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Initially this drama started off at a pretty watchable standard. The young versions of the characters are played by the same people who play the adults, just in school uniforms. I liked the story behind the lead guys past, how he's looking for his sister, hiding out in book shops, living off of ramen. The introduction between the characters was great. The oddball friend falls in love with her best friends brother, the popular friend and the two guys crushing on her. I like the way that the oddball friend befriends 'Peter' and stays loyal to her promises.. however. I don't like the fact that this entire drama is based on the fact Ai Li Si refused to tell anyone who Peter was, and that her so called best friend didn't believe her. That was kind of the area things started to wobble.
Fast forward to the future and Ai Li Si has turned into this cold and distant woman who works as a science researcher. Now as a science researcher I would expect her to be fairly bright, despite her obvious emotional trauma. No. No she is not. The main female lead is probably one of the most naive, air heads I've seen in a drama. Now female empowerment in general is not something I talk about, I'm all for it but it's not something I ever talk about because I don't really argue my opinions. But this... THIS took the biscuit, the plate and the tiny little napkin it came with. I can't put into words how annoyed I felt at this female lead. I know a lot of female Asian leads are meant to be delicate flowers who need to be protected by the strapping young man with a six pack and a flaming axe made out of manly things, but this.. this.. I just can't. I don't see why or how the writers thought making the female lead so urghhhhh. I KNOW she's emotionally unstable but ughhh. Okay I'll stop talking about how peeved the female lead made me I think you get the idea, but it was like.. 73% of why I started skipping.
The actors themselves weren't awful, it was mainly just the way the characters had been written. I think with the scripts they were given, the actors did a great job. Not enough to win an Oscars (or Asian equivalent) but pretty good, especially in the first episodes when they're pretending to be high school students.
I like the way that bullying can be seen in this drama, as in... it shows that bullying can affect people whether that's the intention or not. There's one scene where Ai Li Si meets one of her past tormentors to try and only her memories, but he doesn't really remember bullying him. I think the way it shows that although it doesn't effect you, or doesn't seem like a big deal, bullying can be a big deal in some people's lives. It's kind of like how in Who Are You: School 2015 she tries to commit suicide, although not as extreme in this drama, showing the side effects bullying can have on the victims. Especially in Asia where you can hear a lot of extreme cases of bullying, but no one sees what's wrong with it (I don't know how accurate this is I'm just basing it off of blogs written by people who have taught in Asia).
That's second (and last) item I liked about this drama.
The music was okay, I don't really remember a lot of it... I know it wasn't bad, but I'm not about to go and download the OST.
So to summarise:
Good things - The first episodes where they're students, the portrayal of bullying in younger generations and the affect it can have on the victim.
Bad things - Weak female lead, predictable script writing and a little repetitive. Weak female lead and even seeping into weak second female lead is a large reason I disliked this.
But please keep in mind that this is my opinion and that I did start skipping because it bored me. It is possible that the parts I skipped had information to make this drama better, but in my personal opinion I highly doubt it. I was going to drop this drama, but finished it due to sheer will power. I wanted to give the drama a chance but it just didn't do it for me. I know a lot of people are fans of the innocent romance style, and if you like that kind of thing it might be worth giving this drama a try. But if you came up to me and asked me if you should watch this.. I'd say no. Or at least watch the scenes as kids and then just read up on the rest of the drama. There were a couple of good parts but I don't think that they were quite worth the other 10(ish) hours of not... very.. exciting script writing.
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This film revolves around a prostitute telling her story to a mugger after they get trapped together it the ATM. However her story is not one of a tragic loss, nor is it a cheap story full of erotica and porn, it is instead her revealing her glory days as a hooker and the fun times she had, leading up to her current lowly life. Granted this is not your typical story and there is some mild erotic fondling with a dash of suggestive shots, but it was such a refreshing change of pace. There are few moments when she seems to regret her choices in life, and she seems to honestly enjoy her job, which quenches the audiences guilt as they relish in her amusing antics, both of the sexual nature and not.
I didn't cry in this movie, neither did I burst a seam in laughter, however it did have sweet moments which put a smile on my face and also those sad in which I could truly feel for the protagonist. The relationship she forms with her clients and colleagues was almost beautiful to watch, even the most complicated clients she almost befriends over time. Her clients come and go over time and she never forgets them, its quite sweet actually. Not that I'm saying prostitution is right, it's just nicely displayed within this movie.
