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Ceki

Far Far Away... ✿۶♪

Ceki

Far Far Away... ✿۶♪
Strobe Edge
20 people found this review helpful
by Ceki
Sep 11, 2015
Overall 9.0
Story 9.0
Acting/Cast 9.0
Music 10
Rewatch Value 6.0
Strobe Edge may be the best shoujo adaptation to this date. I am personally not satisfied with most manga adaptations out there (they do not pick or transform actors well, they are boring etc.), however, this adaptation is great. Bear in mind that if you are not a shoujo fan, you will not like this and in order to like it you have to take it for what it is - a light and fluffy romantic teenage film which revolves around a world in which friendship and what your crush does are the most important things.

The story is a typical shoujo plot and the film follows the manga closely. That may or may not be boring if you have already read the manga. I have but I still ended up enjoying it. It is not a masterpiece nor something that I would rewatch from the beginning to end because there is no depth - I mean, a cute girls falls for a guy, he is already in a relationship that seems more like a friendship and it has become a routine, he falls for her too, there are also some supportive characters and that's it.

The cast is perfect. They are like the manga characters come to life. The acting consists of typical Japanese cute expressions and outbursts which you should have got used to if you have watched enough Japanese films. It's just their thing.

Music is also perfect consisting usually of instrumental piano tracks which fit the romantic school setting perfectly . I cannot stand the cliched sugar pop songs that seem like they are coming from a game machine or sth. I would also like to praise the production because it seems they did put more effort into editing.

The overall impression is - I liked it. I knew what to expect and that is what I got. Would I recommend it? Only to shoujo fans and those who like a light and fluffy story.

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As the Gods Will
14 people found this review helpful
by Ceki
May 31, 2015
Overall 9.5
Story 10
Acting/Cast 10
Music 10
Rewatch Value 7.0
If you are not a fan of Takashi Miike whose reputation is notorious (Crows Zero, Ichii the Killer, Audition and One Missed Call are just one of his most famous films and they are quite mild), then you should stay away from this film because it is simply not for everyone.

Just to make everything clear, I am not a fan of gore but I am also not the sensitive type. This film is a mixture of an over the top comedy and suspense. But there is also a lot of blood spurting from everyone and everything, so keep that in mind before deciding to watch the film.

The story is quite interesting and you will either keep nervously looking away or you won't be able to take your eyes off the screen. Besides the apparent craziness and 'trying to survive' chaos going around, there is actually a tiny amount of romance and friendship included, but don't set your hopes high, because this is a suspense and action film, not the romantic one.

The most prevalent theme is the one of survival, and that is why this film reminds me of Battle Royale. What happens when you know that the end is close, would you sacrifice the others in order to save yourself? Is there a limit to cruelty and fear in humans when faced to death and hopelessness? There are actually some really interesting themes that can be analyzed throughout this film.

When it comes to the cast, I am quite used to the Japanese extraordinary expressions so I did not find their acting cheesy and the actors were great. I would not recommend this for rewatching, simply because you won't feel the same after the first time and that means that you should prepare for some huge plot twists. The music is good too.
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* * * BEWARE NOW OF SOME SPOILERS * * *


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Still reading? I warned you. Curiosity killed the cat.
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I lied. I won't tell about the end, which I really liked :p But I will share some thoughts.

The survival game is apparently created by Kamisama (God) and his subordinates. And there are five parts:

1) Daruma - a symbol of perseverance and good luck, but now turns into a deadly Darumasan ga Koronda (Red light/Green light game).
2) Maneki Neko - a lucky charm, talisman.
3) Kokeshi - Japanese traditional dolls, tokens of friendship.
4) Shirou Kuma turns into an evil spirit from a Japanese legend.
5) Matryoshka - a Russian doll, the only element that is not part of Japanese tradition.

Each game tests different skills, but I find them fascinating because of their origin.
Anyway, I liked the film and all its craziness, go and watch it!

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Que Sera, Sera
6 people found this review helpful
by Ceki
Sep 11, 2015
Overall 5.0
Story 5.0
Acting/Cast 8.0
Music 9.0
Rewatch Value 1.0
This drama had a premise of being amazing, but considering my rating of it, it obviously did not turn out that way.
Let's start from the beginning, which was flawless. I was absorbed by the natural acting - there were no silly expressions and remarks found in the newest Korean dramas. Everything seemed realistic which was great.

The main male character Kang Tae Joo is not a hero by any means, you can see from the start that he has flaws (narcissism, lack of empathy etc), BUT you can also see that he also has positive characteristics (being honest and speaking up for himself - the scene in which he defends himself against his boss is amazing).
The main female character Han Eun Soo seems like a typical, stupid and naive girl from the Korean countryside that goes to the big city and falls in love. And it is like that but later on she will mature and learn from her mistakes (or not..).

