Kyou no Kira-kun (Closest to Heaven) Movie Recap
Yes, I’m alive! Gawd, I miss posting recaps in this blog. It has been centuries. Okay that was an exaggeration. But anyways, if you’re curious what got me busy for months, well, I gave birth to twins! Yay! I had a very rough pregnancy and my twins were premature. But now that they’re almost 7 months old and super healthy, I guess I can go back to blogging. Posting may not be as frequent as before but at least there’s an update.
Kyou no Kira-kun is a live-action adaptation of a manga of the same title. The story revolves around the life of an introvert high schooler, Ninon Okamura and her popular next-door neighbor and classmate, Yuiji Kira. Unfortunately, Kira is sick and only has a year to live. When Ninon knew of this, she tried to befriend him and promised to be with him until the end. Eventually, they fell in love. But will their time-bounded love have a happy ending?
A girl hastily runs down the hallway. Though her classmates look at her with curiosity, nobody dares to ask or even talk to her. With her bangs covering her eyes and some introvert vibes, it’s easy to tell she’s an outcast. So when some boy accidentally shoves her and angrily demands for an apology, she’s too stunned to react.
One of her classmates lazily looks at the commotion and without a word, punches the bully. One blow isn’t enough though and starts to beat the bully some more. I don’t know why he’s so darn violent all of a sudden. I guess it’s just part of the angst! Rawr!
Next scene we see the girl, Ninon Olimura (Marie Iitoyo) talking with Punch Boy, Yuiji Kira (Taishi Nakagawa) on the rooftop. She painfully stammers her thanks for defending her but he only pass by her. Suddenly, she asks if he wants to die? This catches his attention and for a brief second, he stills and falls silent. Recovering from the initial shock, he feigns ignorance and tells her he doesn’t know what she’s talking about.
Kira is with his friends hanging around a nearby café. They notice Ninon walking and his friends can’t help notice how grim and unsociable she is. They haven’t even see her eyes because of the awful bangs. Kira doesn’t bother to comment on that.
Kira’s now alone in a park. He’s about to lay on a bench when he sees a bird with a bandage on its leg. He urges the bird to fly and when it did, he says “I don’t want to die” and starts to cry. Aww! He’s so busy being emotional that he doesn’t see Ninon watching him from behind a tree. Moved, Ninon reveals herself and declares she loves him. Heh?!
Of course, Kira is dumbfounded. She admits to being scared in looking at others in the eye but she promises to be by his side for a year. To prove her point, she takes out a pair of scissors inside her bag (yeah, apparently girls in live adaptations are fond of bringing scissors wherever they go) and cuts her bangs. All Kira can utter is: “Do you know?”. Oops! So the info she got from her parents that their neighbor’s son, Kira, is terminally ill and only has a year to live is supposed to be a secret? Realizing what she did, Ninon apologizes for being too straight forward and scoot off in a huff.
When Ninon arrives home, her Mom immediately notices the obvious change in her appearance. Even Dad is a tad shock and wonders if Ninon is suffering from some teenage emotional setbacks. Mom, however, isn’t a bit concerned. She knows better, a young love story unfolding.
With her bangs gone, Ninon worries she can’t hide the scar on her forehead anymore. That, and the fact that she just confessed to Kira. She asks Sensei, her pet parrot and only friend, what to do and Sensei answers “You’re awesome!”.
Ninon loves parrots and knitting parrot stuffs. Because of that, her classmate makes fun of her, calling her ugly and the “Bird Girl”. She’s cool with it but when they criticized how ugly her knitted parrot is, her patience runs out and talks back. Kira sees her little flare up and smiles.
Ninon is walking quietly down the hallway when Kira calls her name. He suddenly shoves her bangs and tells her she’s not ugly. He admits to always wondering why she never fought back but now that she did, he finds her amazing. He puts a sticker on her forehead and smiles. Kira: “Now, you can successfully overcome problems”.
Ninon giddily shares what happened to Sensei and promises to properly look Kira in the eye next time. Now more than ever, she’s more determined to make him feel better when he’s sad. She asks Sensei what to do. Again, Sensei answer “You’re awesome!”. Haha!
On the way to school, Ninon sees Kira waiting for someone. She tries to pass by him but he tells her she’s late. She’s pretty surprised that he talked to her so Kira reminds her of the promise she made and asks if she was lying when she said she’ll be with him for a year. Ninon stands by her promise though. She never lies about her feelings, however, she felt she was too forward and shouldn’t have said those. Kira won’t accept her reasons at all and tells her to take responsibility to what she said.
