Hopeless Tears is an anime movie from the studio that created Perfect Blue. It revolves around a teenage pop star who is kidnapped and tortured by her stalker, and in the process she plays a series of mind games with him and herself to earn his trust and escape. The MPAA gave it a hard R rating for "strong violence, language, nudity and drug use", and had some scenes trimmed to avoid an NC-17 rating. Viz Media rated the uncut DVD as 'M for Mature' and the edited DVD as 'T+ for Older Teens'. Right Stuf Network played a heavily edited version late at night a few times.
Natsumi Kaska was a teenage pop star who won the hearts of boys; she was cornered one night by a stalker who drugged her and took her back to his house. He strips her naked while unconscious and examines her body, while whispering "Forever you will be mine..."
Natsumi awakens in her basement, fully clothed now. The stalker forces her to a 'special version of Hide and Seek', where she would have to be in chains and try to hide behind objects. During this game, she sees the stalker shirtless, blushes, but then shakes it off, refusing to get emotions for him.
Later on, he takes her to a restaurant and has her pretend to be his girlfriend, much to her dismay. Reporters truly believe she is going out with him and take pictures, as she attempts to explain to them that he was not her boyfriend, but the stalker threatens to kill her if she does, so she goes with it.
The next morning Natsumi finds him more attractive as she tries to seduce him, and he is rather horrified by the fact she enjoys it. He tries to make her leave his house, but Natsumi threatens to tell the cops everything if he makes her leave. He sighs and decides to let her stay, and they make love. The stalker begins to agree to marriage with her as he falls sound asleep.
When he wakes up, he finds himself dangling from a bridge, Natsumi smiling. He desperately gasps and begs her not to kill him, stating that he thought she loved him. Natsumi laughs and says, "Me? Love you? Love is a cruel game, darling. But I guess you'll never know."
After he begs and pleads some more, Natsumi drops him in the ocean, and it is implied he drowns. She sends a story to the reporters saying that she found out he was cheating on her, so they broke up. Natsumi continues on her life as a teenage pop star, and later flirts with a boy at one of her concerts, narrating the end of the movie stating that "this is truly what love feels like."
- Despite being a rather low-budget film, the movie was praised and did quite well in the box office in both Japan and America, being one of the only anime films in America to get a large release in over 10,000 theaters.