I do like the way it jumps around, from present day to her stories, it paces the movie without interrupting it, which is what I normally find these formats to do.
There is no spectacular acting but that does not mean they can't act, quite on the contrary. I believe this ties in with the story as there where few dramatic moments which weren't added for the comic element. As expected in a movie about prostitution, there is a lot of seduction going on but its quite mild and leans more toward sensual then erotica.
There is little more I can say apart from give this movie a chance. The poster and title do not do this story justice. It is a classic bittersweet Hong Kong movie to watch (I do have a fondness for the creations which come out of Hong Kong, I admit).
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The Assassin is loosely based on the late 9th century martial arts story "Nie Yinniang" by Pei Xing, a core text in Chinese swordsmanship and wuxia fiction.The film is set in 8th century China during last years of the Tang Dynasty. The film centers on Nie Yinniang (played by Shu Qi), an assassin who is directed to slay corrupt government officials by her master, Jiaxin, a nun who raised her from the age of ten. When Yinniang displays mercy by failing to kill during her duties, Jiaxin punishes her with a ruthless assignment designed to test Yinniang’s resolve: she is sent to the distant province/circuit of Weibo in northern China to kill its military governor Tian Ji'an — her cousin to whom she had once been betrothed. I hope that made things clearer for you, cause it helped me.
The story begins in black and white, showing off the skills of our female assassin. She is ruthless and cuts the guys head off in one clean shot – quite impressive. But it’s done so quickly and smoothly that it takes a second or two for us the audience to go ‘Oh he’s dead.’ We then get shown a second side of the assassin where she is ordered to kill a man but refuses to after she finds her target and his son together after spending the day playing with each other. Her refusal to follow an order due to her ‘humanness’ means she gets sent of to kill Tian Ji’an. We then go in to colour, but still maintain a kind of… ‘old’ feel to the movie.
For anyone who is too lazy to read 2 pages worth of writing here’s a basic summary – slow story but pretty things.
First of all I must make it clear that this movie is not one which I can judge as a ‘good’ or ‘bad’ movie. If this movies hadn’t been recommended by a lecturer I met at a university (I’m planning to do Film Studies at uni next year) then I would never had watched, let alone finished this movie. Why? Well mainly – the low ratings are low for a reason. This film is incredibly slow. I don’t mean it drags, I mean it’s REALLY slow. Firstly would probably be the lack of action. With a title such as ‘The Assassin’ one would expect lots of ninja-badass fighting scenes and lots of killing people and stuff. Yeah there isn’t that much of this, I think maybe only 3 or 4 fight scenes in the whole film – not very many in comparison to other action movies. Especially if you think that quite a few of these fight scenes were shot from far distances, giving you a wider scope of the action in contrast to getting up close and personal to the actors – which is the method normally favoured by modern directors. In addition within the fighting which we do see, it’s more like graceful dancing then brutal fighting. If you watch wuxia for the bloodshed and violence, you won’t find it here. Sorry.
There are many long scenes with little talking, I would say that only about 50% of the film is talking, maybe? In addition there is basically no background music, with the director relying on background noises of water, walking, wind, etc. The only music used in this film which has nothing to do with the scene is at the end credits. It’s a good piece of music, but it is quite solitary. With all of these in mind, it does make for quite a boring story. I won’t lie, I got bored. Half way through I did eat my dinner, brush my teeth, and then started researching background information on the movie to see if there was anything interesting I could use to add to this review. There was a little bit. To be honest, I didn’t understand some of the story line – I’m guessing I just missed the crucial parts where they were actually talking or something. I’m reassured when I read reviews on other sites which state that they didn’t understand the story either. I mean, at least I understood what was basically going on.
And then of course we end on a rather anti-climatic ending thinking ‘Now what?’, but I won’t spoil it for you.
Yes there is a but; a big but.
What makes this film good is not the acting or the story, but the cinematography. This film is f***ing gorgeous. I’m not surprised that Hou Hsiao-Hsien, the director, won a ‘Best Director Prize’ for it. Not only do they make large use of Chinas beautiful landscapes, but they also use a lot of techniques seen in ‘old’ films. I’m not sure whether or not that is a legitimate ‘style’ but there are a lot of similarities.
