Kanojo wa Uso o Aishisugiteru (The Liar and His Lover) Movie Recap
Gawd! I so love this movie. I didn’t read the manga but I did read the synopsis. And I’ve noticed that parts of the original plot were changed. It’s a bold but one brilliant move I tell yah! I love the twist!
The movie is something I could recommend. It isn’t too rushed. The chemistry is there. The storytelling is uncomplicated and straightforward. Soundtracks are superb. I love how the elements come together in a perfect fit. No more, no less…just like how I wanted. Plus, Sato-kun is in it! He was, I dunno, just plain PERFECT!
Don’t know why, but this recap took me days to post. ZZZ! I’m getting rusty.
Standing on a rooftop and enjoying the urban view is Aki Ogasawara (Takeru Sato). He is waiting for his friends; Shun (Shohei Miura), Kaoru (Kouki Mizuta), Teppei (Koudai Asaka) and Shinya (Masataka Kubota). And because his friends are members of the famed Crude Play band, they arrive in the most grandiose way possible—by helicopter.
Clearly, Aki’s not the flashy type as he tells his friends that a normal means of transport would do but they just laugh at him. They are indeed good buddies. But one of them seems not to blend in, Shinya-the bassist. He mutters excuses to leave first. On the later part of the movie, we’ll learn that Shinya is not really part of the group. He just fill in the hole when Aki cranked up from the band.
And off they go, without Shinya of course, to the lounge party to celebrate another chart-topping song. You might ask why they brought Aki with them. Well, because he’s Crude Play’s composer/songwriter/ music engineer.
Takagi (Takashi Sorimachi), Crude Play’s talent manager and producer joins the group. Hostility between Aki and Takagi is undeniable. Unlike Aki, Takagi is in it for the money. Music is just purely business for him. Aki, however, values music as a precious gift.
Aki bids goodbye and goes home. He sees teenagers listening and downloading music into their phones. In voice over he shares his thoughts about how these effortless ways of acquiring music diminishes its the value. He reminisce the time when he wrote songs only for his high school buddies and how in a blink his songs rank into charts. By then, he realized they got everything.
Aki: I wonder why? I feel emptier than those days, when I got nothing. Maybe because I don’t have the things I really wanted.
Morning comes and Aki’s quite surprised that Mari (Saki Aibu), his girlfriend is there. She asks if he finished her song. However, he tells her that he won’t be making songs for her in Takagi’s behalf anymore. She doesn’t give up easily and uses the I’m-your-girlfriend-so-you-must-do-what-I-say modus operandi, but even that is of no use. Instead, he begs her to let him go. Why? Cause he knows she’s been sleeping with Takagi. Ouch!
Angry and brokenhearted, Aki settles on flying his remote-controlled helicopter at the bridge. He then sees Crude Play and Mari’s billboard and all his anger returns. He loses control of the heli and it crashes. He attempts to throw the remote but stops midway. I’m guessing, cause that remote cost him a fortune and the heli doesn’t.
Like all genius songwriters, Aki’s creativity scales up when suffering emotional torments. And so, he starts to hum a melancholic melody. And this very scene is witnessed by a girl. She was so absorbed that she drops the vegetables and fruits she’s carrying. She panics and quickly gathers the fallen produce. This catches Aki’s attention and so he picks up one mushroom. Their eyes meet and he suddenly blurts out the most unexpected words.
Aki: Love at first sight, do you believe in it?
Both of them are shocked. Aki is the first to gather his wits. He tells her not to talk to strangers and starts to walk off. But she pulls his hood and answers his question. Yes, she does. She believes in love at first sight! And in fact, she’s feeling it now. Aki is taken aback. Before he gets the wrong idea, she explains that it’s not love at first sight per se but rather by his humming. She introduces herself as Riko (Sakurako Ohara). She’s the daughter of the vegetable and fruit stand owner just around the corner. Still puzzled with how things turn out, he lies that his name is Shinya Ogasawara. And the lies start here.
Aki: I’m sorry. At the early stage of dating you, I don’t have slightest feeling of liking you. They’re all lies. But to the big fat liar like me, she says I’m an honest person.
Aki relays what happened to Shun. He tells his friend that he’s fooling a girl and will be going out on a date with her. Shun asks what she’s like. Aki tells him that she’s like a mushroom because of her hairstyle. Before their conversation ends, Aki promised to do his best to act as if he really likes her. That’s cold.
Aki bumps into Takagi on his way out of the apartment. Takagi dissuades him in having a relationship with Riko. But Aki is resolved. He needs life outside music. Takagi argues that for a songwriter like him, it’s difficult. She’ll just use him. But Aki remains undeterred. It’ll not happen because he has no plan to tell her that he’s Aki of Crude Play.
