Movie Review: Heroine Disqualified

Rating: 6/10

Genre: Romance/Comedy

Language: Japanese

Starring: Kiritani Mirei, Yamazaki Kento, Sakaguchi Kentaro, Fukuda Ayano, Wagatsuma Miwako, Takahashi Maryjun, Nakao Akira, Yanagisawa Shingo, Rokkaku Seiji, Hamada Mari, Takeuchi Riki

I admit it. I got bitten by the Yamazaki Kento bug, and I have absolutely no regrets about it. Ever since I discovered him, I’ve taken it upon myself to purchase just about every movie of his in sight- even though most of them are of the Romance genre, a genre I normally don’t care for. Maybe I’m just lucky or the guy has a lot of good movies, but I enjoyed most if not all of his work thus far.

Including this one (somewhat. I’ll get into that a bit more later).

This is the latest one I’ve watched, and it’s called “Heroine Disqualified”.

What is it about?

As with most teen romances, the plot of “Heroine Disqualified” is fairly simple. Matsuzaki Hatori (Kiritani Mirei) is a highschool student who is in love with her childhood friend, Terasaka Rita (Yamazaki Kento). Being as close as she is to him, she ardently believes that he will eventually choose her as his girlfriend. So much so that she refuses to conduct the almost mandatory act of “kokuhaku”, claiming that as the woman, she should be the one to be confessed to.

Alas, that is not the case. Instead of getting a confession, Rita starts going out with Adachi Miho (Wagatsuma Miwako), much to Hatori’s horror. That’s not how things are supposed to go!

Whilst she kicks herself for her stupidity, the most popular male student, Hiromitsu Kosuke (Sakaguchi Kentaro), begins to take an interest in her.

Perhaps not all is lost after all?

Is it worth a watch?

Despite the charms that “Heroine Disqualified” has, the fact that it has such an unrelatable main character does it a great disservice. Hatori is a product of directly translating an anime/manga character into the live action world, which more often than not isn’t a good idea. Not if you want a live action character that the audience can relate to on a human level, no.

Hatori is much like any anime/manga character turned live action. She’s exceedingly loud, her reactions are over the top and moments where she seems human are few and far between.

This wouldn’t have been such a problem if she wasn’t the main character, but she is.

That aside, the shiny offerings that “Heroine Disqualified” has come in the form of the two male heroes, Rita and Kosuke. Rita is a stoic lad who has issues with being close to others despite craving intimacy. Kosuke on the other hand is confident, and has no qualms whatsoever with initiating the first move with whomever he’s interested in. Both young men played their roles splendidly, though Kosuke does have a touch of anime/manga-ism to him (why in the world would he suddenly take such an interest in Hatori? In the real world, people would’ve had that girl tested).

As for the story itself, it is structured well enough that it does not feel like it is going too fast nor too slow. It also holds just enough of that cute, amusing factor to push it a tiny bit over the “just average” movie rating.

So is it worth a watch? Maybe, if you also like and understand how anime/manga works. Otherwise, the insanity of Hatori’s behaviour might be lost on you.

Beauty Review: Banila Co’s Clean It Zero Resveratrol

Like many women out there, I’ve heard all the praise this particular Korean product gained from beauty fans. So much so that it was enough to pique my curiosity, leading me to wonder just what is so great about it? At the time, I still had my gargantuan bottle of Muji cleansing oil, so I didn’t bother with Clean It Zero Resveratrol just yet.  No point in buying something I don’t need, right? Right.

But you can bet your bottom Ringgit that as soon as my Muji ran out, I bought Banila Co’s Clean It Zero Resveratrol. After a bit of hesitation, anyway. That RM79.50 price tag ain’t pretty.

Especially since it tends to last my friends for about 2-3 months? Still, I was curious enough to give it a try.

What is it like?

At first glance, I wondered if the balm would be hard to scoop out. Thankfully enough, it isn’t. A pleasant surprise, needless to say, but what was even more so delightful was how it transformed into oil form so cleanly. Cleanly. Does that make any sense? The transition is so smooth that it glides across my skin, clinging gently to my face without dripping- something that is a constant worry when using the usual type of cleansing oil.

