Sort by:
Nirvana in Fire
70 people found this review helpful
See all 46 user reviews
Nov 27, 2015
  • Overall 10
  • Story 10
  • Acting/Cast 9.5
  • Music 10
  • Rewatch Value 9.0
Everything about this drama is superb. Let me tell you that I only had few little times in my life this feeling while watching some Asian or western show, this amount of excitement, fascination and admiration. I've fallen too deep in this endless hole named Nirvana in Fire and I don't want to go out from here ever. No seriously, this is one breathtaking, majestic piece of art, it crawls under your read more skin so naturally, so addicting and it stays there, I think forever. Every detail is incredible, from such high and expensive production, brilliant idea and intricate plot, amazing script where each episode was heavy and carefully detailed to magnificent acting, character development and music. I don't think I could ever put in words all the praise I have for this drama nor I think it could ever be possible, it just has to be seen to be understood.

I cried, laughed, cringed, shouted, smiled, raged and did all sorts of things while watching this drama, I even had to make pause of few days cause I didn't want to finish it. Ever. I know, it may seem too subjective, I guess it is but if I take out all too attached feelings still this is a drama which deserves to be praised and greatly received.

The cast was brilliant. From Hu Ge as too intelligent and clever strategist with many secrets and Wang Kai as loyal, brave and reckless prince who were the main leads in this woven plot, to other side characters: funny and dense General Meng, sweetie pie and awesome martial artist Fei Liu, astonishing and beautiful princess warrior Ni Huang, calm smart and always looking relaxed consort Jing, joyful, carefree and weirdly intelligent Lin Chen, crazy over power and greedy Emperor, faithful and innocent Jingrui, the dignified Marquis Yan, the most loyal retainers of Su ge ge, all of them were simply outstanding, list is too long. ;)

The one who shined the most in this drama is no doubt Hu Ge as Mei Chang Su, he was truly amazing. Man who lost everything where he was young, who lived and fought with only one purpose- to avenge his family and all those innocent lost lives of Chi Yan's army. He became a grand and calculating man with intelligence higher than everyone's else. I loved how Hu Ge portrayed him, as cold, emotionless man who didn't let feelings get in the way and cloud his judgement not one single moment, always being rational and moving forward according to his plan which he was making for 12 years. Cause in this game he couldn't afford himself that, otherwise his enemies would easily defeat him. But under that shell he was the same Lin Shu, kind with good heart and will to fight against injustice and evilness. I fell so much for him, his gestures, mind, expressions, movement, everything was really powerful about that man.
And the other one who has won me was certainly Prince Jing. He was opposite of Su Zhe, quick-tempered and disobedient, always hot headed and too reckless but loyal, brave and firm in his decisions, I really respected that side of him, his unyielding morals and fighting for justice no matter what. It was so entertaining to watch two of them bickering, arguing and sharing their opinions, prince Jing was always bringing fear to Su Zhe cause he was the only one who could actually make Su Zhe's plans not going in the way they should and mess something up, I loved their bromance, their powerful bonding, their attachment to each other, they looked so cute, sometimes like a romantic couple. ;) And I think that Wang Kai really nailed it, he is such a talented and great looking actor, looking forward seeing him more in the future.

I enjoyed in the feeling they gave me, their characters so endearing and strong, greatly written indeed. I enjoyed in all of them but those two especially captured my heart along side with little monkey Fei Liu. What is so fantastic and attractive about this drama are so many awesome bromances, friendships, funny moments in all that seriousness and revenge fights, many of those characters were like a family, I loved their talking, their joking around the house, their ultimate protections towards each other, and that subtle, little amount of romance I really really loved, it was such a wonderful addition to all those powerful feelings.

Without even one little dull moment, I can only say KUDOS to the whole production team and the writers. Production quality is so high and impressive with great action scenes, wonderful costumes where even the shades of colours fitted perfectly to the characters who wore them and not to mention settings and sceneries, every scene shot outdoor was really delightful for watching and every scene shot indoor also was beautiful. Effects and CGI look very realistic, which is pretty awesome for some Chinese drama. And the best thing of course is the script, it is something the most important that made this drama to be this breath taking, intense and phenomenal.
Oh well what else did I expect when it's the same team from whom big names like Battle of Changsha (personally my fav.), The Disgusier, All quiet in Beijing and Love me if you dare are from? ;)

So if you like badass action scenes filled with fantastic developed story line, interesting plot with revenge, political maneuverings and intrigues, astonishing melodies (music in this show is so beautiful, whole OST is wow) and if you're into The Count of Monte Cristo kind of feeling then you should definitely give it a try. Plus many eye candies who weren't there just to be eye candy, they actually had a role and importance. ;)
It may seem too confusing in the beginning with introducing too many characters but after a few episodes you''ll get used to it, just don't give up.

I got too attached to this drama, too fascinated by its existence and in such an emotional state I dare to say that I'm anticipating more dramas like Nirvana in Fire, more dramas which will engrave in my heart and capture me in their little world for a lifetime. Thank you. Thank all of you who participated in making this grand and glorious show. I'll never be able nor I ever want to be able to forget this drama, the most wonderful Asian drama with most mind blowing script.

";In this world, there’s no carefree person. If you have desires and feelings, you won’t be carefree."
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No
If Cats Disappeared From the World
21 people found this review helpful
See all 6 user reviews
Nov 22, 2016
  • Overall 9.5
  • Story 9.0
  • Acting/Cast 9.5
  • Music 9.0
  • Rewatch Value 8.0
"And then comes one Japanese slice of life and completely erases all the other movies she has seen in last couple of years..."

Pretty much the first thought that came to my mind after watching this movie. It has blown me away. With every single thing in it. I had some idea about the plot and I knew it was gonna be some tragedy and illness thing but definitely haven't thought that read more it'd be such a gem, such a rare thing to watch, such phenomenal piece of art. Yes I think this movie is art. Poetic, artistic, so imaginative, full of parallels and metaphors, visually stunning, with excellent music and brilliant acting and writing. I seriously feel so weird now, I can not explain, I'm sad, I cried near the end like crazy, I'm devastated, I'm strong, I'm grateful and thankful and above all I am happy that I am alive.

Description of the movie is already given on movie page so this won't be a spoiler for what I'm gonna say. Just imagine that you find that you're sick and that you're gonna die and suddenly you can extend your life in exchange for some things to disappear each day. I mean the sole idea is very original and interesting and from the first moment it caught my attention but with this pace and this excellent writing it really hit me hard. With each of those things that were disappearing, also memories with a certain person important in his life disappeared as well. With each day it was a new struggle, a new shock, a new fight in his mind and heart, terrifying knowledge that if you want to gain something, you must lose something, and when that biggest attack came, the most difficult thing he could ever lose, then it comes the final acceptance of his fate and his sickness. It was pretty hard to watch those scenes as they were very emotional and with pure rawness.

I can't give enough credit to Sato's performance as he was simply incredible, his eyes, his smile, his way of talking, crying, yelling and dealing with everything, all of it was beautiful to watch. He really showed with this role that now there isn't anything he can't do and I'm glad cause of him. As most of the time he was the only one on the screen, I can't say that the others were in the same spot as he was but Miyazaki Aoi and Harada Mieko were amazing in their portrayals too, which was expected from such huge talents like they are.

