PsychoDrama celebrates 3 years this coming March 2015! Time flies when you're having fun, and it's such an awesome feeling that we're celebrating our 3rd year - reviewing Japanese movies and drama shows, announcing casting news, doing actor's bias articles and hitlist. Watch out for some special/exclusive articles and interviews soon! Really like to thank those who commented, liked, shared, tweeted and reacted to our articles, many of whom are already friends! Hoping we can stay online for another 30 years or more! That's quite an ambitious target but who knows?
The Eternal Zero wins Best Picture, while its lead star - Junichi Okada - took home two awards for Best Actor and Best Supporting Actor (for A Samurai Chronicle). Rie Miyazawa is Best Actress (beating out Sakura Ando, Mao Inoue and Chizuru Ikewaki), while Haru Ruroki grabbed Best Supporting Actress!
Rena Nounen and Hiroomi Tosaka were given Rookies, and also Nana Komatsu (The World of Kanako), Sosuke Ikematsu (Paper Moon, Love's Whirpool, Our Family) and Sota Fukushi (As the God's Will, Say "I Love You) and finally Lady Maiko's Mone Kamishiraishi.
Get to know some of the headlines before the final announcemen of winners, after the jump!Read more...
According to one statistics, the name Kento is ranked #18 as a popular name choice in Japan. Yuki, Takumi and Shota were more popular. In the Japanese movie-drama scene, the name Kento is obviously quite known.
While there are many other actors with the Kento name (good example might be Kento Nakajima), we will focus on four - Kento Nagayama (Eita's younger bro), Kento Hayashi (quite popular and acclaimed for Dive! Parade and Blazing Famiglia), Kento Yamazaki (one of today's toasts of the girl-fan community) and Kento Kaku (maybe considered the group's senior and is coming up with a resurgence in his career).
How they started acting, what are some of their best roles and what the future holds. Who is the best? Who will the the best in the future? Let's find out!Read more...
In what would appear to be one of the best first episodes for this season, Angel's Knife (Tenshi no Naifu) may also be the most exciting drama. Starring Keisuke Koide in the lead, he plays Takashi Hiyama - a no non-sense cafe manager - whose life was thrown into chaos and despair when his young wife was murdered by three 13-year old kids.
The three young murderers who escaped conviction due to their age (13 years old) were Hiroya Shimizu (Boy A), Nijiro Murakami (Boy C) and Takumi Kitamura (Boy B) who grabbed the spotlight in the first episode. In Japan (as in elsewhere around the world), the law provides that anyone who are not yet of legal age must be protected from prosecution. Japan's Juvenile Act may have served these young kids and protected their identities, but when someone seeks out revenge, there are no secrets left unturned.
But is Takashi Hiyama (Koide) really out for blood?
Tenshi no Naifu started out with the actual murder of Shoko (Izumi Fujimoto) at their home. Luckily, the baby she nurtures and cared for was not harmed by the assailants. Upon investigation, it seems money were taken...Read more...
Third Window Films recently made an announcement regarding the upcoming DVD release of their latest film, Fukuchan of FukuFuku flats - they are inviting viewers to vote between 2 poster designs!
Here's the trailer of the film.
Just go to the Facebook page of Third Window Films to vote!
Relatively new to the Japanese movie-drama scene, Shuhei Nomura is a bit of an enigma. While other more popular actors of his generation including Sota Fukushi and Kento Yamazaki are given lead roles in high-profile films (with Fukushi even grabbing a lead role in a Takashi Miike project), Shuhei is like someone's bet in a horse race who got entered when it was just about to start and would ultimately win the race!
With The Summer of Whales and Hibi Rock all over his acting resume, and upcoming movies and dramas, Nomura is destined to reach the top even faster than some of his more "highly-regarded" peers.
When Japanese filmmaker Yasuhiro Yoshida cast Nomura in Enoshima Prism, I was expecting Fukushi to shine since he got the more challenging role among the two. With Tsubasa Honda serving as the boys' love interest, the movie has great appeal, but when I finally watched it, I felt that if roles were reversed, Nomura would have nailed his character, in the way that Fukushi failed with his. But Yoshida has more plans for the young actor. In a follow up movie, Nomura took the lead role in The Summer of Whales, a coming of age movie, that also features Hamao Kyosuke, Shota Matsushima and Takuya Matsuoka.
As Chuuya, Nomura plays the role of one of the boys who belong to a close-knit group, but has to go to Tokyo and leave everyone behind.
Here's the movie's storyline:
Chuuya is a young boy whose life has been passing by without any dreams or goals until one day he suddenly decides he wants to move to Tokyo. His best friends from high school--J, Gizmo, and Machida--throw a big going away party on Chuuya's last day in town, but he becomes hesitant to leave as he clings to memories of the past. Soon, his friends make a certain proposal and an older girl named Yumiko who's been working as an entertainer in Tokyo appears. [ Eigapedia ]
I enjoyed the movie and thought it was way better than Enoshima Prism. [ Watch trailer of The Summer of Whales here ] I think the young cast demonstrated good chemistry on the screen, and as a sidenote, this is Shuhei's first lead role, and also the farewell role for Hamao Kyosuke (who was absolutely endearing in the Takumi kun series).Read more...
