in 4D Foundation - 4, Assignment

4D Assignment 3

Love You to Death (Poster)

Romance | Fantasy

Based on the tale of Romeo and Juliet

Inspiration: Japanese animated films such as Howl’s Moving Castle, Spirited Away and Hotarubi no Mori e 



June had always been able to see spirits ever since she was a young girl. They weren’t exactly scary – most of the times they just look like normal people, but for that reason June always has to ostracise herself from people. If she lets her guard down for just a moment, people would eventually find out about her condition. Nonetheless, because of her looks and pleasant demeanour, she was still relatively popular among her classmates and was not totally without acquaintances. 

One day, as she was going about her usual routine of buying groceries, she spots a guy from the corner of her eyes. For the next few days, she keeps seeing him. He was always wearing black, and looked around her age. The only odd thing was that he always seemed to be looking at her. Realising that he might be some sort of spirit, she gets a bit wary of him and what he might want from her.

After a week of this, as June is keeping her groceries at home, the guy appears again. In shock, she drops her items, backing up against the wall. He reassures her that he means her no harm, and that he is merely here to inform her of something. His face changes, and she senses that the news he is about to break to her is not something pleasant.

He informs her that he is not a spirit, but a grim reaper. Her time on earth is about to come to an end, and it is his duty to collect her soul when her death happens. Being in shock, she is unable to comprehend what he had just told her. He proceeds to leave, and she tries to grab on to him in an attempt to get more answers from him. He recoils back before she can touch him, stating that grim reapers are observers and exist to guide people to the netherworld, and they thus have no business interacting with humans or spirits other than for that purpose. There is a delicate balance between spirits, grim reapers and humans, and any further interaction or contact would upset it. In other words, once a human comes into close contact with a grim reaper, he too will become one. Sensing that she was at a loss, he asks her to spend her last few days with close friends and family.

She slumps, stating that she has no real friends. Conflicted, she doesn’t know what to do with the time she has left. Taking pity on her, the grim reaper stays with her. They naturally start to converse, and she finds out his name is Rin. Over the course of the whole week, Rin keeps visiting her, and June enjoys his company. She feels in her a longing that she has never felt before; in front of her was a man who wouldn’t think she was odd, who wouldn’t judge her, who could see her as she was. She felt a sort of comfort that she had never felt before. His warm hazel eyes were always soft and inviting, and he was always so curious about what she had to say. For once, it felt like she was having a real human conversation.

Picking up her courage, she asks about his job. He explains that his job is tough because he knows when people’s times are up, and is in charge of executing their deaths. She asks if it is customary for grim reapers to have this sort of relationship with the people they reap. He says no. Most of the times, when people are told that their time on earth is about to end, they start going into a frenzy and eventually channel their despair and hatred towards him. Never has he been able to have a proper conversation with a human being. He admits that this is the first time he’s ever spent so much time with another person and felt so connected. At the same time, he is intrigued by her and her personality, and how she isn’t afraid of death. He asks her why.

After pondering over the question for a while, June explains herself. To her, death was beautiful – for in death you could finally leave all worldly desires and worries behind and be who you want to be, love who you want to love and say what you want to say. Death was beautiful, and death was freeing. She wasn’t afraid of death, because he would be there too.

She asks when her time is. Rin looks away.

Wanting to be with him, she asks to embrace him. He doesn’t want her to have what he has, to always be stuck in a position where you take people away from their loved ones. He wants her to pass on and move on. She reasons with him that for once in her life, she has finally found someone she can call a friend, or perhaps even more. For once in her life, she has something she feels so strongly about. For once in her life, there was someone whom she longed to see, and vice versa. It was her decision to make.

Seeing no point in arguing against her, Rin gives in. He opens his arms for her, and smiles at her reassuringly. He understood her now. There was no one waiting for her in the afterlife, and there was no one she would be looking forward to meeting either. He had been there for her, and always would be. She went willingly and happily, relieved that she could be with him. She embraced him.

Finally, she had found something so precious. Love, friendship, and human warmth so undeniably real and strong. Ironically, it was all from an unworldly existence. Nonetheless, it was love, and it was love that finally freed her.




