7.2/10
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14 user 14 critic

Waterboys (2001)

In a Japanese high school, a class of adolescent geeks joins the new synchronized swimming teacher and takes up the challenge to take part in the competition, in spite of the mockeries of the "real sportsmen".

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3 wins & 6 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Akifumi Miura ...
Kôen Kondô ...
Takatoshi Kaneko ...
Aya Hirayama ...
Kaori Manabe ...
Takashi Kawamura ...
Ikeuchi
Hiroshi Matsunaga ...
Mochizuki
Yûya Nishikawa ...
Sakamoto
Katsuyuki Yamazaki ...
Yama-chan
Taiyô Sugiura ...
Taiyô
Koutarou Tanaka ...
Koutarou
Makoto Ishihara ...
Makoto
Naoshi Saitô ...
Naoshi
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Storyline

In a Japanese high school, a class of adolescent geeks joins the new synchronized swimming teacher and takes up the challenge to take part in the competition, in spite of the mockeries of the "real sportsmen".

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Sport

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Details

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Release Date:

15 September 2001 (Japan)  »

Also Known As:

Hablegények  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Connections

Followed by Waterboys 2005 Natsu (2005) See more »

Soundtracks

PRELUDE
(from CARMEN)
Music by Georges Bizet
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User Reviews

 
fun film
8 May 2008 | by See all my reviews

Waterboys opens with a laugh-out-loud visual gag, and pretty much doesn't let up from then on in. The story is that the high school swim team is all but defunct, perennial loser Suzuki being the last remaining member. When a hot young female teacher arrives and takes charge, the membership swells, only to recede again when she reveals her plans to have them become synchronized swimmers. The remaining five pupils are already battling against the odds when their new-found mentor leaves them in the lurch.

So far, so formulaic, but all this happens in the first two minutes and then Yaguchi lets his characters run the story. Tsumabaki does well as the encumbered team captain, his relationship with a ditsy girlfriend adding light romantic interest. Takenaka Naoto reprises his Shall We Dance OTT routine to great effect as the team's cynical trainer. But this is an ensemble piece, the laughs coming from the direction and choreography as much as the performances. One disastrous training session exceeds funny to become hilarious through the judicious decision to shoot it in slow motion.

The film is quick-paced, and best of all it never takes itself too seriously. Tone-wise, think The Full Monty without the sentimental bits. Suzuki and Hirayama hardly hold hands, never mind kiss, but he needs somebody to react to his triumph at the end.

In short, a very funny film with an uplifting swimfest sequence at the end.


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