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Incomplete Life
40 people found this review helpful
Mar 21, 2015
Overall 10
Story 10
Acting/Cast 10
Music 10
Rewatch Value 10
There are very few dramas that I would give a rating of 10 or even re-watch it in its entirety. Misaeng deserves both. It is a masterpiece.

As much as I love my usual rom-coms, Misaeng completely took me by surprise and gave me thrills and heart wrenching moments in every single episode. Some people find the pace slow, but it worked for me. I was engrossed with each and every character and every single plot. I laughed and cried with the trio from Sales Team #3 and its group of supporting casts. It has unexpected moments and original story telling that is rarely seen. I absolutely loved it!

Give it a try. If nothing else, you will walk away with a few valuable life lessons.

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Thank You
12 people found this review helpful
Mar 21, 2015
Overall 10
Story 10
Acting/Cast 10
Music 10
Rewatch Value 10
It is shows like Thank You that affirms my love for Korean dramas. I don’t deny that I do get caught up in the webs of cinderella love stories and dreamy leading men but funny enough it is ones such as this that gives me a lasting impression.

Thank You does not have the glitz of the popular kdramas but it is a wonderfully well scripted, and well acted production. This is also one of my few favourite kdramas where the female leads are the stars of the show. I fell in love with eight year old Bom and her mother Young Shin. I watched in awe at the incredible acting skills of both.

Yes, it is a tear jerker but it is exceptionally well done, not overly melodramatic and it has its share of tragedies versus realistic outcomes; a perfect balance between sadness and happiness.

It has many of the staples of a kdrama; triangle love story, birth secrets, and serious illnesses but all woven beautifully together. It is a drama about family, love, conviction, and perseverance. It is a gem and is well deserving of my 10 rating.

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Across the Ocean to See You
15 people found this review helpful
Apr 24, 2017
Overall 9.0
Story 9.0
Acting/Cast 10
Music 10
Rewatch Value 6.0
Take your usual rom-com, shake it up and reverse all the roles. There, you have it— Across the Ocean to See You. A show where the female lead is the aloof, haughty protagonist that calls the shots! And the male lead is Mr. Nice Guy trying to win the affection of his boss.

The writing is smart and super funny. I love the banter between Su Mang and Zheng Chu, alternately playful and frustrated. The mad chemistry between these two leads leave you wanting more.

This is an easy watch (mostly). No maddening hateful characters that take over the entire show and leave you drained. The last third of the drama starts to get heavy and melo-like but overall it is a very well done romantic comedy with sprinkles of melo. Supporting characters and secondary OTPs complement the show well without overtaking the importance of the primary leads.

The show does have its share of scratch your head moments. For example, where's the baby bump Su Mang? And the ending to one of the characters is questionable but these are but minor quibbles.

Overall, very entertaining. And the OST is super catchy. Loved it.

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Air City
6 people found this review helpful
Mar 22, 2015
Overall 8.0
Story 8.0
Acting/Cast 8.0
Music 7.0
Rewatch Value 7.0
I decided to write a review for Air City since there is none so far. I may be in the minority but I have to say I thoroughly enjoyed this action filled, triangle love story/melodrama.

I found it fascinating the things I learned about the operations of a world class airport. The drama was peppered with a series of action/crime plot lines typical of American programming and some of these scenes were a bit clunky but they served only as a backdrop and did not deter me from enjoying the drama at all.

I was also intrigued by the secret agent, black ops theme. There is always something mysterious about such occupation and Lee Jung Jae was both charismatic and enigmatic in that role. Choi Ji Woo was right on as the confident professional brought in to run the airport. The only minor complaint I had was her language skills. Her character was supposed to be fluent in 5 languages but she clearly struggled with the English scripts.

The romance was my taste with the hate at first sight, misunderstood theme and the chemistry between the leads was icing on the cake. The human struggles also shone through. I could identify with the choices Ji Sung had to make between his duty, guilt for Myung Woo and his love for Do Kyung. And of course, there was a very deserving second lead to spice it up.

I won't give away the ending but I have to say it was one that still gives me goosebumps to this day.

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Falling for Innocence
25 people found this review helpful
May 24, 2015
Overall 7.5
Story 7.5
Acting/Cast 10
Music 7.5
Rewatch Value 4.0
Falling for Innocence is one of those dramas that makes me feel conflicted when it comes to writing a review. Usually I am very clear how I feel about each drama. I am either ecstatic and can’t wait to share my excitement with everyone that cares to listen or it just doesn’t do anything for me. Or when a show has to make me work hard to like it, those are the ones I will ultimately drop.

