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Sageuk Lover

Philippines

Sageuk Lover

Philippines
Completed
Gomburza
3 people found this review helpful
Dec 31, 2023
Completed 0
Overall 9.5
Story 9.5
Acting/Cast 9.5
Music 8.0
Rewatch Value 9.5
This review may contain spoilers

Well Deserved Awards at MMFF 2023

Love this movie, I consider this well made. I love that they gave the most prominent priest role to a less well known actor, proven right since he really acted well in this movie and even won best actor at MMFF awards. Cedric Juan, you really did amazing in this movie. All the other actors are great too. Kudos as well to director Pepe Diokno for the great direction of this movie. Great movie, must watch for all but especially Filipinos.
My only main criticism is the costumes. The ties the men were wearing look like modern neckties and not something from the 19th century.

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Completed
The Red Sleeve
3 people found this review helpful
Jan 2, 2022
17 of 17 episodes seen
Completed 0
Overall 9.5
Story 9.5
Acting/Cast 9.5
Music 9.5
Rewatch Value 9.5
This review may contain spoilers

Hauntingly Beautiful

What a great historical drama. I was looking forward to other sageuks at the beginning of 2021 but this one hands down is just so beautifully done. This drama is such a work of art.
Acting: Everyone in the cast is superb. It may be hard for me to remove my bias against idol actors, but Lee Jun Ho's acting here is so good it made me rethink of that bias. In historical dramas, I usually demand strong presence and Jun Ho did not disappoint in that. He has such a wonderful tone and diction. Had he been in the historical dramas as a lead from the late 2000s to the early 2010s, I believe he would be a really lauded and popular actor today. Lee Se Young, I also love her clear diction. She was able to depict the different versions of Deok Im very well, from the young and carefree court lady to the concubine who is limited in her choices. I am so glad that the girl who played the young version of the rival in my first historical drama Jewel in the Palace is rocking her role here as a female lead in her own sageuk drama. The supporting casts all did well to. Special mention to Kang Hoon, Lee Deok Hwa, Jang Hee Jin, Jang Hye Jin, and Park Jin Young. (9.5)
Music: I think the BGM of this drama will go down as one of my favorite BGM's ever. They are so hauntingly beautiful and it serves the purpose well of capturing this great love story. The songs themselves are not so memorable (except Lee Sun Hee's OST) but it really doesn't matter since the BGM's did it's job really well. Plus kudos to not putting any songs that might not befit the theme of this drama (looking at you Moon Lovers). (9.5)
Story: Yi San is one of my favorite historical dramas. I've also seen various actors play King Jeongjo in various dramas (Yi San, Painter of the Wind, Sungkyunkwan Scandal). There's a lot of historical romance dramas I've seen as well. So at first I thought this drama is not unique. Glad to have seen the trailers that made me watch this drama. However this drama's take on the usual sageuk stories is so fresh. It's easy for most to think that becoming a beloved of the king (for a woman of low class position) is something she would want, but kudos to this drama for showing how a woman might not want that kind of life for her (even though she loves the king herself). I also appreciate how they show in this drama that all kinds of women (from high Queen Jeongsun who couldn't even visit her brother's grave to ordinary court lady Myung Hee who died simply because of loving a man) have very limitied choices in the past. This makes us appreciate how we live in the 21st century where a woman is more free. This drama also screams Pride and Prejudice (depicting a woman who tries to have modern sensibilities in a period that does not allow her to) and Titanic (the wonderfully done ending scene) to me. Last thing, even though the drama focuses more on the love story, I still love how this drama portrays well the impact of Yi San being the son of the controversial Sado.
Bonus: I appreciate the level of detail in this drama. The cinematography, the symbolisms (flowers, water, etc). Just so beautiful.

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Completed
Arthdal Chronicles: The Sword of Aramun
2 people found this review helpful
Oct 23, 2023
12 of 12 episodes seen
Completed 0
Overall 9.0
Story 9.0
Acting/Cast 9.0
Music 3.0
Rewatch Value 7.5