What amazed me the most is that by each encounter, by each of his choices we learn something new, new life lesson, new meaning of choices we make and consequences of that, we experience everything together with him and so easily imagine ourselves in his place, it was so easy to do that. And in the end what this movie really wants to say to us is what really counts -love, bonds and relationships we achieve in our lives. That even if you come to the most difficult and terrible point in your life, there will be always something, someone to makes you feel good. To makes you feel alive and realize why you're alive in the first place. That nothing can compare to the people you love and care about. That it is better to be loved, to love your family, friends, children and partners to the fullest even if it means that you'll live shorter, all that is better than being alone in the world without anyone to call to, to watch a movie with, to travel with but live a long life.
I finally understand what 'If Cats Disappeared From the World" means. And it is something the most powerful. Go and watch this movie, either you're a slice of life fan or not, you won't be indifferent to this one.

p.s. And watch movie till the very end so that you could hear the ending song and read the lyrics, it has such a deep meaning and perfectly goes with the whole movie progress.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No
Secret Love Affair
34 people found this review helpful
See all 22 user reviews
Aug 20, 2014
  • Overall 9.0
  • 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.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No
Reply 1988
43 people found this review helpful
See all 61 user reviews
Jan 20, 2016
  • Overall 8.0
  • Story 8.5
  • Acting/Cast 9.5
  • Music 8.0
  • Rewatch Value 8.0
One thing is sure- this is the best drama in Reply series and the best Korean family drama I have ever seen. I can't stand makjang, I can't stand Korean family dramas of 50 episodes and I don't watch them. Nor I was some fan of previous Reply series. I find them overrated and not interesting enough but this one really got me. It was on different level in terms of family read more relationship and bonding, in terms how each member of those families has won me and made me fall in love with all of them.

Honestly, I have never got attached to more than one family in some drama but here I got too deep into the story of every family. Their interactions, their actions, their conversations, it all felt so raw, so real and so damn natural. I totally had a feeling like they're my neighbors and their kids my friends.

The reason why I love this Reply so much is also cause of the '80s, that nostalgic period of time where my parents were young and had their own kids and friends like the adults in this Reply, that period of time where some of the best movies and music artists appeared. I love how they made all so real, like in the real '80s, from their clothes, make up, haircuts, electrical devices, houses to music, movies, cinemas, bars, taverns. Production is awesome for this drama, I don't have one single complain about that. Plus OST is so wonderful, some songs are made to be danced to them, some are so melancholic with some sad tones and some are so beautiful and made for pure enjoyment while listening them.

I didn't care for the husband hunt. I really didn't care. While in other two Reply dramas that romance part was much more important and pretty much the whole drama plot, here it was just on the outside the main plot but actually inside of it that was the least important. Here words like family, friends, childhood, bonding, neighbors are way more big than romance. Which worked totally fine for me.

These families are pure gold. I laughed so much with them, I cried with them, I rooted with them, cheering with them, screaming and yelling with them, I was singing and dancing with them, they did all that to me. One family though stood up the most and that would be the Kim's. Omo, family like that is so freaking rare, I mean president Kim must be the most unique and funny dad ever with most gentle and good heart, his wife, Mi-ran is one hell of a mom, the coolest mom ever and so crazy, I seriously adore that woman, she carried the whole show for me truthfully. And their kids, JB- one big guy with big dreams who always wants to help everyone and always smiles, such a sensitive, romantic and funny soul; and JH- oh well I could talk about that guy whole night and day.
He is for me the most complex character in this drama, the one who was the most selfless, most realistic and strong one, yes the one who didn't show his feeling to the end to anyone ever but through his actions you could feel and see that, sometimes words aren't enough to say and explain what heart feels and agree completely with that saying. You could feel his emotions if you'd want to, that's what I think. And no matter what he was there for everyone, for his parents- how he in one episode did that stupid joke with his dad just to make him smile, how he continued to follow and to accomplish his brother's dream, how he prepared that awesome surprise for his mom's birthday, how he helped Taek in some way in most crucial moment, how he drank with Sun-woo in silence and was beside him to comfort him, I mean he is just too perfect and I was so satisfied and my heart was full when I saw him smile at the end, I knew he was happy. ;)

There are others I loved, Mr. Choi-Taek's dad, very cool and charismatic man, Bo-ra with all her intelligence and vulnerability combined with being strong and tough, DR- the hilarious, funny, crazy and always supportive friend who just knows what to say and when, so many wonderfully written characters are in this drama and that is what captured me. And their friendship, between those little 5 friends from their childhood till who knows when, they had so much fun together, so many sad moments, difficult moment, amazing and adventurous ones, I can only admire that powerful bond they had. And those three women, their craziness in their ages, their full loyalty to each other and care, just fantastic. That is what drama is about. Completely firm and undeniable friendship.

