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Doukyusei (2016)
Movie Reviews

Doukyusei (2016)

Fans of boys love or romantic anime titles are sure to fall for this movie’s charm.

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I’m always down for a fun romantic comedy, whether it be live action or animated. There’s just something cool about trying to watch two people fumble their way through falling in love. The same can be said for the anime film Doukyusei (meaning Classmates) that shows this concept from a boys love/yaoi perspective that will more than satisfy fans of the genre while being an interesting movie for those who give it a chance.

The film follows high school students Licht Sajou and Hikaru Kusakabe, both who are classmates and sing in the school choir. One day Hikaru notices Licht not singing well and decides to tutor him, which places the two of them in constant contact everyday. As weeks go by, Licht has finally got the hang of singing and reading music sheets. While the two of them are hanging out one night, Hikaru realizes that he has feelings for Licht, who is hesitant at first about it but then realizes he feels the same. From here the two slowly get to know each other better as Hikaru plays in a rock band while Licht is doing his best to get into a good college when they graduate. Over the course of a year or so, the two experience the ups and downs of school life and being in the kind of relationship they’re in while also dealing problems that come their way either through lack of communication or just obstacles life throws at them.

Watching the events unfold in this film was pretty entertaining and interesting. I enjoyed seeing how the two leads struggle with balancing their lives and their feelings, often with funny results due to Hikaru having an over exaggerated but comedic look on life while Licht is smart but naive about most things. The animation and artwork was simple but good, and the Japanese voice actors are spot on in their roles. If there’s a gripe to talk about, it would be the film’s short length, which runs around 56 minutes not counting the end credits. It’s just long enough to show you a good story, but makes you wish it was longer to give the characters more backstory and depth.

While yaoi themed anime isn’t at the top of my list, watching Doukyusei with an open mind turned out to be a pretty cool experience. It was interesting and even fun at times watching the two leads fumble through both their lives and their feelings, which made me wish the film was just a bit longer to give them and the other characters more depth. If you’re looking for a different and often times funny take on the romance genre, this is one to look out for.

About the Author: Chris Mitchell