Title: Touch: Miss Lonely Yesterday aka Touch: Are kara, Kimi wa…
Format: Movie; 92 minutes.
Company: Group TAC
Dates: 12 Dec 1998
Synopsis: Asakura Minami and Uesugi Tatsuya watch solemnly over a grave, honoring the memory of the deceased. While they had grown closer during high school, since graduation they have drifted slowly apart. As Minami blossoms into a beautiful and talented young woman, Tatsuya leaves behind his memories and baseball talent of his high school years. Will they let each other slip away, or will they confess their love for one another? And will Tatsuya accept his true potential as an ace pitcher?
Music: “Miss Lonely Yesterday” is the saving grace.
Animation: Newer technology, different feel, same dated styling.
Story: Sidetracked gibberish; why pull a great series off its pedestal?
Fade in. Miss Lonely Yesterday begins three years after the events of the television series, following the relationship between Asakura Minami and Uesugi Tatsuya. The ending of Touch ended on a rather high note, so as the movie began I really questioned what good could come of it, not to mention the fact that the movie was produced more than ten years after the last episode of Touch ran. Overall, I was rather disappointed with the outcome.
Obviously, with newer technology the animation has been “improved” in comparison to the original. The outcome is a brighter, more computer-animated look with slight character alterations that are more irritating than anything else. Regardless, the art style still screams “1980s”, which may be a turn off for some. While the original television run boasted a great soundtrack, Miss Lonely Yesterday didn’t give the same performance. One track did prove to be rather enjoyable, and that’s the song the title is named after. “Are kara, kimi wa…” by Serizawa Hiroaki is a rather catchy melody that sets the perfect mood for the scene it plays in. Other than that, the rest of the soundtrack is unappealing.
The overall plot of Miss Lonely Yesterday is rather redundant. A new character, Mizuno Kaoru, is introduced as a friend and fellow student at Tatsuya’s college. As a proliferating relationship develops between the two of them, Minami feels betrayed and begins seeing men that fans of the television series will recall. This charade of being dishonest and not caring continues right until the end, when Tatsuya finally decides whether or not to pursue his baseball talents, and Minami as well. The premise for the movie is more suitable to that of a random episode and therefore doesn’t have enough substance to stand well on its own.
Because the end of the television series was done so well, I felt that the premise of making a television movie was rather redundant. Not a lot gets accomplished, other than throwing an additional supporting character into the melting pot and dragging the cast through a pointless side plot. Because the focus of the story is so melodramatic and focuses away from baseball, you lose the chaotic humor that Tatsuya’s character added so well. Also, without the endurance and hardships the sports drama brought along, the movie just didn’t feel right. Miss Lonely Yesterday wasn’t entirely without redeeming qualities, but these were far too little and way too late. Newcomers to the franchise will be without any background, so it certainly cannot stand on its own. Fans of the original series will be sure to check it out, but if they do they should expect to be sorely disappointed.
The Rating: 4
Reviewed by: Godai