a page of madness

film writing by nicholas vroman

Love Bombs / さまよう獣 / Samayou Kemono

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samayou500Nobutera Uchida’s on a roll. Merely a couple months after his Tokyo Filmex debut of his moving post-Fukushima disaster drama, Odayaka, he’s released Love Bombs, an altogether different sort of beast. Love Bombs opens on a young woman, Kiyomi (Mami Yamasaki), on a bus. She’s escaping. From what/whom is not explained. She arrives at a small town and insinuates herself into the home of a dotty, but salt-of-the-earth elderly woman, Kinu (Koko Mori). A young man, Masaru (Kazuki Namioka), hangs around helping her. Thrown into the mix are a couple of other single guys, one with a small cattle farm, Shinji (Mondo Yamagishi) and a tomato grower, Tatsuya (Kiyohiko Shibukawa). A gentle comedy develops as the three vie for her attention and affection. The pace and details unfold with loving care. Then the love bomb drops when Kinu’s bad big city boyfriend (Kanji Tsuda) arrives. It’s here where Love Bombs begins to fall apart. A silly chase through farmlands ends up in a night of overwrought reckoning that nearly throws away an otherwise good film.


Written by Nicholas Vroman

February 3, 2013 at 12:48 am

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