Cha Hye Lin is the second female character and she was absolutely brilliant at the beginning - successful, mature, brave. She goes against authority (her tyrannical parents) and the society. Unfortunately, she will turn into a whimsical pathetic bitch until the end.

Shin Joon Hyuk is the second male character and he may seem cold-blooded and plain on the outside, but he is actually deeply insecure and sensitive on the inside.

All of them are different and the drama seemed pretty interesting until the point when the writing goes really shitty, unrealistic and absurd. The four of them go into a romantic and sadistic fight and there are also many scenes of them fighting, throwing water and slapping each other. Kang Tae Joo is definitely the worst of them. The problem is that all of that is condoned as natural, and they all end up being friends, cozy and fine as if nothing ever happened. Most of the drama is about them hurting each other and nothing else exists.

I would not recommend it to anyone who hates absurd and stupid plots. It had a great premise but it failed miserably.

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Oasis
2 people found this review helpful
by Ceki
Oct 15, 2017
Overall 10
Story 10
Acting/Cast 10
Music 10
Rewatch Value 8.0
What makes this film absolutely fantastic but also terrifying at the same time is not how it portrays raw human emotions but the inability to escape the prison made of them.

We meet two characters who just CAN'T HELP IT. Jong Du suffers from a mild mental retardation while Gong Ju has a severe form of cerebral palsy, a terrible disorder that is incurable. Both of them are shunned by other people who are too afraid and disgusted to deal with them. However, they form a friendship and romance that helps them deal with loneliness. Dong Du is unable to fully comprehend the world around him (which sometimes results in him acting aggressively); while Gong Ju is exploited by her brother who uses her disability pension but leaves her all the time alone with only neighbors to look after her. Moon So Ri's acting is just brilliant, I've never seen anything like it.

There is one scene in the movie when we see how Gong Ju dreams about being normal and imagines having flirtatious interactions with Jong Du. Unfortunately, she is not able to move or even speak normally but still has a need to function properly like all other human beings. It is interesting to note, that all of all people, it is Jong Du who takes her on "adventure" and makes her experience just a bit of life that she has been depraved of.

This is a very difficult movie to watch and it isn't for everyone. There is no HEA for Jong Du and Gong Ju because there is no magical cure to help them be "normal".  But what this movie does is make you APPRECIATE YOUR LIFE MORE. It reminds you that there are people who got it worse than you, who can't eat/walk/talk properly and who depend on others' mercy to survive. So be kind to others who "can't help it" and live your life to the fullest.

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100-manen no Onna-tachi
2 people found this review helpful
by Ceki
Oct 2, 2017
Overall 8.5
Story 9.0
Acting/Cast 9.0
Music 8.0
Rewatch Value 7.0
This was a very intense, interesting and bizarre drama. I was really drawn in by the characters, especially the female cast, and couldn't wait for the next episode to see what was going to happen.

The best part about this drama is definitely its villain - who took me by surprise with its psycho cruelty and really scared me. Other characters are also likeable - Shin, the shy and introverted wannabe author is surrounded by all these mysterious but hot women and is the epitome of a typical awkward manga character. The women might appear as stereotypical female characters but are still intriguing enough.  

Another great thing about this drama is how it explores the industry of book selling in Japan - very often it is not the quality that is sold but the name.

What I disliked is the harem aspect, which is not really surprising since this is after all a manga adaptation; however the fandom element was a bit too obvious. On the other hand, I didn't really understand the reason why these women would accept such a proposal (which was, after all, the main plot of the drama). It was explained how they agreed to it but not really why they would accept it.

All in all, I would recommend this drama to those who are looking for a short but intense and dark watch. Each episode lasts for 25 minutes only but it is enough to hook you on it.

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Boss & Me
4 people found this review helpful
by Ceki
May 11, 2015
Overall 7.5
Story 9.0
Acting/Cast 7.0
Music 7.0
Rewatch Value 8.0
I'm not very familiar with Chinese romantic dramas, however, this one captivated me. I loved the beginning because it seemed that the production was really good and of high quality.. They even inserted short animated emoticons, which was very cute and trendy.

When I saw the main female character (Xue Shan Shan) for the first time, I was worried that she would be just one of many Chinese characters who are annoying, cheesy and noisy like some kind of screechy animals. But she wasn't...to some point. She is cute, cheerful and most importantly - she has good reasoning (at least most of the time). I will say what I dislike about her at the end of the review.

