Secret Love Affair

Secret Love Affair (2014)

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Ratings: 7.5/10 from 1,171 users
Reviews: 13 users

"Secret Love Affair" tells the story of secret romance between Oh Hye-Won, a woman in her 40's, and Lee Sun-Jae, a man in his 20's. Oh Hye-Won, works as the director of planning for the Seohan Arts Foundation. She is elegant and excels at dealing with other people. Oh Hye-Won becomes involved in a love affair with Lee Sun-Jae. He is genius like pianist in his 20's.

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20 of 20 people found this review helpful
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Aug 20, 2014
  • Overall 9.5
  • Story 7.0
  • Acting/Cast 10
  • Music 10
  • Rewatch Value 8.0
Once again I've confirmed my endless love for music. This drama was a true proof to that. I was blown away by the brilliance of this drama from the very first moment I saw the first episode. The great combination of amazing acting especially from Yoo Ah In, portrayal of their passion, and the most important the fantastic choice of classical music got me hooked right away.
Just to be clear about read more something, I'm not a fan of love affairs, actually I don't like them at all and usually do not watch dramas with concept like that but this one I chose because of the music theme and the main actor. And I'm glad I did that 'cause I fell in love with this drama so deeply with no cure for healing. For the record this drama and story aren't affair at all as all of us think what affair actually is and you could see that from the very start and the relationship between the married couple, they were more like business partners. Yoo Ah In and Kim Hee Ae have done the job brilliant in portraying the two people who met and simply, slowly fell in love through the piano playing, music sheets, Mozart, Liszt, Tchaikovsky, and many other classical geniuses. I was hypnotized and mesmerized with their conversations, with their playing, with their passionate chemistry, I can't remember when I've reacted like this to some couple and chemistry in drama, since MARS I haven't felt like this.
This is not some average bubbly romance drama; it's dark, complex, passionate, bittersweet, and sometimes even torturous. It's a true emotional, mature and adult romance drama where we'll cheer as hard as we can for love to win against all odds. It’s a story to show how love can change one for the best or the worst. I loved very much how they concentrate simply on development of the main characters, their constant battle inside them, their pain, their hope and most of all their passion. It had been a very long time that I had felt such complex emotions with such intensity. It was almost like I was one of them. Of course there are boring parts, for example the part about business and all those irritating female characters who were so evil, bad and gossiping around, I really hate that. But except that everything else was a masterpiece for real. Yoo Ah In as a young piano prodigy was magnificent, he once again proved to me why he's one of my favourite actors in the whole world. When he’s onscreen with Kim, they make beautiful music together, both literally and figuratively. The love story generates plenty of heat, and feels genuine and quite moving. As long as the two leads are playing duets together or sharing bowls of noodles, everything else was in the shadow, only them and their fantastic chemistry.
Unlike in the most of average dramas, the music actually added meaning and depth to the drama. They played so many beautiful pieces from so many great composers and anyone who has any appreciation for classical music is going to enjoy this drama enormously. This drama is a bit slow, but it didn't bother me at all. I loved that I could see and feel their every gaze, touch, and emotion. I was able to synchronize my emotions with them, to understand and feel how they fell for one another.

For me this drama has a deep meaning and definitely left me with so many great and honest emotions. If you're like me a person who loves a true pure romance dramas with adult and mature thinking with endless love for music in your daily life, then this drama is for you.
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20 of 22 people found this review helpful
Other reviews by this user
Jun 18, 2014
  • Overall 9.5
  • Story 9.0
  • Acting/Cast 10
  • Music 10
  • Rewatch Value 8.0
Imagine all the negative prejudices possible that one can have against a drama, and then add a little more negative biases; that's exactly how I felt before watching this drama. I hate love affairs, so I thought I could never ever bring myself to watch this. Watching the first episode was a momentary insanity for me, and guess what? I was blown away by the brilliance of this drama!! The majestic combination read more of perfect acting and breathtaking portrayal of their passion, the amazing directing and cinematography, and most of all the phenomenal choice of classical music got me hooked.

I think this drama is severely underrated and in my opinion mainly because of its poor choice of title. "Love affair" brings out the notion of betraying romantic emotions of someone and their trust at the deepest level. It's a dirty and unforgivable act. However, this story is about anything but love affair. Granted the female lead is married, but in this scenario, considering her marriage and how the relationship is, I don't think anyone who will watch this would think that this was a love affair, it simply doesn't fit the category!

This is not your average light and bubbly love; it's dark, complex, passionate, bitter-sweet, and even sometimes torturous. It's a battle where we'll cheer as hard as we can for love to win against all odds. It's a story of growth and maturing oneself through experiencing love, a story of how easily one can lose oneself if s/he is chasing the wrong goals, and how they can still go back to true happiness regardless of their past/bad choices. It’s a story to show how love can change one for the best or the worst.