Satifactory Ending for a Good Drama

At last we already have an ending!
I'm glad the show is finished. While there are still storylines they can add to this drama if they wanted, I think the story we have right now (season 1 and 2) is already complete enough that it's okay if they leave it at that. Kudos to the whole cast and crew. Lee Joon Gi and Shin Se Kyung did well as Eunseom/Saya and Tanya, despite not playing them from the first season. Jang Dong Gun and Kim Ok Bin continued their amazing acting from season 1. I'm not gonna be surprised if any of the cast members got baeksang nominations next year given their amazing acting, but I won't be surprised either if they didn't seeing they didn't nominated the show for season 1.
Despite cancellations, cast changes , and other problems, I'm at least glad Arthdal ended as a really good show. They ended it in a way that they can add to the story if they wanted to, but the show we have right now can stand on its own as a complete story. Kudos to the casts (both seasons 1 and 2) and crew for making a good and unique drama. (I do really miss the epic music and Saya's pretty costumes from season 1 but it did not deter me from enjoying this season). I highly recommend everyone to check out the other dramas written by this writing team. They also made Queen Seon Deok, 6 Flying Dragons, and Tree with Deep Roots kdramas. Our Tanya in this season Shin Se Kyung played the female lead of the latter 2 dramas I mentioned while she's the childhood version of the female lead's twin sister in the first drama I mentioned. Season 1 Eunseom/Saya Song Joong Ki has a pivotal cameo in Tree with Deep Roots which was also his career turning point (he was known as a flowerboy actor and it was his first known serious role).
PS:
1. I missed the dancing scenes, I was hoping to see Eunseom, Saya and Tanya do it again for this season (I also wanted to see it because I wanted to see Lee Joon Gi and Shin Se Kyung dancing together) but I guess that plot point was only necessary for season 1 in order to get the bell.
2. Genuinely surprised to see Erika Karata. She was the person I least expect from the first season to appear again here but she's back. (Those who were waiting for news for season 2 after season 1 ended should know why she wasn't expected to appear in season 2, even before the main leads were recast).

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Completed
Gumiho: Tale of the Fox's Child
2 people found this review helpful
Aug 25, 2023
16 of 16 episodes seen
Completed 0
Overall 9.0
Story 9.0
Acting/Cast 9.0
Music 9.0
Rewatch Value 6.0
This review may contain spoilers

Great Plot

PS: I watched this long ago but I'm only reviewing now
This might not be for everyone due to it's horror sageuk genre, but for me, this drama is really good. Except for a few scenes, I don't find this drama scary in a general sense. The effects used may have aged a bit, but I didn't really mind.
I really love how this drama used Korean folklore to create this original story. I also love how the fantastical elements in this story are used to show the themes of this show: mainly about parents' love for their children and the lengths they'll go for their children. This along with Arang and the Magistrate are both good kdramas that used the Korean folklore very well to tell their story. This drama about family. It's also a drama about children and their adventures, rivalries, and early experiences in romantic crushes/love.
The actors are really great. Han Da Gam (known as Han Eun Jung when she made this drama) was amazing as the Gumiho mother. She also has great chemistry with Jang Hyun Sung (actor of her child's rival's father who fell in love with her character) and Seo Jun Young (actor of the young male servant who also fell in love with her character). Kim Yoo Jung and Seo Shin Ae are both amazing in here as the two main children. Kim Yoo Jung's acting as both the sweet human child of her gumiho mother and her scary gumiho version is really great. No wonder she is one of the most well known actresses in Korea today. I still think this is her best acting in all her acting projects that I've watched. Seo Shin Ae is terrific as the wicked and spoiled child of rich parents, you'll really loath her character. Sad she's so underrated, I really believe she deserves more great acting projects. Lee Tae Ri is only in supporting role, but he's great as the teenage Jung Kyu, the young boy in the affections of both Kim Yoo Jung and Seo Shin Ae's characters.

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Completed
Iljimae
2 people found this review helpful
Jun 2, 2021
20 of 20 episodes seen
Completed 0
Overall 8.5
Story 8.5
Acting/Cast 9.0
Music 10
Rewatch Value 7.5
This review may contain spoilers