So did I enjoy this drama? Yes and No. There were a few times I was ready to walk away from it but it did have enough punch to keep me watching.

The number one reason I stayed through the end was due to the leads. The show’s strongest attributes were its casts. Jung Kyung Ho made me mad, made me laugh, made me sad, made me cringe, but ultimately he made me root for Min Ho. His performance was multifaceted and he was able to pull it off and made me a believer. I might have cringed at some of his expressions and showmanship if delivered by other lesser actors as it could easily have come across as contrived and childish.

The number of times his hair changed or got a makeover made me laughed too. To me, it seemed like the stylist paid more attention to his hair than So Yeon’s which had remained constant throughout the show.

So Yeon was stellar. Her performance was consistently good as the loving fiancee and prospective daughter in law. She did a great job portraying Sung Jung’s inner struggles between loyalty for Dong Wook versus her newfound love for Min Ho.

Hyun Min was as good as it gets for a villain. He made it easy for us to hate Joon Hee by delivering the emotions of a man scorned by his first and only love, someone treated like a dog with little to no respect from the Chairman; both of which ultimately led to his greed for power as the answer to all his woes.

Jo Eun Ji as Wendy and Lee Si-Un as Woo Sik were perfect supporting casts with a cute love line of their own.

I also enjoyed seeing strong female characters; Sung Jung was not afraid to speak her mind and followed her conviction and her heart. Same with Wendy for pushing for what she believed is right and just in a workplace dominated by powerful and corrupted men. Even the secretary pool of Yoo Mi and Mi Roo also depicted strong female traits rather than the conventional silly airheads of many kdramas.

What got me annoyed and almost made me gave up was the plot. I didn’t mind the premise of the corporate M&A theme but the constant re-use of the same plot devices got a bit tiring episode after episode. Instead of one main story arc spanning the entire 16 episodes, it felt like the same story arc got repeated over and over again albeit with slightly different ingredients thrown in. The writer did make us guess all the way to the end but all that angst culminated in one rather quick episode which also made it too tidy and a tad rushed.

The music is good and complements the show nicely but nothing to write home about.

For the above mentioned reasons, it is not a re-watch for me.

But overall, it is a decent drama. The romance is fun, cute and touching. I can’t say enough about Jung Kyung Ho. His performance made all the difference for me.

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My Love Eun Dong
5 people found this review helpful
Jul 22, 2015
Overall 8.0
Story 8.0
Acting/Cast 10
Music 7.0
Rewatch Value 7.0
If you love a classic love story, a throwback to the old days of kdrama productions (ala Winter Sonata), My Love Eun Dong may be just what you're waiting for. It starts out with a lot of flashbacks but they are essential to set up the backstory. These are well produced and do not feel dragged out or slow paced.

Viewers will need to get used to connecting the three different versions of Hyun Soo/Eun Ho and Eun Dong/Jung Eun played by six different actors/actresses. I may be in the minority but I feel the Eun Dong played by Yoon So Hee is a tad different compared to the young Eun Dong played by Lee Ja In and the mature Eun Dong Kim Sa Rang, which threw me off slightly but not enough to detract from the main story.

I have no problem with Hyun Soo’s character. I could easily believe the transition from the teen Hyun Soo (Park Jin Young) to the adult Hyun Soo (Baek Soon Hyun) to the ultimate megastar Hyun Soo/Eun Ho (Joo Jin Mo).

Nonetheless, once you get past the fact that these are played by different actors/actresses, the love story is one that rivals Romeo and Juliet. This is a story of star crossed love and the journey of one man’s steadfast search for his one and only true love. He never gives up hope that he will find his Eun Dong one day despite the lost years and the absence of knowledge of her whereabouts and status; is she alive or dead? Is she married or single? It may seem impossible and coincidental but the Show succeeded in making me care and believe in Eun Ho's journey.

It wouldn’t be a makjang without your usual parade of unforgivable antagonists, betrayals, birth secret, amnesia and hateful in-laws. This show will make you cry, it will make you cringe, it will make you angry and it will even make you question the writer. But ultimately it is a great love story.

