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  • Location: USA
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Completed
Perfume
15 people found this review helpful
Jul 24, 2019
32 of 32 episodes seen
Completed 2
Overall 8.5
Story 7.5
Acting/Cast 9.5
Music 9.0
Rewatch Value 8.0
I'm gonna say it write up, this drama was so much fun. It can be quite funny and that's what I really liked about this drama. It was a perfect way to cool down after work. I can't say I loved every bit of it and it wasn't perfect, but the humor and cast really kept this show going for me and I didn't get bored watching it.

Story (7.5):
So yeah, I have an issue where I constantly drop dramas if they get the slightest bit boring or do something I don't like. But I came back to this one religiously and watched it every day a new episode came out. I know it's not perfect, but it was just good enough and fun enough I can't fault its faults (if that makes any sense).
Primary issues for me are in this section of rating (the story) but I won't spoil anything (hopefully) so read on.

First off, don't worry; fat shaming isn't really an issue in this drama. The first episode might feel a bit wonky, but things get better and it's essential to the whole rest of the plot. This story has got comedic romance, potential love triangles, hidden identities, and crazy exes. It's got the whole gambit, but it seems to take most of them and add its own spin on them so they don't feel crazy. Case in point the main storyline "hidden identity". Sure it's not the first of its kind, but it certainly didn't feel like an overused trope (plus hidden identity tag is one of my favorites).

I think the flaws that detract from the story for me are mostly some underwhelming resolution (mostly in character developments) and throughout there were a few character actions that didn't feel inline with the characters. Also, the number of times the main character faints or is somehow in terrible danger might be a record...

Acting/Cast (9.5):
Let me just say that this drama wouldn't be the same without Shin Sung Rok. There are few other actors I can imagine playing this role. He's hilarious and literally the best part of the drama.
At first I was hesitant about Go Won Hee but she showed me wrong and this pairing was a lot of fun to watch.
I can't point at a bad actor in this drama really. I'll never look at Jo Han Chul the same (I didn't think he had it in him to be that crazy), and was pleasantly surprised with Kim Jin Kyung (as the daughter).
Oh, and you can't forget about Kim Min Kyu. Literal puppy dog. That's the only way I can describe him.

Music (9.0):
Lots of fun tracks in this one and some might go onto some of my playlists. That perfume melody will always cause me to listen for thunder lol.

Rewatch Value (8.0):
Never a fan of rewatching much, I've already rewatched parts of this drama. Lots of fun to be had.

Overall (8.5):
While I can't say it was groundbreaking, a top favorite, or something I'll remember nostalgically, Perfume will be one of those dramas I remember as generating a lot of laughs watching and one that didn't give me much of a headache or worry that it would go horribly wrong. Perfect drama to sit back and relax to.

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Completed
Strong Woman Do Bong Soon
9 people found this review helpful
Apr 19, 2017
16 of 16 episodes seen
Completed 0
Overall 8.0
Story 7.5
Acting/Cast 10
Music 7.5
Rewatch Value 8.0
This was all set up to be one of my most favorite dramas ever! So how did it only make a final overall of 8?



Story (7.5):

I'll start with that I really enjoyed the first half more than the second half, even though the blossoming relationship was really great to see and there was great chemistry between the actors that didn't show up as much in the first half.

However, there were just enough overly ridiculous elements to this drama that it just couldn't get the 10 I so wanted to give to it after the first few episodes.

The main reasons include: stupid gangsters, stupid police, stupid "professional" workers, stupid comedy, stupid monk, stupid jokes...

The other reasons include: unnecessary gangsters, unnecessary "professional" workers, unnecessary stupid comedy, entirely unnecessary monk, unnecessary stupid jokes... And too little Ji Soo (only kind of kidding).

I enjoyed some of the comedy and loved to laugh at this drama, but it just got more and more ridiculous.

I don't want to bash on this drama too much because I really, really enjoyed it especially every scene that had: Park Bo Young, Park Hyung Shik, Ji Soo; and also didn't have: Kim Won Hae, Im Won Hee.

However, the final deal breaker was the final scene of the final episode, which episode I really enjoyed on so many levels and really didn't enjoy on some other levels.

It was great to see some last scenes with a sadly 2d but amazingly acted villain, and the result of relationship between mains was just the cherry on top... But then they had to go in and throw that last scene in which you see some irresponsibility with some mumbo jumbo about the world which I admit looked cool, but the more I thought about it the more I felt it didn't fit with the character...

*SIGH* That probably took away at least 0.5 off of my final score.



Acting/Cast (10):

Park Bo Young and Park Hyung Shik were aMAzing together, and having Ji Soo in there was just a great plus. The rest of the casting was great too, especially from the villain! and even from the overly ridiculous characters as they played it how they should have, even if I didn't exactly enjoy it all.



Music (7.5):

I guess I should also mention the music... It wasn't anything spectacular that I loved; the Love you love you song was fine and actually a really decent song, but nothing unique. Some people may like the Trouble song too, but not my cup of tea.



Rewatch Value (8.0):

For rewatch... I could re-watch a lot of the scenes over and over, and in truth I watched the majority of the drama twice, one raw and once with subs; but I think most of my rewatching will only be done on the first half, especially if it's full episodes.



Overall (8.0):

Wish I could have given it a 10, but had enough filler comedy I just couldn't deal. Still a great drama and recommended!

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Completed
Seirei no Moribito III
5 people found this review helpful
Apr 9, 2019
9 of 9 episodes seen
Completed 0
Overall 10
Story 10
Acting/Cast 9.5
Music 10
Rewatch Value 10
I'm crying right now, I literally can't write a review.
This season blew me away. It was so much more emotional and moving than the first two while relying on them as a foundation. For those who can relate, it is reminiscent of the third Lord of the Rings movie.

