6.4/10
358
2 user 3 critic

Halfway (2009)

Harufuwei (original title)
In this high school romance Hiro is dismayed to learn her new love Shu will be going away to college in Tokyo. She asks him not to go.

Director:

Eriko Kitagawa

Writers:

Eriko Kitagawa (screenplay), Shunji Iwai (screenplay)
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Cast

Credited cast:
Kii Kitano ... Hiro Konno
Masaki Okada ... Shu Shinozaki
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Junpei Mizobata Junpei Mizobata ... Tasuku Mori
Riisa Naka ... Meme
Hiroki Narimiya Hiroki Narimiya ... Takanashi
Takao Ohsawa ... Hirabayashi
Miho Shiraishi ... Matsuura
Edit

Storyline

The boy in question hears the confession when a high school girl expresses her love for him for the nth time. She does not notice his proximity, however, and is quite surprised and confused when he picks up on her longing and returns the compliment. The couple may be official, but there is the matter of his acceptance at the prestigious Waseda University of Tokyo, which will take him hundreds of kilometers away and put an end to their nascent connection. Written by aghaemi

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official site [Japan]

Country:

Japan

Language:

Japanese

Release Date:

21 February 2009 (Japan) See more »

Also Known As:

Halfway See more »

Filming Locations:

Tokyo, Japan

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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User Reviews

Indy Japanese Teen Romance
11 July 2010 | by AnawrahtaSee all my reviews

I'm the kind of person who likes to try random genres of film, and I have a special weakness for anything from Japan and Korea. Without hesitation I gave "Halfway" a try.

It's a very simple story about two high school seniors who fall for each other and then find themselves on diverging paths. Nothing particularly original here. The dialogue and the romance stays as basic as what I imagine a relationship at the grade school level would be like in the West. That surprised me to say the least, although being as the story is set in rural Hokkaido, the northern Island of Japan, far from futuristic Tokyo, it is believable.

The cinematography is excellent, despite being shot hand held, it captures the warm fading glow of autumn, a good allusion to the senior year of high school. Interesting also is that most of the scenes could be anywhere in North America, or even Europe, instead of the focus on Tokyo's concrete jungle we often see in films set in Japan.

The deal maker or breaker for this film is the pacing, the dialogue, and ultimately the story. If you like slow pacing, limited bursts of dialogue that try to convey a sense of what I can only imagine is a real high school relationship in this setting, you will enjoy this film. On the other hand, if you prefer faster pacing, more complex story lines and dialogue with more wit or edge, you will find this film's 85 minutes excessively long.

I tend to lean towards the latter but I take exception for this film because it gave me a slice of life from somewhere I could never have experienced, in a beautifully shot package.


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