True Honest to God (No pun intended) T/WINCEST
Bruleé has been a part of my collection since its release in 2008. It is one of the movies that whenever I browse through my movie list when I have nothing new to watch, I always feel like re-watching it over and over again. So much so that I just saw it once more last night.
Hinako is a serial arsonist. Minako has a secret. Identical twin sisters ran away from each other 13 years ago. They run into each other again, when Minako takes their grandmother’s ashes from the Kyushu district to the sea. This time, they never want to be apart, even if it’s against their destiny.
Real life twin sisters Mika and Rika Nakamura play Minako Kashima and Hinako Okuda, twins separated at a young age after the death of their father in a fire (that was started by the twins themselves) that tore down their home. Suddenly one day thirteen years later, Minako shows up to where Hinako lives with their grandfather with the reasons that their grandmother (who was looking after Minako) is dead. There is another reason though why Minako came to visit unannounced – a much more serious reason indeed.
In the time of Minako’s stay, forgotten bonds are re-grown while stronger ones are made. And No! Before you ask, this isn’t pron with plot! It’s a good old normal (well, to those who have open minds) romantic drama of a gift we have right here.
PS: I know you are gonna have a field day with this one :O so I will be awaiting your lovely comments. Kukuku
Bruleé is too short (running at 70min) but the dialogue is so delicious (think well-done premium steak at a 7* hotel) that it makes up for the time. But it is also because of the engaging atmos that make the movie seem way shorter than it actually is. I swear by the time it was 25min in, I was thinking only 6 minutes had passed! That’s how good this movie is to me, and did I mention this was a re-watch?
If one has been into J-Movies for a while, they might not be strangers to silent drama movies. By this I don’t mean the old western silent movie kind that had no sound whatsoever. Bruleé has BGM where it is appropriate but most of the time there is not which I find is quite fitting and much more appreciated. The conversations between the characters I find are more emotional without the moody music that usually accompanies them, especially the ones that matter (between Hinako and Minako).
I simply love everything about this movie. I love the plot/story, I love the mood of it and though it was a sad theme over all, the pain was sweet. I think of this movie as a phoenix in that though you know there is going to be rebirth, after the first watch, the sweet pain of the moment of death is still painful all the same. Just like how one can’t help despairing at the death of the phoenix as this usually happens when they are at their most magnificent (or so the tales go).
Ignoring the somewhat spoilers, I really, really love the dialogue in this movie. It’s not that it’s witty or funny but because the lines have meaning and always make me pause the video, rewind, and watch once more to squeeze the emotions out of them. For example the first ever line that Minako speaks in the movie. Just one word that makes my heart constrict in pain already just two or three minutes in. She is on the bus and Hinako’s childhood friend mistakes Minako for Hinako so he passes to her Hinako’s Bus Pass she had dropped. He sees the urn Hinako is holding and asks if anyone has died. Minako simply answers…
The first time ever I watched this movie I was confused by this, especially after a few more minutes in when Minako says that their Grandmother (whom she was living with) and died and that was why she had come to live with Hinako and their Grandfather. I took this to mean that the urn contained their grandmothers’ ashes instead so you might understand my confusion. Everything soon became clear though and the truth was much worse than the lie! Yep, Minako lied about the death of their Grandmother (she’s alive and kicking) and it seems that Minako had ran away from the hospital she had been staying at. Why would she do that? She had to be in a really bad condition to be hospital ridden.
And seriously ill she was – having a deadly brain tumour and all. To make the already worse matter the worst, she only had about a month ‘s life expectancy. So what does she decide to do now that she know her time is limited, Minako decides to spend the rest of her time on this earth with her soul mate – Hinako, so she came to her.
Are your eyes wet yet?
Actually, a song comes to mind when I think of Minako. It goes something like “If I should die this very day and the Lord asked me what I did with my life, I would say I spent it with you” , that was Whitney Houston, wasn’t it? Hmm MV idea? Maybe…
It isn’t just Minako with problems (though I guess to her it was no biggie, dying and all. She seemed more troubled by having to leave Hinako all alone) as Hinako is also kind of messed up ever since she was separated from Minako. She’s been into arson and her activities are all over the news. She’s been burning school property from desks to school uniforms (hopefully not while they are on people – which might be the case as it seems she has no female friends), from houses to flower fields (which don’t burn well for her as the flowers are fresh and don’t burn quite as fast). Why is she doing this?
