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We Made a Beautiful Bouquet (2021) (Blu-ray) (English Subtitled) (Hong Kong Version)
Suda Masaki (Actor) | Arimura Kasumi (Actor) | Hosoda Kanata (Actor) | Iwamatsu Ryo (Actor)
We Made a Beautiful Bouquet (2021) (Blu-ray) (English Subtitled) (Hong Kong Version)
Love blooms and love withers
April 30, 2022 Picked By Sanwei See all this editor's picks
Screenwriter Sakamoto Yuji has spearheaded a long list of hits and classics for Japanese television over the years, from Last Christmas to Mother to his most recent My Dear Exes. He's not the most prolific of TV writers, but basically every drama he touches is guaranteed quality. Sakamoto, however, rarely writes for the silver screen. His last film outing before 2021's We Made a Beautiful Bouquet was the 2007 film extension of the hit Saiyuki series, and his most representative film remains 2004's Crying Out Love, in the Center of the World.

We Made a Beautiful Bouquet reteams Sakamoto Yuji with director Doi Nobuhiro after the excellent 2017 series Quartet. Encapsulating the different stages of a romantic relationship, the film follows the ordinary lives and relatable emotions of Mugi and Kinu, played by Suda Masaki and Arimura Kasumi, over five years. Each stage of the relationship is succinctly captured in moments and mood, starting with the protagonists' meet-cute as college students who miss the last train. Clicking excitedly over their similar interests in music and literature, Mugi and Kinu talk deep into the night and naturally progress into lovers. After graduation, they continue to live and dream together, extending their youth while job-hunting. Over time, paths and hearts slowly diverge as their values and priorities change in the face of livelihood and adulthood. This years-long process of falling in and out of love is heart-fluttering and then heartbreaking, but never mawkish or melodramatic as it gently reflects the reality of growing up.

Doi Nobuhiro's steady direction and commercially savvy sensibilities assure bright appeal for this bittersweet love story that is uneventful, and yet full of recognizable events of life. Sakamoto's writing especially comes to the forefront in the film's first half, where narration and hipster-ish conversations about writers and musicians paint the romantic idealism and intellectual curiosity of youth. Equally telling is the lack of dialogue between the protagonists later on.

Compared to Sakamoto's TV scripts of recent years, We Made a Beautiful Bouquet is a very simple and straightforward story, and that's what makes it so effective as a romantic drama. There are no twists or quirks to speak of, just the passage of time and emotions as young love blooms into a stable relationship, and then withers with the gradual realization that love isn't enough – but having loved is already beautiful.






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  • Region & Language: Hong Kong United States - English
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