Oto-na-ri

2009

Drama

30
IMDb Rating 7.1 10 215

Synopsis


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January 12, 2021

Director

Cast

720p.WEB 1080p.WEB
1.07 GB
1280*720
Japanese 2.0
NR
23.976 fps
119 min
P/S N/A / N/A
2.19 GB
1920×1080
Japanese 2.0
NR
23.976 fps
119 min
P/S N/A / N/A

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by sitenoise 6 / 10 / 10

I liked it in spite of itself

This is worth a rental to watch with someone just to discuss the ending. It's one of those "Love was right under your nose the whole time" stories that doesn't have a lot of gas in the tank but it finds a reasonable parking place at the end, an ending which is at first frustrating, then appealing. Then it's back and forth in your mind leaving you unsure if it's a cop out or something inspired. I found it to be acceptable and ultimately enjoyed its resolve, with all its implied storyline. Oto-na-ri is about two lonely souls, early thirties and, of course, attractive but somehow alone in life. They live next door to one another in an apartment building with paper thin walls and take in elements of each other's life through the sounds and conversations each of them produce. But they never see each other. It's clear that the movie is about these two people but it's not real clear it's going to be about them getting together (or not). Kumiko Aso plays the girl. She works in a flower shop and is studying to become a professional florist. She will be leaving for France in the very near future—so throw in a "Time is of the essence" plot line for tension. Junichi Okada plays the boy, a professional photographer who may or may not be leaving for Canada in the very near future to take landscape pictures. They are two artistic souls, as characters, to lend a little of the poetic to the proceedings but they're not overly emo. It's a standard formula to follow the lives of two separate yet somehow implicitly connected people and make us feel that if these two folks would just meet they'd fall in love and all would be well in the world. I wasn't particularly intrigued with either of the two individual stories, a fault of a not very mature script, but I did like the characters, probably because Kumiko Aso is a wonderful and skilled actress who doesn't have a bad moment in the film, and Junichi Okada, a matriculated boy band idol, isn't bad either. The direction isn't very inspiring, though. There were a number of edits where a scene would just stop and stumble into the next one, and while the film overall seems littered with good intentions it is clearly not the work of a master craftsman. Oto-na-ri riffs on the theme of sound without sight and in one of the films weaker scenes, involving one of the side characters in Aso's singular life, the theme is explicitly spelled out for us in case we didn't get it—a case where the director loses confidence in the old adage of "Show us, don't tell us". All in all, while it's got a number of less than inspired elements, Oto-na-ri is a pleasant experience made worthwhile by Kumiko Aso's performance and an ending that will most likely prompt you to groan out loud or applaud it's effort. I liked it.

Reviewed by hhnd_2002 / 10

A light romance that's unconventional and done just right

Oto-na-ri is a somewhat unconventional romantic movie starring a JE actor who can actually act. Why the movie is unconventional, you actually need to watch it because I don't want to ruin the movie for you. For me, the color was a little dark, but that probably has to do with the whole sound-without-sight idea (again, if you're just reading this it might be confusing - the movie is about two neighbors who don't meet; they follow each other's life through the sounds in the other apartment). Simple (definitely not mind-blowing by any measure), artistic, with good acting (though Okada is my favorite actor, I was more impressed by Aso's acting in this particular instance), I would re-watch Oto-na-ri again and again. It's very heart-warming, cute, yet not a conventional chick-flick. Not groundbreaking, but definitely not without merit. Recommended.

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