What other reason could it be than Minako?
Why do I think this? Well, how about another dialogue moment…This one is between Grandpa and Hinako. She wonders why he still runs a sweetshop when his taste buds have long since been destroyed.
Grandpa – “Cakes are made from memories. I can still make customers delicious cakes because I still have my memories since childhood.”
Hinako – “ I can’t to that. I don’t have any memories ever since I was separated from Minako.”
From this I came to the conclusion that since they were into starting fires when they were still together, coupled with the fact that it was fire that separated them and thus being the last thing they did together, Hinako was continuing this act in order to remind herself of Minako. Only she could stop Hinako from starting fires as she can’t control herself enough to make brulee without Minako. Minako says that she will stay with Hinako and watch over her so she doesn’t need to start fires anymore.
Bruleé – the tile of the movie, is explained as to simply singe, not to burn so you can see how nicely referenced here this is.
Which is why when Grandpa finds out about the truth that their Grandma is still much alive and that Hinako escaped from the hospital, as Minako has no choice but to return to the hospital, which in turn means leaving Hinako, As Hinako makes a Bruleé, it soon turns into a fire that burns down the shop. As if connected, Minako senses that something bad has gone down so she abandons her plans to return to the hospital with the last train out and returns to the sweet shop only to find it ablaze with Hinako standing before the raging fires.
Hinako turns around and informs Minako that she will continue starting fires if Minako is not with her. As the two stand their staring into the soul they share, sirens start blaring in the distance and seem to be getting closer. Minako makes the decisions and she grasps Hinako’s hand as the two elope go on the run. Desks and flowers are one thing but a whole building is another. This time it won’t end with an inquiry so they run and thus begins the journey that is to be their last together…or is it? You will have to watch the movie to find out what happens afterword (that is if you haven’t seen the movie already – It has like been out for over two years now).
There is just two more things I wanna talk about that happened later in the movie so if you don’t want to get spoiled, scram!
1. The two get married!
If you don’t approve, shame on you!
Okay, it was a self-wedding with Hinako speaking out the vows and Minako saying out the answers but it was a wedding none the less. They were in a church, standing in the middle of the altar, spoke out the vows which they both agreed too and then there was…
That oh so majestic kiss that sealed their undying love for each other and since there was no one to do so, I took it upon myself to gallantly bellow out from across the screen…
“You may now kiss the bride”
Yes, they actually kissed! And it wasn’t a nonsense, unintentional or (snicker) sisterly kiss either. It was a true honest kiss that was initiated by Hinako and approved my Minako.
Yep! Seals of Authenticity all over this movie!
2. Love Reborn
I have to remind yous again (you hard-headed you) that these are spoilers.
As we know by now, Minako is in bad condition (Not that it shows as that girl is strong – and any ways she didn’t want to make her sickness known to Hinako) so her body starts to shut down as her brain stops functioning and well…No need to mention what happened afterwards, right? But though sad, the moment of it all was very beautiful with the scenery and the great fact that Minako crossed over while in the arms of her one true love. I guess this was the moment when their fragmented souls became one once again because, skip to a bunch of months later and Hinako is pregnant…!
With Minako’s reincarnation!
<insert ultimate reaction gif here>
Talk about breaking boundaries and smashing records! Can you imagine, years later after Minako II is grown up and they are still together (obviously since their relationship won’t change)…They would not only be lovers and soul mates. They will be also be mother and daughter, who were twin sisters in Minako’s previous life only it is still Hinako’s current life-time.
Damn, I am having a migraine just trying to figure out their new relationship. Too bad though that there won’t be a sequel for this (because of various reasons) but at least there is the magic of Fan Fiction. I would so read a sequel fictional story about Minako II and Hinako. Judging by the love I hold for this movie, it might just be yours truly that actually gets to tackle that fic…We shall see.
So, what do you guys think of Bruleé? Oh don’t worry about the flames, I will approve everything even the raeg…
And finally, some more pics…