over how he got famous. Will the three ever be reunited?

Dear Girl Stories THE MOVIE 3 the United Kingdom of KOCHI Six Lords of Ryoma   Dear Girl Stories THE MOVIE 3 the United Kingdom of KOCHI Six Lords of Ryoma Film Poster

DearGirl Stories THE MOVIE3 the United Kingdom of KOCHI 六人の龍馬編 DearGirl Stories THE MOVIE3 the United Kingdom of KOCHI 六人の龍馬編 Rokunin no Ryuuma-hen

Running Time: N/A

Release Date: November 25th, 2017

Director:  Hiroyuki Uchida

Writer:  Masaru Suwa (Screenplay),

Starring: Hiroshi Kamiya, Daisuke Ono, Masaru Suwa, Hiroyuki Uchida,

Website IMDB

Synopsis: Voice actors Hiroshi Kamiya and Daisuke Ono have a radio programme called Dear Girl Stories and they like to travel to places together. In this one, the boys travel to Kochi Prefecture, where Ono’s hometown is located. It’s his birthday so let’s hope he has fun.

Itazurana Kiss The Movie 3 Propose Hen / Mischievous Kiss the Movie Part 3: Propose   Itazura na Kiss The Movie 3 Propose Hen Film Poster

イタズラなKiss THE MOVIE3 プロポーズ編 Itazurana Kiss Part 3: Puropo-zu hen

Running Time: 117 mins.

Release Date: November 25th, 2017

Director:  Minoru Mizoguchi

Writer: Minoru Mizoguchi (Screenplay), Kaoru Tada (Manga),

Starring: Kanta Sato, Reina Visa, Takanori Jinnai, Hikari Ishida, Atsuki Tomori, Nonoka Yamaguchi,

Website IMDB

Synopsis: The final chapter in the “Itazura Kiss” live-action film trilogy, the latest based on a popular manga by Kaoru Tada who died tragically young. Her story brings Naoki Iriie and Kotoko Aiki together but when Naoki’s father is taken ill and he has to step up to a management position in his father’s company, he has to forget about romance… That is until a romantic proposal from the daughter of a businessman who could help him is offered. Will Naoki and Kotoko finally confess their true feeling for each other?

Cinema Kabuki Megumi no Kenka    Cinema Kabuki Megumi no Kenka Film Poster

シネマ歌舞伎 め組の喧嘩 Shinema Kabuki Megumi no Kenka 

Running Time: 103 mins.

Release Date: November 25th, 2017

Director:  N/A

Writer: N/A

Starring: Kazaburo Nakamura, Kinosuke Nishimura, Kokuro Nakamura, Senjaku Nakamura, Toranosuke Nakamura,


Despite working on a documentary about Kabuki, I haven’t really looked into it since seeing a fantastic performance nearly a year ago at the Kabukiza. The stories and stagecraft create a magical world so I need to do more research.

Synopsis adapted from one on Kabuki 21: This is the 29th edition of Cinema Kabuki and it’s a recording of a play based on Takeshiba Kisui’s drama “Kami no Megumi Wagô no Torikumi” was premiered in March 1890. Takeshiba Kisui received the help of both Kawatake Mokuami and Kawatake Shinshichi III for the writing of some acts. The core of this drama was a real event, a spectacular brawl between a group of sumo wrestlers and a group of firemen. This big fight occurred in the 2nd lunar month of 1805 near the Shiba Shinmei Shrine.

A puzzle for you to complete    Kimi ga ite kansei suru pazuru Film Poster

君がいて完成するパズル Kimi ga ite kansei suru pazuru

Running Time: 47 mins.

Release Date: November 25th, 2017

Director:  Mai Sakai

Writer: Rin Shuto, Elizabeth Miyaji (Screenplay),

Starring: Mika Ichinose, Miki Hashima, Mei Hashima, Hina Koyama, Naho Sekiguchi,


Synopsis: The Kamiyado idol girls star in a film where they each lead different lives until they come crashing together. Here’s an article over at Tokyo Girls Update from an advanced screening.

I want to see your smile   Kimi no egao ni aitakute Film Poster

君の笑顔に会いたくて Kimi no egao ni aitakute

Running Time: 100 mins.

Release Date: November 25th, 2017

Director:  Ataru Ueda

Writer: Fumiko Nishii (Screenplay), Eriko Onuma (Original Novel),

Starring: Yoriko Douguchi, Toshio Kakei, Kenjiro Ishimaru, Kazuko Kato, Akiko Hinagata, Takayuki Kodai,


Synopsis: Based on the real-life work of a volunteer probation officer named Eriko Onuma who lives in Natori, Miyagi Prefecture, and works with children who have committed crimes. We see the harsh reality at the bottom end of the social scale with broken families and juveniles mired in delinquency. One boy, Keita who lost his family in the 3/11 disaster, drifts into vandalism and worse. Others are abused by their parents. Can they be saved?

Here’s a news clip from a few years ago featuring a real-life woman named Teruko Nakazawa who deals with kids from difficult backgrounds:


She’s unstoppable! It’s great seeing someone working hard to make the lives of others better even if it’s just providing meals. Please keep saving these kids! Hopefully those kids will work hard to improve their lives and pass on some kindness.

4 thoughts on “Hibana, The Lowlife, Kaiketsu Zorori Movie: ZZ no Himitsu, Full Metal Panic! Boy Meets Girl, A puzzle for you to complete, Cinema Kabuki Megumi no Kenka, Itazurana Kiss The Movie 3 Propose Hen, Anonymous Noise, Dear Girl Stories THE MOVIE 3 the United Kingdom of KOCHI Six Lords of Ryoma Japanese Film Trailers

  1. I enjoyed the anime of Fukumenkei Noizu but it seems the film will supplant the whacky comedy side for extra emotional drama. Plus part of the conceit was that Nino was blonde so by donning a black wig as Alice in No Hurry, people didn’t know it was her. :/

    Anyway, I’ll give it a look if it ever comes my way! 😉

    1. It has totally passed me by so I can’t really comment. Even at the height of my anime viewing, it’s the type of story that wouldn’t grab me. I should give it a shot!

      You will undoubtedly watch and review the film!

      1. I hope so! 😉

        Actually I only picked it up because the promo artwork showed a CLAMP-esque schoolgirl with a Sunburst Gibson Les Paul so I couldn’t really ignore it! 😛 It was quite amusing, if a bit melodramatic at times but a fun watch nonetheless.

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