Mackenyu Chiba started his acting career in Hollywood - and underwent the usual "acting rigors" for those who are not "native" actors. His range of talents include sword fighting, karate and as a young Asian actor who knows English.
He was born in LA and studied in Beverly Hills high school, so he definitely had a taste of the stateside style of living. But acting in Japan is his primary goal at the moment.
Since then he has taken the Japanese entertainment scene by storm - as evidenced by numerous buzz from a number of top Japanese entertainment sites. [ See more here ]
His latest casting is in WOWOW's To Give a Dream (Yume wo Ataeru), the drama featuring Rinko Kikuchi and newcomer Nana Komatsu. Mackenyu is to play a very important role in the drama. He plays an aspiring dancer, and becomes the love interest of Nana Komatsu's character.
His role is geared towards the "sinister" and "juvenile" and will probably give Yuko (Nana Komatsu) a lot of problems. This is definitely a good start for his dorama appearance and it seems the role is a challenge for the young actor.
He is also part of the cast of Team Astro.
“Team Astro” is based on a manga series published from the Weekly Shonen Jump. The movie is all about the 9 ball players with baseball-shaped birthmarks, each with unique powers that complement each other. [ source ]
We'll have to see how he performs in the Rinko Kikuchi drama!
His father is Sonny Chiba, a well-known character actor in Japan.
Yes, what's wrong with rom-coms? I guess there's nothing wrong if you're a sucker for love stories, and for patronizing (even collecting) romantic comedy movies. What's an issue perhaps is the actors who keep on getting rom-com roles (and getting stuck to playing the same old, same old characters), but that's another topic to discuss, perhaps in another time...?
I had some interesting chat with a few friends who are into Asian movies, and more so into TV dramas. It's already a phenomenon in big Asian cities for people to be glued during prime time watching the latest Korean or perhaps Chinese or Thai dramas, but much less into their Japanese counterpart. Being a big J-movie and J-dorama addict, let's begin this 5-part series by talking about Japanese romantic comedy films, then later get into the dorama rom-com scene.
We'll also feature the biggest names in the genre, and why it's a big step for an aspiring young actor or actress to get into this lucrative, yet underwhelming type of movies/drama series...
Let me switch into my rom-com side and just gush in a romantic mood! Yes, Valentine's day is over but it's never too late to spread some rom-com love!
Set during the short reign of Emperor Taisho (circa 1912), when Japanese aristocrats copy the manners and tastes of their European counterparts - the movie tells the tale of young love where Kiyoaki Matsugae (Satoshi Tsumabuki) and Satoko Ayakura (Yuko Takeuchi) lives in such luxury. Satoko already harbors romantic feelings towards Kiyoaki but the young man would rather pretend he has no interest in her than show his true feelings...Read more...
Reports indicate that early favorite Junichi Okada (The Eternal Zero) remains the frontrunner at the upcoming Japan Academy Prize for Best Actor. While Okada's fans are already celebrating, many still believed Gou Ayano should win the Best Actor in any award-giving bodies for his outstanding performance in The Light Shines Only There.
Says Ayano on his performance as Tatsuo:
I’m never myself while I played Tatsuo. There is a director and I memorize words on a fictitious script and play. It can be lonely from “Action” to “Cut” as there is no help. I think that the fiction world could be non-fiction during that short time. All facial expressions, feelings or acting which are not written on the script came from Tatsuo. I could do it naturally because the surrounding and shooting atmosphere are great. [ source ]
Ayano also did a terrific performance in the murder-mystery-thriller The Snow White Murder Case as the ambitious TV executive who grabbed a news scoop by intimating/introducing a suspect who turned out innocent.
While he may not get the trophy at the prestigious Japan Academy, he already garnered quite a number of acting accolades for The Light Shines Only There - securing his place as one of Japan's most talented actors working today.Read more...
13oys and Men - Promoting the awesome and talented young Japanese actors, with lots of screenshots and insights into the careers of top and upcoming young talents.
Asian Addicts Anonymous - Comprehensive reviews and recaps of exciting Japanese drama, including interesting post on Asian music and movie news.
Dorama Doll - a new blog that will feature recaps of selected Japanese dramas, most probably related to Johnny & Associates talents, with some great recommendations on what to watch if you're new to the J-drama scene.
Genkinahito's Blog - Reviews, news, box office results & some amazing insights into Japanese films, including manga and anime.
My Drama Tea - Honest and insightful reviews of Japanese drama, also reviews of Chinese, Korean and Taiwanese dramas, with music news and movie reviews.
Ritsu No Dorama Land - J-dorama reviews with a difference, complete with recaps that really complements the review.
OtherWhere - Excellent and varied trailer showcase, insightful reviews of Japanese movies (both indies and mainstream), and a great resource for news on Studio Ghibli too!
The Corner of the Mind - Drama reviews (with detailed analysis of up and coming dramas via first impressions) and anime spotlights.