review by Neo

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Never give up!
It’s been a while since Neo have sat through a movie with a hint of teary eye, during the entire duration. It is an inspirational movie based on a true life story about someone who endured through an incurable disease that slowly kills you by the days. It is a journey worth learning from and the attitude of never giving up is ever so evident. Sometimes in life, things may not go your way and perhaps no matter how hard you try, you may not achieve the outcome. Nonetheless, the most important thing in life is that you at the very least tried your very best, and even if you do not reach the ultimately, deep inside, you realise that you have never given up. Sure this movie version is immensely congested, but it is excellent summary of Aya’s life and at the same time allowing impatient people like Neo, to endure through 90 minutes, rather than the 10 episode drama. Ever since the beginning of high school, Neo always live by the never give up attitude and this movie sums up this attitude in the most affecting manner.
The movie goes like this: One day on her way to school, middle school student Aya (Asae Onishi) suddenly falls to the ground. The doctor diagnoses her with spinocerebellar degeneration, a rare and incurable neurological disease. Entering high school, Aya's condition continues to worsen as physical movements become more difficult. Forced to attend a special boarding school, she nonetheless finds hope and happiness through the support of her new friends and family. Working hard, she completes her high school education and bravely begins a new stage in her life, despite her weak health and continuous trips to the hospital. Aya never gives up, living each day of her life to the fullest until the very end.

It is a beautiful story about a tragic life that is still so inspirational. In life there is ups and downs, but the most important things is being able to step up again and live on with your life. It is a beautiful reinforcing message about the beauty of life. Aya was fighting a losing a battle, or perhaps a battle that she cannot win, yet she continues to work hard against the pain and suffering and turning a negative into a positive outlook of life. Even in death, she continues to inspire people and achieving ultimate aim of help other people. Her writings about her life through diaries have now become a book, a drama and now a movie. It shows how important her never give up attitude was and how it have such an important impact and influence in the world today. She was a fighter and a true inspiration.

Asae Onishi makes a splashing and convincing performance as the lead tragic heroine. She portrays her character through the numerous stages that leads to the end of her life. Asae handles a difficult role immensely well and her emotions and words touch the audience’s fragile heart. There was a beautiful yet tragic scene when she encounters someone she likes, but knowing that she can never be with her. The image shows Asae slowing backing off on a wheelchair in the background, while her crush is with another girl. It is a stunning debut and her final words are immensely beautiful to hear. There was a moment when Asae can hardly talk and the words she mumbled portrays the beauty of life – “I still want to live on.”

All in all, 1 Litre of Tears is a timeless movie about a timeless theme. Countless of times, we have watched sporting teams go against the odds and never stop trying. The Socceroos, Steve Waugh, Justin Langer, Shane Heal, just to name a few, are people who strive towards the never give up category. Aya’s life story shows that this can be applied into life. A true inspiration and a defining tale, that shows the mental strength of humanity and how being alive is a beautiful thing. Yes, there are plenty of downs in your life, but after all if you give up; it means that you will never have a chance. If you try your best, you got the chance of a toss of a coin and moving on without regrets…

I rate it 9/10 (Note: It was incorrectly posted as 6/10 for the last 6 months)

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Starring: Asae Onishi | Kazuko Kato | Riki Okamura
Directed by: Okamura Riki
Genre: Drama/Life

Trailer/Short Clip:

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