Honestly, I can't help but draw parallels between this and Lord of the Rings.
This falters in lofty depictions every now and then from a technical standpoint, but it's so moving. My cheeks are still conduits.
I could not help but think of the hobbits returning to The Shire after a long fought war when the last episode ended with a plain scene of Balsa returning to the hut to see Tanda moving around inside, birds chirping in the background and a peaceful piano piece playing. I was at a loss for words, it was so beautiful. She enters and there's a shot of her spear left outside the hut, leaning against the wall... Ah. Closure.
I'm breaking out of my usual review format because I don't know what I'm saying.

Now I'll try to remember to the start of this season.

Story (10):
First off, by the end of the season you may have already forgotten about the Kambal sequence (which is almost the whole first half), but it was a very good part of the story. We get to see major character development and reconciliation in our titular character Balsa as well as more of her nation shaping actions. A major part of this development and Kambal adventure is her past with Jiguro which I can't applaud enough. I didn't expect this, because I thought we'd seen a fair enough of her background, but this season is where we see everything that happened with her father and Jiguro...
Basically, the Kambal king killed her father (ordered it), and Jiguro rescued Balsa and was labeled a traitor for doing so. This caused his whole clan to be disgraced for many years.
And there are so many good side characters introduced in this season including her Aunt who has a bitter love for Jiguro (I loved this and how it plays out even after his death), the almost awkward prince son of the Kambal king, and Jiguro's nephew Cahm who plays a large role to the end of the season. Even these side characters have development arcs; for instance, Cahm is despondent at Jiguro for the disgrace of the family clan, and blames him for his mother's death. His hatred falls to Balsa as an accomplice, and we see how he changes and grows from this angry young man.

The second half of this season (there's a blend of course), focuses on the invasion of the Talsh empire as well as potential disaster from the migrating Naguyu waters. That's really all I'll say about the plot now, but there's a lot going on here with characters too.
First and foremost, there's the relationship between Balsa and Tanda.
I'll have to admit, I didn't feel it for whatever brief, apparent unrequited affections Tanda had in the first season, and it wasn't really part of the second season beyond missing each other. However, here I guess I only just realized how deep their connection was as childhood friends from the portrayal of the backstory in the first half of this season.
Even then, I still thought all the feelings were one-sided until Balsa migrates back to the hut that Tanda, her and Jiguro shared when she was growing up. She's expecting Tanda and professes to missing his cooking (wait, was that from S2...), but when she arrives, he's gone off to war.
Watching them apart and trying to get together exposed true feelings of emotional reliance and what a peace they are to the other, and when they reunite it only grows more apparent.
There's another side character I thought would be a Mary Sue at first who is interested in Tanda, but she proves her worth and ends up giving Balsa a nudge in the right direction to help the relationship along.
That said, this isn't a lust filled relationship, people. That's not what we're here to watch and the show did a good job of keeping it in line with the story so it didn't feel jarring.

Since I went on and on about Balsa and Tanda I'll try to keep other relationships short, but there's a very interesting relationship with the Emperor and the Second Empress that also actually plays into the plot. While we're on the subject, the Emperor. He was only the supposed God in the previous seasons, but here we see more of his thoughts and why he has become that way, and we see how far he is willing to go to stick to his ideals. It's both aggravating and moving at different times.
And then there's Prince Raul. My initial reaction on seeing him in S2 was that he was a spoiled, cruel prince. He may be cruel, but he has passion and motivation, and we see him come to a breaking point towards the end that was great to watch to see his flaws.

Do you guys get the point? There are lots of great characters in this show.


Acting (9.5):
I'm only docking a point because there were a couple jarring acting scenes, but most of it was very good, and there were some very exceptional scenes that had me crying (before the last episode).
I can't review acting without making another parallel to LOTR. The more I watched, the more Chagum looked like Frodo. It's not really the character, but the actor actually reminded me of Elijah Woods and I couldn't get over it in a good way. Loved that.
Plus, did I mention, Ayase Haruka?
I think for secondary characters, some of my favorites were Cahm and Prince Raul (of the Talsh empire)


Music (10):
I've talked about this music before in my other reviews of the previous seasons.
It's exceptional. I don't know if it's based off of the anime or anything because I haven't bothered to watch or listen to that (yet), but it's phenomonal. I never skipped the intro because I loved listening to the title track.
I briefly mentioned it earlier, but I cannot get over that ending. Whoever decided to end the show with that piano piece was brilliant. I'm still crying. even this far into the review okay, don't laugh.


Rewatch Value (10):
I thought the other seasons were ones I would seriously consider rewatching at some point... I didn't know what I was in for with this season. This is going on my list of most rewatchable things (as in ANYTHING, movie, drama, show, regardless of origin), ever.


Overall (10):
There's on denying it isn't completely perfect, but I felt it was mostly on a technical level that this had any failures. There were the few CGI shots that I had to cringe at, but there were also very well done CGI effects and some amazing cinematography.
At one point in the last episode, I was very disappointed with a water sound effect that almost ruined the gravity of the sequence, but at the end of the episode I could care less.
Again, there was also some issues with scale. 15 people instead of 15,000 soldiers, etc. But I have to admit, the battle sequences are done better than usual C-Dramas for instance.
And that's the battles, I'm not talking about the fights. Something about the fights in the second season, especially the first half of it, felt lacking. This season, not so. Gorgeous fight sequences. Spears are my favorite now.
For anyone still reading, any Kaladin fans?? I'd love a Japanese dramatization of The Stormlight Archive. Kaladin is a spear-wielder and I couldn't help but think of him throughout this show.

So seriously, if you've seen the first two seasons and aren't sure if you want to finish, then get over it, watch it please. This exceeds the first two. If you haven't watched the first two seasons, just start it. The first season is only 4 episodes and while the weakest of the three, sets a good world building foundation and showcases some good fight sequences. If you aren't in love with Balsa after it, then I'm not in love with you either.

I'll conclude my longest review yet (I think, maybe?), and let you go watch this show. I may edit this when I think of more to add.

