2015 / 119m - Japan
Bakuman poster


June 24, 2020


A rather simple but likeable and easily digestible drama. Bakuman offers a peak into the world of mangakas, though don't expect anything too serious. The presentation is light and focuses on familiar themes like chasing your dream, overcoming problems and valuing friendship. In that sense, it could've been about literally every other topic.

The film does touch upon some some less idyllic aspects of the job, like the pressure of serialization, the competition and the harsh working conditions, but none of that really makes a big impression. The characters are a bit too stereotypical and the drama a little too convenient for that. Then again, big drama and social critique is clearly not what this film set out to do.

The cast is likeable, the cinematography slick (with a couple of stand-out scenes) and the film flows well. Even though it's two hours long, it never drags or loses momentum. It's just a very warm, easy-going drama that has its heart in the right place, but doesn't really excel at anything particular. Premium filler in other words.