Example would: この第二次世界大戦についてドキュメンタリーはちょっと観にくいけど、本当に面白いと思う。work to say: This documentary about WW2 is a bit hard to watch (hard to stomach) but it is very interesting.

  • 3
    I think you'd use 観づらい instead for such a subjective meaning. 観にくい sounds to me like there's something wrong with the production/media of the documentary, or that you have trouble accessing it. But I could see wrong about that. See The differences between ~がたい、〜にくい、〜づらい for more info.
    – istrasci
    Jun 13, 2023 at 20:19
  • If you mean 'very unpleasant' by 'hard to watch', neither 観にくい nor 見づらい works.
    – sundowner
    Jun 14, 2023 at 2:54
  • 1
    – aguijonazo
    Jun 14, 2023 at 6:46

2 Answers 2


If you mean it is the content that makes you feel "hard to watch (keep watching)", then you are already receiving some information from that. In this case, 観にくい is not applicable. It would mean that you have difficulty bringing yourself to the point ready to watch, because e.g. hard to obtain, tape is damaged, resolution is too low etc. I think you need to be a bit more specific which aspects in the content make you uncomfortable.

観るのがつらい/きつい painful to watch (not 観づらい)
観て楽しいものではない not very pleasant to watch
わかりにくい hard to understand

Or as a workaround, 観やすくない "not easy to watch" could be understood vaguely that there is something not easygoing inside.


No, you can’t. 観づらい doesn’t work, either. You can say 観るのがつらい, instead.

Or you should explicitly say how you feel when you watch it, like 観ると悲しくなる.

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