And have I mentioned the smell? It smells wonderful. Enough to put me in a good mood while I smooth it on.

As for how it performs when in action, it’s so effective that it gently yet effectively melts my makeup away, even if it’s something as heavy as foundation. Foundation, lipstick, eyeliner, mascara, powder… All of these melt away without any need for tugging and pulling. It’s all smooth sailing with this sorbet-like concoction, to be honest.

Packaging?

If this creation from Banila Co had a fault (and it does), it would have to be the packaging. While the solid balm is prettily encased in a round, frosted container, it is a bit inconvenient to have to scoop the balm out with the provided spatula. Or if you’re feeling particularly indifferent, your fingers.

As with all beauty products that come in containers, there is concern of contamination. Even if you faithfully use the spatula every time, you still need to wash it beforehand. A bit inconvenient, if you ask me.

End result

While I wouldn’t call it a miracle worker, I am quite happy with the result of using this regularly. Not only does it rid my skin of makeup without so much as an effort, it also helped with minimising the size of my pores. Hurrah! It’s definitely a step in the direction I’m aiming for, so this is an A+ in my book, that’s for sure.

Adding on, there’re very few cleansing oil products that I can say do this as well as Clean It Zero Resveratrol can, so I’m glad I decided to give this a try.

Where can I find it?

Banila Co.

Verdict

  • Product rating: 5/5
  • Packaging rating: 4/5
  • Repurchase?: Hell yes

Ingredients

Cetyl Ethylhexanoate, PEG-20 Glyceryl Triisostearate, PEG-10 Isostearate, Polyethylene, Butylene Glycol, Water, Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Seed Oil, Olea Europaea (Olive) Fruit Oil, Propanediol, Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Vine Extract, Vitis Vinifera (Grape) Root Extract, Thuja Orientalis Leaf Extract, Zanthoxylum Piperitum Fruit Extract, Resveratrol, Butylparaben, CI 42090, CI 19140, Fragrance.

Hello, 2018, and Hello, New Year’s Resolutions

Here’s  to another New Year. 2017 was somewhat of a rocky ride, and despite some of the things that happened during that year, I will look upon it with a sense of thankfulness and pride. This is because I feel that I’ve grown a lot over the past year; I finally found my passion and purpose in life, I learned to let go of things that don’t matter, I’m learning to be more open in terms of sharing things about myself (though I sometimes still hedge from getting personal. I’m still working on that), I learned to be more disciplined, etc. Lots.

Honestly, 2017 was a very fruitful year for me, and the only regret I have is that I didn’t realise what I really want in life sooner. My only and biggest regret, because that was a lot of time up in smoke.

But that’s alright. Now it’s 2018, and hopefully it’ll be even more productive than the last. I’ve never been the sort of person to draw up New Year’s resolutions, but seeing that I’ve become more and more goal-oriented, why not? I might as well, since I’m already doing just that.

So here’s my very first list of New Year’s resolutions:

Be more disciplined

Top priority. I know I’m not a robot, but I would like to be more disciplined in terms of work. Due to the nature of my job, it sometimes can’t be helped that I might have to suddenly work outside of office hours. Which is fine, but it would be good if I could do all I can during my usual hours to ensure I’d have less to worry about later. This can be done by preparing articles way in advance.

If I can do this, I’ll have more time to devote to my studies, health and hobbies.

Learn a new skill

Low priority. Photography, maybe? If I can’t manage to secure classes for this one, I can always try learning how to apply makeup hahahahaha. I know the basics, but if you ask me to do anything else, I’m at a loss.

Earn more money

Medium priority. This is something I’ve been thinking about for a while now (think 3-5 months), but I never really got round to it due to time constraints. This is tied to my first resolution, so if I manage my time just right, I might be able to secure a part-time/freelance job.

This isn’t a priority, but it would be nice to have a bit more cashola in my pocket. Wishful thinking because my schedule is already bursting at its seams hahaha. No harm trying, though!

Allocate more time to studying

Top priority. It’s not easy studying while working a full-time job, but something has to be done about this. Japanese is steadily getting more and more difficult, and I really need to dedicate time to studying as much as I can whenever I can. I’ll just have to squeeze in studying during my commute to and from work, and maybe an hour after work before I head home.

