Ito (Ren Komai, True Mothers) is a high schooler in the small town of Itayanagi, Aomori Prefecture, withdrawn and still mourning the death of her mother while she was a young child. She’s disinterested in her laidback Tokyoite professor father’s (Etsushi Toyokawa, Her Granddaughter, JC 2018) research into the regional Tsugaru dialect, and rejects invitations to pick up the shamisen she once loved from her grandmother (played by expert of the instrument Yoko Nishikawa). Seeking to break out of her shell, she answers a help wanted ad in nearby Hirosaki City, and works part-time in a maid café, where she meets surprising characters from veteran cosplay servants to stoic baristas and nerdy patrons, allowing her an unexpected space to find self-expression connected to her cultural roots. Director Satoko Yokohama (Ultra Miracle Love Story, JC 2010 and The Actor, JC 2016) returns to her and star Komai’s native Aomori in this heart-warming comedic drama.
Available streaming territory: U.S. only