5.8/10
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3 user 3 critic

8000 Miles (2009)

SR: Saitama no rappâ (original title)
(Japanese with English subtitles) This surprise indie box office hit in Japan follows the tragi-comic trials and tribulations of a group of wannabe rappers struggling to make something of themselves in the suburban sprawls of Tokyo.

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Cast

Credited cast:
Hakushu Kamisuzuki
Ryusuke Komakine
Ryuya Masunari
Mihiro
Shingo Mizusawa
Eita Okuno
Hikohiko Sugiyama
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Storyline

(Japanese with English subtitles) This surprise indie box office hit in Japan follows the tragi-comic trials and tribulations of a group of wannabe rappers struggling to make something of themselves in the suburban sprawls of Tokyo.

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Drama

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Release Date:

14 March 2009 (Japan)  »

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8000 Miles  »

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$25,000 (estimated)
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Connections

Followed by SR: Saitama no rappâ - Rôdosaido no toubousha (2012) See more »

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User Reviews

 
A nice surprise
24 November 2013 | by (socal) – See all my reviews

This little movie was a pleasant surprise. I went into it with zero expectations, having randomly selected it looking for Japanese movies streaming on Netflix, and its informality, humor, quirky characters and unambitious storyline added up to an experience that was entertaining and charming, in a low-key way.

The hapless hero, if you can call him that, is a small-town, overweight, probably under- talented NEET (not in employment, education or training) who dreams of being a rapper and is maybe in love with a girl he knows from high school who's worked in AV (adult video, aka porn). His humiliating journey -- getting beaten up, jeered at by the girl he likes, performing hip hop to "represent youth" in front of a roomful of polite city council members -- isn't really all that much of a journey. But he and the supporting characters are so naturalistically and modestly portrayed that they somehow come to be endearingly real and sympathetic.

Anyway, this may not be the greatest movie of all time or anything, but it reminded me of other indies about 20-somethings I've enjoyed over the years: Repo Man, She's Gotta Have It, Clerks and Bottle Rocket spring to mind. Like them, 8000 Miles is understated, fresh and funny, unpredictable and unsentimental. A nice surprise.

note: the English subtitles leave quite a bit to be desired, spelling- and punctuation-wise, but they kind of fit the offhand feel of the film and they're adequate.


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