Here are the reasons I like this film/find this film interesting:
1) The landscapes – obviously. There are many lingering shots of the landscapes all around rural areas of China, Mongolia and such. Director Hou (What am I meant to address him as?) has said in interviews and such that they aimed to shoot at high altitudes because there was no civilisation there. This of course means that you get to see beautiful rolling fog and ever changing weather. I believe that the weather and such was not planned for and they just went along and filmed with what whatever weather was happening at the time. I thought that this made it much more natural, compared to the controlled and precise movies of today.
2) The fight scenes are believable. Unlike most Wuxia films we don’t have people legitimately flying left right and centre. Not gonna lie – I hate that style. In this movie I think I saw only one or two instances where he uses this, but prominently the shots and choreography is either at a far view point or… not as close as most modern fight scenes… but near enough that we get a jist. We see interaction and faces, which we don’t normally see in the ‘quick-cut’ action scenes we’re used to. It’s nice.
3) The child actors – bless them. I’m convinced that they didn’t hire any children actors and those that were featured were accidentally brought to the set one day and somehow got dragged into it. They kids just sit, play and run around as if there are no cameras. It’s awesome. Plus it looks very natural.
4) The lighting. Director Hou tried to make the lighting as natural as possible (seeing a theme here yet?). If it was day time he would try and use the outside light, if it was night time then he would make it look as much like candle light as possible. This use of natural lighting resulted in a lot of warm colours, which made me happy inside.
5) Long scenes. But isn’t that a bad thing?! Yeah. Probably. Kind of. Some scenes go on for too long, but it works in some cases. There was one scene were we see tree tops for about 20 seconds. Time yourself and stare at a wall for 20 seconds, it’s a long time. It does work better when he lets us star at rural scenes in a village for a while, or the landscape shots – they’re pretty. In addition the long scenes do also mean we aren’t cutting every 5 seconds when ever a new person talks, which brings me to the next point.
6) Composition. One of the keys to a good movie is composition. And boy does this film have some sweet composition in its frames. In some cases we get shots of a setting and then go straight into talking – this means we don’t have to have as much talking and can carry on looking at pretty things. Or we have the scenes were the camera is handheld and moves around the set from one speaker to the next – no cutting (I love this so much). We have symmetry, symbolism, thirds, etc. It’s just gorgeous. It makes me want to sit down and screen shot frames to analyses what’s in them and what it could mean, my inner English student is trying to escape!
7) The last thing which made this film so interesting is movement. In most scenes there is something moving. There are curtains, wind, fog, birds, servants, candles, even the characters themselves shift and move to make them selves comfy. I feel like maybe Director Hou has gained inspiration from Akira Kurosawa, a Japanese director. I saw this movie but I couldn’t stop thinking about the fact that they share this quality. It’s such a good idea. It makes it so that your eye is distracted and entertained whilst nothing happens in a scene. Absolute genius! I love it!
Ahh. I hope you can see why I found it so hard to evaluate whether this movie was good or bad! Yes it’s a bit dull but it’s so well made! I would say that I probably wouldn’t recommend this to anyone looking for a good story. However, if you are interesting in movies as an art, or can appreciate a well made movie then this is a good movie for you! If you think you can struggle through the slow pace then you are welcome to try it, as long as you can realise that it’s not a bad film. It’s just that the main focus is not on the story itself but the presentation of the story. The idea that the director is trying to convey. I truly think that the rating of the movie at the moment (6.2) is a bad representation of the movie. This movie is all about subtleness, be it in the detail, symbolism or the music.
I don’t know. Try it yourself and see what you think. Just watch it with a pinch of salt.
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Milky Way is set out with pictures drawn around it, I shall to call this 'manga format', the pictures move make words, etc. It's a cute quirky style that fits with the plot. The two episodes show the point of view of the two main characters, I thought this was cool and interesting! Overall it's a cute tidbit to watch, because it's very light and fluffy. So cute!! :3
Secret Love is set in more of the classic drama format. To be honest, the plot line for this would probably make a nice drama if extended.. don't misinterpret me, it's still cute to watch as a short two episode series, it just could of been even better if there was more context etc! Instead of cute and adorable this half of the series could be described as sweet. Maybe I'm just a sucker for pop stars falling in love with normal girls :3
Both were nice to watch, both had cute plots. If I was to say one was better, it would have to be Milky Way. However the ending for Secret Love made me giggle - watch it and find out why, it'll only take half an hour of your time :)
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Okay, admittedly I did go into this movie thinking that it was probably going to be a bit of a try hard movie and that the graphics wouldn't be that great – I’d just attempted watching Shark Boy and Lava Girl. But oh. How wrong I was.