Aki goes to a music store where he’ll meet Riko. But he can’t even remember her face. While looking at some CDs, he overhears some Crude Play fans speculating that Aki is some ugly, fat dude that’s why he’s been replaced by Shinya. Tehehe! Imagine his disbelief. They’re badmouthing him without knowing he’s just standing there.
Riko calls out his name. He immediately takes notice of her voice. He’s a tad confused. Seeing her in uniform and learning she’s a Crude Play fan is just too much to digest for now. Just a little background, Riko is only sixteen years old and Aki is twenty-five. Two of her friends; Yuu (Ryo Yoshizawa) and Soo (Yuki Morinaga) follow her. They are appalled to know that her boyfriend is an old man and, on top of that, he’s a nit (unemployed).
In anger, Riko pushes her friends. She grabs Aki’s hand and run (in slow mo). 😉
And finally, after running in slow mo, they stop to catch some breath. Riko honestly tells him that she can’t forget his hum. She tries to sing but he immediately covers her mouth. He lies that he is afraid of music. Actually, he hates songs. Riko feels sorry for him and asks why he cries. He laughs and tells her he’s not crying. But she knows that he will. On cue, a tear falls. She hugs him and tells him she’ll protect him. He slowly leans to kiss her and makes her promise not to sing, because she hates girls who does.
Aki finds Mari in his apartment. They had a talk and she explains why she had an affair with Takagi. It’s because he’s the one who scouted her in high school. Duh! Aki isn’t angry anymore. He has nothing but gratitude towards her now. He thanks her for letting him realize his true feelings. He already found a girl he could truly love. Unlike Mari, that girl doesn’t like him for his songs. She doesn’t even know that he is ‘Aki’. Even after believing he’s only a nobody, she said she’ll protect him.
But, Riko too, has her secret. She sings. And she sings amazingly well. Yuu and Sou are not only her friends but band mates as well.
On the way to Aki’s place, Takagi sees Riko and her friends performing. And whoala–he sees a goldmine! Without wasting time, he plans to make them the next big thing. The group is a little hesitant since they’re just newbies. But Takagi assures them it’s nothing to worry about. As long as they can act well, it doesn’t matter. Even Crude Play lip sync, or in this case, pretends to play the musical instrument themselves. It’s only Shinya who plays on his own.
Shu, Kaoru and Teppei are happily practicing their song. Takagi congratulates them for displaying a remarkable improvement. It’s good to practice…they’ll sure get better in pretending. By now, they must realize that nobody will pay a single ticket for amateurs like them. Silence fills the room. Shun suddenly laughs, breaking the ice. Yeah, he’s right. They are just amateurs. Soon after Takagi left, the friends stop laughing. Takagi’s words are just too much. Poor guys. 😦
Takagi tells Aki about his new recruits. He wants Aki to make the group’s debut song. Aki couldn’t possibly associate himself with someone who uses people. Shinya overhears the conversation and volunteers to write the debut song. Hearing Riko’s amazing voice, Shinya is pleased to have volunteered. He even calls Aki stupid for letting a girl like her pass him by.
Aki recalls the time when he and his friends were just plain high school musicians. Takagi saw their potential and produced the group’s first single. Of course, they were very overwhelmed. Little did they know, Takagi was only after Aki and his songs. Takagi told Aki the truth. They won’t be playing as a band, rather they will be pretending to be a band. He will gather the best musicians in the country to play for them. And this is where Shinya gets in the picture. He will be playing for Aki. Right then, Aki decides that he’ll only agree to write songs for Crude Play if Shinya will take his place as the band bassist.
Aki reflects on things. He thinks of calling Riko but hesitates. Thankfully, she calls him first. He asks her about the promise she just made. She told him she’ll protect him. But the question is, protect him from what? And she answers she’ll protect him from everything that will hurt him. He’s touched. He asks her where she is so they could meet up. Ironically, both of them are walking along the bridge. Riko runs towards him. Just like the first time they’ve met, she accidentally drops some fruits. I’m still wondering where she kept those fruits.
Aki laughs and accuses her of doing it on purpose. He suddenly hugs her. This time, he promised to protect her. Kyaaah!
Riko and her friends are invited to visit the studio. There they see Mari, the ex-girlfriend and gets star struck. Shinya willingly takes them to the music studio where Crude Play will perform their newest single. They will be the first group to hear it. Yeppe! It’s a song written by Aki himself. Speaking of Aki, Riko asks Shinya what he’s like. And he tells her, he’s a fool who remains a nobody even though he’s a real genius. Despite Shinya’s obvious dislike on Aki, Riko declares that she still likes him. Shinya also confesses that he too admires Aki’s talent…to the point of hating him.
