CHIBIHAM, JUICY & ME
CHIBIHAM, JUICY & ME
A culture shock comedy by an American filmmaker who has lived in Japan for 20 years!
Paprika, an American exchange student, waits restlessly in the lobby of Haneda Airport. She has come to pick up her cousin Chibiham. Her friend Juicy has come along, and is looking forward to meeting Chibiham for the first time.
The girls turn at the loud voice. Chibiham has arrived, sporting a big, round belly and a very dowdy mumu. Chibiham runs at them, tripping and smashing into people as sweets fly from her bag. From the moment she arrives, Chibiham is a self-centered disaster.
Paprika recalls Chibiham’s old selfishness from their youth, and realizes that she hasn’t changed at all. Juicy, too, is surprised by Chibiham’s behavior, since Paprika is a much quieter and more subdued a person.
Chibiham quickly laughs off her mishaps as she eats the candy she brought from abroad, saying, “I can’t stand Japanese food all the time.” It was much different than what Paprika had been expecting of her cousin, and she worried how the homestay will turn out.
Sure enough, Chibiham does all kinds of things that shock the girls as she stays with them. For example, she rants on the train, refusing to give up her seat to an elderly person. She refuses to even glance at the Japanese food that Juicy cooks for her, and even cries when she goes to a fast food restaurant and to discover that the green tea in Japan is not sweet. On one occasion, she grabs at clothes with her chocolate-covered hands in a gothic-lolita specialty store in Harajuku, and gets into a fight with the clerk. Paprika is annoyed at her general lack of remorse.
Of course, this is not the only time Chibiham will run amok. Chibiham is not used to Japanese-style toilets, and the bathroom ends up covered in… erm, yeah. Paprika is constantly forced to clean up Chibiham’s messes. Literally.
A battle breaks out when Juicy’s mom comes to visit. She takes the girls sightseeing and to eat sushi, but Chibiham keeps complaining about the soba, the sushi, and everything. Mama finally snaps and says, “If you don’t accept any challenges, you won’t grow as a person. If you are arrogant, no one will respect you.”
Finally, Chibiham reaches out her hand and tries the sushi. She admits, “It’s delicious.”
Could it be that the selfish Chibiham may have begun on a journey far more important than just a homestay in a new country?
Selections and Awards:
September 24, 2022