ESC to close 3.69 (by 114 users)cha no aji
  • 2004
  • film
  • Japan

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romanized cha no aji
english The Taste Of Tea (literal)


genres comedy, drama


language Japanese


country Japan
type real
format film


date 17 Jul, 2004
duration 143 minutes
status released


avg. score 3.69 of 5 by 114 users
total users 215
rating 421
favorites 3



This film follows a household that anyone would think is normal. However, each member of the family is someone entirely unique and all have their own special problems and hobbies.




Haruno Ayano
Haruno Sachiko
Haruno Hajime
Haruno Yoshiko
Terako Akira
Haruno Nobuo


director, screenwriter, original creator, editor


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21 Jul, 2011
This was probably one of the most innovative films I've ever watched.

I have to admit, I was standing in my library's foreign film section when I first saw this. I wasn't very interested, because the summary on the back made it seem rather boring. My opinion was drastically changed. But there are some spoilers.

The family is seemingly very normal, and if you think about it, they really actually are. A mother and a father of a teenage boy and a young girl, living with their grandfather. Their uncle visits them, and their grandmother is no longer living. Everything seems like you could most likely find a family that fits that description, correct?

However, this film isn't just a regular, boring slice-of-life. It shows how every single person is different from each other, enjoys different hobbies, and lives their lives in completely unique ways. It shows how everyone needs to enjoy their lives the way they want to enjoy their lives, because it is completely up to them.

The teenage boy is in love with the new transfer student; that is a story we have all heard of before. But the boy is different from the other boys. The girl is a different transfer student, with different hobbies and looks. Everything is the same but everything is different.

The young girl is bothered by a gigantic version of herself, who watches her everywhere. One could take this as an overactive imagination, an imaginary not-so-friendly friend, or many other things. But this giant being is completely unique, as is the girl who is bothered by it. It is her own distinctive problem.

The mother is an animator who once gave up her dream job because she needed to take care of her children. Many women in the world have to give up their careers because they become mothers. But her family is different from others; and her circumstances are also. Her personality is unique. The animated short she created from her imagination is entirely her own and cannot be copied by another mind.

The father is a hypnotist. He helps people everyday and knows what the subconscious mind is telling us. A scene from the movie shows one of his patients who is currently under hypnosis. She tells him that she sees an angel who is a hairdryer. When she comes back to reality, he tells her that "his angel was a telephone." I believe that this is telling the viewer that no matter who you try to be on the outside, your subconscious mind is always the same and is always matchless.

The uncle who is visiting for most of the film is a music mixer who is still not over a romance that ended years ago. This is also a common situation. But his thoughts are different. The way he handles it is different.

Another uncle is a manga artist. His assistants are unique to themselves, and his somewhat peculiar personality definitely is as well.

The last character in this film I'd like to say something about is the grandfather. He is fun-loving, he doesn't care what people think of what he does and what he stands for or anything like that. He knows that life is the most beautiful thing in the world, and because of that, he is one of the most beautiful people I've ever seen.

This film can be interpreted in many ways, so you may not have agreed with everything said in this review. But I believe that is what the film is trying to get across. Everyone is special, for lack of a better word, and that life is beautiful and we should all treat it that way.
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sayitaintsojoe 10 Sep, 2014
Nice. Funny. Weird.
alicedreams 31 Aug, 2013
First half is great but then lags.
aqu135 23 Feb, 2013
When I watched it again, I could see all the connection!
Loved the ending with the drawings ♥
buebuesan 04 Jul, 2012
oh yeah! :)
purefault 14 Dec, 2011
At once, both subtly vibrant, and vibrantly subtle. Beautiful cinematography. A delightful film.
dutchviola 25 Jul, 2011
A wonderful peculiar movie.
lostinthemist 16 Jun, 2011
I've never seen a ghost in a movie who has a pile of shit on the head. Ever.
hidde 16 Dec, 2010
A slow, relaxing movie.

agreed, all paintings he left was so wonderful and touching :o