These are the adjectives that come to mind when I watch Kimura Takuya as Ryo in One Million Stars Falling from the Sky.
A series of murders calls Detective Kanza's attention. Two beautiful students have been murdered and one murder even had been staged to look like a suicide. Kanza, whose own life consist of little than caring for his younger sister, pursues the elads and almost all point into one direction: Katase Ryo, a young, enigmatic though cold junior chef at a restaurant.
Ryo is popular with women even though he treats them with little better than lab rats. He is a player, a womanizer, and even though he has the charm, the women know he doesn't care about them, and yet they still want him.
When Kanza's sister Yuko falls for Ryo, a fateful chain of events begin that might lead to more secrets revealed and more dead bodies than anybody, Kanza, Ryo and Yuko included, can bear.
Ryo for the first time in his life falls for a woman, Yuko. He fights the attraction, knowing that she might mean the end of his existence, but as he falls deeper and deeper in love with her, her brother suspects him of murder more and more. When secrets of Kanza's and Yuko's past are revealed, Ryo and Yuko already have reached the point of no return, and although Yuko loves Ryo it is her decision to end it all. And it has to end, no matter what, they cannot stay together - the scars they both bear physically and mentally show that they cannot be.
I seem to have a knack to pick dramas with a strong incestual theme and I did suspect that something might happen in that kind of vein when it was revealed they both had burn scars on their bodies. When Yuko also pointed out that she and Ryo standing together in front of a mirror their scars looked like two pieces of a puzzle put together, I knew where it was heading. But I simply didn't care. I was so wrapped up in this suspence story and was both appalled and in love with the main male lead. Ryo is a lost little boy who is callous and charming, tender-hearted and cold-blooded, naive and manipulating at the same time, and you hate him for his darker side, but the attributes he displays while with Yuko make up for that. I got to know Ryo because he was a very complex person, a person who is so lonely who cannot relate well to other ppl let alone love them, and then there is Yuko. A young woman he feels drawn towards and even though he tries to tread her like all the other one night stands and girl-friends he had before her, he can't. You see the indecisiveness, the self-hatred, but also the cold-blooded calculation within this character, and I loved him even more for it.
One Million Stars is not the usual drama, heck, it is not even your usual Japanese drama with UST, Angst and life-changing decisions. This is DRAMA with a capital D. It is like a train wreck, you know the train will wreck but you can't do anything but watch. And it is the same with this series. It is intense, it is even disgusting at times, but you cannot stop to watch. You know it will end badly but you cannot stop, you need to know how and why it will end the way you suspect it will end.
I finished this drama over a week ago, and I still am torn between disgust, bawling my eyes out and just curious wonder. I was shell-shocked when the series ended and incoherent (which is a small feat). All I could do was post an almost one liner about this drama in my LJ, I was this surprised and taken in by it.
Kimura Takuya is brilliant in this series. You get shivers down your spine when he as Ryo deals with the women in his life. You can see that he is evil, but at the same time he is a lost little boy trying to find some peace of mind from a dark past that overshadows everything he does and also loves.
I think that is the best performance of him I have seen so far!
x-posted in my journal