One thing I just didn't like is that romance part. It was weak for my taste and two last episodes were really weak from that point. I didn't mind who was the hubby at the end, well I was sad and cried a little and watched all I could find about other second lead but I accepted as DS's decision and her choice. And that was what actually bothered me. I won't say much cause opinions are so subjective and different so from my point of view I couldn't feel her chemistry in that amount with neither of them. I felt and saw love from second lead's and from main guy but from her head and heart it was too rushed and even after I read many things about clues and all those feelings, yes I could see that he was the one but as for her, it was too rushed and not deep at all. Also what made me angry it was that part when you make some guy to be a main role, having his narrating, voice, feelings, actions, everything from his point of view and then not include him in last two episode with enough screen time, I think it's very unfair and illogical. At least we should see how they stayed as cool as before, how they talked about that what he said even as a joke, at least they should say one damn sentence at the end as adults- like he is there and there,and also about DR, I mean those guys are main leads in this drama, they deserve it. I didn't like how it all came down to the Sung's, DS , Bo-ra and happenings only in that family.
But that is of course my own opinion. As for the rest it is absolutely amazing and outstanding drama and it should be seen most definitely. it is truly one heartwarming, sweet, great story about one little part of the neighborhood, families who live there, their kids, their stories, their adventures, their lives. And everyone of us could easily identify with them. I know I did and it was a great and unforgettable journey.
Kim Jung Hwan, I'll miss you, good bye ;)
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No
Soredemo, Ikite Yuku
27 people found this review helpful
See all 9 user reviews
Jul 30, 2014
  • Overall 10
  • Story 10
  • Acting/Cast 10
  • Music 6.0
  • Rewatch Value 7.0
If there is a score 100 for acting, I would definitely give it here. To Eita and Hikari . They were OH MY GOD. I see this kind of acting very rarely or should I say almost never. Eita is in my top 10 actors ever but after this role I think he's going up straight to the top, he is truly unbelievable talented actor, expressions he makes, the look in his read more eyes, I felt every single little emotion he felt in this drama, I honestly think that he is not human, I mean it's hard to believe that some actor can do to me the things he has done, that I was hypnotized all the time when he's in the scene. And the chemistry with Hikari, one of the best chemistry I've ever seen in whole drama land although it's not a romance drama, although there's no kisses and some deep physical contact between them, it is a chemistry that is rarely seen. Both of them were brilliant and I can only say that these two must have some other drama together but as a couple. The rest of the cast was great, Kazama as a crazy, psycho brother, he portrayed the twisted guy amazingly, I was mesmerized with his acting.
The story itself is already very sad, dark and depressed and all of those actors just gave the whole drama a big plus with their great acting. And although it is a very tragic and heartbreaking drama it has positive sides, through the whole drama you'll see the constant battle inside the characters whether to forgive or revenge, whether to be good or bad, whether to love or hate...And those words HOPE and LIFE were there all the time with them to remind them to fight and live on. I was crying, I was smiling, I was terrified, I was scared, I was sad and I fell in love. All these emotions has gone through me while watching this drama and in the end it remained the feeling of emptiness because everything was over. I can say this for sure that no doubt Japan has the most heartbreaking, emotional, amazing dramas that nobody in the world has. When they make some drama it is certainly that you're going to be different after watching and that you'll feel the strongest emotions ever. It doesn't matter whether drama is tragic or happy. And that is something that no one else can do. Of course there are exceptions.
As for the music, this is the first drama that I didn't care about the music and that there weren't music almost at all except for that main song.
So in the end I hope that more people will make the time to see this drama because definitely deserves more attention. And for sure you won't regret it. At least I haven't. Nor I will. I can only be grateful for watching this masterpiece.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No
Suddenly Seventeen
13 people found this review helpful
See all 5 user reviews
Jan 31, 2017
  • Overall 8.0
  • Story 8.0
  • Acting/Cast 8.5
  • Music 7.0
  • Rewatch Value 9.0
This movie is typical romantic comedy. And yet at the same time it's not. I picked it up because of the leads whom I really love and I kinda liked the plot. I was expecting something fluffy, cute and already seen but honestly it was different. The core and essence of this movie is actually quite different than all the other romcoms I've seen.
Yes the main plot is about one couple read more who were together for so long that their relationship started to fall apart and at one moment the girl comes in possession of magical chocolate that brings her mind when she was 17 to 28 years old herself in the present time. And going like that back and forth she begins to realize her life, her mistakes, she starts to find her old self again and learns what was it that she lost along the way till this day. Whole movie is funny and very sweet, it brings many memories of our own past and it definitely makes you connect with the main girl. She is one beautiful woman who for the man she loves gave up her dreams, her own desires and her own self, she thought that acting that way will bring her marriage and happiness. And that's when Little Liang comes to the light, she awakes in Liang that young spirit, she brings her back her love for painting and drawing, she makes her feel alive and full of life again, to be more brave and relaxed, simply she makes her to learn to love herself and do what she really loves. And that was the strongest part of this movie, the main focus is only on her and her two personalities- young 17 years old Liang and unsatisfied lost 28 years old one. The way they start to interact with each other, in the beginning their bickering, misunderstandings, to the part where they finally accept and learn all the lessons becoming one. The guys were pretty good although I couldn't feel the chemistry with her boyfriend and I find that part of the movie weak- it simply wasn't explained how they feel in love with each other and till the end I think they weren't suited for each other. My heart has won the second lead or should I say the guy with whom Little Liang fell in love with. He was a typical rebel, riding a bike with living his life to the fullest but the one who awoke in her passion and love, they were totally great together. And when you add that Darren Wang was that second guy, well then it's logical that I rooted for him. ;)

The choice of the actors was also good, Ni Ni is one gorgeous goddess and she looks more beautiful by each day. She could really pass as a high school girl. Her acting was very believable and although she is older than Darren, their chemistry was so damn real and fantastic. Wallace as the lead guy was okay but in his typical wooden serious cool style and although in some other projects of his I liked him, here he definitely wasn't my choice nor the right choice for her. Despite that, it doesn't matter in the end because the main thing wasn't in men and relationships, it was in her, her mind and her heart.

" I'm proud of us"- this sentence simply engraved in my heart, the moment she said it, the way how two of them were portrayed and what they said to each other, it was very touching and realistic. As long as we have our own selves, as long as we think with our hearts and do the things we desire, as long as we don't lose ourselves along the way of growing up, we can make it, only then we can be truly happy, making our dreams come true and our lives into the life worth living for. This is the best message one movie can teach us. Despite that we may already know all that, still it means and makes us smile. It made me smile and I fully recommend it for watching.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No
Kono yo no Hate
28 people found this review helpful
See all user reviews
Oct 6, 2014
  • Overall 10
  • Story 9.0
  • Acting/Cast 10
  • Music 8.0
  • Rewatch Value 8.0
One more drama from the 90s without any review. So I decided to write about this one, too. Honestly I think these old dramas are the best in every way you look at them, especially dramas with romance as the main focus. I wanted to watch this one because I liked the story and because of the brilliant cast, Mikami Hiroshi, Toyokawa Etsushi and Suzuki Honami. Those actors are really so talented read more and I enjoy in their works especially in Etsushi's dramas. This was his first drama, his first role so I guess that's why he wasn't the main lead and didn't have so many scenes to show what he's made of but he was good enough, exactly what was his role he portrayed it in the best way.

As for the Suzuki, that woman is just too beautiful, I watched her in Tokyo Love Story where she was fantastic but in this drama she was way too brilliant and amazing, I was hypnotized all the time when she was in the screen. Hiroshi as the main guy, I was mesmerized by him, he just know how to portray tormented, lonely, tortured soul with a serious psychological problems, I've seen him in Lipstick and there he was fantastic and I thought that he couldn't play better any role. But I was so wrong. This is for sure, 100 % his best role, the most complex one and I've never seen that kind of acting like his in some drama.

One thing is sure about this drama and that is that there isn't no darker and more depressing Japanese drama than this one. Literally. I've watched many of them, old ones, new ones but like Kono yo no Hate, never. I mean there are no happy things at all, rarely you get to see some smile, some light, well maybe only in the last episode. This is the first drama I saw that there was a drug addict as the main lead and that someone from the top, a married man with career, a famous pianist fall so deep down in a a gutter and become worthless. And that is what fascinated me and wanted to see more and more, how Hiroshi played a heroin addict, you know how Japanese are the masters in creating some drama to be so realistic one, and I really thought that he was on some drugs. He starts from the top, a man with money and power who accidentally meet Mariya and fell in love with her, then the next stage is how he leaves everything for her, they start to live a happy life but not for long because some things begin to happen and slowly everything starts to fall apart. What left me with the most impressions was that man Shido, how he became wreck of a man, you could see how heroin had an affect on him, how he destroyed everything he had and the woman he loved because of that drug. This drama showed us how no matter how much you love someone if you abandon everything, your life, your career for that person and the most important if you lose yourself, start to lose self confidence and doubt in yourself and the woman(man) you love causing to become jealous and obsessive, you'll lose everything and that's when you turn to other vices and destroy your life and all that love you had for someone. It was very difficult for me to watch this drama because I am a person who hates drug in every single way but I always want to hear the stories and to listen to people who have gone through that hell and that's why this drama had such a big effect on me.

As for the main girl Mariya, she was the most gentle, kind and selfless person in this drama, actually the most selfless character I've ever got to meet but not the stupid one. This girl should have a medal for everything she's gone through, she was not typical girl at all, dressed more like a guy with short hair, smoking cigarettes all the time and with a quick temper. But how strong she was, how smart, how she was helping selflessly her sister, her mother, Shido to the very last breath. She was also a very tormented young soul with tragic past and you could easily see through each episode how she was struggling with everything, with all the insults, offensive words, rude behavior and remained strong, positive and cold from the outside, I think she is the woman I truly admire and respect.
In this drama I liked also the side characters, especially the guy with a scar, he was such a hero and cool guy, and I liked it how you get to see their stories, not only of the main couple.
There are no perfect and happy people in this drama, everyone had their own flaws and issues in the brain, simply that is the thing with Japanese, when they make a drama they make it more realistic and more darker than anyone else. And I admire that completely.

