Monday, May 6, 2013

Movie Review: Like Someone in Love (2012) -- Overall Rating 1.75 / 5

Starring Tadashi Okuno & Rin Takanashi
Directed by Abbas Kiarostami
Not Rated

Story: 1 / 5
Direction: 1 / 5
Acting: 3 / 5
Visual: 2 / 5
Overall Rating: 1.75 / 5
Explanation of rating categories appears at the bottom of each review posting.

Like Someone in Love is the story of a prostitute, maybe, that’s never actually made clear, who has some personal issues, namely an obsessive boyfriend. She gets sent on a call by her pimp to get with this nice old man, who maybe just wanted to have dinner with her, but she’s a professional and just wants to get to it.

It’s not clear if they do anything, she goes right to sleep, he turns out the lights, and it’s the next morning and he’s driving her somewhere. He drops her off at school and says he’ll wait. Her boyfriend shows up, whom she was having an argument with on the phone at the beginning, he harasses her.

The boyfriend then waits for her. He notices the old man and they have a conversation. He thinks the old man is her grandfather. They talk for a bit, the girl comes back out. She’s concerned at what the old man told him, but fear not; he was discrete. He drops the boyfriend off (who also fixes a loose belt on his car), and then drops the girl off, and goes home. He gets a call from the girl, he goes to get the girl, she’s been hit, by the boyfriend we can assume. He brings the girl home. The boyfriend shows up, shouts a lot, and throws a brick through the window.

Roll credits.

I just saved you an hour and thirty nine minutes of long shots of literal screenplay interpretation.

I’ll warm some milk for you.


What follows is a five minute scene of the old man getting milk from the fridge, pouring it into a glass, putting it in the microwave, setting the microwave, waiting while the microwave cooks… etc. And this is one of the more concise scenes in the film.

Like Someone in Love should have been titled Like Someone Who Didn’t Know How to Make a Film, but Convinced Some Financiers That He Did.

Would I recommend this film? No, unless maybe you’re a coma patient and looking for the inspiration to get out of your coma and leave the hospital just to escape the tedium of this film.

Explanation of Ratings

All ratings are on a 5 point scale where 1 is the lowest possible score. A score of 3 indicates the film was simply effective in this regard. A score of 5 indicates perfection in a given category. The overall rating is a simple average of the four scores.

  • Story -- How well the film was written?  Did the story make sense?  Were there plot holes?  Was the dialogue natural for the style/genre?
  • Direction -- How well was the film put together?  Did all of the elements come together properly?  How was the pacing?  Was the tone consistent and effective?  A subcategory of this would be editing, but for the purpose of these reviews it is combined into one category.
  • Acting -- How good were the performances?  In a drama did the lead actor/actress draw the audience in?  In a comedy where the performers funny?  This is an amalgam score of all the performances in the piece. A single great performance can elevate the entire score, but a bunch of bad performances can just as easily bring it down.
  • Visual -- How did the film look?  If there were visual effects were they used appropriately and did they look good?  Did the overall look enhance the telling of the story?


  1. Well that sounds... thrilling

    1. I have never walked out of a movie, but I seriously considered it this time. That's the second time in my life, the only other was Gods and Generals. If I was by myself I might have just left, but my wife was fast asleep and I didn't want to disturb her.

      The group we see these movies with has a discussion after the film. I considered staying for it just to hear what kind of nonsense people might come up with to justify such a waste of time.

      I'm not saying it was a bad story. Any story can be interesting, if done properly, but this was a twenty minute short film stretched out into nearly two hours. In hind sight, after realizing late in the film what a mess this thing was, I realized an earlier scene where the main character listens to SEVEN voice mail messages while riding in a cab was a strong warning of what was to come.