- Ensemble Darkhorse: Chieko. She's the least connected to the main plot, but critics were talking about Rinko Kikuchi's Oscar chances the instant the movie came out.
- Retroactive Recognition: American audiences are now far more likely to recognize Rinko Kikuchi (Chieko) for her role as Mako Mori in Pacific Rim. Interestingly, Alejandro González Iñárritu is known to be good friends with fellow Mexican filmmaker Guillermo del Toro (they're two-thirds of the so-called "Three Amigos", along with Alfonso Cuaron); Iñárritu may well have been the one who recommended Kikuchi to Del Toro for Pacific Rim.
- Tear Jerker: This goes hand-in-hand with Oscar Bait movies. The exceptionally sad scenes all involve the deaf Japanese girl struggling with coming of age and her maturing sexuality.
- Unintentionally Unsympathetic: It's the case for many (but not all) characters. Obviously caused by the Idiot Plot.