So. I watched The Raid 6 times. I watched Pacific Rim 6 times. And today I just broke my personaL record of watching a fiLm repeatedLy for 7 times (edit – 8 times per October 8th, and wiLL stop at 8)(edit – saw it for the 9th time on October 19th. Sue me). The honor goes to Rurouni Kenshin: Kyoto Inferno.
To commemorate this speciaL occasion, I’LL just make a post about each and every eight viewing sessions, and I’LL try very hard not to make it an ode to Sato Takeru. But I can’t say I’LL try to make this short and spoiLer-free.
But of course first we HAVE to taLk about Sato Takeru. I have to admit, when it was announced that he got the roLe as my dear Himura I was.. meh. But he did a good job in the first fiLm and I couLd see he fit perfectLy into the Kenshin ‘moLd’. But in RKKI Sato was.. Sato is.. Sweet father of swords, he IS Kenshin in 3D fLesh and bLood human form. The way he smiLes. The way he grimaces. The way he draws his sakabato. The way he waLks. And his “oro”. I need to have an audio fiLe of that “oro” and set it as my phone’s aLert tone.
And basicaLLy my top 3 scenes has Kenshin in three different expressions.
When he cut down the rope that hung Eiji’s parents’ bodies.
When he just got the new sword from Seiku, moments away before the finaL attack on Cho. (Some peopLe said this scene was too stretchy and commented why Kenshin didn’t draw out the sword right away before Cho taunted him, but! Kenshin swore he wouLdn’t kiLL anymore, WHAT IF that new sword was a normaL kiLLing sword? The cLose up on his face never faiLed to make me feeL the inner turmoiL in his head, so imo this scene was perfect as is.)
And. Kenshin running with the windmiLL toy he got for Iori
*meLts**I’m stiLL dreaming of this scene**dies*
Okay, Sato-gushing done.
Indonesian premier! (or sort of) Went with MP, a workmate who’s aLso a One OK Rock fan – part of why we were so excited was because finaLLy we got to hear Mighty Long FaLL on surround sound! – and had seen the anime. It was a fuLL house session, the auditorium was packed to the brim with peopLe our age and somehow I feLt so happy. Like, unLess you’re a Sato Takeru fangirL, I feeL Ruroken is something that can be enjoyed excLusiveLy by us who grew up in the 90’s – earLy 00’s. And happy because Kyoto Inferno turned out to be everything I expected it to be and MORE. Way better than the first instaLLment. FeverishLy sang Mighty Long FaLL during credit roLL, but was interrupted because an acquaintance caught me in the act. ALready pLotting to watch again.
I was aLready super restLess and agitated to see it again, so I posted an open invitation on Twitter. A uni junior responded, and on I went with her and her high schooL friend. Not exactLy my normaL movie night ensembLe, for sure, but we had fun making fun of the fucked up Indonesian subtitLe (many many things are Lost in transLation because I suspect the Indonesian sub is transLated from the EngLish sub, not the originaL Japanese Lines). Another fuLL house session. To my right was a guy who seemed to be a manga/anime hardcore who kept mumbLing “this isn’t right”, “it shouLdn’t happen this way”, and finaLLy “damn it’s aLL fucked up” in the end. ReaLLy wanted to teLL him to shut the fuck up.
Went with Naomi. Yet another fuLL house session with the row behind us dominated by Seta Sojiro Fan CLub. Lamented over Aoshi’s characterization which feLt as deep as the dry fish pond on my front yard. Naomi suspected Aoshi was there just to showcase Iseya Yusuke’s gLorious cheekbones and fantastic 0%bodyfat physique. Her reaction upon seeing Masaharu Fukuyama on screen was PRICELESS.
Went with TT (her second (or third?) viewing) and VW (his first – I saw the first instaLLment at 2013 Jiffest open air cinema with him and outside the fighting scenes we were witLessLy bored). The day before me and TT had a Long and very serious discussions about:
Kaoru >> Too cute? Too tough? Too weak? Just right?
Sojiro >> Less smiLe-y than he shouLd be? Not bishie enough?
SATO TAKERU IS THE PERFECT KENSHIN OMG
Weather inconsistency >> snow in May??????
Means of traveL and transportation >> How Long did it reaLLy take to traveL from Tokyo to Kyoto through Tokaido? Was it reaLLy possibLe to go from Kyoto to Osaka in short time by horse?
Misao >> is perfect. Misao has the most danger to be this siLLy annoying girL character, but Tsuchiya Tao did a good job. I Love the way she wriggLed her eyebrows.
Cho >> the man cospLaying ahead of his time. How did you bLeach your hair in Meiji era? And why does Miura Ryosuke aLways pLay the character with the most sensationaL hairstyLe?
The Indonesian subtitLe >> wouLd we use the words ‘jagabaya’ and ‘tuLen’?
Anyway, this was yet another fuLL house session. VW’s reaction when he saw Cho and Fukuyama Masaharu was priceLess.
Went with MP, UC, and JJ of the OORong gang. Main mission: Might Long FaLL karaoke. This was the first time I reaLized Seiku and Cho spoke in Kansai-ben! Both MP and UC have watched Kyoto Inferno before, but JJ heLd off seeing it in Singapore to specificaLLy see it in Jakarta with us.
Now, about Mighty Long FaLL (or MiLF as we caLL it). It’s a good song, technicaLLy, and the Lyrics perfectLy suits Kenshin – Kaoru dynamics in Kyoto Inferno. But compared with The Beginning.. MiLF paLed considerabLy. The Beginning is “Oh my god what is this goodness gracing my hearing sense” EPIC. MiLF is “What? Oh yeah, good” good. We stiLL had fun busting our Lungs out during credit roLL, though, and because it was yet another fuLL house session, we got many weird Looks but whatever.
Went with FR and I feeL partLy responsibLe for making her faLL in Love with Sato Takeru. This time the auditorium was onLy haLf fuLL. Another priceLess Surprise! Fukuyama Masaharu! reaction.
Went with me myseLf and I. This was the personaL record breaking occasion, so I saw fit to go soLo. I expected it to be a not-so-fuLL session because usuaLLy Japanese movies Lose their steam on Indonesian screen after 2 weeks, but boy how wrong I was. Since there was nobody to joke and banter around with during the fiLm, I was abLe to take in even more detaiLs, Like the maikos in orange and purpLe kimono appeared three times totaL. And the costumes. Damn I want one Oniwabanshu costume.
Went with AJ. I had a hunch this wiLL be the Last day I can see Kyoto Inferno (I was right), so I dragged another first timer. A few minutes in, the girL beside AJ made a ruckus because she thought she’s seeing The Legend Ends and made a big deaL on how she had seen Kyoto Inferno before. Yeah yeah. This time it feLt a LittLe bittersweet and it was over too soon.. 😦
So now I’LL wait patientLy for October 22nd to come and maybe fantasize that Kenshin was just going shopping for dinner.
Edit – October 19th
Went to “Rurouni Kenshin Saga” marathon on LocaL cinema, and got to see aLL three fiLms incLuding The Legend Ends back to back (with 10 minutes break between each fiLm, phew). FuLL house. Between the nostaLgia of the first fiLm and the anticipation for The Legend Ends, this time Kyoto Inferno feLt Like a bLur. But I wouLd never refuse a chance to see Kenshin running with a windmiLL one more time 🙂