Define wrong timing. It’s having Riko and Aki inside the same freakin’ studio! Aki runs into Yuu (Riko’s bandmate) in the CR. He calls Takagi and to his horror, Riko and her band-mates are the new recruits Takagi was talking about the other day. He then vows to protect Riko from Takagi’s claws.
And the inevitable happens. Crude Play starts to play their new song. Riko senses a very peculiar familiarity in the melody. She closes her eyes. Yes, she already heard that song somewhere. And yes, it’s the song Aki (or Shinya) was humming. She opens her eyes and alas! In the blinding light, she sees Aki (or Shinya) standing in front of her.
He says sorry for lying. He’s name is not Shinya but Aki. Riko is puzzled. He meant Aki of Crude Play? Yeah, Aki of Crude Play indeed. He continues to apologize. He wasn’t only lying about his name but about being a nit and hating singing women as well. He already knew she’s a gifted singer the very first time he heard her voice at the bridge, but still, he told her not to sing.
Riko: But I don’t think you’re a liar, Mr. Ogasawara. I can tell by listening to your music. When I first heard your hum, it sounds like a scream (cry) to me and it properly reached me inside here (heart). And that made me think, I need to protect you. So that’s why for me, you’re more honest than any other person.
Now that’s pure love baby. 🙂
Aki brings Riko to his apartment. She’s being cautious though. After all, she’s only sixteen, nee? 🙂 Aki assures her that she’s safe with him. He only wants her to see the real him. Riko sees his bass guitar. Aki shares the story behind it. It’s his first ever guitar. His father gave it to him as a gift for his 12th birthday. He’s dad was so proud and told him he brought him the most expensive guitar. He was so happy, he showed it to Shun only to find out it’s a bass guitar. He could never forget what Shun said that day…’They could form a band then’. Kaoro and Teppei joined in and the rest is history.
Riko asks him to play the bass but he refused, telling her that bass is only played with a band. She then sees a CD of Crude Plays first single, Sotsugyou. She sings some lines but stops when she remembers Aki doesn’t like singing girls. Aki gets his guitar and plays the chords of the song. So Riko sings to her heart’s content. And in that moment, Aki realizes something.
Aki: Damn! I fell for her.
The love birds hold hands. She waves him goodbye a couple of times. It’s cute that she still waves her hand while inside their fruit shop. Aki smiles and yells that she go inside already. On the way home, amidst the calm traffic sounds and serene sea waves, Aki hums a gentle melody. A new song! He runs as fast as he could.
Aki tells Shun that he’ll write song for Riko. Shun is fine with it, as long as he won’t cut corners for Crude Play. He promises he won’t.
Aki begs Takagi to let him write the debut song for Riko. But Takagi won’t let him. Aki won’t make it on time. Besides, Shinya already submitted a debut song for her.
Aki runs into Shinya. Dan-dan-dan…Shinya tells him that he never thought Riko is his girlfriend and he’s sorry for filling in his post. He too has his issues. He badly wanted to form a band and when he met Mush & Co., the name of Riko’s band, he finally felt he found a place to belong. With Riko’s unique voice, he won’t hand her over. Roar!
Mush & Co. seems to ride a jet plane to fame. One fine day, while they were in school doing school stuffs, the media people swarms like flies. It’s a surprise presscon. When I said surprise, I meant even the people involved in the presscon didn’t know about it. Hehe! And suddenly, they were given bottles of Pepsi. Huh?!
Meanwhile, Aki is reading about the presscon on the net. It’s his turn to be surprised when Riko knocks on his door, still holding the bottle of Pepsi. Tehehe! This is free endorsement. 🙂
They are walking along the bridge. Aki asks her if she doesn’t want to debut. She says nope. She just wanted to sing. Aki falls silent and stops walking.
Aki: It’s okay, I’ll protect your songs. I want you to sing my songs. I once turned my back to music and I have suffered since then. But you I feel that I could face it again. You know why I feel so great about music? It’s because of you.
Aki notices the bottle she’s holding. Riko laughs. Yeah, she forgot about it. She opens the bottle and tells him its the new Pepsi product. It tastes like lemon. She takes a sip. Aki looks at her and kisses her by surprise. Gawd! I love that he nips his lips after the kiss. It does taste like lemon! ❤
During a meeting, Aki barges in and gives Takagi the demo tape for Mush & Co. debut song. He begs Takagi to listen to it once. After the meeting, Takagi did listen to the demo tape. He laughs. Aki did it again. One chart-topping song ahead!
Riko and her friends go to the studio for a band rehearsal. She sees Mari (the ex-girlfriend) waiting for her ride and chats with her. They talk about Aki, of course. He wrote a song for her. A goodbye song that is.