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Completed
Healer
5 people found this review helpful
Apr 27, 2017
20 of 20 episodes seen
Completed 1
Overall 10
Story 10
Acting/Cast 10
Music 8.5
Rewatch Value 10
Why are you reading this? Go watch this drama!

Story (10.0): An amazing storyline! Didn't have me hooked from the get go, but it did soon enough. I have a problem where I can love a drama and still lose interest in continuing, or I see some negative comment on the next episode and I'm like meh I'll watch this later, let's go find a new drama. Or I even have to read recaps to get through a drama... Healer was nothing like that. Seriously. There was one point when secrets are being revealed that I saw a comment on the next episode saying how distrusting Ji Ahn was of her friends... Let me tell you, that almost had me wait for a whole minute to watch the next episode! But in the end I completely disagreed with the negative comment anyway. What I love about Ji Ahn was that she trusted her friends even when things didn't look good and evidence pointed the wrong way. She had her weaknesses but she was also a strong female character. And Jung Hoo can DEFINITELY hold his own. Plenty of squeal worthy fighting and pseudo-parkour to please anyone. Sometimes when I watch dramas even if I enjoy some melodrama, there is a point where miscommunication and the like can get extremely annoying and cause me to drop the drama. There were one or two points where I felt something coming in this storyline along those lines, but I was surprised both times by the resolutions that just made me love the characters more. If anyone has any qualms about the 20 episodes vs. 16, there was not even a single sign of dragging to make this drama the full 20 episodes. In fact, at the end I was hoping for a little more time to cool off and see the characters in their finally peaceful lives!

Acting/Cast (10.0): I loved all the characters in this drama and they were all played by very good actors/actresses! If I have any complaint here, it's that I couldn't stop seeing the nervous Emperor Huizong whenever Ji Chang Wook was playing Park Bong Soo... I even half expected the dramatic deathly hand drop at one scene where Oh Ji Ahn is holding his head in her lap... :D Of course this doesn't detract at all because Ji Chang Wook is such a good actor anyway. Even the children actors were amazing and small boy Jung Hoo had me crying when he was eating that potato... Ahh, the feels. The best part was that Ji Chang Wook and Park Min Young are really good together as a couple; definitely not the best, I have at least two other couples that surpassed this one, but it is probably a top 5, maybe 3, of my favorite drama couples. (Even if my mind keeps throwing Empress Ki in the mix).

Music (8.5): Pretty good music, but it took me a few episodes to really feel it... Don't get me wrong, the music fits with the drama, but it didn't quite resonate with me from the start. However, the lyrics to that one ending song are really good even if I didn't originally appreciate the style of the song. Rewatch Value (10.0): I don't rewatch many things unless I really really really enjoy them, and this is definitely a drama I could see myself rewatching very soon! In fact I may just force some family members to sit down and watch it with me....

Overall (10.0): My first 10.0. Yes, no drama is completely perfect, but I was logically able to reason away any flaws I saw and I really wanted to give my first real 10 to a drama, so yeah I rounded this up. And if you think I'm being hesitant, Healer definitely earned every single one of these stars. There are some dramas I've rated slightly lower which I might be more inclined to rewatch because they personally resonated more with me even though I was able to find more flaws, but this is currently in my top 3 dramas, if not inhabiting first place.

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Completed
By Chance
4 people found this review helpful
Aug 16, 2018
Completed 0
Overall 6.5
Story 5.5
Acting/Cast 9.0
Music 8.0
Rewatch Value 4.0
Okay, I'll keep this shorter. This gave me both smiles and eyebrow raises. The intro was intriguing, the plot hmm inducing, and the movie...

Story (5.5/10):
Frankly, there wasn't a whole lot to the story and not a whole lot of execution time for 1 hour and 20 minutes. I had recently easily watched two episodes of Reply 1988, both of which where at least as long as this whole movie, so I thought it would be quite simple to complete this.
I yawned and x2ed and even skipped a bit through the second half of the movie.
It's not bad. There's just a bit of drama with some cuteness from the main female and some flashbacks and more flashbacks and some brooding from the male lead. And that's about it.
I loved the whole store scene, "Cheaper!" and them trying to communicate;
I groaned when we got Akira.
Though it wasn't as bad as I anticipated from the first half of the film, I didn't feel any romantic connection between the leads besides the fact that she looked exactly like his fiance, even if they were cute together. It was hard to convince myself he wasn't thinking of her as Ryoko.

Acting/Cast (9.0/10):
Nothing extremely noteworthy here, but nothing that stuck out as terrible. I liked the resident bad-boy rich kid, and the main female lead did a fairly decent job of acting two characters, though we had little of the Ryoko to see anyway. Perhaps some slightly wooden acting from the men? I still can't get over the "cheaper" English from the female lead. I've rewatched that few seconds several times to make up for all that I skipped.

Music (8.0/10):
Nothing download worthy, some of it felt like I'd heard it before, but I guess in a good way since the music was pretty good.

Rewatch Value (4.0/10):
Besides the store scene, I doubt I'll dream of rewatching this again. "Cheaper" is in fact all 4 of these stars.

Overall (6.5/10):
Oh my, the ending was so kdrama though :D
If you're bored, this could be fun. If you want something that makes you think...
Think elsewhere.

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Completed
Queen In Hyun's Man
3 people found this review helpful
Apr 19, 2017
16 of 16 episodes seen
Completed 0
Overall 9.5
Story 10
Acting/Cast 10
Music 8.0
Rewatch Value 9.0
Amazing! One of my all time favorites, even if it used a few tropes I at first was uneasy with, it all resolved quickly and turned out great!



Story (10.0):

This story... I'm personally a fan of both historical and modern day dramas and everything in-between, and while I generally am NOT a fan of time-travel, this plot just fused historical, time-travel, and modern in together in such a way that I couldn't deny the genius. There was a bit of stuff with the time travel and devices used that I felt uneasy with, but it all made perfect sense and couldn't be argued with. I believe this is one of those dramas where everything was planned out ahead of time and it definitely shows.

