Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Quick Review #33: "Aishuu Cinderella"

Title: Aishuu Cinderella / 哀愁しんでれら

Rating:  7/10

Recommended for
Those who like psychological horror tales and are fans of the leads Tsuchiya Tao and Tanaka Kei

- The movie managed to depict the horror of extremes in a very interesting manner i.e. being extremely unlucky and having all the bad things happening to you in one night vs. having your fate overturned just by one chance encounter. As kids, the fairytale "Cinderella" would have most thinking that Cinderella would "live happily ever after" because she managed to fit into the glass slipper picked up by Prince Charming. However, it's not often that you get to explore what happens to the characters after a fairytale ending. This story clearly targeted at adults and squashing any idealistic thoughts about the "happily-ever-after" was a pretty interesting perspective to explore although I have to admit that the switch between the extremes was often sudden and violently impactful.

- The acting from the leads including the child actor COCO was very engaging to watch. For Tsuchiya, I thought that from the point when her Cinderella mentality was shaken to the core and something inside her mind snapped, that was when her character got really interesting. As for Tanaka, despite his harmless and nice-guy look, he did give me the chills as a mentally not-so-fine doctor. COCO may be a child but she was very versatile in showing the double-faced nature of her character and switched between those polarising sides so skillfully. 

- The biggest problem with the story is that there were some loopholes or parts which were never explained convincingly nor clearly. For example, the motivation or reason spurring Daigo (Tanaka) and Hikari's behaviour was rather unbelievable to me or rather didn't make much sense. Or perhaps it wasn't supposed to make sense to most straight-thinking people. As such, I think the completeness and comprehensiveness of the story were somewhat affected by these missing pieces. 

- Much as I think the ending was very unexpected and to be honest, shocking, how viewers react to it could be vastly different. Some may like it for its unpredictability while I think some may think of it as too extreme and far-fetched. I'm somewhere in the middle of the spectrum but even so, the lack of any logical clues that could point to that outcome makes the ending feel like an abrupt brake applied to the momentum built up in the film until that point and you find yourself crashing into the wall at full impact. May not be a palatable ending to some, if I may say.

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