Tsuji is sometimes warned – and also sometimes wonders aloud – what will happen if he continues to pursue Ukiyo, a shy and emotionally unstable woman who is often in debt, homeless and suicidal. It’s no wonder, then, that Tsuji’s story is the worst moral story: Fukada and Mitani treat their stillborn protagonists as victims of their own cyclical self-abuse, and then suggest that this supposedly representative behavior is the product of time, age, and environment. Yes indeed.
For starters, Ukiyo’s character is never really questioned. She is more of a lucky charm in human form than a person, a caricature of misery embodied. “His frail charm compels men to help him” warns the obnoxious, but I guess the oracular gangster Wakita (Yukiya Kitamura), to whom Ukiyo owes a lot of money. And: “With her, you’ll be in serious trouble,” insists the hapless cuckold Tadashi (Shohei Uno), Ukiyo’s long-suffering husband. More often than not, Ukiyo confirms these weak opinions of her.
And that “serious shit” that Tadashi alludes to is Tsuji’s Hell on Earth, a miserable series of aimless crises that he goes through because he wants to do the right thing, but also has a copious masochistic streak and a zero pulse control. Tsuji conscientiously cleans up after Ukiyo and longs for a relationship with her that she is not ready or capable of. Because once again, his character is what he is, and his too. Everything is gray and / or shot in natural light in this movie, and everyone talks like this: “Once [make love to her], you will go to hell. ”Save yourself, unlike filmmakers, I know you can.
Maybe it’s because I haven’t read the source comic from Hoshisato, but based on “The Real Thing,” I find it hard to appreciate such a pretentious vulture. And it’s pretentious: Ukiyo is often reduced to his inability to break bad habits, just like Tsuji. Which, I guess, means they’re mutually hopeless. Except there is nothing in common there, because Tsuji also uses Hosokawa – “Even now you can’t say it. You won’t tell me that you love me.” – and Minako, to whom he says: “From the start, I never had feelings for you.”