The only part that I felt dragged a bit was the very first episode when everything was being set up, but after that it was a pleasure to watch. I still get goosebumps from the scene with a time overlay... You'll know what I'm talking about once you watch it.



Acting/Cast (10.0):

Wow. One of my all time favorite couples! They even dated in real life afterward, though they've broken up since. Used to be my favorite drama couple ever, though there are some close runner ups now. The supporting cast is all decent, and play their parts well, even if the characters themselves can be annoying.



Music (8.0):

It's not extremely memorable music by any chance, but it fits the drama very well, often using that dramatic orchestral element that you might find in a historical drama. The songs were also very decent and didn't make me want to cringe, so that's a plus. Nothing I'd download to play back, but I'm giving it an optimistic rating because it fits well enough.



Rewatch Value (9.0):

I have yet to rewatch it. That is ever since I finished it, because as soon as I finished the drama I went back and watched all my favorite parts, which coincidentally happened to include both Yoo In Ah and Ji Hyun Woo... I will definitely enjoy rewatching this one.



Overall (9.5):

After I finished this drama, I probably would have told you that it was my favorite drama ever. Anymore I'm not so certain, but it's at least a contender... Go watch it, and if by episode 8 you don't like it, I'm sorry for you.

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Completed
Goblin
4 people found this review helpful
May 17, 2017
16 of 16 episodes seen
Completed 2
Overall 10
Story 10
Acting/Cast 10
Music 9.5
Rewatch Value 10
This review may contain spoilers
I think this drama just stole the first place in my favorites list! I laughed, I cried, it moved me Bob! Go watch this amazing drama now! Stop reading! Honestly, this is the highest quality drama I have ever seen. Not just the best, but the cinematography, the sets, the costumes, yes EVEN the Visual Effects were magnificently amazing. I didn't have to cringe my way through a scene that looked fake! No, instead I would be thinking "Wow, what amazing camerawork, what an ingenious way to show that, look at that scenery!..." etc, etc, etc.

Story (10.0):
I have yet to give a 10 across the board, and rating the story a 10 is almost as rare. This story is literally gobsmackingly amazing! If you need some context, it reminded me of a mix of some of my other favorite dramas: Healer just for the vibe of secrets and connections to be found; Queen In Hyun's Man for the previous lifetime, man from another time sort of story with an impossible love; Legend of the Blue Sea with similar feels of previous lifetimes and fated character connections, touches of supernatural. But honestly, it was also completely its own thing. It reminded me of elements from those other dramas, but took those and transcended them!
Goblin was the perfect mix of romance and bromance, comedy and tragedy, love and heartbreak, life and death... This drama had way more than I asked of it and didn't ever once go off the rails. I won't spoil the ending or anything, but at the end of the drama I had SO MUCH FEELS I felt like I'd just watched a 50 episode Saeguk instead of a measly 16 episode package of awesomeness!
I've heard some complaints about the lead female roles characters, but honestly what really made me love this story and made it stick out from all the other dramas I've seen was the characters and the interaction between the characters, the ways they try to express their feelings and learn from those around them, the witty banter and dialogue! I can't say how many times I laughed in this drama! I think episode 10 was my favorite just from this one hilarious bromance scene... AHHH! I want to write more about this story because it was pure GENIUS, but I can't say much more without giving some spoilers. Read the plot if you--never mind just go watch this.

Acting/Cast (10.0):
Perfection. I can't say I've finished anything Gong Yoo has been in and I honestly couldn't deal with Cheese in the Trap; nor have I watched much with Lee Dong Wook... BUT THEY WERE AMAZING. All those main three... I seriously can't deal with it. The story and dialogue was my favorite part between these three and they delivered the heck out of this. The bromance between Gong Yoo and Lee Dong Wook was just the best. And I'm not forgetting the just as brilliant performances of Yoo In Na and Yook Sung Jae, on the contrary, I've seen these two in other dramas, most notably Queen In Hyun's Man and School 2015, and I loved them both there! How could I not like them here! I was always so sad to see Yoo In Na in the "evil" roles like in Secret Garden and You Who Came From the Stars, so it's a pleasure again to be rooting for her.
I mentioned I couldn't get through Cheese in the Trap, but it was nothing to do with Kim Go Eun. Seriously, she was perfect for this role and acted it out splendidly. At first I was wary of the romance between her and Gong Yoo, and while they aren't my favorite couple out there, they really did a great job together! It was just great.
As far as secondary actors go, I don't remember one bad actor... If I remember right, there may have been some of that classic KDrama cheesy English, but no biggie for everything else we get out of this show! Oh, props for Kim So Hyun! One of my favorite Actresses, I was so overjoyed to see her in this and she looks great in a historical setting! I'm so enjoying seeing her in Ruler: Master of the Mask after her role here in Goblin.

Music (9.5):
I really wanted to give this 10 all the way across the board and honestly this soundtrack is really good! I even listen to it on its own which I don't do unless I really enjoy a soundtrack. But it wasn't perfect for me as some of the songs didn't really fit with me. But I still gave it the highest possible rating I could without hitting that ten mark!

Rewatch Value (10.0):
Yes, a 10. Usually my rewatch values match pretty closely to the story value, and this is no exception. The story is just amazing especially the first time through when you don't know what's going to happen, but the interactions of the characters is just such a joy to watch that I've already started rewatching this! To be honest with you all, I watched the first half of this drama when it was first coming out; I loved it, but stuff happened and I never actually finished the drama... gasp! So when I was coming back to it, I was like whatever let's watch the first part again, and my rewatching hasn't stopped from there. This drama... I don't think I'll ever stop rewatching it. And I rarely rewatch anything, so yeah, it's good. Go watch it so you can rewatch it.