Kono yo no Hate is a drama with tragic events, dark issues, depressed atmosphere, crazy people, many tortures souls, with music in the background which suits so good with all the non happy things and happenings, I truly think that this drama is no doubt the most complex one I've ever watched but also a drama with the biggest and strongest emotions ever.
A true love story about a man who had everything and lost everything because of his stupidity, immaturity and jealousy and a woman who didn't have anything and who fought 'till the last breath for the people she loved risking her own life and not stopped believing and trusting her man. The story that showed us how love great and strong can be that nothing couldn't stop or destroy her but that sometimes just love isn't enough.
A true masterpiece for me.
If you look for something very different than all other dramas, if you don't mind real human stories, if you don't mind dark, depressed, problematic and mind issues plot with the complex characters, if you love a full development of how and why things happen and if you love not simply, not fairytale, a very serious and complicated romance story then this drama is a must watch for you. Also what was a big plus to the drama is how at every beginning and ending of an episode, Shido narrates and telling us his own thoughts from the time he met her until the end and you could easily find yourself to understand and feel everything he tells you through those sentences.
For me it was a piece of art. And in the end left me with so many lessons, deep messages and gave me a light in that dark atmosphere.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No
Prince of Lan Ling
22 people found this review helpful
See all 23 user reviews
Apr 24, 2015
  • Overall 8.5
  • Story 9.0
  • Acting/Cast 9.0
  • Music 8.0
  • Rewatch Value 8.0
In the last couple of months these Chinese dramas really are my cup of tea, I find them to be so appealing and interesting especially their historical ones. Also I love their approach to romance, in all these historical dramas couples are so natural, realistic with real kisses and hot scenes, spontaneous hugging, touching, biting, kisses all over the place and it looks so great. It's not that I find that the read more most important but when you have those moments between couples I want to see them as more realistic as possible. :P

Anyway apart from that I always loved Chinese historical movies the most so it's logical that I enjoy in Chinese dramas too. Lan Ling was easily one of the best historical dramas I've seen and I could gladly give even the higher score but those episodes from 20 to 26 or 27 I think, were too draggy and unnecessary with many illogical turn of events and I found the reactions some of the characters too unbelievable. Except for that everything else was FANTASTIC. LITERALLY. I think that the acting was outstanding and that even the side characters were brilliant and shined in some moments more than the leads.

Ariel as Xue Wu was perfect, she became my fav. female from historical dramas, so witty, smart, caring, funny, cool, brave and strong full of love to give to her man and all her friends, it's so rare to see a woman like her. I loved how she was such a support to Lan Ling and a true wise woman who deserved to be treated as a Queen, without her Lan Ling wouldn't succeed in anything, she was so psychically strong and in some scenes I loved how she showed balls like a real man. :P
William as Lan Ling- beautiful, wonderful, so freaking hot and grandiose man, a true leader who loved his people more than anything, who was willing to sacrifice himself in order to save the woman he loved and to save his soldiers and his country, I enjoyed in watching his brotherly love with Fifth Prince and how they shared their deepest thoughts together. And when he was a masked warrior oh well I was so in love with him, that role was even more suited for him. ;)
Yu Wen Yong-the way Chan Daniel has portrayed him was just magnificent, his expressions, gestures, his ability to be such a great Emperor and grand man, how he fell in love with Xue Wu and loved her until his last breath and who fought for her but to the point when it was possible, how he respected her, I enjoyed so much in their scenes together, I think they had incredible chemistry, they should make some other drama as a couple for real. ;) He broke my heart several times, I really fell hard for him and once more I had that second lead syndrome.

Amongst them all, there was one character I literally loved the most, it was Wei Qian Xiang as Xiao Dong, that guy was freaking brilliant and I have to say that without him, his helping and solving some things, nothing would be possible, he was of the crucial help for Xue Wu, Lan Ling and Yu Wen Yong. So spontaneous, free spirited, in love with life, a rebel who was by each step side by side with her, who supported and believed in her no matter what, who was also the most intelligent one- he saw before everyone else threats, who was evil and who's not, reminded me so much of Moon Jae Shin in SS which was fantastic. Above that he had so great chemistry with Ariel, both of them were such a splendid sight for the eyes, their scenes were the most funny and interesting ones. ;)

This drama also has such a great villains, the most hateful ones. I really found in Lan Ling the character I hate the most but really hate, she climbed up to my number one and most definitely she well deserves that place. Zheng Er- you who have seen this drama know why I'm saying this, you who haven't- go and watch. I've never seen some woman to be this evil to the core, to the tiniest bone in her body, twisted, nasty, terrible, disgusting, obsessively jealous, her smile is the most creepy one, I have goosebumps every time I think of her. The actress deserves and award for such a brilliant performance.

Music was beautiful and so wonderful, I like all the ballads, especially from Della "Shou Zhang Xin", it brought tears to my eyes.

I liked fighting scenes, cinematography was great, costumes astonishing, sceneries breathtaking, and the chemistry between the leads one of the best I've seen if not the very best one. They became one of my fav. couples in the whole world, their chemistry was too great, moments they shared were priceless, kisses, conversations, hugs, teasing, even fights were great, intimacy- one of the best I've seen, mindblowing for sure.

Every vivid fan of historical dramas should see Lan Ling, every fan of the actors in it should see Lan Ling, every fan of intelligent script should see Lan Ling and every fan of real passionate love and intimacy should see Lan Ling.
The bottom line is- Lan Ling is a great drama with its own flaws, holes and boring moments like almost every drama but hell it was worth watching every moment of it. And it has the most perfect ending. At least I found it to be so appropriate and logically wonderful.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No
Gap Dong
18 people found this review helpful
See all 14 user reviews
Aug 19, 2014
  • Overall 7.0
  • Story 9.0
  • Acting/Cast 8.5
  • Music 8.0
  • Rewatch Value 6.0
For me, this drama was a very pleasant journey. Generally I love these kind of dramas so the story was enough to get my attention. The acting was really mind blowing from the male leads, especially the character of Ryu Tae Oh. Lee Joon has portrayed the mad, twisted and crazy guy so perfectly, honestly I was freezing to death when I saw his expressions, that look in his eyes and his read more so creepy smile, that moment when he from totally serious face slowly begins to smile, uuf, it gave me a chills every time. I would give a ten only for his acting. There are flaws in this drama of course, the main flaw was how the female leads were annoying in trying to understand a psycho killer without emotions or humanity, I mean I would kill them or torture them or any other way I would think to do except that one, to understand them or help them in some way. I get it, Maria was a doctor so she had that side naturally in her, the other one was just a high school kid, so naive and good, but either way it was crazy to try to be on the side of the lunatic killers. Also, I liked the character of Sung Dong Il, one of my favourite older actors, he truly knows how to act, I enjoy every time I see him.
What I liked the most is how they made comparisons to the movie Silence of the lambs and Hannibal Lector (which is one my favourite movies) and to the book "Crime and punishment'" which is one of my favourite books, it was such a great idea for all that, it fitted perfectly in the whole concept of the story and characters.
Overall I liked the drama really and in some weird and sick way I was sad at the end and I really loved Ryu Tae Oh's character, not that I felt sympathy or something like that, it's just that I was fascinated by the sickness and craziness of his brilliant mind. Gap Dong as the main culprit became really like a myth, exactly like Jack the Reaper and the actor who played him was great. Music was so good, I liked the main song, it was full of action and emotions, it didn't bother me at all since it was played many times in drama.
Who loves dramas with thriller and obsessed concept with many twisted characters and lot of excitement, this one is definitely not to miss. Although the story is slow and they could easily finish everything with 16 episodes, I was satisfied at the end.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No
Singing All Along
9 people found this review helpful
See all 3 user reviews
Oct 3, 2016
  • Overall 8.5
  • Story 8.5
  • Acting/Cast 8.5
  • Music 9.0
  • Rewatch Value 7.5
I've actually finished this drama 10 days ago but somehow I wasn't able to let it go, I wanted it to stay longer in my currently watching list. And that's because I completely loved it. Yes I did. With all its holes, stupid, unnecessary and illogically evil Guo family, with less screen time of the Yin's who were the most important folks in this drama, with some rushed moments that looked like read more they were cut and with very uninteresting villains. And still it was an amazing journey. Because of those details I couldn't give more but I seriously fell in love with this drama.
The plot seemed very intriguing and engaging right from the start and we follow Liu Xiu's and Lihua's journey through the whole drama, from the moment they find each other after long time through many fights together against the current Emperor and for the people till he finally became an Emperor himself and then with classic palace intrigues, we live the life in palace with them. I wanted to learn and find more about this part of Chinese history as I was interested to hear more about her, about that woman who was a true companion for her man and who became an Empress with humble and pure heart. And it did live up to my expectations.