The main male character Feng Teng is just the type of character that I like - cold on the surface, but hot blooded underneath. I love the way he gets soft towards Shan Shan, even though there were moments when he was too possessive, nevertheless, I love him.

The story goes on smoothly, and there are no crazy plot twists that would annoy you and that are typical for Chinese dramas. There are of course some minor conflicts, but if there were none, it wouldn't be interesting to watch. I love plot twists and conflicts as long as they are not silly and annoying. If you are like me, this drama is for you, because it is relaxing and cute.

So... why is exactly this drama rated 7.5 if I liked it so much? Oops, well, now I will say what REALLY annoyed me. BEWARE OF SOME MINOR SPOILERS::: What annoyed me the most is the way how Shan Shan turned into some kind of a gold digger and a subordinate to Feng during the middle of the drama. Yes, they love each other and they are cute, but why the hell you need to accept his credit card even though you have a job? Why do you accept many other things and so on. Basically, she depends too much on him, there is even one scene in which he orders her what to do, but I won't spoil and say what. So if you want to see a career-driven woman who is independent and intelligent, Shan Shan is not for you. She is kind, cute, and partly reasonable, but that's it. She is always oblivious to the happenings around her, which makes her a bit of a fool. Her "innocence" is what made me rate this drama so low, because I was expecting that she would mature and become independent during the drama, but she became worse, unfortunately.

Well, at least it was cute and Geng is an eye-candy.

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New Tales of Gisaeng
2 people found this review helpful
by Ceki
Oct 3, 2015
Overall 8.0
Story 8.0
Acting/Cast 9.0
Music 6.0
Rewatch Value 10
I will try to make this as short as possible, but I will probably end up writing a long rant. I'm not fond of long family dramas because I find them tedious, but I started this one because of Sung Hoon and ended up liking the story.

STORY - is pretty original to me because I have not watched something like that. Okay, the forbidden love part is very popular, but having a Korean woman going and becoming a modern Gisaeng (an equivalent to Japanese Geisha) is not really common.

The main characters are Dan Sa Ran and Ah Da Mo. She is an independent and mature student of dance. I mostly liked her because of her positive attitude and strong character, but I also disliked her very much because her face is too expressionless and she is also too frigid. I mean, there is NOT EVEN ONE KISS because she is too ashamed to kiss her boyfriend and soon-to-be-husband?! So you will see scenes in which she keeps turning her head away and insulting Da Mo for being a hoodlum, only because he wants a physical contact. These scenes were painful to watch, plus I despise people who act as if their frigid nature is nice and makes them better than the others.

When it comes to Da Mo, yes, he is gorgeous and I also love his stubborn and powerful character, because such persons love to the max and when they set their mind to something, they do not give up until they achieve that. I respect that in people. However, he is also a spoiled almost 30-year-old man who cannot live without his parents and has not achieved anything on his own. He basically lives off his father, drives the car he bought and sleeps in the same house as his parents. No independence there and that is a major turn off. There is one scene in which he says that he does not plan living without his parents because he is an only child. Ewww.

His tyrannical father is basically a man whose only love is reserved for his dog Andre while he treats his wife less than a dog, and believes that the highlight of a man's life is to marry and have a son so he can be proud and show off to other businessmen and rich people. Even though there is one scene in which he says that he would "get hit instead of his child if the world is throwing stones at him", 99% of time he is just a tyrannical and conservative man nobody would want to live with if they were in their right mind.
The mother is even worse because she is a typical housewife - massages her husband's feet before he wakes up and all she does is sit around the whole day doing nothing in partical. There is one scene in which she will show development and finally speak her mind, but you will have to wait 40 episodes for that and you will already feel like shit by then.
I didn't pay much attention to supporting characters but I liked Sa Ran's step sister and Da Mo's grandmother. She seemed like a very talented and open-minded person while the granny showed more reason and intelligence than Da Mo's both parents.

Music is ok but not remarkable. The rewatch value is low, except for some favorite scenes. The acting and cast are great.

Overall, I can say that I liked the drama because it shows that humans are not black and white. They can be both good and bad, it depends which one prevails. Da Mo's father may have real affection for his family, but he still thinks more about his reputation. Da Mo may be hot, nice and in love, but he is still a little boy who is suffering because of his father's lack of love in the childhood, and he is far from being independent and ambitious (I'd never want to marry him and live with his terrible parents). Sa Ran may be pretty and great, but she is far from perfect - she is frigid and acts as if physical contact is something terrible before you marry which is stupid and which makes her just one of many Korean female characters who are not allowed to be sexual and physical beings, they just need to be pretty, kind and calm. I felt sorry for Da Mo.

So, if you have time, check it out. This drama would make a great basis for analyzing conservative Korean families and the importance family holds in their society.

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