Overall (10.0):
How could I not give this drama a ten? The story was astounding, the acting was incredible, the music was amazing, everything was practically perfect in every way! I feel like I've said everything up above but that I still have so much more to say! I'm having trouble expressing how much I enjoyed this without posting spoilers... I'll probably be coming back to post new stuff in this review because I know I have more to say about this but it's all fled my mind to be replaced with the desire to go watch this again. Annyeong!!! Salanghae!!! P.S. Not my longest review, only coming in at a little over 1.1k words, but it's still a great effort. Hope this convinced you to go watch this drama.

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Completed
Everything About Her
2 people found this review helpful
Mar 31, 2019
Completed 1
Overall 7.5
Story 8.0
Acting/Cast 9.0
Music 6.5
Rewatch Value 7.0
I've tried a few Filipino movies in the past that I couldn't really get on board with mostly because I couldn't take them seriously. Even if they're romantic comedies, which genre I often enjoy, there's something in past Filipino movies I've tried that put me off somehow.

This is not a romantic comedy. It's also not a tragedy, nor is it a plain romance.

Story (8/10):
The basic premise of the story is pretty simple. A mother who has neglected her son due to her company gets cancer. She gets a live-in nurse who helps bring the two back together. Overall, there isn't anything super complicated or exciting beyond this plot, but I thought it was written well and the cast did a great job bringing the script to life. I see how parts could have been flat with a less talented cast, but there was also a bit of added emotional lines with the nurses family that I think made this a decently solid story. I'm staying spoiler free so I'm not going to give any more details, but the story is emotional while being uplifting and giving a message of just living life to the fullest with no regrets.

Acting/Cast (9/10):
Simply put, what made this movie for me was the cast, mainly the mother Vivian Rabaya and the nurse Jaica Domingo. These two were great on their own and when put together it was perfect. One of my favorite scenes was the two of them talking together outside in the evening and getting very emotional. The scene was very well acted especially from Angel Locsin (Jaica). The same holds true for almost every other scene the two are in.

Then there's Xian Lim, who plays the son Albert Mitra. I was a little less than enthused with his acting and I felt that the more the movie went on the more I was unbelieving in what he was trying to portray. He wasn't terrible by any means; he had a few emotional scenes that were not too bad. However, every now and again he'd be saying a simple line and it would sound really forced. All that said, he's not bad looking and had pretty good chemistry with Angel. I mostly forgave him with the scenes of them at the end. :)

The rest of the cast is less of a highlight in the movie due to the nature of the storyline, but there were also some good performances from side characters and no one who I could pick out as a bad actor.

Music (6.5/10):
Part of the job an OST is supposed to due is blend seamlessly with the visuals and I can say that this didn't stand out in any negative way. However, a truly good OST will stand out in the opposite way and be noticed not just for highlighting the movie, but being good as a standalone (at least, IMHO). This score is fine in portraying the emotions of the movie, but also nothing noteworthy.

Rewatch Value (7/10):
I can actually see myself rewatching this at some point. If I did, it would probably be to see Jaica and Vivian again. I'm going to have to try to find more Filipino dramas in this vein since it's one of the only ones I've genuinely enjoyed so far...

Overall (7.625/10):
I think as an emotional, uplifting, thought provoking movie, I've definitely seen better. But it's also really enjoyable and the cast was (mostly) a pleasure to watch. There's also a sprinkle of romance (drama free) for all the romantics out there that adds that extra bit of flavor to an already enjoyable film. However, if you're watching this for the romance, that's not what this movie is about. I'd still recommend it anyway...

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Completed
Nice Witch
2 people found this review helpful
May 5, 2018
40 of 40 episodes seen
Completed 0
Overall 8.0
Story 7.0
Acting/Cast 7.0
Music 8.0
Rewatch Value 10
So much melodrama, I thought it was a comedy. Seriously, this was such a fun show to watch, and usually at the dramatic parts, I'd smile and laugh. :D

Story (7.0):
Over the top, ridiculous, and I loved it.I'm a sucker for secret identities, twins pretending to be each other, bad guys almost killing good guys, hehe. Plenty of that in here. So much melodrama.The bad guys are way too bad, the good guys, probably way too good (nah), the ending was not at all realistic, and lots of people turned about face without much explanation.I confess I watched a fair amount of this at x2 speed, and used the 10 second skip liberally, but I still loved the plot. It was so funny hilarious and drama hilarious. As in a lot of the drama was so contrived and unrealistic that I enjoyed it without too much worry.
Plot hole unrealistic galore, so much fun.

Acting/Cast (7.0):
Over the top, ridiculous, and I loved it.
Seriously, I thought most of the parts were over acted, especially Yoon Se Ah (thought that's not new imho), and it was really enjoyable x)
I also felt the twins were overacted, but Lee Da Hae did a VERY good job acting the two twins. You really forget that it's one person doing it.
I think the most organic acting in here was from the two male leads Ryu Soo Young and An Woo Yeon, and from the kid.
Still, I think all the acting, while not spectacular, fit the drama and was definitely overacted (as opposed to underacted).

Music (8.0):
I probably overrate most drama soundtracks, because there are few that I actually love and I still love the dramas; this ost again isn't anything spectacular, but there were a couple songs I might actually consider listening to outside of the drama, so that's definitely a plus.

Rewatch Value (10.0):
Okay, even if I really love a drama, I usually can't imagine sitting down and rewatching it again. Especially if it is really emotional. I really enjoyed Mother, Goblin, etc, but I have yet to rewatch them completely. Favorites, yes I can go back and watch my favorite parts.
But this drama was just so much fun, I think I could go back and rewatch the whole thing xD. (EDIT: I literally did this, rewatched the whole thing in a matter of a couple days, so I've increased this to a 10 lol. I think I had even more fun this second time watching)
I'd still probably have to skip a lot of the bad guy stuff now that I know what's happening and it's marginally boring (oh come on, who doesn't like to see Yoon Se Ah throwing a temper tantrum), but I'd do it I swear.
If you're laboring over whether you want to watch this or not, are you looking for something serious? Eh, go watch something else.
Honestly, I enjoy a lot of the cliched plots in melodrama, but it's a rare melodrama that keeps me interested throughout. If you like melodrama, you'll probably enjoy this, and even if you don't, you might... if you get what I'm saying.
Come on, who doesn't love a twins story. It's double the fun!