Before analyzing the rest of the drama, I just have to say that I LOVED the music in this drama!!!!! They played so many beautiful pieces that were very well integrated within the flow of the story. Also, unlike your average drama, the music actually added meaning and depth to the drama. Most of the pieces were classical music played by the main leads (and let me tell you, I still cannot believe that they are actors not professional pianists!!!) There was one song that was not classical music, and it fitted the drama better than Cinderella's glass shoe fitted her. Anyone who has any appreciation for classical music is going to enjoy this drama enormously. And I'm not overselling it by stating that it's through the music that we can truly understand their passion, their fears and their love.

The pacing is slow, but surprisingly it didn't bother me at all. I loved that I could take my time and savor their every single gaze, touch, and emotion. The slow pace allowed me to synchronize my emotions with them; to not only understand, but also feel how they fell for one another. I guess the only negative point of the drama is the business part of it, but trust me; this one is not as bad as the others out there. It’s not the strongest part of the drama and the writers try not to get very technical with it. But I think it wasn’t that poorly written/executed. In the scale of the drama as a whole, it didn’t bother me at all!

The characters are complex, and it takes time to truly understand them. There were times that I was very annoyed with the main actress because I didn't really understand her. Nevertheless, as the drama progressed, my understanding of the characters deepened and I start too feel their pain, their hope and most of all their passion. It had been a very long time that I had felt such complex emotions with such intensity. It was almost like I was one of them.

Well I can go on and on, but I want to keep this review at a semi-reasonable length to allow ppl to read it. So if you're a fan of classical music, or if you want to go on a very emotional and bittersweet journey of love, fear and loss, I would recommend you to definitely give this a chance.
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Make a Recommendation More recs (7)Recommendations

in both works, the heroine -who gave up on being a pianist- meets a piano genius and decides to help him dream big.
Recommended by ParkChohwa
Seol Nae Il and Lee Sun Jae are genius gemstones with a bright future as pianists. Both pour their hearts in the piano without restrictions. They let their hearts play and they face the conformity and the coldness of the world.
Recommended by ParkChohwa

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Comments (87)

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    Mo-chan May 11, 2015

    I LOVE this kind of movie/drama, where you can feel idk like the poesy of the acting and the purety of the moment they share. I found myself crying over the way they portrayed emotions in some scenes, it was AWESOME.
    I downloaded Billy Joel's Piano man, that scene got me heartbreaking too

  • Reply
    beloved89 Mar 21, 2015

    Some decent parts...but the ending dropped my rating a lot.

  • Reply
    bLoodYThoughtS Mar 21, 2015
    Reveal Spoiler »
  • Reply
    alexk345 Jan 10, 2015

    Yoo Ah In is a worst actor. Anyone like this acting need to check their head. He just rushes everything because he can't emote much. I hate to see this guy in a drama. can't stand him. he annoys me. Great lead actress and good story

    • Reply
      winterlasting Feb 14, 2015

      you can have an opinion, but you don't need to bash others. Seriously. Don't like don't watch. No one is forcing you. -.-

  • Reply
    alexk345 Jan 10, 2015

    I hate the hero. He annoys me with limited acting. He was same mess in fashion king. Another limited actor get a chance by influence? bad casting director

  • Reply
    anonymous1112 Jan 5, 2015

    I watched for episode 1 and tried really hard to finished it! It just toooooooo boring! IMHO

    • Reply
      Mo-chan May 11, 2015

      You didn't get the feels ^^

  • Reply
    jumpstar Dec 31, 2014


  • Reply
    Lunacordelia Dec 23, 2014

    Such a beautiful drama!

  • Reply
    iamsarah Dec 6, 2014

    Amazing story of two unintended lovers that came to be a home for each other while one was an elegant slave. Just finished it and although this was most definitely not perfect it was in it's on way perfect.

  • Reply
    NicEgUy Nov 24, 2014

    I just finished it and it was amazing.I like story and acts specially Yoo Ah In that was awesome.

  • Reply
    bertkhua Nov 18, 2014

    Good drama but i dont like the ending of this drama. witch's romance is better than secret love affair...

  • Reply
    jumpstar Oct 12, 2014

    i think somehow jtbc is special.

  • Reply
    ReyBo Sep 19, 2014

    boring show .

  • Reply
    Chrisstina Aug 29, 2014
    Reveal Spoiler »
  • Reply
    ahtaena Aug 15, 2014

    this is mind blowing and beautiful, i think this series is a piece of art and wowwww for the music, you can actually feel every emotion, i loved it, i think people didn`t like it because it wasn`t the typical kdarama that everyone expect...beautiful masterpiece...if you are a person who likes deep emotions definitely watch this...this will make your soul satisfied...


  • Country:

    South Korea
  • Type:

  • Episodes:

  • Aired:

    Mar 17, 2014 to May 13, 2014
  • Aired On:

    Monday, Tuesday
  • Network:

  • Duration:

    60 min.


  • Score:

    7.5 (scored by 1,171 users)
  • Ranked:

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