Soo Rin, a 6th grade student, moved due to her father's job. In her new school, people label her as a weirdo and avoid her after reading her blog. However, Sung Min, from the next class, befriends her and they fell in love. One day, Soo Rin, Sung Min, and Sung Min's friends Tae Shik and Jae Wook go to the mountains. There they find a cave under a tree which lead them to mysterious egg. Soo Rin then notices that the boys have disappeared and the police start looking for them. A few days later, Sung Min appears again but as an adult.
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Cast & Credits
First, this film is worth watching for the plot alone. The writer is extremely creative and he weaves in the 'fantasy elements' in an eloquent way. As a viewer, it felt realistic, as if it was something that could actually happen, despite the idea of it being so far-fetched. Another thing that is worth mentioning is that he examines the situation from different perspectives - how the average person would view their story (mentions of stockholm syndrome and other psychological analysis) versus how Soorin viewed Sungmin's story. It was extremely thought-provoking. There were comedic scenes, but also heart-wrenching scenes that made me tear up. It was well-paced and kept my attention throughout. I docked half a point for the story because I felt like a scene near the ending wasn't explained very well (it's either a loophole or something I need clarification on). But other than that, I had no qualms with the story.
Moving on to the acting/cast, I will emphasize this over and over again, they could not have chosen better actors for their roles. Kang Dongwon is absolutely impeccable as Sungmin. It's almost as if you are watching the thirteen year old boy Sungmin stuck in a man's body; as evidenced by the way he delivers his lines, the look of naïveté in his eyes, the tears of hurt, and feelings of guilt - in my opinion, no one could have played Sungmin better than him. Shin Eunsoo was the real surprise (as I'm a fan of KDW, so I already knew he would deliver). It's hard to believe this is her first role and she has little to any previous acting experience. She's so talented and her ability to emote is stellar. She has this wonderful ability to express a variety of emotions, and her friendship with Sungmin (the dynamic she had with both young/adult Sungmin) is what made this film so 'real' and beautiful to me (*mini spoiler: their code language was so special). Also, her chemistry with Kang Dongwon is so natural and inherently believable. The rest of the cast fit their roles well, especially Lee Hyoje as young Sungmin and his friends, they were adorable and hilarious at times, but you could also feel how conflicted they were to be in that situation.
The soundtrack fit the atmosphere of the film very well, but there wasn't a particular score that really captured my attention. However, the music did help with the buildup of intensity in certain scenes.
I will definitely rewatch this film, especially since I haven't seen anything else like it. But I also found it quite sad, so I think I'll pick it up again after some time.
Overall, objectively I'd rate it a 9.5/10. In terms of my subjective enjoyment of the film, I'd rate it a 10/10. Just a few additional comments I'd like to include, the cinematography is gorgeous and it really contributes to the mystical and melancholic vibe of the film. There are so many scenes that were filmed beautifully, such as close up shots of their eyes, Soorin's hair, the ocean - it was very artistic and aesthetically pleasing. I also thought the CGI was done well, especially the floating items, the scenes filmed in water, water droplets in the cave. It really felt as if time had stopped. Anyhow, this film is definitely worth the watch. It's hard for me to come up with the right words to describe it, but I guarantee that it's a gem. It left me wondering, if time has stopped for everyone else except for me, what would I do? And how would it affect the way I developed as a person?
Vanishing Time: A Boy Who Returned is a well-delivered, thought-provoking film with its own unique eccentric touch. Director and writer Uhm Taehwa astutely adds a touch of realism to this fantasy film.
I definately became attatched to the main characters, It's really hard to describe how I feel about it without giving away the story away.
The music was okay... I mean I don't really concentrate on the music, I'm just trying my hardest that I don't miss anything they say in the subtitles.
I've already rewatched this again and again, so... it's a 10/10 from me!
Overall I really enjoyed this movie, and I would definately reccomend it if anyone has 2 hours to spare!