Title: Seven Days – Monday → Thursday || Seven Days – Friday → Sunday
Mangaka: Takarai Rihito || Author: Tachibana Venio || Director: Kenji Yokoi
Complete: Yes (Manga: 2007 || Movie: 2015–2 parts)
Volumes: 2 || Extra chapter: Seven Days Overflow (released 2013(?), not yet translated in English)
Two boys are popular in this school for two different reasons: Seryou, who was looking for that “special someone,” goes out with anyone who asked him, only to break up with them after a week; Shino, a princely-looking guy that excels in archery, ends up being dumped by girls after knowing what he really is on the inside. One fateful morning at the school gates. Seven days. Will Seryou finally find that “special someone” in Shino? Will Seryou accept Shino for what he really is?
“My female friends say seven days is long enough for a dream. But seven days were long enough to fall in love.”
I tried writing this review on my tablet the other day. After a few minutes I gave up. There’s an ad! What the heck..how can you type with an already limited screen, and then the little remaining space was occupied by an ad?! So annoying. So I just ended up reading this again. *sigh*
Ah, Seven Days! One of those mangas considered as one of the very first yaoi/shounen-ai manga a budding fujoshi has to read. Pretty much tame and innocent compared to others. Believe me.
To others, the story might be so simple, cliche and predictable. Indeed it is. Here in our country, there was a song entitled “Isang Linggong Pag-ibig” (“A One Week Love [Affair]), though that song ended up on a sad note. So you can see that the story is not that original.
But for me, I’ve read this during the period in my fujoshi life where I’ve already read a lot of hardcore yaoi mangas (no bara and furries though, I’m glad, even until now), so this is a breath of fresh air, despite several misses, like the fact that both of them are straight before they actually talked to each other on the school gates.
Oh well, this manga is not the first one to have this kind of miss: the if-it’s you-it’s okay trope. I can give you a list of them actually. There are other plot holes, and you’ll notice them once you read the manga. So just read it! I’m only blabbering nonsense here. Lol.
Manga vs. movie, overall. I am glad to say that the movie pretty much followed the flow of the manga. That was the very first thing I looked out for. And oh god, the locations! The scenes! They’re so pretty!!! Their uniforms, the school, the park (where they had their first kiss), the bridge, everything!
And the scenes were presented like how the story unfolded in the manga.
Characters: Now, now. I’ve been reading some comments displaying their annoyance that the actors “look old.” Hey! It’s hard to find someone who will look exactly like Seryou and Shino in real life (well, if you do not include the cosplayers).
If it works at other manga adaptations (like Kuroko no Basuke, where Kensho Ono was the VA, and he’ll be the one playing as Kuroko for the musical–and dang it, he looks good), well it won’t work on other adaptations every single time.
What’s more, since this is a live action adaptation, and the setting of the manga is real life (not an AU or fantasy), it helps that the actors they picked looked “realistically human.” If you go to Japan, most highschoolers would look like them, albeit a little younger. So the choice of actors is just nice.
(And those hairstyles! *teehee* Those hairstyles looked wild, just like a tamer version of visual kei style.)
Besides, there is a kissing scene. I think the director and producers would have a lot of legal problems if they chose a younger-looking cast and have them kiss each other onscreen. Especially that this is a story about two guys falling in love.
Another thing: I would rather have a good actor who looked a little different from the manga compared to someone who looks a lot like the original characters, but with a subpar/downright bad acting (*ahem* Shingeki no Kyojin live action *ahem*). You can’t have everything all the time. For me, what’s more important is the acting.
I was quite skeptical at first, but once you saw the whole movie, you’ll be convinced they’re just perfect.
Acting. As always, my major issue with Japanese actors today is the “stiff” acting. This movie suffer from it. I feel like something’s holding them back so they really can’t show their emotions 100%. They’re restrained in their facial expressions and body movements.
I’m not really sure if this is due to the theme of the movie, or if it’s in their culture, but hey, I’m just making assumptions here. If you have watched the older Japanese movies (like Akira Kurosawa’s), you’ll see the difference. The emotions and facial expressions of their actors before are more spontaneous, exaggerated even (yes, I’m thinking of you, Toshiro Mifune. Lol). Even with the intimate scenes. Good thing here in this movie we only have a couple of kissing scenes.
I guess it’s not just me who noticed this. I’ve seen similar reviews.
Art. Takarai Rihito’s art has gone a looooong way. Of course, six years is a long time for an artist to hone his/her skills. I’m not saying Seven Days looks bad. It’s not. When I first saw it, a lot of scenes caught me thinking I was seeing an artist sketch for a fashion magazine, only with a dialogue.
I’ve read that this was her first manga series. If you put Seven Days and Seven Days Overflow (or any other of her recent works like the infamous Ten Count or Graineliers) side by side, you’ll see the six-year difference. But one thing’s for sure: her art before and now is still beautiful.
Ending. I can say that the ending for both versions is just perfect. No promises of “happy ever after,” just a promise of the beginning of a new week. They may argue, bicker, and have misunderstandings along the way, and we know it. But we are quite sure that they can work it out. Even in Seven Days Overflow, even after six years, Takarai Rihito is still quite aware of this.
Seven Days Overflow shows us a glimpse of what happened a week after, after six years in real life. Isn’t this cute?
P.S.: The images for both the movies and manga was taken from aarinfantasy.com and movie trailers were found in youtube. Seven Days Overflow was taken from here. If you are the owner/scanlator, and not feeling comfortable in seeing your work here, kindly send me a message so I can take it down.