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Completed
Her Private Life
2 people found this review helpful
May 31, 2019
16 of 16 episodes seen
Completed 0
Overall 8.5
Story 6.5
Acting/Cast 10
Music 9.0
Rewatch Value 9.0
Wow wow wow. Adorable.
But I think I have a cavity.

Story (6.5):
This show was pretty much perfect for quite a ways. There was a great premise and set up, plenty of romantic drama and potential sabotages, media frenzies, fan greets, drama, romance, will they won't they... And then stuff calmed down.
And then the story went bonkers. I don't want to offend anyone, because the story is actually emotional and moving and it's not stupid or like I hate it, but it did change the tone of the drama. In my eyes, it broke up with most of the realism and down to earth maturity of the drama I'd felt to that point and got a new girlfriend called all the k-drama cliches you can think of.
I'm not going to lie, we saw some of this stuff coming from miles away and there are sooo soo many coincidences riddled throughout this drama, but as that ending kept going and oh wait another secret thing and okay that's convenient now that I think about it that's super coincidental... it's great but kicked me a bit out of starry eyed love into dispassionate appreciation mode. :)
I think if it had fewer episodes it would have been great. Either that or they need to change up their drama. Some of that stuff I was okay with but eventually I stopped caring all that much.
By far my favorite part of the plot was her undercover fangirling which also suffered a hit when the end drew near. I felt that particular storyline lacked full conclusion compared to other aspects. The last two episodes were twiddle my fingers candy. :D
Okay, enough criticism, now everything else is perfect.

Acting/Cast (10.0):
Park Min Young is (and has been) one of my favorite actresses (perhaps even my #1) and Kim Jae Wook is great in this drama. I was hesitant about the pairing at first and it's still not my favorite pairing (I much prefer Ji Chang Wook), but combined with their chemistry and Jae Wook's brilliant portrayal of a perfect boyfriend, you can't hate on this lead couple.
All of the other cast is very well done (yes even crazy director), but I think one of my favorites was the actress Kim Bo Ra who played Cindy. After watching this show, I realized I've seen her in a handful of other shows, most recently Ghostderella. I would honestly love to see a spin off show of her and that potential romantic interest at the end (not gonna spoil it guys). That would be such a fun show :D

Music (9.0):
That main opening song kept getting stuck in my head! I'd be going around thinking "All I want is you, all I want is you!" lol. There wasn't a whole lot else that stuck out, but there are other good songs throughout this show even down to the background music playing in the Cafe.

Rewatch Value (9.0):
There's such an assortment of fun and cute moments in this show, it's highly rewatchable. I'll admit, I'll probably stick to the first half, but don't put down the rest so easily.

Overall (8.5):
So overall, some mixed feelings; well over halfway, this completely topped What's Wrong With Secretary Kim (WWWSK), but as it kept going so much felt thrown on to keep the show going and also made the show lose some of it's credibility that it'd done so well holding to for awhile. We could see some of it coming for awhile, and I'd groaned a bit, but expected it... and then they just kept adding on... But if I'm really bored of a show I have trouble watching it, and that was not the case here. I watched every episode the day it came out... so yeah.
Compared to WWWSK they come up about even in my recollection, though this has the lead in the first half.
Recommend to all rom-com fans especially if you're sick of people who don't communicate and stop talking over minor mis-understandings and act like teenagers when they're in their 30s. This show is for you!

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Completed
High School King of Savvy
1 people found this review helpful
Oct 26, 2019
17 of 17 episodes seen
Completed 0
Overall 7.0
Story 9.0
Acting/Cast 7.0
Music 6.5
Rewatch Value 6.0
Story (9.0/10):
From a story perspective, this drama is a solid win in my book. I always love the secret identity trope and this is a perfect example. Mixing it with Noona romance is just a bonus. Of course you get one of my least favorite tropes: a second male lead with a sad backstory who is technically a much better choice of partner and inexplicably can't seem to get a girl so has to get his heart broken by the FL. I get that a lot of dramas would have little to no drama in them without these second leads, but I seriously get very tired of it. There were also some minor issues through the drama where you wonder at the choices the characters make that introduce needless drama, but overall this story is just so much fun, you can pretty much ignore everything else.

Acting/Cast (7.0/10):
Here's where I'm slightly conflicted. There are some great roles in this movie and the whole cast is undeniably talented. Seo In Guk's acting as the two brothers is especially great and so much fun to watch.
BUT I couldn't like Lee Ha Na's character portrayal of Jung Soo Young (yeah, the FL) and it seriously stunted my speed of watching this drama. In fact, before finally completing it I started and dropped it numerous times.
Now, I don't have anything against Lee Ha Na. I've enjoyed her acting in more recent and serious dramas like Voice where there isn't anything to complain about, and such older and more similar characters like in Merry Mary. So perhaps it was her directions for the character? A great number of the mannerisms and characteristics Lee Ha Na used to portray this character were just so bothersome. Often times, it felt really fake. Not fake as in bad acting from Lee Ha Na, but I felt like the character was being fake. That laugh especially got me every time. So bothersome.
Did anyone else feel this way? I don't mind watching dorky characters who could use a makeover, but something about this one didn't work for me.
The character and the actress are both great, but together it didn't mix.
To wrap up this section, I have to say that I really enjoyed the Grandpa character! He was so much fun and honestly looked like he had so much fun playing that part.

Music (6.5/10):
Plenty of fun tracks to go along with all the hijinks, but nothing I'd choose to play by itself.

Rewatch Value (6.0/10.0):
The benefit to starting and dropping a drama multiple times, is that you know at least the first part is completely rewatchable! :) There are parts of this drama I'll probably come back to now and then and others I'll never watch ever again thank you very much. It took me long enough (think years) to get through this drama the first time.

