Ikigami (JPN, 2008)

Ada-ada saja ide imajinasi mangaka dan pengarang Jepang akan pemerintah/negaranya. Tapi, ide-ide nyeleneh ini mampu mereka tuangkan dalam manga/novel yang mampu menggugah sisi kemanusiaan kita. Masih ingat dengan novel dan film Battle Royale yang mengisahkan sebuah undang-undang Battle Royale Act? Undang-undang yang kemudian memaksa  anak-anak SMP yang saling membunuh untuk mempertahankan hidup? Kalau masih ingat, tema akan sikap apatis pemerintah akan anak muda di era yang -untungnya- imajinatif tersebut, ternyata kembali diangkat menjadi manga oleh Mase Motoro dengan judul Ikigami (Death Notice) yang kemudian diangkat menjadi film oleh Tomoyuki Takimoto.

Title – Ikigami: The Ultimate Limit
Casts – Matsuda Shota, Takayuki Yamada, Takashi Tsukamoto, etc
Director – Tomoyuki Takimoto
Runtime – 133 min
Original Media – Ikigami (manga) by Mase Motoro

Synopsis

Once upon a time in Japan (at least that what I think), there is a new law: sacrificing random people to death in order to revive value of life that eventually drives people to their productivity. Every child at 6 years old must be injected with a nano capsule so that when they reached 18-24 years old, the government could choose “the chosen ones” and forces them to “serve” the country by activating the capsule that will send them to death. Kengo Fujimoto (Matsuda Shota) is a new Ikigami deliverer. Ikigami is a death notice; sent 24 hour before the chosen one dies. An ikigami is a passport made to guarantee the chosen ones to have a “meaningful” last 24 hours of live. What a meaningful life will that be when you already know your time of death?

Personal Notes

Sedikit berbeda dari Battle Royale yang lebih sadis sih ^^. Tapi, saya jadi kepikiran, benarkah para petinggi yang notabene orang dewasa segitu tidak percayanya terhadap generasi muda mereka? Kalau saya nih, sebagai orang dewasa tanggung, agak sedikit ga percaya sama anak muda zaman sekarang yang alay-alay gitu dan udah terkontaminasi sama silaunya dunia entertainment (Wuakakaka… No offense… But seriously, why many of you want to be famous as celebrities rather than becoming a great scientist, teacher, and other noble occupation? Geez…* Sori ga nyambung). Tapi, tentu saja, peraturan yang tega seperti ini tentu tidak pernah akan adil di mata manusia yang mempunyai hati nurani. Sepanjang saya membaca manganya, korban-korbannya justru bukanlah manusia tanpa arti. Malah, mereka orang-orang yang telah menginspirasi dan membawa perubahan ke orang lain. Sumpah, ga adil banget ni cerita. T.T

Film live actionnya sendiri hanya mengambil tiga chapter dari manganya. Sayangnya, ketiga chapter ini adalah chapter yang lebih menggali sisi-sisi kerapuhan karakternya. Padahal, chapter lain banyak yang lebih “menggugah” loh…

Personal Favorites

Dari 3 cerita yang ditawarkan dalam film, sayang sekali yang saya suka di manganya malah tidak muncul. Kalau saya boleh memilih cerita favorit di filmnya, saya tercengang dengan cerita kedua: bagaimana bisa Kazuko Takizawa (Jun Fubuki) malah mengambil keuntungan dari anaknya, Naoki (Kazuma Sano), yang telah dipilih negara untuk mati? Memang ceritanya agak klise, tapi sedih banget ketika tahu cerita sebenarnya dibalik itu. Haduh, berderai air mata ini. T.T

Yang lucu, sebelum nonton ini, saya sudah teracuni image Shota sebagai Akiyama-san di Liar Game. Jadi di cerita ketiga, entah kenapa, saya kok merasa Akiyama muncul ya ^^? Idenya bagus juga untuk membantu Satoshi Izuka (Takayuki Yamada) dalam mewujudkan keinginan adiknya, Sakura Izuka (Riko Narumi).

Personal Score

Idea and Story Development: 4*
At first, you may think this is merely like a new form of Battle Royale. Nonetheless, Ikigami is more heartbreaking than BR. There is no need of bloody death to touch the heart of the audience. I think the film is as good as the manga. Like other Japanese drama movies, Ikigami is kind a slow. However, slow-paced movie is good in order to deliver the sadness and emptiness that the characters felt. Unfortunately, my favorite chapter from the manga does not appear at the movie.

Casts and Characters: 4*
All casts are great in acting. Everyone is fragile as human. No drastically changes from the manga. However, none of them has a strong character that stands out more than the others do.

Sound and Music: 3,5*
Sad tunes are all over the movie, but none of the BGM is memorable for me. At the other hand, the theme song “Michishirube” by PhilHarmoUniQue has a superb lyrics. It is a nice theme indeed.

Presentation: 4*
My favorite is the “camera’s moves below the monorail” scene. It is a CGI, am I right? It is a nice one. I think it is a symbol for Fujimoto. Yep, all that he can do is just following the rail track. I also like the how the camera captured tha city lights where Tsubasa Tanabe (Yuta Kanai) remembered how he and Hidekazu Morio (Takashi Tsukamoto) sang along together at the street.

Opening and Ending: 3,5*
I do not really like the opening. Huh, a nearly strip club? Yeah, I know that it resembles the “darkness”, but I think the director could just cut the dancers’ scenes. Heu, those scenes are not my cup of tea T.T.  However, the scene after successfully brings the suspense. The ending does not strike me as well. Nevertheless, I like how a father take a big step and decide to change because all these circumstances.

Overall Score: 3.8*

Note:
1,0 – 1,9 = Don’t even try to see it, ever!!!
2,0 – 2,9 = You may see it, on your own risk though.
3,0 – 3,9 = Entertaining to watch. Try to see it.
4,0 – 4,9 = Must See!!!
5,0       = Absolutely Superb!!!

Note:
TItle picture is presented here for illustration only. Ikigami and other related copyright items belong to their copyright owner(s).

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