After finishing to the end I could 86% believe that half of the monsters in this were real creatures, the special effects are sweet as pie. The smaller monsters were more realistic then the bigger ones, but even then they were cool! Heads up and applause to the graphics team cause you guys rock! I’m pretty sure the CGI was more realistic in this film then the stunts were... but then again they used the same kind of method they use in Wuxia films/dramas – lots of wires and stuff. Not that I’m complaining or that this wasn’t done well. I’m just not a massive fan of the unrealistic jumping. I’m writing about a film with monsters why am I complaining about unrealistic jumping omg *dies*
I feel that unlike a lot of monster and human movies this one is a little unique. As the previous reviewer said, the story plot is not the stereotypical story where the guy and the girl find a monster, rescue it and take it home to its mother. Not in the slightest. First of all the main female wants to sell the baby monster, bye bye small cute creature! Not to mention that this is a female lead with guts and point object to kill you with. I can not express how happy female leads in Asian films/dramas, who aren't pansies, make me feel. The role reversal of the leads was just perfect and slightly comedic, I love'd that they let the female have power over the male as it's not a common sight in Asian film. The idea that it's the guy who has to give birth and it's the woman who has to protect him and his child is the absolute bomb.
And then the monster child itself? I melted. I don't think it's legal to make a radish that cute... If any one can find a supply of these adorable monsters can you catch me one? I'm melting into a squishy goo just thinking about that little critter! Ahhhh!
In addition the sideline stories are also awesome, it's hard not to give these away sooo... the couple they meet in the inn are adorably stupid - the woman made my day. As well as the female leads rival monster hunter and his pursuit of the queens protectors. Ugh. It makes me so happy.
I don't know who the actors are so I feel like I can't compare them to previous roles or anything. However, whoever they were did pretty good jobs. Jing Boran was good at being pregnant and had a lot of comic relief. I think my only issue is that they sometimes seemed to forget that his character was meant to be disabled and use a leg brace thing... other then that he was pretty good. Bai Bai He, who was the female lead, was alright. Nothing really struck me as amazing about her acting but it wasn't bad. If that makes sense... However I think it may have been more to do with the scenes she was given then her acting skill. But I'm not sure, as I said I've not seen them act before.
The music was awesome~ From the ridiculous songs which the monsters sang to the actual soundtrack. I think that the music was just the icing on the cake. It made adorable perfect scenes even more perfect and adorable :3
This is definitely a film I recommend seeing! I don’t understand how there wasn't a bigger thing about this because it was pretty god damn awesome. The way it ended made me think that there could be a second film *crosses fingers*
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There is nothing complicated about the drama, no one loses their memory and the misunderstandings are kept to a minimum. I think this is why I didn't take a break from the drama like I usually do. The storyline was sweet and simple, and very easy to keep up with. Although many of the main actors are older characters then the usual Korean shows I watch, they still some how portrayed a childish joy in the adult world as well as the complications and hardships growing up.
I saw that a previous comment/review said that this drama is more then a 38 year old woman gaining her independence. This is about regret, loss and mistakes. It makes a point that we do things we regret, but we don't have to look back and mope over them. An on going theme within the drama revolves around moving forward, beyond the past, and to keep looking on to the future. I think that the story in the drama, although fictional and simple, is inspiring.
I realise that my review is making this drama seem serious and dull, but that's just it - it isn't. It wasn't what I expected when I started watching it, but it was so much more. I would definitely recommend this if you're wanting a break from the normal cliches in drama land. It's like eating homemade food after a long period away, is the best and shortest way to describe it - it's sweet and filling with a sense of warmth.
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Okay so judge me for not giving this a whole hearted try but it was just too weak for me to carry on any longer.
As far as a watched this wasn't a complete disaster of a drama, it just gave off the feeling that it was a bit amateurish. Starting with the easiest subject, the music seemed muted and cheap. Take the nightclub scene for example: maybe Chinese nightclubs normally play the music quiet enough that you can actually hear people speak, but it just kinda underline the music guy had actually accidentally turned off half the track. The music sounded like cheap stock music you could download from the internet, not particularly impressive and rather repetitive.
