7 Days Report
High schooler Ryota (Shirahama Aran) is a week from graduating when he discovers that he is really a clone. In fact his entire school is part of an experiment designed by Itao Itusji’s scientist, and all the teachers are really his lab technicians. Ryota manages to escape, but soon finds himself at an identical, real school building, where he comes face to face with the real him! Horrified to discover that his genuine doppelgänger is a timid, victimised kid, Ryota seizes the chance to focus his own insecurities on helping his new friend gain the confidence to stand up to his enemies and profess his love for the gorgeous Mizuki (Yamashita Rio).

As a teen melodrama, 7 Days Report is mostly successful, and proves a fine debut for Shirahama, but the film rarely capitalises on the existential possibilities of its science fiction set-up. Rather than examining themes of identity and individualism at an age when teenagers are struggling to define themselves, 7 Days Report instead preaches about not squandering youth and making the most of our short lives. These are perfectly valid themes (just look at Blade Runner), but there was plenty of opportunity between the numerous shots of Shirahama strutting around in his underwear or standing awkwardly in front of his dream girl, to have made fuller use of the film’s intriguing premise.

Advertisements