Ninon can’t believe how things went. Kira, whom she only looks from afar is finally walking with her. Seeing them together is definitely a serious matter as people can’t help but stare.
And since Ninon is a hopeless animal lover, Kira decides to go to the zoo with her. Ninon is super excited and offers to be his guide. She even knows where are restrooms are! Kira laughs and find her eagerness funny. All through the tour, Ninon tells him facts about the animals while he’s busy taking pictures. Aww!
They’re having a great time and as a remembrance, they take a picture in a booth. Ninon is being her awkward self again so Kira holds her hands and grabs her close. Kyah!
Going home, they see the beautiful sunset. Kira realizes then that it’s not like him to enjoy sunsets and animals. Everything seems strange to him. Somehow Ninon understands what he meant. His time is precious and their time together is limited.
One day, Ninon and Kira are walking to school together when they bump into Kira’s old friend Yahagi Rei (Yuna Taira) who introduces herself as Kira’s ex-girlfriend. Ninon is slightly hurt knowing that. Thankfully, Kira corrects Rei and says she’s just someone whom he shares a hospital room way back in middle school. Rei then asks if they’re dating and when Ninon answers they aren’t, she asks about Kira’s birthday celebration preps instead.
Kira’s birthday is on November 12. Determined to make that day extra special for Kira, Ninon organizes a surprise birthday party for him. The day arrives and as a birthday present, Ninon bakes Kira a cake. While looking at Ninon happily baking, her parents are relieved to know that, finally, their daughter found some friends.
The birthday surprise was a success. However, when Rei sees the birthday cake Ninon baked, she angrily asks if Ninon wants Kira to die. Turns out, Kira is on a no-sweets diet! Ninon feels embarrassed and disappointed at herself. She’s feeling down, and so, after the party, she bids the group farewell. The group then bumps into Ninon’s Mom, who thanks Kira for celebrating her birthday with them. What? So, it’s her birthday too?! Kira didn’t know and starts to look for her.
Ninon is mulling over what happened. She’s happy that she made Kira laugh but a bit disappointed that her birthday cake didn’t work out. She’s about to throw the cake in the bin when a hand stops her. It’s Kira and he tells her to stay with him for a while.
Kira finally bares all, literally and figuratively. He takes off his shirt and shows her his tattoo. His life changed when he was in Junior High. That year, he had a heart attack. The doctor said his medical tests were not good. He took it hard and got angry at his Dad for not telling him about his condition before. He rebelled and hurt good people along the way. He did whatever he pleases but it got him nowhere. In the end, he still felt alone.
After being told he only has a year to live, everything lost its meaning and life was dull and he just wanted to die. That’s what Kira thought. But since she came, even though he has less time now, he’s able to laugh. He even forgot about his illness and realizes he’s not alone. Ninon cries at his confession. She tells him to put on his clothes and gives him a back-hug. He then asks if it’s still okay if he doesn’t want to give up. Ninon answers that it’s okay, as long as his heart is beating.
Kira: Okamura, I love you. I always want to be with you. Yes, I’m willing. One year today and always. Happy birthday Ninon. (Leans for a kiss)
And so, they become a couple. Kira even proudly announces to the whole class that Ninon is his girlfriend. Imagine his disbelief when he sees Ninon walking with a guy. Were Ninon and the rest of populace even listening when he said she’s exclusively his? Rawr!
Needless to say he’s jealous. Sighing and pouting, he asks who the guy was and she innocently answers he was from another class who helped her carry some books. It doesn’t sit well with Kira though and he complains suffering from chest pains. He’s just being cute but Ninon misunderstands. She starts to panic, thinking he’s having a real heart attack! Dismayed by her naivety, Kira explains it’s not what he meant, pulls her behind the curtains and kisses her. Kyah! Time passes by in a blur and the couple happily spends their days together.
But good days doesn’t last. One time, Rei bluntly asks Ninon if she already slept with Kira. Well, she wants to know because she already had and proudly shows a shirtless Kira on her phone. Ninon is hurt and runs off. Kira arrives in time just to hear the two girls’ conversation. He’s pissed at Rei’s lies but his friend remains unapologetic. She believes Kira must get rid of people who are not mentally strong.