Let me tell you something about the leads and characters they played. Honestly you don't get to see such fantastic leads often in some drama, who carried the heaviest roles, who acted so believable to the point I literally wanted to wipe off their tears, kiss their foreheads, hug them tightly and smile with them when they were happy, they really engraved in my heart for a lifetime. Lihua and Liu Xiu deserve the title of the best couple ever in whole historical dramaland. I simply couldn't take my eyes off of them. Their relationship that is built on ultimate trust and honesty above all, so strong that nothing could destroy it. I really appreciate that between the couples. I became to feel respect for Liu Xiu cause he treated Lihua with such love and care, with such relaxing and positive attitude, he didn't care when she pretended to be a guy as he didn't care when she stopped pretending because for him she was one and only Lihua who he loved since he was a kid, he loved his men all equally and he trusted them, he wasn't jealous when Lihua was alone with them, the only woman between men and still he had real trust in all of them. For me that was the biggest strength of this drama, one big comradeship, men who fight for one cause and who built such powerful friendship along the way. Really worth seeing and experiencing that.
Not to mention chemistry between our leads, it was electrifying, you could feel it in your bones from their every move and I came to wonder how it's possible that Ruby and Justin are only friends? Amazing actors indeed. Justin has been my favourite Chinese actor since Scarlet Heart but Ruby, I didn't think she was this good, the woman is outstanding actress, that's for sure. Her gracious figure when she was a Lady Yin in the palace, her coldness and calmness when it was needed, her passion and courage in battles, her endless love for her family, she was the actual hero of this drama and she carried all of it. I don't think I've seen till now female character like hers, that much educated, smart, brave, loyal, tomboyish yet feminine, strong yet fragile, lovable yet very strict and someone who was selfless when it came to her family and closest people she loved. The one woman I'll admire forever. Yes in some scenes she exaggerated, all of the sudden she acted weird and not like before, that's when I thought that this drama has some flaws but most of the time I could totally relate to her and understand her.

This drama is also very good cause of the females, you get to see many intelligent and strong women who were most of the times more brave and smart than men which is a rare thing to experience in dramaland. Hu Po, Ding Rou I completely loved, those two girls were such support to our heroine and the ones who were beside her all the time never abandoning her. They are supporting characters but they mean so much, without them this drama wouldn't be the same. I enjoyed in their love stories too, one with Lihua's brother who was such adorable and wonderful guy, and the other one with Gongsun, Liu Xiu's best friend and most loyal general.

What was one of the biggest strength of SaA is family. Bonding between members of a family, between Liu Xui and his brothers, sister and mother, between Lihua and her brothers and mother, between them and Deng's, it was such wonderful sight, watching so many family members being so close and taking care of each other. For me Lihua and her family were the ones that captured me, they gave me feelings of warmness, coziness, feeling of home, I really fell in love with them and their relationship, every one of them had important role and each one of them simply crawls under your skin. I cried so hard when some of them died, I felt like my heart was ripping apart when some events happened and the way they happened, I really think that my heart died a few times during this drama and that's when I knew that this drama will become one of my all time favourite.

Many scenes were so real, battles were done in very good way, effects pretty realistic, sceneries breathtaking with beautiful usage of colours-red, blue and green, astonishing costumes, I wanted so much to try at least one of those dresses, everything seemed really on high level with high budget. For that part I don't have complaints.
Also music, opening and ending songs are so beautiful, the lyrics are among the most powerful I've heard and they have such deep meaning, every time I listened to them I get goosebumps. They fit perfectly with the drama and its plot.

I think I said everything I wanted to say, I think SaA is definitely a drama worth watching cause you don't get to see lead characters like that every day. And you don't get to see relationship building like that every day nor such comradeship and brotherhood. Those things are for sure the ones that will win you and keep you interested to watch it till the end. Despite all the plot holes and some really stupid characters and happenings. I would love for more dramas like this one, please.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No
Battle of Changsha
16 people found this review helpful
See all 15 user reviews
May 30, 2015
  • Overall 9.5
  • Story 8.5
  • Acting/Cast 10
  • Music 8.5
  • Rewatch Value 8.0
For quite some time I've been stalking Wallace Huo, I consider him a very good actor, he has shown how many various roles he can play and be really natural and believable. I've been waiting especially this drama to be subbed cause I find this period of time very important in history and worth to be seen through television movie and dramas plus last couple of months war dramas really picked up read more my interest, somehow I got attached to them the most

So finally I was able to find this drama subbed and I was happy cause of Wallace who, to tell honestly, looked amazingly dashing in uniform, and I was confident that this drama was going to be all about love story set in the WWII era, but I was so wrong. Battle of Changsha is one of the most emotional and heartbreaking dramas I've ever watched but most of it doesn't even have to do with romance at all.

What was the greatest strength of this drama are their characters, the whole Hu family, they were the heart and the soul of it. You follow them through all the hardships, you laugh with them, cry with them, watch them as they grow and mature and they slowly grow on you until you realize that they’ve become a part of you and when everything ends you feel so empty, like someone stabbed you with a knife and ripped your heart. And now I’m stuck in Battle of Changsha and I can’t get out nor I want.
Whole drama is filled with so many raw emotions, every single detail of it feel so real, what left me speechless is that none of the characters are perfect, they are all full of problems and weaknesses, they deal with life in monstrous time of war and struggling to survive by any means.

This drama can be separated in two parts, the first half of it is more funny, lighthearted and relaxed than the second full of heartbreaks and overwhelming emotions, especially in the last couple of episodes where you'll start to sob and cry an ocean of tears and where your soul feels like dying and you can't breath. You're kinda expecting that cause yeah no one said war was easy but still you feel heartbroken to the core.