Kudos to all the casts for a great performance. All of them acted beautifully. Can’t say enough about the two leads. Kim Sa Rang and Joo Jin Mo ooze instant chemistry and make us root for them from the get go.

Unlike many kdramas, there isn’t any over the top acting throughout the entire show. It is tasteful and utterly believable. Kim Tae Hoon is fast becoming the man to hate in kdramas. His portrayal of crippled Choi Jae Ho is well done and despite being a hateful character, he shows us the many layers of a man struggling between right and wrong.

If you want to watch a romantic love story with a hopper full of twists and turns, this one is it. It is about enduring love, about two people finding each other despite decades separating them,

The OST blends in very nicely and this one is a definite rewatch if your heart can take it.

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Orange Marmalade
10 people found this review helpful
Jul 31, 2015
Overall 7.0
Story 6.5
Acting/Cast 8.0
Music 7.0
Rewatch Value 1.0
This is one show that breaks almost all my ground rules of kdrama watching. As a self proclaimed old fashioned romance junkie, I tend to stay away from dramas or stories based on vampire, fantasy, time travel or paranormal themes.

Orange Marmalade embodies all of the above and some.

So how did I end up watching Orange Marmalade and stuck with it through to the end? Because there was enough intrigue to this madness and it was sufficient to keep me tuned in each week.

I was fascinated by the boldness (or some may say craziness) of the production team to take on a challenge that is such a departure from the normal formula of kdrama success. It is supposedly an adaptation of a popular webtoon but it is nothing like its predecessor. It is but a myriad of cliche tropes, creatively brave screenwriting, mix in some non conventional programming, good looking casts, and there you go - Voila! Orange Marmalade!

At first I was intrigued by the mini teasers which did a fantastic job of marketing the show. I was sold by the mystique of the elusive vampire girl and the puppy eyed, longing stares of Jae Min.

Yeo Jin Gu’s superb acting won me over in those few seconds. I am already a fan of CNBlue’s Lee Jong Hyun therefore having him as the second lead was a bonus.

Two episodes in, I was ecstatic! The Show exceeded my expectations. It started out really well in introducing the storyline depicting the struggles of the vampires trying to live incognito among humans; reminiscing of real life discrimination faced by many in our society today. And throw in a few light-hearted hilarious moments, I was sold! My reaction...Wow! They did that on prime time public television?

Episode 4 was the turning point for me. The pace was suddenly so fast it was like watching a completely different drama. Suddenly the Show introduced all kinds of loopholes, sub-plots and question marks. And then the big reveal - flashbacks to the Joseon era. At this point I was close to dropping the show but curiosity kept me reeled in.

It turned out I actually liked the Joseon episodes the best even though I was cringing when I first heard about it. I really enjoyed Shi Hoo’s story in the Joseon era. His character had more depth and layers than the other two leads. The bromance between Shi Hoo and Jae Min was cute and touching. The love story between Jae Min and Ma Ri was endearing but a tad ordinary and predictable. I actually felt more for Shi Hoo’s restraint love for Ma Ri. It was respectful but heart rending. The secondary characters were interesting and their stories closed the gaps in understanding the relationships of these characters in the present day.

I also enjoyed the story development surrounding the human-vampire conflict and how the pact was reached that carried to the modern era. I was mostly invested in Shi Hoo’s story though how the show dealt with him in the present day was a tad too convenient for my taste.

The chemistry between the second leads was excellent but in typical kdrama fashion it was a bit rushed in the end.

Overall, Orange Marmalade had its moments but lost a lot of fans from the misleading advertising, inconsistent storytelling/pacing and the modern to historical jumps. But I am glad it didn’t suck and it definitely wasn’t a complete waste of my time.

The music was catchy and melodic but to be honest the exact tunes have totally escaped me so it must not be that memorable.

Is it a rewatch? No, it is one of those unique shows that will certainly divide but even for the faithful, a rewatch is probably not likely.

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The Man Who Can't Get Married
4 people found this review helpful
Nov 21, 2015
Overall 7.0
Story 7.0
Acting/Cast 8.0
Music 6.0
Rewatch Value 5.0
A show about an eccentric, obsessive-compulsive 40 year old bachelor who swears off marriage. He is someone that cherishes his independence and guards his privacy and aloneness with all his might.