Enjoyable Show especially for Lee Joon Gi fans

I don’t know why it took me so many years before eventually deciding to watch the whole drama since I knew about its existence since about 2009. I got to know about this drama when I often read mentions if Lee Joon Gi name in kdrama sites all those years ago. I somehow always go back to the profile of this drama as I watch other dramas where they feature actors in this show. Around 2017-2018, I was able to read some summary of this dramas plot, watch some video clips, and listen to the OSTs. Yet somehow it took me watching another Lee Joon Gi drama (Flower of Evil) that I decided I needed to watch this show.
Iljimae. I don’t think this drama is perfect. In fact I find the beginning episodes a bit slow. Plus the ending could be better. But once Yong/Iljimae learns more skills and gets to wear his black suit and mask, drama’s plot then moves very fast. Even though some episodes are slow though, most episodes often end with Yong/Iljimae’s tactic on how he was able to complete his missions without being discovered by guards which makes viewers very much satisfied. Drama also becomes more exciting as we see Yong/Iljimae being successful in his missions and even becoming a sort of hero to the people (despite starting out as a thief with his goal of revenge). Plus Yong/Iljimae also shows very good martial arts and action skills, very enjoyable and exciting to watch especially for Lee Joon Gi fans.
The drama also has heart. Drama doesn’t focus much on romance, but Yong/Iljimae still is given two love interests, the noble Eunchae and the street girl Bong Soon. Don’t expect much if you’re here for a romance between famous actors Lee Joon Gi’s (Yong/Iljimae) and Han Hyo Joo’s (Eunchae) romance though, as although they are the official couple here and have chemistry, I don’t think it’s enough to sustain the whole drama. I also feel that Yong/Iljimae has more chemistry with the other girl Bong Soon (who has one sided feelings for him) since she was the one who spends more time with him. There is also the part where Yong/Iljimae rival Shi Hoo also has one sided feelings for Eunchae but although I feel she fits him more than Yong/Iljimae, some viewers might find their potential romantic relationship a bit icky (you’ll understand if you watch the drama).
The reason why I mentioned the drama has heart though is not because of the romantic relationships but because of the father/son relationship. Both Yong/Iljimae and Shi Hoo have an adoptive father whose not the smartest or strongest person around, but he very much loves his two sons (despite not being blood related to either). He is shown as someone very much willing to sacrifice for both of them. His fatherly relationship especially to Yong/Iljimae is very much touching. Thus, for the drama’s heart and pluses in the plot, I’m giving the story an 8.5
The acting is very good. Highlight is of course Lee Joon Gi as Yong/Iljimae. Of course I expected great from him since this role gave him a too excellence award plus a baeksang nomination, but he was simply fantastic. It’s really hard to act with your face half covered, but even with a mask, he can be seen as showing his emotions very well even with just his eyes. Also, I find him really good in changing emotions very fast, especially in one scene where he was crying for his sister’s death but have to show a happy go lucky personality to the person beside him so people won’t know he’s related to the sister that died. He’s very good in showing two distinct personalities, from the happy go lucky Yong to the serious and badass Iljimae. Also excelling in acting is Lee Young Ah (Bong Soon) and the ensemble cast. They are all very excellent in portraying their characters. Stand out among the ensemble cast is Lee Moon Shik as the adoptive father, his performance is part of the reason why the father son relationships in this drama is so touching. The child actors like Yeo Jon Goo and Kim Yoo Jung also did well. On the other hand, I find both Han Hyo Joo (Eunchae) and Park Shi Hoo’s (Shi Hoo) acting to be a bit stiff, but then again I don’t think they are given enough moments to shine (especially Hyo Joo) and I feel like they did their best with their characters. I’m not blaming them and I’ve seen them act better in dramas they did after this one so I still think they are great actors in general. With the stuff I mentioned, I’m giving the acting in this drama a 9.0.
The music in this drama is very good, I’m hooked in some of them. Flower Letters is such a beautiful song, I love it very much. Maehwa is also good. Lonely Footsteps is excellent, it really fits well as the music while showing Yong/Iljimae doing his heroic stuff plus action skills. Thus a 10.0 for the music.
Rewatch value is 7.5, some parts may be too slow for me to watch, but I might still watch some of the show’s enjoyable moments (especially the action/heroic stuff, father son scenes, and maybe some romantic moments).
Overall, an 8.5 for this show.

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Completed
The Painter of the Wind
2 people found this review helpful
May 31, 2021
20 of 20 episodes seen
Completed 0
Overall 9.5
Story 10
Acting/Cast 9.5
Music 10
Rewatch Value 7.5
This review may contain spoilers

"Unique Drama!" "Moon Geun Young best female to male crossdresser ever!"

