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Like Someone in Love (2012)

Not Rated | | Drama | 15 September 2012 (Japan)
1:59 | Trailer

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In Tokyo, a young sex worker develops an unexpected connection with a widower over a period of two days.



1 win & 5 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview:
Takashi Watanabe
Denden ...
Mihoko Suzuki ...
The neighbor
Kaneko Kubota ...
Akiko's grandmother
Hiroyuki Kishi ...
The former student
Reiko Mori ...
Kôichi Ohori ...
Taxi driver (as Kouichi Ohori)
Tomoaki Tatsumi ...
The mechanic
Seina Kasugai ...
Nagisa's friend


Like Someone in Love I is a Japanese-language film directed by Iranian director Abbas Kiarostami. It has been selected to be screened in the main competition section at the 2012 Cannes Film Festival. Written by Abbas Kiarostami. Written by Ugetsu

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis




Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

15 September 2012 (Japan)  »

Also Known As:

Ez is szerelem?  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$21,813 (USA) (15 February 2013)


$221,390 (USA) (19 April 2013)

Company Credits

Production Co:

,  »
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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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Did You Know?


In the late 1990s Abbas Kiarostami was driving late at night while on a visit to Tokyo and witnessed a young girl on the side of the street dressed as a bride. In the years following, while visiting Tokyo to promote other films, he realized that he was always looking for that same girl because she had left such an impression but that he would never likely notice her again in real life because she wouldn't be wearing the same dress. This experience became the basis for the film. See more »


Noriaki: [subtitled version] What do they teach them in there? As if dusty, old, foreign books will open their eyes.
See more »


Featured in At the Movies: Cannes Film Festival 2012 (2012) See more »


Que Sera, Sera
Sung by Tadashi Okuno
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User Reviews

An Iranian director in Japan
27 September 2013 | by (Upstate New York) – See all my reviews

Like Someone in Love (2012) is a Japanese movie written and directed by the great Iranian filmmaker Abbas Kiarostami. Kiarostami brings his quiet, thoughtful style to a culture that is surely very alien to him. Japanese viewers may note cultural errors in the movie. My thought is that Kiarostami can look beyond cultural differences to universal themes.

The movie, set in Tokyo, stars Rin Takanashi as Akiko, a young provincial woman who is a call girl. (She doesn't walk the streets. She works out of a bar, whose owner arranges the sessions at people's homes.) As the movie opens Akiko is facing two immediate problems. Her jealous boyfriend is on the phone, demanding to know where she is. Akiko is a college student, and her boyfriend is aware of that. He doesn't know that she's a prostitute, but he can sense that something isn't right, and he suspects her of cheating.

Akiko's grandmother is visiting Tokyo that day, and desperately wants to see Akiko. Akiko would love to meet with her, but the bar owner is adamant--she must go out on a call to an important client. The client is Professor Takashi Watanabe, played by Tadasi Okuno. Akiko has no choice but to ignore her grandmother and visit the professor's apartment.

Prof. Watanabe is a gentle, lonely widower. He has prepared a special dinner for Akiko, and he's playing Western music. (It's Ella Fitzgerald singing "Like Someone in Love.") It's more like a seduction scene than a paid sexual encounter.

Akiko spends the night at the professor's home, and he drives her to the university the next morning. It's at that point that the film takes a different turn, because Akiko's violent boyfriend confronts her on the university steps.

All of this action takes place in the first third of the movie. In the remainder of the film, Kiarostami continues to explore this unusual and somewhat threatening love triangle. This interaction among three very different individuals provides a fascinating look into human relationships. Where these relationships will lead isn't always obvious or predictable.

I enjoyed this intelligent, thought-provoking movie. It will work well on DVD. It's worth seeking out and watching.

20 of 33 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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