But his life goes topsy turvy when he meets his new neighbour, 26 year old Yoo Jin and her pet dog Sang Ja, and Doctor Jang Moon Jung, a 40 year old spinster. Unlike Jae Hee, Moon Jung wants to be married but was previously jilted. She is holding out for her ultimate soulmate amid protests from her dear father who wants to marry her off to the next living, breathing man of acceptable scruples and standing.

Jae Hee’s character parallels the Academy award winning role played by Jack Nicholson in As Good As It Gets. He is frankly quite annoying and unlovable. As the show progresses we get glimpses of his kindness and empathy for his fellow human beings especially towards Moon Jung.

Despite the show’s quirkiness I did enjoy it for what it is, my expectations neither here nor there. The cast is stellar; the ladies especially are all outstanding; the friendship between Moon Jung and Yoo Jin despite the age gap is refreshingly real. Delightfully no evil, OTT antagonist if we exclude the creepy stalker. The meddling mother and father are understated in the realm of kdrama demanding parent trope.

Perhaps it is also a tad unbelievable that three equally successful and beautiful women could fall for an oddity of a character like Jae Hee. His mystic certainly adds to his charm. A twist on the all girls want bad boys trope.

Overall it is a decent show with sprinkles of hilarious moments like Jae Hee's first encounter with Dr. Jang. It lacks the "it" moments (at least for me). If you simply want something to fill the void this may do the trick for rom-com lovers.

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Oh My Ghostess
4 people found this review helpful
Sep 5, 2015
Overall 9.0
Story 8.0
Acting/Cast 10
Music 5.0
Rewatch Value 8.0
Wow! What a ride! After a lacklustre summer of kdrama watching I finally finished Oh My Ghostess and I absolutely enjoyed it! It is a wonderful conglomeration of fine acting, funky storytelling, tasteful use of popular kdrama tropes, a touch of mystery suspense, wrapped into a unique love story.

STORY

This is a love story after all, the genre says it is a romantic comedy but one that is uniquely its own. It is sweet, captivating, different and ultimately spellbinding.

First you have the one sided, unrequited love of the kitchen help for her good looking celebrity boss. And you also have the classic friends secretly pining for each other love line. And then lo and behold you have a virgin ghostess love story, masquerading in the body of her host and successful in stealing the heart of the leading man. And finally the new Bong Sun emerges from her shell. Lots of tender loving moments, tantalizing kisses and amazing chemistry.

It is also a show about friendships. True friendships never waver and this show has plenty of them including one that surpasses what the eye can see, trusting your body and memories to none other than a ghost.

This is also a show with attention paid to familial love. A daughter’s love cut short by her untimely death and a father’s regrets. A brother’s maturing journey from irresponsible son to a young adult ready to take on the man of the house role. It is rare in kdrama where we have the absence of a dysfunctional family and this show is one of those.

This is a tissue worthy show. I depleted half a box watching the goodbye scenes but that's me. I do cry easily. :)

ACTING/CAST

I am hard pressed to find a single character that did not belong in the show. Everyone has his/her purpose from beginning to end. Well-crafted characters do not come to life unless they are well casted. Excellent acting coupled with amazing chemistry simply made this production comes to life and utterly believable. Among the three leads, they were equal and perfect complement of each other, be it, looks, acting calibre, or fan attention.

Our delightful Ghostess, was consistent in mannerisms, tone, voice, and personality whether it was Kim Seung Gi or Park Bo Young acting the part. There are other shows where the transformation from child to adult characters fell short for me. So the very fact that I was a believer in Park Bo Young’s Soon Ae is a testament to her superb acting. Yes, there is plenty of aegyo throughout the show but it is not the cringe worthy variety. The cuteness serves to showcase the virgin ghostess story beautifully.
The suave and slightly arrogant chef played by Jo Jung Suk is spot on. He’s got enough charms and nice guy good looks that makes it believable that two women and a female ghost would fall for him. His chemistry with Park Bo Young is one to die for.

The Shaman. She reminds me of Ajumma in the Healer. An idiosyncratic but lovable, and fun character. She first comes across as the brash, no nonsense type that is out to catch all the stray souls left on earth but she shows us compassion and heart. The bond between her and Soon Ae rivals a mother-daughter’s. Her friendship with Seon Woo’s mom starts off business-like, a Shaman looking to milk a naive rich woman but her conscience wins over and their relationship turns into one of companionship and respect.

