Follow TV Tropes


Film / Our Little Sister

Go To

Our Little Sister is a 2015 Japanese drama by Kore-Eda Hirokazu.

The three Kouda sisters, named Sachi, Yoshino and Chika live together in a big old house that they inherited. One day, they receive news of the death of their father whom they haven't seen in 15 years. At the funeral, they meet their 14 year old half-sister Suzu Asano. As there is nobody to take care of her the oldest sister Sachi invites her to live with them.

This happens in like ten minutes. Then only daily life things happen but they have to deal with them.


This film features examples of:

  • The Baby of the Bunch:
    • Suzu is a teenager who lives with three adult sisters.
    • Chika was the youngest child before Suzu showed up, the one who barely remembered how life was when the parents were still married and Sachi was already a Parental Substitute for her. Chika is very pleased to have a younger sister to take care of, so she will stop being this trope.
  • Broken Pedestal: A lot of Suzu's angst comes from the fact that her mother fell for a married man and supposedly ruined her older sisters' family. She eventually learns that it's ok not to be blind to her parents' mistakes, but it's also important to forgive them.
  • Children Raise You: A common theme. Sachi had to look after her psychologically fragile mother and her younger sisters. Suzu also is introduced looking after her theatrically grieving stepmother and her little son. Sachi gets very quickly that Suzu is left raising all by herself.
  • Advertisement:
  • Christmas Cake: Sachi is around thirty and still unmarried (she is involved with a married doctor). Her great-aunt worries that adopting Suzu would further dire Sachi's marriage prospects, but Sachi isn't listening.
  • Commonality Connection: Sachi, the eldest sister, bonds immediately with Suzu over the fact that they both grew up ahead of time because they had to care for someone of their family (Sachi had to care for her emotionally needy mother and two younger sisters, Suzu for her fatally ill father), when an adult was supposed to do it.
  • Deceased Parents Are the Best: Discussed and Inverted. The father was apparently a very kind and imaginative person, but his flaws are not overlooked by the elder sisters, who rightly resent him for abandoning them. Even Suzu, who was the closest to their father, drunkenly confesses to having resented him for being forcing to be his caretaker during his illness.
  • Half-Sibling Angst: Suzu's half-sisters are nothing but kind and supportive of her, but the young girl does angst about the fact that her mother supposedly stole the husband of another woman.
  • Happily Adopted: Suzu is happy to live with her older half-sisters.
  • Has a Type: Apparently the father attracted fragile, emotionally needy women. Sachi immediately notes the similarity between her mother and the third wife, who couldn't take care of her ill husband or her stepdaughter, and can't get ahold of herself during the funeral.
  • Modesty Bedsheet: Yoshiko is showed in bed with her boyfriend in the opening scene.
  • No Antagonist: Sometimes the sisters do bark at each other and Sachi has an unresolved conflict with her mother, but no one is the villain.
  • Nuclear Family: Inverted. The family consists in three adult sisters and one teenage little sisters. The parents are deceased or absent.
  • Parental Abandonment: Both parents of the older sisters left them. The film begins as their father dies after fifteen years of absence; and their mother is still alive but not living with them.
  • Passionate Sports Girl: Chika, the youngest of the original trio, is the sporty gal who works in a sports store. Suzu is also a enthusiastic football player.
  • Practically Different Generations: The entire premise is having three adult sister being the guardians of a teenage half-sister.
  • Promotion to Parent: Sachi, the older sister, is the head of the family. She also decides to adopt her little half-sister, who is over a decade younger.
  • Really Gets Around: Yoshino has a series of deadbeat, emotionally needy or unavailable boyfriend who usually end up dumping her. She gets better at the end starting to date a kindly co-worker.
  • Sailor Fuku: Asano wears one when first meeting her older sisters.
  • Sibling Team: These three then four sisters live together, the older one acting as head of the family.
  • Slice of Life: The film has no conventional plot, but focus on the daily life of the sisters and the conflicts that arise in some situations.
  • Sugar-and-Ice Personality: Sachi is usually ice to everyone and sugar towards Suzu.
  • Unbalanced By Rival's Kid: The three elder sisters' mother is polite towards Suzu but rather cold. Unsurprisingly since she was dumped by her husband's for Suzy's mother. However, she comes around quite soon, and brings a present to Suzu when she visits her daughters.
  • Understanding Boyfriend: Sachi has a married lover, who quite unusually provides useful advises for her family life and is generally supporting. They eventually end the affair and he moves outside Japan, but end things amicably.
  • Unknown Relative: What Suzu is to her older sisters in the beginning. She meets her older half-sisters at their father's funeral.