I have watched this drama when I was younger back in 2009. Though not understanding everything in the story, I was able to see that it was a great drama. Through the years, I often find myself watching clips from the drama (especially with that beautiful soundtrack) and reading up on it to understand more on the story. 2021, I decided a rewatch is needed for me to see if this drama holds up and for me to completely understand the story while watching as a grown up.
The drama really does hold up. but first, I completely understand why not a lot of people might like this drama. If you're someone who watches dramas for handsome "oppas", this drama is not for you. There are no oppas here, closest we get is the son of one of the villains (he's not exactly the best character either) or if you count Moon Geun Young's handsome manly disguise then that could be your oppa. Second, if you watch historical dramas for action and swordfighting, this is not your show. This drama focuses more on painting and we have a lot of gayageum (Korean instrument) music too but not a lot of swordfighting. There is a female assasin often feautured when there are action scenes, but there's not really a lot of them in this drama (female assassin is a minor character). Also the drama can be confusing to some if the historical context is not known. I suggest people read up on Crown Prince Sado (to understand the dilemma of the King in this drama) or even King Sukjong (a previous King who had issues with Queens and concubines, he eventually made a law that no concubine can be Queen, this helps viewers understand why the King's stepgrandmother is so young).
Now here are the reasons why this drama does hold up. I don't know about the others but I think the plot is really tightly written. The storytelling is consistent, we really get through the dilemmas and experiences of young artist Shin Yun Bok (a woman who has to disguise herself as a man to become an artist in a world that doesn't accept women to be among those). I especially like how well a story they made that somehow involves the real life paintings of the real life painters the two main characters are based on. The many paintings of this drama really helped me get to know more about Korean paintings and artworks. (I prefer Shin Yun Bok's paintings a lot more than Kim Hong Do's due to the vivid colors and depiction of beautiful women).
The unique relationships! Oh the relationships in this drama! Main character Shin Yun Bok has three potential love interests. None of them typical and all can be considered taboo. First is Shin Young Bok (her foster brother) whose potential romantic interest in her is seen as taboo since society sees them as siblings (plus people think she's a man). Yun Bok doesn't really love him romatically the way he does, but she truly values him as a sibling and is really appreciative of everything he sacrificed for her. Second is Jeong Hyang whose relationship with her is taboo since she's a gisaeng (belonging to someone else) plus knowing the truth that Yun Bok is a woman, they can't be together in historical times. Their love is mutually romantic, most people watching this drama are drawn to this relationship the most since it's about two young women who are both similar yet different yet somehow found love and solace on one another. Third is her teacher Kim Hong Do whose eventual romantic relationship with her is taboo since the world sees her as a man, and even as a woman they are really taboo since he's her teacher and he's very much older than her (plus he knew her since she was a child). Unlike some people who watch this drama, I think Yun Bok very much loves her teacher romantically as she loves Jeong Hyang romantically. She loves Jeong Hyang as a woman who can relate to another woman, she loves Hong Do as a woman who wants to be loved by a man. Thus for the uniquely beautiful relationship this drama portrays plus my love for the storytelling as mentioned in the previous paragraph I am giving this drama's storytelling a solid 10.
For acting, I am giving a 9.5. Moon Geun Young's acting in this drama is so fantastic, she completely sold me on her acting as a woman disguising to be a man, no other actress comes close. She truly deserves her daesang and her baeksang award from this drama. Plus the way she emotes, she's so good! It is this drama that made her one of my most favorite actresses (even if I haven't seen most of her other works except My Little Bride and some clips of Autumn in my Heart, and Love Me Not movie). Park Shin Yang is also really great but I feel like the way he speaks does not fit historical dramas sometimes, he's still great in this show. Two other fantastic actors here are Ryu Seung Ryong and Bae Soo Bin, the former being so good and scary as one of the villains Kim Jo Nyun the latter being so good and charismatic as King Jeong Jo (I was really amazed with Bae Soo Bin here, my image of him before this drama was the very feminine Sayong of Jumong). Moon Chae Won as the gisaeng Jeong Hyang is so beautiful, she also acts really good and cries prettily (there are some imperfections on her acting but given that she's a rookie here, i'm gonna forgive her). Plus she really has fantastic chemistry with Moon Geun Young (they really deserve their best couple award), her talent of having really great romantic chemistry with her partners which we can already see in this drama has brought her success on her later dramas as a lead actress (ex: Princess's Man, Innocent Man, Flower of Evil). Thus my 9.5 rating for the acting in this drama.
The music in this drama is superb. Both "Still thinking of You" and "Two Lovers under the Moonlight" are two of my favorite soundtracks from Korean dramas ever, they are so good. I also really love the songs "Flower Tears" and especially "Line of Sight", the lyrics really depict the feelings of the characters of the drama. A perfect 10.
Rewatch value is only 7.5. While the whole drama is really great, some scenes (especially scenes of older men plotting might be boring to some viewers). The great parts are really rewatchable though. My favorites are Yunbok/Jeonghyang scenes, Yunbok dressing up as woman scenes, Hongdo whenever he almost finds out Yunbok as a woman, plus episode 10 where the part where Hong Do uses Yunbok's bra (which he was confused what it was for) to clean himself is so funny.
All in all I give this drama a 9.5. Kudos to the whole cast plus director Jang Tae Yoo. I'm very much excited for Hong Chun Gi, another painting drama by this director coming later 2021 starring Kim Yoo Jung (child Shin Yun Bok here).

