Some days you just don’t feel like moving, or thinking, or even existing. Which means you need to try and find the fluffiest nonsensical movie out there and push play. Such is the situation that lead us to watch The Disastrous Life of Saiki K. Come find out if it was just what we were looking for.
SYNOPSIS: Kusuo Saiki is a 16-year-old high school student. He was born with psychic powers, but he hesitates using his super powers in front of other people due to a childhood experience. Kusuo Saiki now tries to keep a distance from others to hide his psychic power ability, but his classmates with distinct individuality gather under Kusuo. Can Kusuo keep his precious ordinary daily life?
Kmuse:The plot isn’t overly deep. Pink haired boy with magical powers wants to ensure the school carnival (which will be shut down if there is any type of chaos) goes off without a hitch. Not out of any sense of school spirit, but because he uses these school days for his “me” time. Which means this carnival needs to continue so he can vacation instead of participating in future carnivals. But while it seems straightforward, his eccentric classmates bumble into odd and unusual situations that test Saiki’s powers and patience.
Karie the Maknae: OH MY GOSH HOW DID I LET KMUSE TALK ME INTO WATCHING THIS MOVIE? The plot really is that simple, and the characters reminded me a lot of Napoleon Dynamite–same quirky small-time town feel, but with superpowers! And pink hair. And self-imposed antennae.
Kmuse: The characters often look like they came straight out of the pages of Manga. Which makes sense since it is a manga brought to life on the big screen. I think they did a great job achieving the feel of the original and it was very enjoyable and slapstick funny.
Karie the Maknae: I am not an anime-watcher, but by the time we got to the dude with the spiky red hair, I caught on. It was pretty easy to tell who Kusuo’s not-posse were–they were very colorful and their expressions were exaggerated, so you could see them coming a mile away. That counts as cinematography, right?
Kmuse: I loved our leading man. Imagine Napoleon Dynamite with superpowers, pink hair, and the intelligence of Sheldon from the Big Bang Theory and you have Saiki. But what really brought the movie to life was his interaction with all his co-stars. Every single scene had me laughing out loud. Especially Saiki’s mental conversations with his stalker, Kokomi Teruhashi, who can’t imagine why he isn’t falling at her feet since she is so cute.
Karie the Maknae: Yep, we both got the Napoleon Dynamite vibe. Add the literalness of Dwight Shrute in the mix, and you have our hero. It was his internal conversations that made me laugh the most. The lead girl annoyed me most of the time, until her true abilities were revealed. The side characters were more memorable for their looks rather than for anything they did, for me, except for the guy with the ice-blue hair. His storyline was straight out of some bored high school theater class’ script, but it cracked me up. I thought he was some sort of conspiracy theorist, and THEN HE WASN’T. I laughed and laughed. This movie also reminded me of Mystery Men in a way–just with the parallel bumbling group of superheroes.
Kmuse: I have to admit that my favorite side character was only in a few scenes but she totally stole the show. Or at least, it was at her scene that i laughed the hardest. Kudos to magician assistant/magician’s mommy Jessie. Her excitement in torching her son’s magical box and then running it over with a bulldozer was pure comedic gold. Now that is showmanship.
Karie the Maknae: LOL!! Oh, she was the BEST. So enthusiastic and such a far cry from her timidity when she first came on stage.
Kmuse: This movie was so much fun. It was quirky, wasn’t overly sensible, and total crazy pants, but I loved every minute. So much so that I made my daughter watch it again later that evening. It was exactly what I wanted after a really rough week so I give it a solid 7.5/10 all around and a 10/10 if we just consider how much I laughed.
Karie the Maknae: It’s no secret that sometimes I’m a story snob. I have to say, though, that all the storylines wrapped neatly back on themselves. It wouldn’t seem like it on the surface, but every character has their arc and every motive was well-explained and reasonable in that universe. It made the movie work. I may have come away from it shaking my head and laughing, but I enjoyed watching it. (Note for gentle viewers: Captain Spiky Red Hair has trouble keeping his bottom covered during some scenes. It’s purely comic, but I know I wouldn’t want to be surprised with it if I were watching with my younger kids.)
Til our next movie adventure,
Dramas with a Side of Kimchi