Seon Woo’s mother, Hye Yeong. When she first shows up on screen, I was like “Huh?” She looks so young and it is hard to believe she would be cast as the mother but as the story unfolds it becomes believable and it makes total sense. A highly educated woman with a modern view but one that believes in Shamans and the supernatural.

Not saying a lot about the antagonist since it will give away spoilers but it is nicely done and gives the show the right amount of suspense/twists.

The kitchen crew is a tight knit, hilarious bunch, led by the vain and colourful sous chef, Min Soo. The group’s banter is playful and endearing and definitely not wasted air time.

MUSIC

I have to admit I did not pay much attention to it since I was too engrossed in the show.

REWATCH VALUE

Definitely a yes. I do see myself picking this off the re-watch list someday.

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Spring Waltz
4 people found this review helpful
Apr 18, 2015
Overall 8.5
Story 8.5
Acting/Cast 8.5
Music 9.0
Rewatch Value 7.0
Spring Waltz is the second drama on the Endless Love instalments that I watched; the other one being Winter Sonata. Though not as popular as its predecessor, it is actually surprisingly underrated and is deserving of plenty of accolades. It is beyond good and freshly breathtaking and is equal or better than Winter Sonata in its starry-eyed storytelling magic.

It is a tale of childhood romances and sacrifices made by a young boy to save a girl he loves but having to live a life of lies thereafter. Yes, it has its share of kdrama makjang but it is rightfully sentimental, intensely heart rending and purposefully melancholy for the right reasons.

The first four episodes may drag out for some people since it focuses solely on the childhood lives of the two main characters. The child actors were outstanding especially young Eun-young. This is one of those dramas where I can relate the young actors to their adult equivalent. Young Eun-young was breathtakingly beautiful with her wide-eyed innocence and expressive acting talents. The adult Eun-young was equally beautiful and came across as very warm, caring, self sacrificing earnest type.

The story thereafter took place fifteen years later when their paths cross again amidst new identities and blurred memories of their childhood; he the cold, introvert, renowned pianist and she, a bubbly, aspiring designer. That scene in the train in Austria was one I could rewind and re-watch again and again.

The plots are certainly kdrama cliches where mysteries and secrets tend to drag out towards the end with one too many coincidental missed opportunities to reveal the truth. Having said that, Spring Waltz is truly a romantic’s dream with its fair share of lovely leads, deserving second lead, slightly evil antagonists that eventually redeemed themselves and generally beautiful acting surrounded by scintillating music and beautiful cinematography. The OST and background score were all mesmerizing and soothing to listen to.

It is a definite must watch for any hopeless romantics out there. As for re-watch value, I may speed watch some scenes but yes, I would sit through it again.

Spring Waltz is almost a decade old and is reflective of its age when it comes to kdrama trends. If you are ones that crave glitz, action packed scenes, fast paced storytelling, novelty themes, then maybe this is not for you. But if you feel nostalgic for some makjang done well, Spring Waltz will surprise you.

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New Heart
4 people found this review helpful
Mar 27, 2015
Overall 8.0
Story 8.0
Acting/Cast 8.0
Music 6.0
Rewatch Value 6.0
Medical dramas always fascinate me. I am in awe of how these dramas are shot and amazed at how these actors can memorize the complex medical terms and actually look like real surgeons. I am even more amazed at the script writer(s), research and props teams for the depth of medical knowledge they infuse into such dramas. I am no medical expert therefore cannot attest to the accuracy of such procedures or operations of hospitals but I must say those surgical scenes looked so realistic and are definitely not for the faint of heart.

This drama satisfied me on three fronts; the surgical room mystique, a physician dilemma “to save a life or not to save a life” and a heartwarming romance from two very likeable actors with a nice twist of the jerk with a heart of gold plot device; except the jerk in this case was the female lead.

Ji Sung’s character was bubbly and kind; nothing seemed to be able to get him down; his glass was always half full. Kim Min Jun’s character was the haughty female resident whose biological father happened to be the Chairman. She grew up wanting to prove her worth to him and therefore came across as cold, uncaring and ambitious. These two balanced each other out nicely and eventually learned to see from each other’s perspectives.

It has its share of hospital politics and infighting but not crazily overdone. The moral of this medical drama is mostly about the question of ethics and a doctor’s true calling. Cho Jae-hyun played a stubborn, idealistic doctor who did not care for hospital politics and protocols. His only mission in life was to save his patients but at what cost? His conviction and dedication to his profession almost caused him his career, his wife and children.