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Completed
Queen Seon Deok
2 people found this review helpful
May 1, 2020
62 of 62 episodes seen
Completed 0
Overall 9.5
Story 10
Acting/Cast 9.5
Music 10
Rewatch Value 8.5
This is my favorite Korean Drama Ever.
STORY: I have such great respect for the writers. Kim Young Hyun original wrote Jewel in the Palace/Dae Jang Geum before this and Park Sang Yeon was the original author of the novel that inspired the film Joint Security Area. After this drama, they also made Tree with Deep Roots and Arthdal Chronicles, other great dramas for me as well. Six Flying Dragons is also a drama by them, though I haven’t seen it but I heard its good too.
Queen Seon Deok is fantastic because it was able to show us motivations of many of the main characters and why they acted the way they did. They also showed that the good characters didn’t have to be perfect and that characters on the opposite side have some good in them and have their characters’ backgrounds explained clearly in a way so we can understand their actions .As a female, I also applaud that the drama has strong female characters (on opposite sides) who are both strong and smart, and stand firm on what they believed in. Except for sageuks, this was rare in Kdramas in 2009 when it was aired because the popular dramas then were simplistic love stories about rich guys and weak girls, so I really applaud them for this drama’s storytelling.
ACTING CAST: All actors deserve respect for signing up in a lengthy drama with the most difficult genre (sageuk). I dont think actors today would ever sign up for a 50 something episode show, never mind a serious sageuk of this length.
The best actors for me are, Go Hyun Jung as Mishil, Kim Nam Gil as Bidam, Nam Ji Hyun and Lee Yo Won as Deokman, Seo Young Hee as Sohwa, Jeon No Min as Seolwon, and Jung Ho Bin as Munno. I have no words for Go Hyun Jung’s performance for Mishil. She was beautiful and menacing at the same time. The aura she showed can either make viewers love or hate her character. Oh Bidam! Bidam is the reason why Kim Nam Gil became a lead actor in dramas. He had such a charisma in this show, that even the writers found it difficult on how to continue the story because of his great acting and charisma on the character he portrayed. Nam Ji Hyun was excellent in portraying desert girl Deokman. I know some didnt like Lee Yo Won’s acting, but I believe she did well in carrying the character and the show, even with Go Hyun Jung’s popularity. Seo Young Hee as Sohwa, she was simple fantastic in bringing out a character who had to go through a lot of changes, from a silly young maid to everything in the story that happened to her character. Jeon No Min as Seolwon, it was a supporting character but I never fail to notice his character and his acting. Jung Ho Bin, from Jumong to here he was always excellent in playing warriors and swordsmen.
Other actors that I also think did really well are Lee Seung Hyo as Alcheon, Park Ye Jin as Cheonmyeong, Yoo Seung Ho as Chunchu and Park Eun Bin as Boryang, Shin Se Kyung as young Cheonmyeong, Ahn Kil Kang as Chilsuk, Kim Jung Hyun as Hajong and Jung Woong In as Misaeng. Great cameo by Kim Yoo Jung too in one of the first few episodes as little Cheonmyeong.
One actor I didnt particularly enjoy was Uhm Tae Woong as Yushin. I find his portrayal mostly bland. However, I felt his characters love for Deokman in a scene when he was looking at her eyes and like I said, I respect him for taking up this drama (I heard he was great in other dramas, so I don’t think my opinion of him here should be any indication of how he is as an actor in general).
MUSIC: The music is the best on this show. Almost 10 years since I watched it and Crystal Glasses Instrumental is still among my most favorite instrumentals. I love how the instruments is used to portray Mishil’s character while she is doing what she is doing in the story (in the first scene it was played, she was literally playing on glasses. Balbambalbam was such a beautiful sad love song, perfect for this drama. I also really love Mishil’s theme, too bad the version I like best (with the violin sound, I think) is never on youtube. I also love the other instrumentals, especially the ones that were the themes for Deokman’s female relationships like Sohwa and Cheonmyeong. Thumbs Up!
COSTUMES/PRODUCTION DESIGN: How I wish this is also a category on mydramalist since the costumes and production design are fantastic. Despite being an older drama, I like the costumes better here than the other Silla drama Hwarang as the characters are more realistic and you can really imagine 600-700 a.d. Silla with those costumes. At the time of watching this drama, I thought the costumes and the hairstyles won by Cheonmyeong, Mishil, and even Deokman, were the most beautiful costumes worn by women from the historical Asian period, apart from Hwang Jin Yi's costumes. Even today, their clothes can still live up as good costumes in comparison to newer historical dramas with higher budgets. I also love the color coding on Hwarang and Nangdo clothes, it was easy to identify which Nangdos are under which Hwarang. I also love the realism of this dramas’ production design. Can you imagine a shower in 600-700 a.d. in Silla? Unlike the drama Hwarang, this one doesn’t have that prop (which is too modern for this period) and thus more pluses for this show.
REWATCH VALUE: really takes a lot of time to rewatch a long drama but I am giving a good score on this drama for this category because I was continuously rewatching many of my favorite scenes when I decided to check even just one episode in youtube years after I watched this.
OVERALL: With the elements I mentioned above making this drama great, the combination of them makes a gripping story of how a woman overcomes all to fulfill her dream of greatness for her kingdom. The way the story shows on how she overcomes her trials makes great storytelling.

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Completed
Lovers of the Red Sky
2 people found this review helpful
Oct 26, 2021
16 of 16 episodes seen
Completed 0
Overall 8.5
Story 7.0
Acting/Cast 9.0
Music 8.5
Rewatch Value 6.0

I find the plot lacking but still appreciate mythology of the drama.

I like it, I'm giving it an 8.5 despite me feeling a bit let down by the plot since I never found drama boring. Despite being a bit let down, I still like the mythology of this drama. The visuals and the imagery (especially those beautiful paintings and sceneries when Haram and Chungi are dating) are really beautiful. Acting is good by most especially by Kim Yoo Jung and Kwak Si Yang. Ahn Hyo Seob is good, but he really shone in the last 2 episodes (my only complaint against him is he sometimes doesn't act blind). Gong Myung is a bit disappointing (I'm saying this because I feel like an excellent actor with a lot charm could have made his character more memorable), but he was okay in the last 2 or 3 episodes.