The acting.. this show stars a bunch of newbie actors and it showed. Maybe the cliche and corny script didn't give them any favours either, but it just seemed to be rather weak acting. Don't get me started on the female lead. Not only did her train of thought seem to be very much padded in cotton wool but any noise she made which was not a word sounded like some sort of meek and mild erotica.. but then again the other lady who died also moaned like she was enjoying the pleasures of life... I think the sound effects general where terrible. In episode three a guy gets killed and he legit makes a squeaky toy noise, I cracked up for the rest of the episode.
I can't give a riveting review as I could not finish this drama, however I felt I should at least give the reasons of why I thought it was not very good and give a review up till where I ended. I'm sure a lot of effort was put into the making of this drama however my impression up till the point i dropped it was that this drama just felt weak. If you're into pansy female leads and weird obsessive vampires, allied up in a questionable plot line, this could be the drama for you!
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It was not the best storyline I've seen and I was a little confusing in places. The
general theme seemed to be based around Shakespeare's play, Romeo and Juliet, which you can definitely see elements of near the end of the film.
The main issue I had with this film is that it never really seemed to develop much and I wasn't entirely sure which guy she was meant to end up on.
But even with all these flaws, it had is cute moments which made it worth watching. The way the different guys try to win her heart made it cute and interesting. The fight scenes where also quite good and well rehearsed, boosting the score up to
To be honest, I got the feeling that one someone had said their given line they just awkwardly stood there. Actions seemed over the top or unprepared in places, which made the movie seem amateur.
The boys were cute and had good chemistry with the love interest, but most of the other actors weren't amazingly brilliant, this dragged the score down to above average at a 6.
The music was quite good. It probably helped that 6 out of 7 of the main actors were all in a boy band, so their singing and playing music scenes were quite good. I liked the songs and background instrumentals as they were probably the best part in the movie. I gave the music an 7.5 because it was above average but not amazingly jaw dropping!
Overall it was a feel good movie which made you smile. In the end the only reason I finished it was because the boys were cute and I was curious to see which boy she ended up with.
It's unlikely that I will watch it again because it wasn't fascinatingly interesting, but it seems like an okay movie to watch if I get bored.
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Looking at all the episodes story from the last couple; I found the drama hilarious. I laughed out loud so many times whilst watching this! The music for that first kiss made me very happy indeed! Over all it was a great modern adaption to The Little Mermaid storyline. I heard occasionally Kim Ha Ni humming music from Disney's film. I don't know whether that was intentional or my imagination, but I thought it made a sweet addition to the drama!
My only negative towards this was, as I've said, the ending. If it hadn't been cut due to low ratings in Korea then it would of been my favourite drama. Six more episodes and it would of been perfect!
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The main story of this is about a woman in her early 30s, if we read in between the lines of the script, who gets sick of her wealthy husbands neglect and her mother-in-law being a stuck up cow. She files for a divorce whilst trying to create a rock band with all her ahjumma friends.
I liked the story and the ending, I know a lot of people who watched this didn't like the focus on the law side of things. It does focus more on the band nearer the end, but the divorce and other law related things take up a huge chunk of the story line. Another thing many didn't like in this story is the lack of romance in the drama. There is a bit but it is ultimately cut out. This is difficulty not your normal drama. It is perhaps the first Korean drama I've seen which doesn't carry the message "Love makes everything better and will give you eternal happiness." It also enforces the idea of keeping your morals and staying humble, over the power of money and fame. It's a story which although carries k-drama traits, deviates from the normal run of things. Which is why I like it. It's not for everyone if you go into it expecting an entire drama about music and love. It's a story about women with careers and children fighting for a piece of happiness in their lives..
I'm gonna talk about the characters which stood out for me instead because I don't know any of these actors :)
First of all we have Soel Hee, the leading lady. Probably the one who goes through the most character development in this drama. She starts off as a meak kitten under her mother-in-law and turns in to a classy, sassy tiger. She can be naive at points - to the point of being almost stupid - but she keeps her morals and standards. And again, not your typical lead as she is actually a strong female lead - something you don't normally see in a k-drama.
