When it comes to romance, few things are as painful as unrequited — or unnoticed — love. But making your feelings known can be scary. Who wants to be rejected, especially by someone you feel is The One? No one.

In “The Girl I Like,” Shinya Tamada’s relationship drama based on an essay by comedian Naoki Matayoshi, the main character stoutly maintains his “just friends” status with a woman he clearly longs for. Is he a nice guy, an immature boy who needs to grow up or just a coward? The film, which Tamada also scripted, considers all these possibilities with nuance, humor and, in the end, pathos.

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