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Flower of Evil
1 people found this review helpful
Mar 21, 2021
16 of 16 episodes seen
Completed 0
Overall 9.5
Story 9.0
Acting/Cast 10
Music 9.5
Rewatch Value 9.5
This review may contain spoilers

Great drama plus Fantastic Acting

(Forgive me, this is a long review, watched this back in October but decided to put this review only now).
INTRODUCTION:
As a fan of Moon Chae Won since her Painter of the Wind days (watched that drama in 2009 I think), I had been very sad that the last few dramas of hers were not favorably received by most people, especially as more people discovered kdramas since 2016. I kind of understand if people have mediocre expectations of her if they’ve only seen her dramas from 2012 and after (although she was great in Innocent Man and Good Doctor, I think those dramas highlighted the male leads a lot more than her), but if more people have seen her amazing performance in The Princess’s Man (2011 kdrama), there should be no doubt that she would do great here.
As for Lee Joon Gi, I was familiar with his name and respected him as an actor, but for some reason have never paid attention to him or his dramas. I’ve seen Iljimae video clips of him before though and thought he was great in those (saw those clips since a lot of actors I’m familiar with was in that drama). Thanks to this drama, I was able to realize how great of an actor he is.
MY RATINGS:
1. Story
I give the story a 9.0. I’m normally not a fan of crime and thriller dramas, but I gave this drama a go since I’m a fan of MCW, this drama has good reviews, and she’s paired with an actor who I think is talented. But as the story progresses, I love how the mystery is unfolded in this drama. I love how the audience gets to know more of the mysterious Do Hyun Soo as the episodes go by. Initially, I was calling his character “plastic” as his actions with his family is so contrary with his actions with others, but I learn to sympathize with him as I learn to understand him more. I also love Cha Ji Won, how as a character, we are able to be in her shoes, the one who has to uncover the truth. I didn’t give the story a perfect 10 though, because I feel like the main villain should have suffered more (I’m so cruel, I want him to be tortured the way some good characters in historical dramas are tortured) than just dying on the spot. Also, I wish Jung Mi Sook and her husband could have been shown reuniting in the end (her husband, for all the wrong things he did like killing people, only did those things for her and thus deserve to see him). Also, I feel like the real villain bumping his car to Do Hyun Soo of all people seem to coincidental for me. Other than that though, I feel the story is great as it is. I love the way the plot is presented, the cute moments in some of the episodes about the main couple’s pre-married life helped lighten the mood in some episodes.
2. Acting
A perfect 10. Love all the actors. As I mentioned, I am a fan of MCW, and I expected good things from her. She really did great in this drama, I really feel all her emotions and her love for the male lead (it doesn’t help that she has a nice voice that is really good for females expressing their sincere feelings of love and devotion). I love the way she cries as well.
Lee Joon Gi deserves all the daesang, I want him to win Baeksang awards for 2021. He was so good at changing his facial expressions so fast, one moment he looks so loving and cute another moment he looks so scary. I now understand the hype around him and all his historical dramas are on my watchlist now. Observing his filmography and watching some clips of him, I think he has to be one of the most versatile actors in Korea, he’s actually threatening Song Joong Ki as my most favorite Korean actor born in the 1980s. He’s definitely my fave among the original hallyu stars (those that got famous before 2008) from now on.
Together, Joon Gi and Chae Won’s chemistry is out of this world. Me saying this means a lot since MCW is normally an actress with fantastic chemistry with all her costars (especially with Moon Geun Young in Painter of the Wind and the lead guy in Princess’s Man), but her and Joon Gi’s chemistry just outdid all her chemistry with all her other costars for me. From emotional scenes, to family scenes, to sweet loving moments, they just work so well together. Especially their sofa scene together, they really seem like a real couple up to the tiniest details (like the way she touches his ears and the way they look at each other). I wish they could get best couple award somewhere because they really deserve it together.
The acting of the villains are so believable. Applaud to Son Jong Hak who played doctor Baek for making me hate his character so much from the moment he spoke. Kim Ji Hoon is so scary as Baek Hee Sung. He is fantastic in making him really scary as an earlier episode where his mom made him food actually made him a bit endearing for me at first. Nam Gi Ae is so believable as Baek Hee Sung’s torned mom.
The rest of the cast did their job well. I really love Seo Hyun Woo’s facial expressions (I wish more people mention the actor’s name, not just the character Moo Jin). Choi Young Joon is really good as Detective Jae Sub who is kinda pessimistic and doubts a lot (at least that’s what I feel about his character). Jang Hee Jin, although she didn’t stand out for me, also did her part well as the torned and complicated sister Haesoo. The actors who played the other detectives are also good. And of course, Jung Seo Yeon as Eun Ha, I love her so much, she is so cute. She has a future as a great actress, I hope she is the next Kim Yoo Jung or Kim So Hyun.
3. Music
I gave the music a 9.5, because the way they use the music is just right for this drama. I did not give it a 10, since the instrumentals and OST are not as epic as the ones used in other dramas. But I give a 9.5 because I feel that they use the music well. What I mean is the music is not overpowering the performances of the actors (especially the emotional scenes). My most favorite song is Feel You. I love the lyrics, it really describes Hyun Soo’s feelings for Ji Won.
4. Rewatch Value
I never give rewatch value a perfect 10 score, since i believe it’s always gonna be different if you’re seeing something for this first time. This one gets a 9.5 though, since the acting and the chemistry of the actors together deserves a second watch. In fact I want to see LJG and MCW together in another project, but of course they have to move on and act with others next. I also think a rewatch would make the viewers appreciate the story more, plus the camerawork and some editing details
5. Overall
Overall, I think this drama is one of the best. Of course no drama is perfect, but this drama is already great as it is for me. It will not be part of my top 10 kdramas ever (sorry, those spots will only go to historical kdramas since those are what made me and appreciate Korea more), but this is definitely one of my favorite modern dramas.

