Taking manga from paper to the big screen is no easy task, and the live-action version of Bakuman proves that. The story follows secondary students Moritaka Mashiro (Takeru Satoh) and Akito Takagi (Ryunosuke Kamiki) as they team up to make manga, but they quickly realise that getting published is harder than it looks. Despite their lack of experience, they still manage to find their own way into the business with their very own unorthodox creation. The film beautifully highlights just how tough, and often cruel, the manga industry really is.
The plot is nicely developed, and we get to see our protagonists go from zeroes to heroes as they try to compete with professional manga artists. The film sends out the message that producing comics isn't just fun and games, and builds up an appreciation for these artists.
The movie is adapted from the manga series of the same name, and with so many variations and spin-offs, it would be impossible to include the same level of detail as the comics, but overall, the movie is well laid out and easy for everyone to follow and understand.
It might seem like Bakuman is only designed to appeal to otakus' and existing fans, but the reality is that it's a wonderful story of creation and inspiration that all audiences can enjoy.