Read more

Low priority. Not just novels, but works of non-fiction as well.

Dye my hair dark ombre purple 

Medium-Low priority. Because why not? Ehehehehh. I’ve had the same hairstyle since forever. Time to try something new.

Participate in a marathon

Low priority. It would be a nice challenge to myself! We’ll see if I can even manage it, though. This also depends on the marathons that are available when I’m finally ready to take one on. At this point, I’m just aiming for a half marathon.

Keep meeting new people

Medium-Low priority. Despite being an introvert, I realise how important it is to keep meeting new people, so… Just like the tail-end of last year, I’ll be open to and keep meeting new people whenever the opportunity arises. Whew. This is a far cry from how I used to be; I’m fairly sure I used to have social anxiety at some point in my life. Now that trait is barely there. I’m definitely still quiet, but the fear of speaking to someone new doesn’t strike me anymore.

There you have it. My first list of resolutions. Yay!

Have a very happy New Year, everyone!

What Happened After I Stopped Drinking Coffee

As I’ve mentioned numerous times before, I have been cursed with oily skin. Rare it is for me to experience a dry spell in the oil works, yet a couple of months ago, I did. I wasn’t entirely sure what the problem was at the time, but after I kept seeing the word “caffeine” come up in articles related to skin issues, I started to have my suspicions.

And looked at my beloved coffee with a sad twinge in my heart.

Could it be…? The timeline was about right.

Did coffee really affect my skin?

I had to admit, my skin problems exacerbated after I increased my coffee intake. It was during a time when I had a lot of work to do and was barely getting enough sleep to cope with staying awake at work. Plus, coffee is a hella cheaper and healthier alternative than my usual Red Bull. So my choice on whether to swap my Red Bull with coffee was obvious.

Sadly enough. Because as time went on after the change, my skin condition steadily worsened. It got to the point where it was the near polar opposite of what it used to be.

And when I say near polar opposite, I really mean it. The oil that used to sit obnoxiously on my face had just about dried up, and my skin, from being relatively young-looking looked almost scaly. I’m serious when I say that it was that dry. And as though to add salt to injury, I also had a nasty case of cystic acne, when before that, I only had those once every few months. Apparently, after having too much coffee in my body, I’d get them all the time. Most frequently on the sides of my face.

Mad annoying.

Despite how much I had come to love coffee, I love my complexion more. So from that day onwards, I decided to go cold turkey and swapped over to green tea.

Did it make a difference?

Honestly? Yes. I was actually able to see results in less than a week, which was, trust me, more than enough compensation for having to give up my sweetened milk coffee for bitter green tea. Thanks to the swap, my skin started to lose the scaly look it had gained after increased consumption of coffee. Much to my relief. For an awful second there, I had thought I was experiencing heightened signs of ageing.

So happy that wasn’t the case. My skin eventually returned to its usual self; oily and relatively smooth, certainly not suffering from dehydration. The fine lines I had faded as well.

And the inflamed cystic acne? Thank the Lord that those receded too. I’m used to getting one or two every now and then, but consistently every week? So not okay.

That said, I’m not perfect (as I so often hint or even highlight on this blog haha). Sometimes I take coffee when I’m exhausted, have work to do and have no other caffeine-filled alternative close by. Needless to say that those God awful cystic acne and other skin problems consequently returned not long after, so I was glad to immediately drop the drink once I was done with that particularly hectic (and recent) episode of my work life.

While it was annoying, it at least further confirmed that coffee = skin problems. And hey, at least I got some work done, so that was nice.

Tldr; I’m sticking to tea.

Something to Be Happy About

It’s not like this is a big deal or anything, but I just want to put this out there so I’d remember what happened over the weekend. It’s not all the time you receive praise from a film & television director, after all.

But… yeah.

That’s what happened. I was wondering why one of my articles suddenly had a spike in Likes and thought it was some sort of error. Apparently not. So what happened is that the director of one of the shows I reviewed for work really liked my review and shared it on social media with the cast and crew, and they in turn shared it with their loved ones, etc… He also thanked my colleague for bringing me over to the press screening.

Haha, so yeah.

That’s my good news for the day. Now I’m going to awkwardly slink back and return to reality.