Overall (7.0/10):
I had a lot fun watching this drama, but it took many false starts and recap reading to finally finish it. I can see why it would be highly rated, but I can't in all honesty give it a higher score than this. That said, I don't regret finally pushing through to the end!

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Completed
Mulan
1 people found this review helpful
Jul 12, 2019
Completed 2
Overall 9.0
Story 9.5
Acting/Cast 9.5
Music 9.0
Rewatch Value 8.0
Welcome to the real world, Disney fans!
I originally started watching this when I first heard that the Disney live action was going to be, and finally finished watching it today after seeing the first trailer for Mulan 2020.
Wow. Don't embarrass yourself Disney. You've already got outcry from China on your historical inaccuracies just from the trailer alone...

Story (9.5):
Quite unlike the Disney animated version, this story follows more closely the original poem. In that version, Mulan was already skilled in fighting when she took her father's place in the army, and she didn't leave the army until 12 years later.
To start with, the setup here is done really well. There's a brief introduction to important characters through snapshots of daily life before we jump right into the army recruitment with a well handled segue into Mulan taking her father's place.
Since Mulan is already well trained, there's little room for a "Make a man out of you" scene, but don't worry, it's replaced by a beat up the bully type of scene showing off her awesomeness.
From here there's little to the story that resembles the Disney version. Instead of singing and fun and flashy fighting, we jump into gritty battlefields and Mulan's inner turmoil as she wrestles with her humanity and failings and emotional pain. It was really fulfilling to see the character arc of Mulan; she's not perfect (please don't make a Mary Sue Mulan Disney) and it's painfully obvious in some scenes where she's at her lowest point. But she overcomes her weaknesses with the help of her friends and even rises to greatness.
If you're looking for a sweeping romance with stolen kisses and a white picket fence ending to the movie, you're going to be disappointed. I'll say that much without spoiling anything, but don't worry too much. It's not a major downer or anything. Instead, this is a beautiful look at humanity and makes you wonder what kind of a person you would become in a battlefield.

Acting/Cast (9.5):
Major props to the actors. It's not the first time I've seen the main actors, but I was particularly impressed with Vicki Zhao as Mulan. From the first few minutes I was a little skeptical (having come from seeing Crystal in the Disney trailer) but she really delivered. I'm not going to get into the whole "oh she doesn't look at all like a boy, how didn't they realize" because I think that's a little pointless; of course she looks like a girl...
But don't tell me she doesn't look like an indefatigable general as she staggers to meet Wen Tai in the middle of the battlefield after the Poison Dragon passes. Very well done especially in the second half.

Music (9.0):
Frankly the music and audio in this movies isn't perfect, but it's like a grainy image of perfection. I wish I could call it perfect because it seemed to do all the right things, it just wasn't able to fully portray what it should have all the time. But it still got the message across beautifully and really helps pull those tears right out of you. Don't even think about skipping the end titles. Are you a savage?

Rewatch Value (8.0):
It's definitely a fairly gritty watch, and usually I'm more the kind of person who rewatches the super fun fan service kind of stuff, but this movie is definitely something I'll be rewatching again. I'll probably watch it side by side with the 2020 movie to see what gives.

Overall (9.0):
Well, I'd say don't watch this if you're looking for a romantic flick... But I do think it's an important movie.
Honestly, I'm really excited for Disney's live action Mulan but I'm terrified they're going to botch the culture or something. Now that I've steeped myself in so many Asian movies and dramas, watching most Western film that tries to be Asian is usually super painful.
However, there's one exception to the rule which is one of my all time favorite movies: The Last Samurai
The highest praise I can give this 2009 version of Mulan is that it reminded me of The Last Samurai. The friendship and brotherhood, the character development, even the way battle is depicted, I kept thinking of The Last Samurai.
What I expect of 2020 is a more flashy film, but this version here is truly an epic portrayal I don't recommend missing.
P.S. Also, major props to this movie on the battle scenes. It did a good job of portraying large scale combat through combinations of lots of people and skillful cuts thus avoiding the pitifully understaffed or obviously fake armies I've seen before...

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Completed
Maria
1 people found this review helpful
May 17, 2019
Completed 2
Overall 6.5
Story 6.0
Acting/Cast 7.0
Music 7.0
Rewatch Value 6.0
I'll start out with a content warning... this is an action movie and shows lots of blood and torture. A lot of times it's super fake (wait where did that blood come from), but it could be very disturbing for some.
There is a also a shower scene with the main character that really doesn't hide much and lots of swearing (in English mostly).

Story (6.0):
Okay, the story is pretty simple. Girl was assassin, girl retires (pretends she's dead). Gang boss's son sees her and messes with her family. Girl goes on revenge spree to kill the son.
That's all it is and I'm not saying that's bad. In fact, if any of you have seen John Wick, you can tell from the way I worded it that the basic plot is a lot like that story. It could even be argued that the plot for Maria has a better emotional pull than the plot for John Wick.
However, where John Wick shines is clearly the action sequences and this film can't hold a candle to it. I'm not saying the action sequences are bad, and they have some good use of Filipino Martial Arts, but they're obviously staged and don't feel real compared to the brutal quality and obvious training from John Wick (all of the John Wick series).

Acting/Cast (7.0):
The acting is fairly good, mostly from the main character. A lot of the rest had pretty cheesy lines they had to deliver and I was impressed with how well they pulled off those cheesy lines. Still, cheesy is cheesy lol.

Music (7.0):
There were a lot of epic songs played in this, but I didn't think they did a good job of going with one as a highlight for an awesome sequence. It felt like the music faded out too quickly. But the tracks weren't bad.

Rewatch Value (7.0):
I honestly probably won't rewatch this anytime soon because I know much better action movies (e.g. John Wick, The Villainess), but this is one of the most watchable Filipino movies I've seen and I think has a new level of quality I've never seen in them before.

