Countering a longstanding Japanese cultural resistance to films that portray gay relationships, this superbly acted drama based on the semi-autobiographical novel by Makoto Takayama deftly merges strains of attraction, eroticism, love, loss and family into an affecting love story. Kosuke (Suzuki), an eminently sophisticated fashion magazine editor, seeks out the younger handsome personal trainer Ryuta (Mayazawa) on the recommendation of a friend. Their professional relationship quickly turns intimate and the two develop an ever-deepening emotional bond after Ryuta introduces Kosuke to his aged mother, who raised him alone, and reveals a painful secret from his past. The limits of true love are tested when tragedy strikes. Note: features explicit sexual activity. In Japanese with English subtitles.
“A joy; infused with warmth and energy.”–Wendy Ide, Screen International
“Groundbreaking…moving and intimate direction…raw and immediate.”—Mark Schilling, The Japan Times
“A stunning and truly haunting work.”–Frank J. Avelia, Edge Media Network