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Posts Tagged ‘Masako Chiba’


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To Watch
Netflix

Cast:
Mirei Kiritani as Tokita Mayuko
Mao Daichi as Nanjo Mayumi
Mayuko Kawakita as Kouno Yuri
Ken Kaito as Saruhashi Jin
Wakana Sakai as Nishizawa Mizuki
Maiko
Masako Chiba
Dori Sakurada
Nicole Ishida

Genre:
Drama, Clothing, Coming of Age

Plot:
A young country girl Mayuko Tokita, obsessed with silk fibers, starts a new job at the custom-lingerie shop “Emotion.” There she meets her new boss Mayumi Nanjo as well as an odd assortment of employees. This drama follows the growth of Mayuko, both as a designer and as a person.

For many many years, Mayumi Nanjo has been defining the lingerie fashion of Japan and the very definition of what is “beautiful.” What happens when her world is challenged from every direction? Will her Emotion brand be able to survive the turbulent and ever-evolving fashion world?

As Mayuko quickly learns all aspects of lingerie design and the operations of the business, how will her own ideas and aspirations grow and play out?

Review:
It seems that I’ve been away from dramas for quite some time, or more accurately I haven’t been able to finish any dramas for quite some time. Either I lose interest quickly or there just isn’t something out there that I can watch completely.

Atelier brings back fond memories of binge watching a drama. I have to say, Netflix got it right. I’ve actually been quite impressed with Netflix originals: House of Cards, Daredevil, Chef’s Table, Marco Polo. The quality, the story, the acting; everything in Atelier comes together for an amazing production.

Mayuko Tokita, our leading character, puts on an amazing performance across from boss, Mayumi Nanjo, who also puts on an equally amazing show. Throughout the series, we grow to respect both of them and to cheer them on. They must succeed they must they must…we chant in our heads as obstacles pop out one after another. Mirei Kiritani is able to portray her transformation from a simple and idealistic country girl into a mature and ambitious woman. I’m now a new fan of hers! There are so many scenes where we feel her sadness and disappointment, and also scenes where we laugh at her hilarious antics and her thinking aloud. Though much older, Mao Daichi puts on a flawless performance of an eccentric designer boss. She’s able to capture the strong-willed yet compassionate nature of her character so well that we are able to learn so much about her through her actions and interactions with each of the other characters.

In addition to our leading ladies, the rest of the cast and crew really bring the Emotion to life. There is a wealth of character development that we don’t often find in dramas these days and the messages that each character conveys is perfectly done.

Probably what impressed me the most in Atelier is it’s depth of dialogue. The sheer amount of emotion portrayed by all of the actors and actresses complements the dialogue with a vivid sense of realism, showing us the true nature of our humanity. The story itself was pretty typical, but even predictable as it was, it nudges us with teary moments and also bursts of joy and hopeful smiles.

I’ve watched many Japanese dramas in all the years I’ve been a drama fan, but the quality of this production was probably one of the best I’ve seen. The camera work, the set design, the lighting, the casting are all superb.

Rating:
4.7/5.0

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