「 Heroine Shikkaku LAM 」 The Failure of a Heroine’s Story

This is the movie which became the top-grossing shoujo manga adaptation of the year 2015.
Heroine Shikkaku is the live action of the shoujo manga of the same title, written by Momoko Kouda. It is about Matsuzaki Hatori (Kiritani Mirei) has a crush on Terasaka Rita (Yamazaki Kento),her childhood friend who she considers as the hero, and believes that she is going to be chosen as the heroine. However, he starts going out with Miho Adachi (Wagatsuma Miwako). Hiromitsu Kosuke (Sakaguchi Kentaro), a popular guy in their school, starts to pursue her as well.

The leads: Yamazaki Kento, Kiritani Mirei, and Sakaguchi Kentaro

I haven’t read the manga yet, but it has been on my plan to watch list since during the time I was still reading Ao Haru Ride and Hirunaka no Ryuusei. I read that this is one of those manga where the love triangle is done well because the readers are torn apart between the lead guys. In fairness, after watching the film, I somehow understood what they were saying. For me, the author succeeded in writing a story where it is not that obvious who the lead girl ends up with.

Anyway, since I have no idea how it is written, I was taken aback by the comedic nature. It brings Switch Girl!! to mind. (Even Kiritani’s acting reminded me of Nishiuchi Mariya‘s acting from SG and Yamada and the Seven Witches.) This is a pleasant surprise, though. I enjoyed it more because of it. Though the plot is not very surprising, just the usual shoujo manga story of a love triangle, it made up with its comedy department.

Out of all the cast, Kiritani shone the brightest. She was cute all throughout the film, even if she were making silly faces. She pulled off both the comedic and the serious parts of her character well. Meanwhile, I found Yamazaki’s acting quite lacking. I felt like he was not able to fully grasp his character, like he was not sure how to be Rita. Or perhaps it is just my issue with Rita’s characterization. Anyway, I did not like him very much. On the other hand, I enjoyed watching Sakaguchi as Hiromitsu. I found his character more interesting. He reminds me of Andou from Strobe Edge, what with the change that happened to him after meeting the lead girl. I loved Andou more, though. (This character of him has a semblance with his Shirakawa from Kounodori, though. I’d love to see him in various roles.)

The cast do not look awkward together. Sakaguchi and Kiritani definitely has more chemistry than Kiritani and Yamazaki. I did not actually feel the deep friendship that they supposedly have since they are childhood friends. Too bad because it would have been more effective had she had the same level of chemistry with the two guys.

The other supporting cast did well, especially Fukuda Ayano who played as Nakajima, Hatori’s best friend. I especially enjoyed when she was part of the humorous scenes.

The sound design is good. The music managed to set the mood. Certain sounds are inserted to make the scenes funny. The OST “Torisetsu” which is sang by Nishino Kana has that shoujo feel. Lighthearted, it gives the happy ending feel.

Since I haven’t read the manga yet, I cannot say if this is a good adaptation, but looking at it simply as a film, I think it is a good one, much better than the other shoujo films that I can think of. I recommend it those who like romantic comedy and those who does not mind clichés.

The movie’s trailer can be watched here.

FROM HERE ONWARDS ARE SPOILER-Y THOUGHTS.

This is my choice. I got a second lead syndrome here. Yes, one of the reasons may be because I favor Sakaguchi more than Yamazaki, but I also enjoyed watching these characters together. As I said, they had more chemistry together. (I’m sure she could look better with Yamazaki even if his role was not the somehow-indifferent Rita, though.) Rita is the character who realized his affection towards the other after she was taken by another guy. Normally, I would support (I guess?) such leads, but I got attracted to Hiromitsu’s character. He loved Hatori and it seemed she was happy with him. It did not feel like she was forcing herself (unlike some other characters *ehem Futaba ehem*). This may be why I approve of them.

Rita and Adachi together seems weird from the very start. Rita’s reason of agreeing to go out with her did not sound convincing enough for me. (Or is it the way it was shown and said in the film?) It really looked natural that they would break up. I don’t know if it’s supposed to look like this, but if not, I could only look at the actress who played as Adachi. She lacked facial expressions. She did not actually look like a threat to me because she and Rita did not look like they are actually interested with each other. (Acting problems?)

I would have loved it more had Rita and Adachi broke up by the end, while Hiromitsu and Hatori become canon. Knowing the end, I may pass reading the manga. Or maybe I’ll read it when I don’t really have any other manga to read… which may not happen any time soon.

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