Kira catches up with Ninon. She’s already crying her heart out. He admits that Rei is someone special. She’s his best friend and the only person whom he can share about his illness. She’s just a friend and Ninon has nothing to worry about. Ninon knows but still, she can’t help feeling jealous. Now that it’s settled, they kiss and make up. Rei who is listening from afar, tells Ninon to take care of Kira. It would have been a happy ending, until Kira had a sudden heart attack…for real!
Ninon is crying again… but now, for a totally different reason. She’s worried for Kira’s life. Rei tests her resolved, telling her it’s the perfect time to back out. Just in case she forgot, Kira has a time bomb in his body. It may go off anytime. It’s something normal people like Ninon cannot understand. This is Kira’s reality and it’s understandable if she runs away.
However, Ninon is decided. She knows this fact since the day she befriended Kira. But she tends to forget, especially now that she sees Kira laughing and smiling. She loves him very much and something like this can never turn her back on him. With Ninon’s heartfelt answer, Rei is satisfied. Ninon passed the test.
For now, the only thing that can save Kira is a surgery. He decided against it before because it has risks and he might die. Rei, herself, took the surgery. She too was so scared back then. That’s why she understands what Kira feels. His operation is riskier and if she was on his shoes, she might decide against it too. Thankfully, Kira recovers from the heart attack. But of course, without the surgery, his life still hangs by the thread.
It’s nearing Valentines and when Ninon asks Kira what he wants as a gift, he answers a mind-boggling “I want Ninon for Valentines”. Is he hinting some kind of sexual action?
And the fateful day arrives. Ninon is obviously tensed. Being alone with Kira in her room adds to the nervousness she’s feeling. The sexual tension is already unbearable. Staring at each other, slowly Kira leans in. They’re about to kiss then … Dad barge in. They had the dates wrong! Finding them in very compromising position, Dad is not happy at all.
Dad speaks with Kira alone. He sets it straight. He doesn’t approve of Kira for his daughter. He’s worried that the more Ninon falls for him, the more difficult it is for her to recover once he’s gone. Kira couldn’t argue with that. With a heavy heart, he leaves.
Ninon wants to run after him but Dad forbids her to do so. There’s no need for her to pursue the relationship since Kira himself ended it. Ninon replies defiantly. Dad has no say in this. She already decided to be with Kira. On impulse, Dad slaps her. Despite Dad’s orders, Ninon goes out to look for Kira. But she’s too late. He’s gone. She breaks down. Ninon: “I don’t want to end it like this”.
After that, Kira stops waiting for her. He stops attending classes and disconnected his phone.
Kazuhiro Yabe (Shono Hayama) confronts Kira about the latter’s crumbling relationship with Ninon. Obviously, he’s not the Kira he knew. He reminisces in the past, the time when Kira never let anyone or anything affect him. However, Kira believes he made the right choice. After all, Ninon’s father was right. it’s impossible for her to have a relationship with someone who has no future. This riles up Yabe. He angrily tells Kira to stop kidding around. Apparently, Kira is being serious. A normal person like Yabe will never understand. Yabe differs. No one knows what will happen in the future and no one can guarantee they’ll be alive tomorrow. They’re basically the same. His chances of survival for the next ten years is not a guaranteed zero percent. Yabe: “Just calm down because you are you”.
Meanwhile, Rei fetches Ninon. When Ninon asks where they’re going, Rei mysteriously answers “Towards the bright future”.
Kira arrives in the church and Ninon is already waiting at the altar, wearing a wedding dress. Looking at her, Kira sheds some tears. This is it! The love of his life. He jokes that marriage, considering their age and circumstance, is just too blunt. Ninon then jests if this was what he meant by “a promise for the future”. Kira laughs and admits he wasn’t thinking that far ahead but one thing’s certain though, he wants to be with her always. Ninon agrees. She wants that too.
He informs her that he’ll undergo the operation. He’ll take the risk just to have a future with her. She’s the meaning in his life and he hopes to spend more days with her. They’re both crying now. Ninon tells him not to cry. In contrast to his tough and cool exterior, he’s actually a crybaby. Kira laughs and promises not to cry anymore.
And then they’re parents arrive. Ninon’s Dad finally gives them his blessings. As long as Ninon is connected with the most important person in her life, then it’s fine with him.
Kira flies to America for his operation. He’s scheduled to undergo surgery next month. He tells Ninon not to worry because he’ll definitely come back. He wants to see her smile and join hands as they go to school.
Next, we see Kira and Ninon walking hand in hand, smiling at each other. Kira fulfills his promise! Yay!