Mari’s car arrives and just in time, Aki appears holding an umbrella. Mari shares with Aki’s umbrella, makes some lingering touches here and there and walks to her car. -_- Seeing the ‘intimate’ gesture, Riko runs away without looking back.
Riko finds comfort in the presence of Shinya. She’s listening to Aki’s new song and feels jealous. Shinya gives her a bottle of water and tells her to sing his song instead of munching over her emotions. And this is the scene witnessed by Aki. Nope, he’s not jealous.
Takagi tells Aki that he’s debut song for Mush & Co. is good. It maybe the best he ever wrote. But he can’t let it happen. Takagi shows photos of Aki and Riko kissing on the bridge. It’s bad. Aki knows that it’ll taint Riko’s image. People might think she’s just using him for his song. However, they could still make it right. To divert media attention, Aki must pretend that he’s in a relationship with Mari. Takagi already talked with her and she agreed on one condition. Aki must break up with Riko. Okaaaaayyy! -_-
The next day, photos of Aki and Mari dating surfaces. Showbiz is one heck of a crazy jungle!
Aki meets with Riko. He lies that his publicized relationship with Mari is true. Riko doesn’t believe him. He said he loved her at first sight. Aki smiles. He wonders if he really said that. It could have worked on anybody else. Just so its clear, he doesn’t like a her the slightest bit and he can’t make songs for her anymore. Aki walks off. Riko breaks down. It’s hard for Aki too. After turning his back at her, he cries. He starts to hum melodies but his throat seems dry.
Riko and Aki leads separate lives now. Riko busies herself with preps for the debut and Aki writes songs day-in and day-out.
One day, Takagi receives an email with dozens of newly composed songs from Aki. This deserves a warning bell and so, he calls Shun to ask what’s on AKi’s mind.
Riko is delivering vegetables for a customer when she sees Aki’s things outside his apartment. It’s unlocked so she enters the apartment. She immediately notices the tons of boxes piled up. He’s packing. She sees his bass guitar, crouches down and hugs it. Aki returns to his apartment but fails to see her. She stands and asks if he’s going away. He doesn’t answer. She then runs off, taking the bass guitar with her. Aki runs after her but couldn’t catch up. Tehehe!
While Aki is busy catching Riko, Shun came to the apartment. It’s still unlocked! What’s with Aki and his unlocked door. He notices a CD and secretly takes it.
Shun talks with Riko. She knows Aki is going somewhere, but since she can’t tell him not to go, she just took his bass guitar. Ahhh, so that’s why. Shun tells her not to worry. Aki will become a greater man when he comes back. He just wants to go to a place where nobody knows him and start over. And besides, Aki looks happy again. It’s after he met Riko. She’s not sure about that though. Aki said he didn’t like her. Shun laughs. He gives her the CD he snatched from Aki’s apartment and tells her that by listening to this song, she’ll know which are truths and which are lies.
Riko listens to the song and she can’t help but cry. I forgot the title so I’ll just call it Riko’s song.
It’s Riko’s debut and Aki’s flight sched. It has to be on the same day, of course. Shun and Aki bonded one last time. Shun reminds Aki not to be late for his flight.
People are excited for Mush & Co.’s live performance. The band, on the other hand, is nervous. Takagi shares some encouraging words and tells them this is a once in a lifetime oportunity. Not everybody are given the chance to debut, so they must do their best and play with their heart. Awww, who knew Takagi could be good.
Riko is experiencing stage fright. She can’t open her mouth. Her band mates start to worry. She closes her eyes and finally, she gathers some courage to sing. The crowd cheers and cue music. It’s a success!
Shun calls Aki to get his bass guitar. Riko’s at the thanksgiving party so it’s okay to drop by. That’s what Aki thought. At the concert venue, he hears someone playing Riko’s song. He’s a little confused but realizes that Shun took the CD from his apartment.
Riko is trying to play the bass. She stops when Aki told her she sounds awful. Tehehe! Riko gently punches him and tells him she has so many things to say but can’t seem to remember them anymore.
Riko: Mr. Oagasawara please tell me one last thing. The music that you create, is that the real you?
She smiles and gives him the bass guitar. Okay then, at least they could perform together. She tells him to play the chords and she’ll sing the song he wrote for her. He stares at her. In the middle of the song, she mouths that he’s lying. Aww, she knew. 🙂
But even then, he bids his goodbye. She can only look at him go.
She’s walking and crying when suddenly, he calls out her name, grabs her hand and kisses her. Kyaahhh!
Aki: Towards me who always lies, she calls me an honest person. She smiled pretending to realize my lies.. I have no right to like her, forever..
It’s an open ending people!