Life isn't easy for a group of high school kids growing up absurd in Japan's pervasive pop/cyber culture. As they negotiate teen badlands- school bullies, parents from another planet, lurid... See full summary »
Based on a series of true stories posted by Ho-sik Kim on the Internet describing his relationship with his girlfriend. These were later transformed into a best-selling book and the movie ... See full summary »
The recent trend towards more "serious" drama and the influx melodramatic korean dramas replacing the more light-hearted Japanese style, a crazy tear-jerker was bound to hit the Japanese airwaves. This drama will make even a cold-hearted person with ice water in their veins tear up. The formula is simple, really: Show innocent high school kids falling in love and dealing with happiness, love, and loss. The reason this formula has and will always work is because everyone has an affinity for the purity and idealistic quality of adolescent love. I imagine that there will be a few out there who will say that the "tragedy" aspect of the drama is pandering for sympathy. True, it seems like there are a lot Asian dramas out there in which cute, bright-eyed kids are stricken with some terminal disease (leukemia, brain cancer, acid reflux, etc.). The brilliance of Sekai no Chuushin is the presentation of this (maybe overdone) subject. Like almost everything, a measure of quality involves considering details. Sekai no Chuushin sets aside screen time in order to throw in subtle instances of humanity in order to generate a foundation for us to care for the characters before hitting us with one of the crazy, dramatic moments. Personally, I felt the beginning episodes (before we're hit with bad news about Aki) were the best ones. The acting was outstanding for a Japanese drama and the whole series was well-cast (the older Saku could've been a little more likable though). Special honors go to Takayuki Yamada for his portrayal of 17-year-old Saku. Yamada has to be one of the best dramatic actors in Japan. Overall, this is one of the best dramas to come out of Japan.
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