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My Name Is Loh Kiwan
0 people found this review helpful
Apr 14, 2024
Completed 0
Overall 9.0
Story 9.0
Acting/Cast 9.5
Music 8.0
Rewatch Value 8.0

Great Acting and Story about the Struggles of Refugees

I really like this movie. I think this is the best movie of Song Joong Ki since 2012's Werewolf Boy. He always acts well, but I really appreciated his acting here among his recent works. Choi Sung Eun is also really excellent. she has matured in her acting since I saw her in Sound of Magic way back 2022. Seo Hyun Woo, Kim Sung Ryung, and Jo Han Chul are also memorable. It's a good movie that shows the struggles of refugees trying to survive in a foreign country. I said earlier that SJK is really excellent, that's because he acted really well how a person in really bad conditions should act even though he himself has been always comfortable in life.

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Everyday I Love You
0 people found this review helpful
Mar 28, 2024
Completed 0
Overall 9.0
Story 9.0
Acting/Cast 9.5
Music 9.5
Rewatch Value 7.0
This review may contain spoilers

Real Love is Letting Your Girl Pursue Her Dreams

I watched this in 2015 but I never really appreciated this movie until now. Also, watching this in 2024 feels oddly satisfying. I feel like the real relationship of LizQuen is closest to this fictional couple among all the couples they played (second being the couple from Alone Together) as I get the impression that Liza and Enrique are both passionate in filmmaking and making shows and Enrique is selfless in how he loves Liza. They have good chemistry in all their movies, but the chemitry here is just really amazing. The way Enrique looks and speaks to Liza! Both Enrique and Liza portrayed their characters really well. I really enjoyed the love story, glad the girl Audrey chose someone (Ethan) who lets her be who she wants to be and dream what she wanted to do rather than someone who wants her to change. Wih Liza's hollywood career and both her and Enrique insisting they never broke up, I feel like Enrique's love to Liza is similar to the way Ethan loves Audrey in this movie, he encourages the girl to make her dreams come true and loves her for her true self. Plus he's willing to sacrifice his happiness just for the sake of her own. That's true love!
It may seem to some people that Audrey is cheating on Tristan (played by Gerald Anderson) with Ethan here, but I totally understand why she would fall for Ethan, Tristan was a really toxic boyfriend who wants Audrey to change for him and does not love her for who she is (unlike Ethan).

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My Ex and Whys
0 people found this review helpful
Mar 28, 2024
Completed 0
Overall 8.0
Story 6.0
Acting/Cast 9.5
Music 7.0
Rewatch Value 8.5
This review may contain spoilers

Liza and Enrique's Performances Make Up for the Movie's Imperfections

This is very enjoyable but not as good as Alone/Together among LizQuen movies. The acting between Liza and Enrique is very convincing. The movie is also an enjoyable watch for a lazy weekend. However, the basic point of the plot, Gio's "cheating", is not very convincing since he didn't really cheat but was only taken advantage of during a night when he was drunk. I understand that girls get hurt if guys lay down with other women even when they were drunk, but Cali breaking up with him and making her a man-hater because of it makes her character less admirable. I wish they made another scenario of how Gio would cheat on Cali (ex: being taken to a bar after a tiring and disappointing day at school or work where he was really tempted to sleep with another girl for comfort because he was really disappointed with what happened at school or work). However, the fact that Cali's dad cheated on her mom did help add to the pain of Cali as well as make her man-hating personality develop more.
I wish the film was less "racist" though. How could a film be filmed in South Korea and then call a Korean character Kimmychi (joke on kimchi food)? While this mistake can be forgivable since Kimmychi maybe just a term of endearment from her boyfriend, using the term "slanted eyes" is just a little bit too much.
3.5 over 5 for Liza and Enrique's performance and for it being an enjoyable film for me to watch. A Korean person might however find this film a bit offensive.