This is a touching drama that gives rise to many thought provoking questions about the profession and human nature. The pace is fast and subplots get resolved in one or two episodes but all building up nicely towards a satisfactory conclusion.

If makes for a good intro to this genre if you haven't tried medical dramas before. It may be a bit dated but is still worth watching.

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April Snow
4 people found this review helpful
Mar 25, 2015
Overall 7.0
Story 7.0
Acting/Cast 8.0
Music 6.0
Rewatch Value 5.0
I watched this movie probably a year ago but decided to write a review since there aren't too many here so perhaps mine will give a prospective watcher something to ponder over.

I picked this one up because I liked Bae Yong Jun in Winter Sonata and Hotelier. This is an artistic movie about forbidden love, morals, betrayals and friendship. It reminds me so much of Meryl Streep and Clint Eastwood in "The Bridges of Madison County" or Tony Leung and Maggie Cheung in "In the Mood for Love".

There is hardly any dialogue; the pace is methodical and purposefully slow, subtle background music, and flashbacks but excellent acting by the two leads and very restraint directing.

This movie is all about the little things; the gazes, the touches, the unspoken words, the guilt and the what ifs.

The love scenes were tastefully done and actually quite beautiful. The music plays a secondary but important role to set the mood but there isn't something that is memorable that I would download to my playlist.

Is it a re-watch? Not likely given the abundance of choices we all have before us. But if you can appreciate its artistic value and do not expect a heart wrenching melo, or cute romantic plots then this may be worth your time.

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Always
3 people found this review helpful
Mar 27, 2016
Overall 10
Story 10
Acting/Cast 10
Music 10
Rewatch Value 10
I gave this movie a 10 and I don’t usually do that. I’m actually quite stingy when it comes to giving out 10s. But I asked myself what would I change about this movie and I could not come up with a single reason. Since this review system includes rating the music, maybe I could ding a half point for not having a scintillating OST but that would be nit picky.

Breathtaking. The one adjective I would use to describe this movie. Why don’t they make romantic movies like this anymore? This was produced in 2011 and here I am in 2016 and it doesn’t feel old or outdated. Because emotion is timeless.

The entire production evokes all kinds of emotions from me: anguish, pain, sense of loss, despair, wonder, regret, hope, trepidation, and ultimate joy.

The story, the pace, the acting, the direction, the set up, the chemistry… I could go on and on. It simply works. What can I say about So Ji Sub and Han Hyo Joo? I cannot picture any other actors as Chul Min and Jung Hwa. Their acting brilliance made this love story so believable. It is all about the little things, the effortless portrayal of every nuance of emotional range without having to over-act or being over-dramatic.

I was invested in their love story from the moment she walked into his small parking lot booth. Two souls with a sad past. The beginning of something special. Yes, the story is not original, but then what is? If the quest for originality loses sight of the overarching goal of making us care, then it defeats the reason for making this story. I would rather have a story that makes me care about the characters, touch at the core of my emotions, pull at my heartstrings and ultimately bring tears to my eyes than one that is original but leaves me emotionless and with apathy.

This is a romantic movie with a touch of melo for those that cherish a well done heart-wrenching love story.

And it is a definite re-watch. It is one of those treasured love stories that I will be coming back to for years to come.

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I Have a Lover
3 people found this review helpful
Feb 29, 2016
Overall 8.0
Story 8.0
Acting/Cast 10
Music 8.0
Rewatch Value 5.0
This is a show with a complicated story arc. And it will divide. It will take you on a roller coaster ride of emotional twists and turns. If you are not comfortable with the adulterous theme, then this is not for you. Ultimately it is a story about redemption, forgiveness and second chances.

Central to this story is a love quadrangle involving the lives of four people. Except for Baek Seok who is the penultimate goody two shoes who can do no wrong, the other three (Hae Gang, Jin Eon and Seol Ri) are flawed characters, all dealing with their own personal struggles. This love quadrangle is sure to take you on an emotional tailspin.