I have always been a fan of Japanese animation, and I love how Japanese story telling always places an emphasis on the characters and their thoughts rather than the events of the story itself. Since this is a romance genre, I felt that the female lead’s thoughts were an integral part of the story and how it should be told, and thus decided to stick to the conventional method of telling the story from the her point of view.


The main point I was trying to bring across in this story is the concept of how love transcends all things and knows no boundaries, and how love always happens when you least expect it. While it is a very common and perhaps even overused concept, I wanted to portray it in a different way. I placed the emphasis of the story on the main character and her thoughts so that readers would feel more involved in her journey, and so that the romance would be able to develop better. With the story being more character oriented, I wanted the readers to be able to feel what June did, and feel a strong connection to her.


  1. I love how you decided to be more character orientated rather than event to be able to develop the romance story better. The concept of being able to fall in love with the “unlovable”. (y)

  2. Your movie poster is very well thought out, and it actually looks a little bit like a story book cover! But I am just a little bit confused at the end… So after the embrace, June turns into a grim reaper and they stays together? Or is she dead after that embrace? Or should the audience interpret the ending themselves?

  3. I really love your story because it’s incredibly emotionally captivating. Even though there have been similar story concepts like this before, it is still enjoyable and does not come off as cliche.

    The main characters come off star-crossed lovers which gains sympathy of the viewers, but they eventually have a pleasant ending together too. June’s connection with Rin is clear, due to her innate ability to see otherworldly beings. This allows the viewers to see an apparent potential for them to connect to each other, thus to be convinced by their love for each other.

    In my opinion, there’s potential in this, and I would love to see it being materialised into an actual drama or movie. 🙂

  4. I feel drawn to Rin, for he is the symbol of death yet is portrayed in a different light, being an empathetic character. I enjoyed the story and find the idea of the precious love between the bodies of life and death very enticing.

  5. I like the poster design, where the ribbon add more feel to the poster, a deeper meaning! Interesting idea of how the character in a dilemma, of choosing which path to go! 🙂 good job!

  6. The story is very sweet and I feel emotionally drawn to it as well – there must be a reason why the story “Romeo and Juliet” has survived through all these years – it just doesn’t get old. Your adaption of Romeo & Juliet is refreshing but yet stayed true to its original essence – the star crossed lovers only joined together in “death”; except that I like your story better since there is an afterlife for your Romeo and Juliet! Yay for happy (or so I thought!) endings 🙂

    I really liked the poster design – extremely minimalistic, simple but well thought-out! Though the photograph is only of an object, I felt that it is very symbolistic and expressive, right from the withered flowers (symbolising death) down to the red ribbon that binds the flowers together.

  7. TBH this is one of my favorite stories <3 I love fantasy romance but me myself cannot make it i don't know why T.T can't wait to see the trailer if you will make it :))
    and the poster whoaaaa. okay, i think I cannot comment much, becoz me like all of them 🙂

  8. The writer of this version gives off a vibes that she follows the twilight novel series especially with the poster design! =p On a serious note though, I see the effort in putting thought to create a storyline that is away from the cliche original of Romeo & Juliet. You also incited a feel that a random Edward Cullen will appear anytime

  9. Jo! I felt that I had read this story somewhere before!

    Anyways, I thought that the story brings out every man’s desire to not be afraid of the inevitable. Often, Death is viewed by man as scary; and unknown; but your story seeks to prove and change the viewer’s mind of how they perceive death; even lightening the weight and gravity of it. One of the stories that I feel majority of the public will love.

  10. Ms CHIO!
    I love how the poster actually conveys the atmosphere of the movie. The symbolic interpretations are spot on! As for the plot, I love the use of the Grim Reaper as an unconventional character. I love the idea of the contrast of death and the living! The conclusion feels really bittersweet! It leaves a really strange fuzzy feeling, I don’t know if that is a good thing or not. HAHA

  11. Hey Jo, your story is really poetic and there’s a magical element to it. I could see the growth of your characters as they learn more about each other and the effects they have on one another. It’s a heart-warming story and one that definitely piqued my interest. I think there is potential for it to be a very symbolic film with interesting characters put in a unique situation; which are some of the ingredients that make a great film!