Kogure Shashinkan (Kogure Photo Studio) is based on a novel by Miyuki Miyabe. When I found out that Miyabe-sensei was the one writing the story and Kamiki was the main cast, I immediately searched for the drama. I have encountered several works done by Miyuki Miyabe and I like most of them. Crossfire, a book about a girl who can controls fire is my favorite Miyuki Miyabe’s book.
Kogure Shashinkan is my favorite family drama done by Kamiki Ryunosuke, a very talented young Japanese actor. This is the third time he played as the oldest son in a family, the other two were 11 Nin Mo Iru (review) and Kazoku Game (I haven’t finished this one because the story lingers too much). In each drama, he showed different acting skill even though in all three he became the oldest son. One as a gentle brother, one as a cold brother and one as panicky brother. I just love seeing him acts.
Anyway, I have mentioned it before that I always like stories in a happy family rather than in a dysfunctional family (I guess that’s why I haven’t finished Kazoku Game even though Kamiki’s acting was brilliant there). Kogure Shashinkan is a warm story revolving around a happy family. The mysteries surrounding the photo studio makes the story more interesting.
Hanabishi Family decided to buy an old photo studio. However, they didn’t plan on using it as a studio only as a house. In honor of the previous owner, they kept the sign despite not using it as a photo studio. The place was said to be haunted by the old owner, Mr.Kogure. The Hanabishi were Hanabishi Hideo (Ishiguro Ken), Hanabishi Kyoko (Matsushita Yuki), Hanabishi Eiichi (Kamiki Ryunosuke) and Hanabihi Hikaru (Kabe Amon)…and an extended family, Tenko (Eiichi’s best friend) (Horii Arata). The family had a peculiar way of calling their sons, Eiichi was called Hana-chan even though Hana is usually a girl’s name and Hikaru was called Pika-chan (Hikaru means light and Pika means sparkle). The Hanabishi actually had a daughter but she had passed away due to a sudden illness. Her death had caused this small family to break away from their relatives because when Fuko passed away, everyone was blaming Kyoko for her death.
Not long after living in the photo studio, Hana-chan was given a ghost photo. The girl who gave him the photo found it in a book she bought. A face of a sad woman was seen in the background of a family photo. With some help from his family, his best friend and the real estate agents, Hana-chan began investigating the photo.
His success in solving the mystery on that photo led him to other unusual photos and somehow he got a nick name as Ghost Photo Detective.
You might think that this mini series (there were only 4 episodes) was about ghost and mystery…but it really wasn’t like that!! The story was pure about family problem.
All the ghost photos acted as stories that connect to Hanabishi’s family problems. The family loved each other…they were a true happy family. Their problems was with their relatives. Every mystery solved by Hana-chan helped him to understand his family’s problems and how to help his family.
Kogure Shashinkan was a warm family story…there were no exaggerated cry, no exaggerated shout and definitely no exaggerated family fight. It looked so normal that you could easily relates it to your own family. It was a simple story and yet very fun.
I really like Hana-chan and Tenko’s friendship. It reminds me of my own friendship with my best friend (we’ve been friends for 20 years now).
I really like their brothership (I don’t think this is even a word 😉 ) Hana-chan took good care of his little brother. Both of them showed how 2 brothers from a warm family would act.
I also like Hana-chan’s unclear relationship with Kakimoto, an older girl who worked in the real estate agency with suicidal issues.
Basically…Kogure Shashinkan was about relationship between one person to another. Although we could clearly see that it centered mostly on Hana-Chan.
And I love everyone’s acting…every actor act so normally here, it’s like every one was destined to be the character they were chosen to play. Kamiki, once again delivered a great performance, he managed to deliver all the perfect emotion for his role.
Overall, I really enjoyed Kogure Shashinkan. I have watched it twice and would love to watch it again one day.
Title: 小暮写眞館 – Kogure Shashinkan (Kogure Photo Studio )
Director: Kumasaka Izuru & Moriya Kentaro
Cast: Kamiki Ryunosuke, Narumi Riko, Ishiguro Ken, Matsushita Yuki, Sasano Takashi, Horii Arata, Kabe Amon