I got attached to many of the characters but there are few of them that grabbed my heart and for whom I ached and cheered the most. First of them as my favourite are the twins, it was impossible to separate them here as in drama too, they were together all the time like one. Xiang Xiang- the bold, confident one, a girl who wasn't afraid to speak her mind and fights for what she believes, I loved her transformation and how her character grew up and she became a mature, strong young woman; and Xiao Man- the immature one and he stayed like that almost until the end but then he also showed how mature and real man he became through many terrible and tragic things he experienced and has gone through. I loved their bond, they have to be my favourite brother-sister couple, the best siblings ever, I laughed so hard with them, I respected them and how they fought for their freedom, I cried so hard with them, they really made me too emotional, even now while I'm writing about them their picture and scenes shared between them are so vividly shown like they're in front of me.
The other character who was the most lovable is their brother in law, that guy who at the first glance looked so harsh, cold, evil but when you got to know him you see how he actually love them all, how he protected them, how he was doing all the things he's done just so they could be safe and have a roof above their heads and food to eat. His unwavering love for the sister was admirable to the core, so powerful and strong, he made me wondering how is i possible to love someone so strong and firm. I really enjoyed in scenes shared between him and the twins, they were at the moments so hilarious and then the next one they made you cry. And when you add to that the character of Wallace- who was also fantastic, his eyes, his expressions, how he secretly protected Xiang Xiang, he simply draws you in, he was a true soldier, brave and courageous worth the praise; you get four amazing characters who made this drama to be so freaking, torturing, astonishing beautiful.

Although a war drama there were a few battle scenes, whole drama is more a family drama in times of war. Despite that special effects for them were still excellent and those scenes in the battlefield and in actual fight were brutally realistic as mush as possible which only made it better (or worse) to the viewer, you tend to be more emotional and involved.

I honestly don’t have any real complaints about this drama besides some very minor things that I can easily overlook. Seriously, everything from the directing to the musical score was wonderful.
Battle of Changsha is a true rare gem. Yes, it has been a heavy, rocky, heartbreaking ride but I loved it completely and don’t regret watching it at all. Simply because a drama as beautiful as this one deserves multiple viewings.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No
15 people found this review helpful
See all 4 user reviews
May 8, 2015
  • Overall 10
  • Story 10
  • Acting/Cast 10
  • Music 10
  • Rewatch Value 7.0
"War is not just a game where you slaughter your enemies. It's a struggle to remain human despite carrying a gun in your hand."
While these words has graved in a deepest chamber of my heart, I'll try to tell you about this magnificent piece, about the best drama ever made in history of television although I don't think it can be described with words. Seriously, it’s impossible to describe Comrades the read more way it should be described. I do not have that kind of vocabulary that could tell a story about such a beautiful work. But I'll try it anyway..
Stunning. Simply stunning. Comrades has grabbed my heart, mind and soul and captured me, possessed me. When I finished whole drama last night, I couldn't fall asleep, I was laying on bed for hours just starring in the ceiling and trying to revive my broken heart.

I don't have any special love and interest for war theme but I do appreciate when movies and dramas in that genre are well done with believable and realistic story and development of events. Which is the case with this drama. Comrades doesn't tell you the story nor the characters tell you what are they doing, whole drama SHOWS you all that through their actions, through the look in their eyes, so naturally and brutally realistic. And doesn’t sugar-coat anything, I didn't feel not for a moment that it's trying to impress me or manipulate me, it was like it was trying to take me in the true inside story. Sometimes that story got so unbearable (the hopelessness, the senselessness of it all) that I had to stop the video and simply walk away. And after a while come back again fully prepared for more feelings than previous time and I wondered whether in those moments show started to become manipulative, taking me to hell and getting last drop of tears from me. I cried like I don’t think I have ever cried watching TV. I bawled. I sobbed loudly and messily, I cried out as my heart broke and I felt grief and despair.

The whole story is about soldiers who fought in Korean War and it shows you their stories, both from South and North Korea, you get to see ordinary people who willingly or not found themselves in that chaos and cruelty, you see that there aren't good or bad guys, both countries show you that people everywhere are the same; they just want to live peacefully, care for their families, and make a living., it's not a story about winning or losing, it is a story about human beings getting involved with each other and bonding as long as they live.

I got attached too much for the characters and I got a feeling as if I met them face to face. Every one of them felt so real, tangible. The more episodes I watched, the more invested I became in their lives. I was constantly longing to be able to reach into the screen and give each character a big hug. I was overwhelmed by the warmth and the love that I felt for these soldiers, these young men who wanted nothing more than to live. I laughed and cried and breathed with every single one of them. They are now as real to me as the people I know in my everyday life. And thanks to that, I was able to understand, if only just a little bit, some of the horror of war. It was the first time I’ve loved so many characters in one drama, and not just loved them, but feared so much for their well-being. I watched every episode with one hand over my mouth and the other over my chest. “Survive, survive, please survive.” I wanted everyone to live.
If I have to pick some of the characters I love the most, I couldn't do it cause all of them I love to the fullest. But there are some of them who fascinated me and captured me the most. First is sergeant Lee. He is the sole heart of the Squad and the actor Choi Soo-jong was more than perfect, he was outstanding to the point I was questioning whether he was in real war or just acting. His character is a true leader, his courage, compassion, commitment we fell to the core. He knows what needs to be done, and he simply does it. He commands, he protects, he encourages, he teaches, and most importantly, he loves. His men are his family, his children, his responsibility. He values their lives far more than he does his own. If Lee Hyun-joong has a flaw, it’s his tendency to care too much. As a result, the men under his command forge a bond stronger than steel. They fight, whine, nag, and complain, but when faced with a choice to save themselves by leaving someone behind, or to stay together no matter the cost, then there really isn’t a choice. “All for one and one for all” might as well be tattooed on their foreheads. Second private Jung Taek-soo, he was my favourite boy and my heart ached for him like never before, he was so brave, loyal to the bones to his mates and I loved his on the surface emotionless but actually very soft in his heart, and third character I fell the most for was Park Il-kwon, that ahjussi was a real badass, how much he sacrificed and how much he did bear only to help his friends, he was called by many names and insulted and tortured but he survive all that until the end, I felt sorry for him too many times. Also a medic boy Park so sweet, caring, brave at every moment but very sensitive, then on North Korean side Chun Yong-taek, a true idealistic man who fought fair and who stood up side by side with Lee Soo-kyung, who was such a kick ass woman, I admired her so much to the middle of the show and then I literally wanted to rip her apart and strangle her, her transformation was truly magnificent, the actress was incredible. As you could see, I got attached to all of them.

Comrades has a fabulous soundtrack. One of the best in entire world, I don't know which song or instrumental left me speechless more, maybe that opening song "20 october 1950' or "Patriot's Way" or "I will come back" from Insooni or "Kyrie" which played every time something too shocking happened. I think that music from this drama tells more than words could ever do simply cause words are not enough nor they could ever show those feelings that music can give you. That song 'Friends' I'll remember for the rest of my life and it'll stay as a song which will always remind me of this brilliant drama and her marvelous friendship in it.

Comrades gets everything right. Faultless acting, script, story-telling, editing, pacing, special effects and stunts, splendid soundtrack, sets and locations, historical faithfulness, top notch battle scenes, interesting and believable characters, an intelligent sensibility, maturity…

In the end, after all those powerful feelings and after my heart has calmed a bit, the thing I will remember forever is Squad One. That brotherhood, that bond deeper than friendship and stronger than death, between men who side by side with each other strive to keep body and soul together in hell. That affection and commitment. Because Comrades isn’t just about a war, it’s about people, people whom I’ve come to care too much about and who will make me cry every time I think about them.
I promise you, you will never be the same after watching this drama. And one thing is sure, Comrades will rip your beating heart right out, throw it on the floor and step on it, then leave you all alone to pick up that poor heart if it's not already destroyed from all those bruises. Either you're a crier or not you’re gonna cry anyway, I guarantee that and if you’re masochistic like I am you’ll probably even like it.

