Love my Life
Original Title: ラブ マイ ライフ
Release date: December 9, 2006
Director: Kawano Koji
Manga by: Yamaji Ebine
Screenplay by: Kanasugi Hiroko
Cast: Yoshii Rei, Imajuku Asami, Ira Ishida, Issei Takahasi
Based on the popular manga by Yamaji Ebine, Love My Life is the story of quirky Ichiko and solemn Eri who are secret lovers. One day Ichiko decides she wants to tell her father about her relationship with Eri and she receives quite a shock when her father confesses he’s also homosexual. From there on a chain of new discoveries unfolds. Both girls begin a journey to explore what true happiness is from the inside out.
Love My Life would seem like a compilation of ideas. Although it does have a general sense of coherence and continuity, at some points it feels more like a collage of discourses. On the forefront we have the theme of homosexuality, which is widely discussed throughout the film via a variety of characters and situations. Then there’s the underlying theme of freedom, which comes to be the second biggest discourse in the movie.
There’s a scene when Ichiko and Eri discuss the unorthodox relationship that Ichiko’s parents had before her mother passed away. With it the director seems to play around with the idea of what is, or should be, ‘normal’. Ichiko couldn’t quite understand why her parents had decided to lead the life they led, thus came one of my favorite lines from the movie when Eri tries to explain: “No. It’ doesn’t make sense.(…) But maybe it made their lives that much richer. With more flavor than a life limited to always making sense.”
The film in itself has an indie production sort of feeling, with odd angles at times. First person points of view and shaky sequences are also a small part of the cinematography. The characters are all very interesting; their journey, quite revealing.The first time I ever saw this movie, I confess, I picked it up at Blockbuster for the sole reason that it was both Japanese and LGBT themed. That particular day I took all movies with lesbian couples. This one though took a little piece of my heart when I gave it back. Not because it was an exceptionally well done movie, but because of its charming simplicity and the abundant introspective lines on life, love, freedom and happiness.