Secret Love Affair

Secret Love Affair (2014)

7.6
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Ratings: 7.6/10 from 1,965 users
Reviews: 23 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.

  • Native title:

    밀회
  • Also Known as:

    Milhwe;

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wolfgirl9
48 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 better or the worse.

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 felt 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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purplenette
40 people found this review helpful
Other reviews by this user
May 15, 2014
  • Overall 9.0
  • Story 9.0
  • Acting/Cast 10
  • Music 10
  • Rewatch Value 9.0
One thing before I rave about this drama. I don't know why they called it Secret Love Affair when it wasn't a "secret". Maybe the LOVE was a secret, because the other characters were shocked at what Oh Hye Won did at the end.

This drama is excellent. Love unexpectedly blossoms through music. I can so relate to Oh Hye Won. Sometimes a person feels like they are just moving from one read more necessity to the next (even if she was a little greedy) with out really thinking about how you are living your life. Then some one walks into your life and changes everything. The way the director portrays every emotion through music is so wonderfully done. I love that the writer actually assumed we would know what the character was thinking. The music is amazing. I even cried. Crying while watching a drama is rare for me.

Yoo Ah In is combustible. His emotional portrayal of Lee Sun Jae was perfection. I don't know any actress that could have played the roll of Oh Hye Won better than Kim Hee Ae. I really don't know how she gave off a feel of innocence. I felt like she was reliving her youth. Good for her. I was totally invested in the main characters. The rest of the people were good too, but I could have cared less about their characters. I think that is what the writer wanted. There is no second male lead. No one for you to care about except the two lead actors.

The music is phenomenal.

I say watch it. Maybe younger people wouldn't really be in to it. It isn't action packed or anything. It is a real romance.
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Make a Recommendation More recs (11)Recommendations

The basic plotline (affair) is obviously similar. But also the complexity of the relationships. Both are drams that are darker, more intense romances that really challenge views and make them think about love and life.
Recommended by alexa
Secret Love Affair is an amazing show. Definitely on par with Master's Sun. So if you already watched MS 2x and would like a change of flavor. Try Secret Love Affair which also portrays a strong female lead - a very smart mature relationship that will warm your heart and brighten your days.
Recommended by CjRun

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Comments (131)

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  • Reply
    svnplstw Apr 30, 2014

    his crying at the end of episode 12 just about killed me.

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      Chocobana Apr 30, 2014
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      mssarahlm Apr 30, 2014

      agree to that T_T

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    SpicedSugah Apr 30, 2014
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    papillon113 Apr 30, 2014

    the scene with the piano man-song was perfect! really enjoyed the slow timing and the focus on their faces. more of this good directing and acting :)

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    trueturquoise Apr 28, 2014
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      SpicedSugah Apr 29, 2014
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      papillon113 Apr 30, 2014
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    Chocobana Apr 27, 2014 - edited
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      trueturquoise Apr 29, 2014
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      prettytin May 1, 2014
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    rainecat Apr 26, 2014

    Never noticed Yoo Ah In til now. There are actors who simply act out what they're supposed to...then there are those who become the character they are portraying. Seems he falls into the latter. Amazed by his performance.

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    BaDaBa11 Apr 25, 2014
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      SpicedSugah Apr 26, 2014
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    lexies Apr 24, 2014

    What kind of ending do you predict? Sad, happy, open or something in between?

    • Reply
      BaDaBa11 Apr 24, 2014

      Sad or bittersweet. I'm not really sure how this could have a happy ending.

    • Reply
      SpicedSugah Apr 26, 2014

      I would like an open ending, but only if they have a second season that is just as good as this one. I think the affair will end and she will go back to her life with her husband. I just don't want LSJ or OHW to die at the end...that would be horrible!

    • Reply
      lexies Apr 27, 2014

      I'm hoping for something like an open hopeful ending.
      I would like at the end if she stops doing that stressful and legally questionable job and do something that would make her happy like teaching her own students. She also should get divorced. Whether she and Lee Sun Jae are still in a relationship should stay open, (like in Dirty Dancing)
      Well for this drama that would be a happy ending.
      I guess I'm hopping for too much, let's just say I also don't want the two of them to die.

  • Reply
    steph_ravita Apr 22, 2014

    REALLY want to start this for Yoo Ah In. From the comments, this role sounds perfect for him. :D

    • Reply
      SpicedSugah Apr 23, 2014

      Just get your heart ready when you get to episode 3.

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    SpicedSugah Apr 19, 2014
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    Lorraine71 Apr 19, 2014

    How is the drama going? I love YAI acting but this one seems no appeal..lol

    • Reply
      sam30317 Apr 28, 2014

      I disliked it and dropped it. It bored me. HOWEVER, many ppl like it. If u havent already done it, i suggest watching up to episode 3 (or maybe just episode 3) to see if u like. It wouldnt hurt.

  • Reply
    Lindysaducos Apr 19, 2014

    I'm asking because I'm curious and I've already been bothered by this for quite some time... thanks :)

    Why doesn't Kang Joon Hyeong and Oh Hye Won share the same bed?

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      nytwp Apr 19, 2014
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      Lindysaducos Apr 19, 2014
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      nytwp Apr 19, 2014
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      Lindysaducos Apr 19, 2014

      Thank you! Now I understand! :)


      and lol yeah, thanks! I love the two of them. :")

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    KamZ Apr 18, 2014

    I LOVE Yoo Ah In and I LOVE this drama! That is all!!

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    Danielle Apr 17, 2014

    Really random question: Is Yoo Ah In actually playing the piano or is he just playing random notes? If it's the latter, I can imagine how interesting the music would sound during filming :p

    • Reply
      locurabella Apr 18, 2014

      I may not be 100% correct, YAI fans, jump in at any moment, but I heard that he took classes to learn the pieces he would play. So essentially, he's learning to play the piano.

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    locurabella Apr 15, 2014

    These last two episodes, 9-10:

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      locurabella Apr 15, 2014
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      locurabella Apr 15, 2014
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Details

  • Country:

    South Korea
  • Type:

    Drama
  • Episodes:

    16
  • Aired:

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

    Monday, Tuesday
  • Network:

    jTBC
  • Duration:

    60 min.

Statistics

  • Score:

    7.6 (scored by 1,965 users)
  • Ranked:

    #1230
  • Popularity:

    #573

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