“Wish we could just go back to our 1st Squad days.”

“Uh?! What was so great about those days? We risked freezing to death, not to mention what happened in the caves. Oh…the concentration camp. Was it really that good?”

“Except all that drama, of course. Anyway, back then… there were nine of us.”
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No
15 people found this review helpful
See all 41 user reviews
Jun 4, 2014
  • Overall 10
  • Story 9.0
  • Acting/Cast 9.0
  • Music 10
  • Rewatch Value 10
Mars. Was he the coward, who the Greeks say was bloodthirsty and belligerent, and yet was afraid of failure? Isn't he supposed to look mean and ferocious?; Indeed he is the God of War, but I heard that the Romans described him differently. ; Really? ;They said...Mars...wore shining armor, look dignified. He was a dark hero who helped people overcome tragedy.

This is how it starts. This drama has won me right read more after the first episode. It has been on my list since a long time ago but finally I decided to watch a few days ago. And then everything changed. I have never watched anything similar to this, maybe there are a little few Asian dramas in the whole world like this one but it's honestly really rare. Different from everything else, in so much more deeper and darker psychological level that every second I was truly in a state like the main characters, I felt every single emotion they felt, I smiled, cried, yelled, was so angry and crazy at times they I could kill like Chen Ling thought he could, I was in love, I felt so much passion, desire and true meaning of a strong real love, exactly like that I have never felt while watching any drama in my entire life.
What is it that makes this drama so different from others and that makes me to write and feel like this? Well, when you start to watch you see that there are some guy who is a popular playboy and very handsome, and you see some girl who is very shy, artistic and doesn't talk to anyone. So at first you think this is going to be some cliche romance drama with the plot you have seen so many times. But you're wrong. Sooo wrong. Because already in the second part of the first episode you see that it's different, that you've got some strange feeling inside your body which tells you this is going to be something amazing. There is no some twisted mystery plot, no birth secrets, no rich handsome boss and poor cute girl, no love triangles, no annoying people and yelling all the time. The attraction between the characters begins right away, and they are what make this drama.
And the story begins.
Of course I'm not going to tell the story 'cause you have that already in the description of the drama, but what I'm going to tell is that this is the most beautiful and the strongest love story ever. Literally. I mean two young people trying to face and struggle with their pasts, their fears, their tragic and sad experiences and finding solace in one another. And they succeed in that. Because they simply fell in love. Honestly. Truly. They helped one another to face with all difficulties and overcome everything with the strength and power of real love. Vic and Barbie have done amazing job,they had amazing intense chemistry all the time, I really admire them, they are really very talented and fantastic actors. I think it is very hard to play a role where your character is psychological damaged and where the character is in some hand a little bit crazy with many problems and issues in the head and in the heart. I don't need to say that Vic became my favourite actor, actually in my top 5. ;-) And his character is the best ever, I fell in love with his hair, his style, his bike, his attitude, I like it very much that he is not perfect, he has so many flaws and that's why he became my favourite character in the whole dramaland.
Also, the character of Tong Dao is such an amazing addition to the already dark, depressed and psycho feeling. Oh my God, do you know how I love his character? Not in some positive way, it's just I think that he perfectly fits in here with his twisted and creepy behavior and you'll see why. An Jun Can was a genius in this drama, I was so scared of him in some scenes, great really.
Music- no words, just listen. I still shiver and tremble and still in my mind are the songs from MARS. Especially the opening song, MASTERPIECE.
So, in the end only to say that YOU HAVE TO WATCH MARS, IT'S A MUST WATCH DRAMA and you'll definitely won't be the same after watching. At least you gonna fall in love with Vic (or Barbie) and you gonna enjoy in beautiful music if you don't like the drama. But honestly there's no way you not gonna like it.
All I know that I became a little obsessed with characters from MARS and literally played some scenes more times than once because the conversations between them are so precious and intelligent, I enjoyed in every detail. DRAMA MASTERPIECE. Oh yeah did I say that kiss scenes are so hot, sexy and so natural and real? I felt like I was with them in drama in their intimate moments and kissing them all the way. ;-)
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No
Sayonara Itsuka
10 people found this review helpful
See all user reviews
May 13, 2015
  • Overall 8.5
  • Story 7.0
  • Acting/Cast 8.5
  • Music 7.0
  • Rewatch Value 9.0
This is one of those movies that will stay with me forever, if we talk about romance and love stories, this one is exactly my cup of tea. It has indeed somewhat typical story and there isn't anything special about the plot but what fascinated me personally is that I had a feeling like I was literally there. In the oppressive Thai heat, the sultry sun, the dusty streets of Bangkok in read more some other era. I could practically reach into the screen and touch and taste and smell the world director was portraying.

I was overwhelmed with so many gorgeous sceneries, wonderful settings, astonishing colors in this movie. Yellow, orange and red- I have never loved more these colors so much like I loved them in this movie, so many light, so many beautiful details. Somewhere after the middle of the movie those colors became more dark going smoothly in the direction the movie went but all the time cinematography was simply majestic.

Honestly the main reason why I started this movies was Miho Nakayama, she is for me one of the most beautiful women in the world and in Sayonara Itsuka she was a real goddess. Her dresses, skirts, her clothes in this movie was so beautiful, I want those dresses, all of them and dress like that. The way she smiles, walks, talks, kisses and loves- she took my breath away. She really shined and carried the whole movie. And in the end she broke my heart and I felt so much pain, I love that feeling, that means that the actor succeed to win me over. ;)

Chemistry between her and Hidetoshi was outstanding, their relationship in the movie was breathtaking, from those passionate sexy scenes in hot Bangkok and ventilator turned on while their naked and sweaty bodies were hungry for each other, through their sweet and romantic scenes in the car, boat and just walking around to those heartbreaking and full of sadness and desperate longing, they were fantastic.

There are a lot of holes and flaws, from the main one where guy is cheating and not loving his wife, marrying her only to be promoted and succeed in his career to the one where they realize that they love each other even after 25 years and once again they had to apart, yes but I still think Sayonara Itsuka is a great movie. It depicted a very real dynamic of love, one that puts the head against the heart in an inevitable lose-lose situation, one that was brought to life by great, if a-typical, characters and exquisite cinematography. For me this is one of the best movies ever in the genre of pure romance and has one of the most memorable endings which will stay with me forever.

"At death, some look back on being loved
While some look back on having loved…
I’ll definitely look back on having loved…”
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No
Scarlet Heart
23 people found this review helpful
See all 33 user reviews
Nov 27, 2014
  • Overall 10
  • Story 10
  • Acting/Cast 9.0
  • Music 9.0
  • Rewatch Value 9.0
First let me say that this is my first review about some Chinese drama and first review about a historical one. I have recently started to watch Chinese dramas and only watched a very few of them but after this one I'll be definitely watching more. The reason why I haven't watched before is cause of the large numbers of episodes, they're always too long. So you got to have more time read more for that. Anyway with historical dramas somehow time goes so fast and drama kept that interesting part all the way, not becoming boring at all. At least that was the case with Scarlet heart.