There are the other three members of the band Soo In, a failing music producer; Ah Reum, a young mother; and Fa Ja, a mother and a sales person. They all have their issues which they have to deal with as well as being in the band. Fa Ja was my favourite out of the three purely because her husband and she were the cutest things on earth. She had annoying moments but the cuteness made up for it.
Soel Hee's ex-husband had more chemistry with her at times then the lead guy did, which is a shame. I do admit that although I like the fact we have free independent women, I wish there was a teeny bit more romance between the lead male and lady.. it was a bit anti climatic.
Other characters I can think of? The good lawyer (who helps her divorce) was a total gem, the mother-in-law was a complete b****, the rival female lead was completely delusional and the sister.. what happened to the sister? She disappears never to return... that was odd.
I downloaded the entire OST before episode 10. It's beautiful. It's played a lot but you don't get tired of it. This version of 'Million Roses' is my new favourite song.
Rewatch Value: 5/10
Not because it's a bad drama, but just because I'm not one to rewatch shows very often.. I'd replay all the music.. does that count?
It's not everyone's cup of tea, but I liked it. Don't expect a huge amount of romance, but the strong female lead and lack of emphasis on love is refreshing for a k-drama. Many say the ending is a disappointing but I disagree, it's realistic and humbling. Awesome drama worth watching just because of the music either ways :3
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The story itself is about a singer called Seong Je who is in a singing group called Choshinsung (or Supernova in real life, take your pick). After having his songs put on hold due to his Japanese pronunciation not being very good, he meets Saori. Saori is blind and does not recognise her idol, instead offering to help him with his Japanese pronunciation. In a matter of days the two fall in love blah blah blah. And then, additionally, behind the frontal love story there is an idea of friendship in the band and sticking together when times get tough. This part didn't touch me in quite the same way the initial love story did, but it was still quite cute to see the guys have each other's backs - despite them all moaning at Seong Je when he told Saori his name was Jae, I mean give the lad a break.
However, I think what really made this film what it is, is the ending. Now I think I might accidentally ruin the ending here so skip to the next paragraph if you don't wanna know, but I can't explain my love for this film without mentioning the ending. Most storys where the life of the lead character is in danger always end in happy endings, and strangely this always leaves me with a sense of disappointment. This film doesn't do that. This film makes sure you fall in love with the lead characters, it makes you root for their happiness and their love and then it tears out your heart and leaves you in a puddle of sadness whilst you cry your poor souls out. Yeah. That's a pretty accurate description. But that is what makes this movie so good, is that instead of making everyone happy, it throws real life straight back in you face. More movies and dramas should follow the lead of this one. The only other story which made me this sad yet happy which I can think of right now, is the Chinese TV series, Scarlet Heart - but I was crying through 90% of that anyway.
Any way, this is a simple movie, yet it can move your heart. I didn't expect much from this movie as I'm not a massive fan of Japanese produced films and stuff, however it is now one of my favourite things to watch despite the fact my heart breaks a tiny bit whenever I watch it. Definitely would recommend, whatever your taste in shows/films is :)
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This was a cute kind of drama. There were a few moments of cringe worry misunderstandings but nothing quite like more well known dramas - it was a pleasant change. I started to watch this drama mainly because it was a gender bender, I'm quite partial to a classic gender bender, but I believe that this drama can also be classed under Wuxia. I've read novels in this genre but I normally avoid the shows because the fighting is so horribly unrealistic. I didn't find this an issue with this drama though. The fight scenes weren't over done, and they were nicely choreographed! Which is awesome!!
The only disappointing part of the plot was the end.. I don't know why I didn't like it, it just felt a bit different... I think it's cause the guy gave up way too easily.. I'm not saying which guy. I just felt a bit 'meh' when it finished. The rest of the plot was awesome though :)
1st brother kind of appears at the start then disappears off to France.. I admit I was disappointed that he never reappeared..
2nd brother is a indecisive peanut.
3rd brother is a sad monkey.
And 4th brother/sister is one of the more free willed female roles in drama land. She has a few moments of stereotypical female wiggles - it a eastern show and I've never seen one without females acting weak at some point. But in the whole she actually uses her brain and wits. Her disguise as a boy both providing heart, comedy and romance!!
I like the string thing (I think it's a zither but I could be wrong) that plays a recurring part with in the drama. Providing symbolism as well as background music. This drama has made me love the instrument, but gonna lie.