Overall (6.5):
For me personally, the hilarity of random blood squirts (e.g. bat to the upper back, neck explodes) and a bit of woodenness in the otherwise pretty well choreographed fight sequences combined with some cheesy dialog kept throwing me out of the story and reduced the amount of fun I had. But it's still a pretty good action movie and if you think you can turn your brain off, I recommend it.

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Completed
Seirei no Moribito II
1 people found this review helpful
Apr 5, 2019
9 of 9 episodes seen
Completed 0
Overall 9.5
Story 10
Acting/Cast 9.0
Music 10
Rewatch Value 9.0
I finished the first season of this just a little after this second season finished airing, but I never did end up watching it for some reason. So here we go, finally!

Story (10.0):
With more than twice the episodes of the first season, there is a lot more added on to this story.
Some of my favorite parts and characters in this story were greatly impacted by the first season which I have to give major props to that season for. Not only did it do a good job of setting up the world we now more fully dive into, but having watched it lends a weight to the current character traits of the different characters and how they react to situations. More than once throughout this season, we can see Chagum being influenced by his experience with Balsa, and it also helps show how much the new characters are being influenced as well. Balsa herself, now four years later, is not immune to change either.

As far as the new story goes, I can also see it going to be a great backstory (without the four year gap) for the next season which yes, I still have yet to watch.
Chagum is older and is sent on a diplomatic/supportative (suicide) mission by his father and meets a few new friends on the way. And yes, one of them is a similarly aged female :)
Balsa also meets new characters, and I was impressed by how defined and unique (think the Red Eye pirate) some of the side characters were.
Balsa has her quest to complete with the new child Alsa, but the full arc leads to her and Chagum potentially being reunited in the quest to save New Yogo from the encroaching Talsh army.
I can't quite say it's at Lord of the Rings levels, but this story is pretty impressive, and to a level that's never attempted in Kdramas (that I've seen), and rarely done well in Cdramas (in my opinion).

Acting/Cast (9.0):
When I reviewed the first season, I had only seen Ayase Haruka in one other show (a movie actually). However, I have since rectified that shortcoming, and have seen a fair bit more (though I still have a long way to go).
Honestly, I'm not sure if I enjoy her more as a spear-wielding (or martial arts queen) or as a romantic lead. There is no doubt she's my favorite Japanese actress I've discovered to date.
Chagum, I was a bit wary of at first, but this new actor did a great job of carrying on from the younger role, and in some scenes, I could almost believe they were the same person. So props also to whoever cast him.
There are several new characters in this show, as mentioned, that I fully enjoyed, including the new female friend for Chagum, who were all cast very well. Combine that with the fact that there was little with Torogai who was by far my least favorite character from the original season, and the cast here is a winner.

Music (10.0):
It doesn't add much above the original soundtrack, but that received a well deserved 10 out of 10, and I can't give this any less. Seriously, this OST has stuck with me.

Rewatch Value (9.0):
I don't rewatch shows very often. The first season received an 8 on this category from myself, and I'll admit part of that is how much fun it is in such a short amount of time, despite not being perfect. This show tops that one and even though it's 5 hours longer, I would much rather rewatch this season than that one.

Overall (9.5):
I'm actually very impressed with this series and I wish more people on MDL would add it. I've heard all good things about the third season, so hopefully I'll watch that too and get a review up at some point.
Signing off with the title track playing in my head...

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Completed
Detective Dee: The Four Heavenly Kings
1 people found this review helpful
Feb 19, 2019
Completed 0
Overall 6.5
Story 6.0
Acting/Cast 7.0
Music 8.0
Rewatch Value 4.0
I'll be honest with you, I mostly watched because it was on Netflix, I was bored, and I saw it had Sandra Ma in it. So I had little expectations going in and I think that helped make it somewhat enjoyable.

Story (6.0):
The story was never really boring and kept me mostly intrigued but neither did it have me doing much guesswork and in retrospect it wasn't special at all. It's probably a fun watch for someone who likes cheesy action flicks and is a better movie in my opinion than the likes of The Huntresses or Gods of Egypt, but is also a movie I'll be throwing into the mix with those movies as oh cool never watching that again.
While the movie doesn't get boring, I was also not super invested and there were some plot devices I thought didn't work and some things that they didn't even try to explain. I think the weirdest part of how they told the story was leaving some important closure until after the credits had started rolling. I was about to close the film, thinking that they were just going to leave the audience unsatisfied and then some after credit scenes started playing cut up by more credits and only explained a few small story ends and then it was over... I found the decision to do that entirely unnecessary but oh well.

One item I can praise this movie for is the CGI. It's not perfect and there were some fake elements, but it was a lot better than I was expecting and I'm usually a CGI snob.

Acting/Cast (7.0):
We have a good list of actors/actresses in this movie and they all perform well, just don't expect the parts to force their finest or for anything else spectacular here. As a Sandra Ma fan I was a bit disappointed with the lack luster performance from her, but it wasn't bad acting, just not much to do. The character was supposed to be a bit quirky but it came off as odd instead of the endearing General she's played you know where else. I felt similarly with the other characters. Nothing really special here. Fortunately there really wasn't any of those over acted crazy people that can be found in a lot of movies and dramas so that is a plus... well, okay one or two slightly crazy acted people but it's manageable. Think crazy old witch lady and the like.

Music (8.0):
The music was fairly decent and fit with the movie. I even listened to the whole end credits song. Nothing Hans Zimmerlike but it was good orchestration.

Rewatch Value (4.0):
As with many lackluster films, I doubt I'll ever watch this one again, but I can't say I'm sad I watched it.

Overall (6.5):
If you're bored and would like to waste an evening in dubious fun, have at it. It's actually a fair bit better than a lot of other Asian B movies like The Huntresses or Bounty Hunters but you're not getting a super quality film either. That said, the effects are surprisingly good and you'll have a smile or two with some minimal guesswork. Have at it.

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