And now I'll be starting to write about this magnificent piece. The review will be a little bit long because I really have to say a lot about this drama and how it has captured me forever.
I liked everything. Literally. First of all the story: history, time travell, Qing Dynasty, all those princes and the main girl who had so many different relationship with all of them. Attracted me from the start. Then Liu Shi Sh, she's such a natural beauty, such a delightful creature and amazing actress, I started because of her, the rest of the cast I haven't seen before. But they were all so fantastic and I'll be stalking some of their works for sure from now on. Every one of them portrayed their roles perfectly and without a flaw. I loved the scenery in this drama, oh so many beautiful scenes with snow, snowflakes at night, during the day, seasons changing from refreshing spring with cherry trees and so many beautiful flowers, through the warm autumn with wonderful leaves to the cold winter with white pure snow. The colours were astonishing and I was purely enjoying in that, every scene was so filled with many colours and beauty, it was such pleasure for the eyes. Not to mention the dresses, the coats, hair, make up, all that jewelry, oh I was glued to the screen all the time. ;-) I was even captured by the porcelain and all those wonderful tea cups, I imagined that I drank tea from those cups.
All these things made this drama to be for true one of the best drama ever. But what was the best part of it (still is) and what made this drama so different was the relationship she had with all the princes. It was written exceptionally and I really admire the writer for that. I loved how here we have so much more male leads and roles and less women, I always enjoy and love more when there are more guys in a drama, somehow everything is better, friendship, relationship, more intelligent minds and there aren't annoying and hysterical women who only scream and gossip around. ;-) Anyway in Scarlet heart we got to see so many various and colorful relationship between Ruo Xi and the princes, it simply crawls under your skin and you can't stop but love them all. Every one of them had so important role in a drama and in Ruo Xi life and that was the best part of it. You don't have one perfect man who, let's be honest, doesn't exist in real life, you get to see many men with all their flaws who when you take the best from them become one perfect guy.

What I found to be so fantastically done is that through the whole drama you could see how all of them change, how not everything is sunshine and rainbows, and someone you knew can become someone you can't recognize through time. The drama does an amazing job of showing how greed can poison everything and destroy your loved ones. Yes, the love is in the main focus but it's not only about love, it is a fight between the brothers over the throne, it is a constant battle who will become the Emperor, it involves a politics, some palace intrigues but most of all it keeps you so attached and captivated every moment that you literally lose time about everything and everyone else.
With the love as the center of everything, I would like to say that it was done so incredibly perfect where every characters gets their "5 minutes of glory", of course some of them more, but you really get to see the stories of all of them, how and why they loved who they loved, some loves were sad, some happy, some left with bittersweet taste, some passionate and true to the bone, some one sided and all of them were no matter of their endings, filled with hope and faith.

My heart has won from the beginning 13th prince, from the first second his interaction with Ruo Xi. He was so sweet, free, carefree, a man who will do anything for his brothers without some hidden goal. A guy who was no doubt the best material for her, it was such a pity that they haven't fall in love with each other. But then again, they had the friendship one of a kind - one in which people should envy. A friendship that is unselfish, truthful and doesn’t have ties attached to it. Because their friendship is so strong, they believe in each other no matter what or in whatever circumstances. They never questioned each other and they don’t need to know or hear a reason for anything, simply because they trust each other. He was her soulmate friend.

***** SPOILER ALERT! I will be writing about some parts her relationship with some princes so if you don't want to know nothing then don't read the next lines. *****

As the show progressed I started to like 14th prince, put aside that he was from the start the best looking guy and the tallest one, I meant for his character, I started to like him more and more and in the end I thought why she hasn't loved him? He was kind, strong, loyal, a little fierce, and a tad ambitious. But his defining characteristic for me was his steadfast and unwavering nature. The defining moment for this character for me was when he made a promise to come save the woman he loved if ever she needed him. She had only to send one word and he’d come. And when she called him he came running to her. He’s the type that will stay loyal until the day he dies even if some think he should give up. But he’s also not the type to restrict you and trap you if you want to be free. He was a true man for me and I fell in love with him.
As for the two men she loved, first I would tell something about the 8th prince. He’s so angelic, very gentlemen and always warm to others. It was natural for her to fall for him although she knew she wasn't supposed to. Knowing that he’s gonna have such an ending, she sympathies and pities for him. Rouxi is in a confusion state with her feelings, she doesn’t know if she really likes him or just pity him for his fate. But then she realize that she does have feelings for him. 8th Prince and Rouxi love each other, but not enough to give up everything. It’s a beautiful love story, but they’re not fated to be with one another. It’s a love worth remembering, but it’s a love that can no long be. Somehow I saw him as her protector and she was his, their love was replaced by respect and protectiveness until the end.
As for the 4th prince, that was her love to the core. Their chemistry was undeniably sizzling. Their passionate truly pure love seared through our hearts and souls that we were left heartbroken when they were apart. Their intense love and longing for each other induced us into crying fits when the magnolia flower finally fell off her grip, and when he broke down in tears as he looked at the belongings left behind by his beloved. 4th Prince is always cautious and well-hidden, but to Rouxi, he’s different. He can be honest with her, telling her he wants the throne and such It’s an adorable, yet touching and interesting romance - it’s love. It’s a love, not just worth remembering, but a love that can last a lifetime, even when they’re not together. When 4th Prince finally became Emperor, there were more obstacles standing in their way and more misunderstanding. The more they loved each other, the more they hurt each other. 4th Prince intentions to aim for the throne was so he can protect Rou Xi, but by becoming the Emperor, he needed to maintain his power, which forced him to act in such a way that he ended up hurting the people that Rouxi love and care about. Their peaceful time together was sweet, but short. Their relationship starts to break down, with differences in opinions. They never got around to fix their problems - it escalates even more. Rou Xi becomes more hurt and tired. She still love 4th Prince, but she cannot accept the other princes’ sufferings. They were fated to meet, fated to love, but not destined to be together. And that some cruel fate. But if you ask me, I didn't like this man because he was too much cruel and tyrant, I knew that he loved her but that is not enough. I remember when he said to the 13th prince:" She only cares for others, I only care for her.", you could feel all his powerful and strong love but I just didn't like him as a person and the choices he has made were to much of a cruelty and selfishness.
***** SPOILER END! *****

Character development was awesome. The strongest character and the most pitiful one was Rui Xi. The burden she carried was very big, but she wasn't able to really share her story. And that makes it even more tragic. Ruoxi wanted to love and give, but even though she was cherished in return, she was never able to truly give herself completely. She was a true survivor after all, just trying to make the best of it. She was the most admirable one, smart, strong woman with a good heart who wanted to help others and always protected and helped the princes no matter what. And they helped her, no matter what and how important was the thing they were doing they were always coming to help her and be a support. You could just watch and admire their relationship. Cecilia has done the job brilliant, she's a true great actress. And the others were so great in acting.

Even though this drama was filled with pain, it felt real and it gave you hope at the end. I could completely relate to the most of the characters and why they did certain things, after all it was all about love, passion, friendship. This drama really had such a big impact on me and I would really recommend it to everyone, at least give it a try because I think you won't be regretting. It is a wonderful piece filled with life and making the best of it as much as possible. The story of one dynasty and their princes, their relationship with one girl who came out from other time and changed everything. All of them captured me and made my previous days filled with so many emotions and happiness that I'm really thankful for that. From the bottom of my heart.
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


  • Last Online:

    4 hours ago
  • Gender:

  • Location:

    Belgrade, Serbia
  • Birthday:

    December 15
  • User Type:

  • Join Date:

    March 14, 2014

Friends view all