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Alone/Together
0 people found this review helpful
Mar 17, 2024
Completed 0
Overall 9.0
Story 8.0
Acting/Cast 9.5
Music 9.5
Rewatch Value 8.0

Love the leads' acting (especially Liza). Characters really relatable to people in their late 20s.

I enjoyed this movie. It's very relatable to someone like me in her late 20s who feels like a failure after college, except that I don't have big dreams except to have money and I don't have a boyfriend. I watched this for Liza Soberano, she's good here. Enrique Gil is good as well but I feel like this is Liza's movie and she was the one given more chances to show her acting prowess. I have the impression that some people find her acting bad because she doesn't put in "big emotions". However I found her acting on point. Her emotions shown in the movie is perfect. It doesn't need to be too loud or too mechanical. She's perfect
Unlike some people, I'm not bothered with the "cheating" here. Raf had already broken up with his girlfriend prior to going to New York and proposing to Tin while Tin can't help returning back Raf's affections as I think her boss boyfriend is too controlling.

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Criminal Minds
0 people found this review helpful
Nov 28, 2021
20 of 20 episodes seen
Completed 0
Overall 6.5
Story 6.5
Acting/Cast 6.5
Music 6.5
Rewatch Value 6.5
This review may contain spoilers

Main actors are wasted, the villains and victims actors shined in this show

This drama is just not good nor is it for me. Pity. I wanted to like this one since this is Lee Joon Gi and Moon Chae Won together. But the plot's execution is just not good. There are some episodes which are more interesting for me than the others (I find the cases in those episodes more compelling to watch), but this drama just fails for me to connect them with the main characters emotionally. I do appreciate some episodes that show the background and the struggles of some NCI members. Actingwise, as good as Joon Gi and Chae Won are as actors in general, the actors that were really given the chance to shine here are neither them nor the rest of the NCI team, but the actors playing the villains and their victims. At least Joon Gi and Son Hyun Joo (the other super main character NCI member) have some moments where they show their acting moments, I just wish Chae Won is given a heavy scene herself too (I hope people who only seen her in this one call her a bad actress, she has dramas and movies before this one where her acting really shine). I like Lee Sun Bin, Go Yoon and Yoo Sun in their respective roles but I think this drama didn't make them shine in their own way either (I do think Lee Sun Bin has been given more than the other two actors). Giving this drama a 6.5

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Good Doctor
0 people found this review helpful
Oct 19, 2021
20 of 20 episodes seen
Completed 0
Overall 9.5
Story 9.5
Acting/Cast 9.5
Music 8.0
Rewatch Value 6.0
This review may contain spoilers

Drama with great pacing and execution plus life lessons learned

Ah! Good Doctor! I'm not really a fan of medical dramas but I decided to watch this one as I like both Moon Chae Won and Joo Won and I did not regret my decision to watch it as it's a really good heartwarming drama.
There are many things that makes this drama great. One is that the pacing and the execution of the drama is perfect, and kudos to the writers. The characters are very well developed too, you have likeable characters and most of the "villains" of this show are also given a good side in this drama (some of them even developed to become good characters). Many heart-warming life lessons as the doctor characters heal and overcome the difficulties their patients face. Among the many characters here, the main character of the autistic servant Park Si On is very important to the developments of many characters plus the life lessons provided in this drama. Let's not forget the acting, for me everyone did amazing. Joo Won as the autistic doctor Park Si On, Moon Chae Won as Park Si On's fellow doctor/future lover Cha Yun Seo, Joo Sang Wook as Kim Do Han, even young Kim Hyun Soo as In Hae did great. I have to give a shout out to Yoo Hae Jung as patient Eun-Ok, she was so amazing especially when her character seems very wild at first.
There's really nothing I can fault with this drama. The only thing though with this drama is I felt that career-wise, Moon Chae Won should not have chosen this drama especially after the successes of The Princess's Man, War of the Arrows, and Innocent Man during the two years before she did this drama. Don't get me wrong, Cha Yun Seo is a great character and I love how understanding and helpful she is of Joo Won's character. It's just that I feel the character doesn't give her the chance to show more of her acting skills unlike the previous works mentioned and I feel like she should have chosen a more female centric role. I have no choice but to respect her script decision though and despite what I said earlier about her character and the acting she had to show for this drama, the drama did show a different side to her acting (this character is more light and warm-hearted then the previous works mentioned). Plus I'm still glad she has a drama like this in her filmography.
Attesting to the greatness of this drama is how this won best drama in 2014 Baeksang and even got a US remake that now has many seasons. So what are you waiting for, watch Good Doctor now!

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