What made me stick around is the performance of Kim Hyun Joo. She’s the star of this show hands down. She’s such a great character actress, playing three entirely different characters in one show: the high and mighty, win at all cost Hae Gang, the amnesiac confident Mother Theresa Hae Gang, and her unsophisticated, simple-minded identical twin, Yong Gi. Her performance is breathtaking that one keeps forgetting she’s in these multiple roles. Her ability to emote a variety of emotions, love, sadness, anger, indifference through her facial expression and eyes is simply unbelievable,

The second reason I keep watching is the amazing on screen chemistry between Kim Hyun Joo and Ji Jin Hee. It is impossible to deny the effortless chemistry and deep sexual tension between Hae Gang and Jin Eon. The sparks just fly when the two are together. The eyes say it all making it so hard for me not to root for a reunion.

Running parallel to the love conflict is the saga of Hae Gang’s twin. In hiding to save herself and her child, she’s quirky, naive and almost comical. Mother and daughter find refuge in the unlikely brother of her enemy. This is a heartwarming part of the show. Kim Hyun Joo having conversations with herself in the two roles is nothing short of perfection. Throw in little Woo Joo. She’s got to be the cutest kid on k-ent. Sweet and endearing like no other, she’s unassumingly charming as Hae Gang’s niece and Yong Gi’s daughter.

And there’s always the trusty sidekick. Hyun Woo as Jin Eon’s best friend, confidante, matchmaker and errand boy, he gives us the candid humour and lighthearted moments.

Unlike other melodramas, the casting of the antagonists were a tad soft in my opinion. Jin Eon’s father doesn’t come across as evil or sinister. Min Tae Seok, the serial murderer is mild compared to other villains in kdramas. I thought the role of Seol Ri was appropriately cast. Park Han Byul is very credible as the beautiful and young seducer. She succeeded in making me hate her for most of the show.

For the most part the characters are all well written, multidimensional with many layers which make this show realistic and unconventional.

This is mainly a story about human relationships and the bonds between husband and wife, between brother and sister, between parent and child and between friends. The other storylines are secondary and only serve to complement the love quadrangle theme.

My only gripe is that at the end, the show tries to tie everything up too neatly for each of its leads which takes away some of the edge. Other than that it is an engaging show well worth my time.

The OST is excellent and very memorable. As for rewatch, not likely at 50 episodes.

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Perfect Proposal
3 people found this review helpful
Jan 3, 2016
Overall 7.5
Story 7.5
Acting/Cast 9.0
Music 5.0
Rewatch Value 5.0
A departure from my usual genre, I decided to take a turn into the dark side with the thriller Perfect Proposal. It is one of those movies that is not spectacular but it is also not a dud. It’s got enough suspenseful moments and tingling clues to make me want to continue watching. It’s less about whodunnit but more about how will it end kinda suspense.

A university graduate who fell on hard times and accepted the “perfect proposal” with a catch. The over-analytical in me questions the plausibility of Ji Yeon even considering such a proposal. She doesn’t come across as the silly, money grabbing airhead with a killer bod or pretty face. She’s rather ordinary but this is where the show departs from the usual stock character of a femme fatale. She’s smart but vulnerable. She is charming and attractive without being seductive, the exact qualities the antagonist Lee Seong Yeol sought her for; the winning combination to carry out his carefully designed plan against his father,

Overall, the story, unlike its namesake, is not a perfect movie but it is entertaining and offers sufficient twists and subplots to keep me guessing. When I thought I’d it figured out, it still manages to surprise me almost all the way to the end. I like the use of the cinderella concept in this context, but with its own interpretation and outcome.

The three big names, Yoo Yeon Seok, Im Soo Jung and Lee Kyeong Yeong’s acting is rock solid, giving us powerful emotions with their eyes and facial expressions. Soo Jung as Ji Yeon is fragile in front of Seong Yeol but controlled and restrained when she has to be in front of Seok Goo. Rising star Yeon Seok is perfect as the ambitious and confident bad boy Seong Yeol while Kyeong Yeong is more than convincing as the foul tempered, terrorizing father and boss, Seok Goo.

Sexual tension without the sex. Even the kiss is subtle. Yeon Seok and Soo Jung burn our screen with enough chemistry to spark the romantic in all of us.

The rest of the multi-ethnic cast fit right in but not too memorable except maybe for Do Hee and the adorable chihuahua.

The ending is expected and yet also unexpected. A nice mix of creepy moments, a twist of the forbidden love, and some unexpected turns. Overall a nice filler if you are looking for a thought provoking thriller but not over the top angst.

Don't recall the music and is it a re-watch? A Maybe for me.

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