I'd recommend this drama if you're looking for a vaguely strong female role. There is a small amount of fighting, which is nicely choreographed. Don't be put off be the many episodes, they're only 45 minutes each - I finished the drama in just about a week. It's a nice drama to watch, plus gender bender always has comedic moments.
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Okay. Mainly the story was cliche and predictable. It had its cute moments and even a few touching ones. But in all honesty. I spent a majority of this drama feeling frustrated. The episodes were quite long, and a lot would happen in each, at times I'd finish an episode and it would feel like I'd finished 2 or 3. A new and different event would be in each making the drama feel longer then it is.
The love triangle is again, quite cliche. At times I would have second lead syndrome - after about episode 7 - despite at first hating him. The drama seems to be focusing on gaining sympathy for the characters and their complicated relationships. Despite this, it was cute too watch, even if I felt like throwing it out the window.
The last few episodes are a little... random. That's all I have to say about the end.
I thought that the actors were quite good at their roles, I haven't really seen them in other dramas - of which I can remember - so I feel like I can't be an excellent judge for this one. So instead I shall talk about the main characters themselves. Many of the characters did get me to the verge of throwing soft items such as; pillows, teddies and bricks at the screen. But the actors had captured their essence quite well.
Tao Hua - The character Tao Hua was so indecisive! I know that she loved her brothers dearly and that she wanted them to be happy, but couldn't she stand up for herself for once near the beginning?! Okay sure. It would cut the drama shirt by about 10 episodes but UGH it frustrated me. Otherwise she's a sweet character, and when it comes to the heart she was sincere.
I like her brothers, despite them being cruel and manipulative at times, they are doing what they think is best. They are unselfish in all matters towards their sister, which I thought was very cute. If they'd have bullied Yu Yi less I may have even fallen for them.
Yu Yi - Yu Yi himself was a sweet addition to the brothers. He was the glue of the family - sticking them all together. Despite being bullied constantly by his evil brothers, he would try and rectify their mistakes. He would comfort Tao Hua, and always thought of her feelings, instead of keeping her safe life her other brothers. Due to his brothers bullying he had a hard time standing up for himself, but when the time came, he would finally pluck up the courage and do it. I personally feel like he was the most attractive brother for this reason alone, despite not being the most physically attractive out of them all. He was cute. Definitely earned the title of Favourite Brother!
Shi Lang - For a supposedly clever character, he could be really dumb at times. I can't explain this with out adding spoilers... Okay I'll give a quick example. It won't ruin the story, but skip to the next point if you're worried. Ready? If a girl beats you in a sport.. WHY ARE YOU WORRIED SHE WON'T BE ABLE TO DO SAID SPORT?!? Christ almighty.
Other then that he had his moments. The two leads made a cute couple ^^
Cute and quirky is all I could say about it. I find myself often singing along the the opening theme tune, it's catchy.
Although frustrating at times, coupled with the fact it's a classic, cliche from drama land, it is a sweet relief from real life. If you're looking for something sweet and easy to watch, this would be a good recommendation, just don't expect a great deal from it. It's cute enough to pass time with, but I doubt I'll watch it again, it frustrated me way too much! :)
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With the starting moments set in 1988, this film follows the journey of ex-alcoholic Oh Dae Su, who was imprisoned for 15 years in a single room resembling a cheap hotel room. He is given no explanation for his imprisonment, he does not know the identity of his captor nor does he know their motives, his only friend for the next 15 years is the battered old TV. After being spontaneously released Dae Su strives for vengeance against his unknown captor and thence begins his quest. On his journey he falls in love with an attractive young sushi chef, who becomes his lover and his greatest weakness. Cheerful story, I know.
As many people have said this is not a bad film it's just... fudging weird, beautifully presented but fudging weird. Like... it was okay up till about the half way point. Adapted from a manga I've never read and later remade as an English film which I've never seen, this version contains picturesque camera angles, single shot fight scenes (I'm sorry I love them), live octopus eating (like for real) and a whole ton of queasy scenes. It has it's moments, but I think you could also make a decent drinking game out of the times you shout WTF or NOOO WHY at the screen. Double shots if death is mentioned.
We began the film on the edge of our seats; What? Who? Why? We exclaim as a rugged man dangles another off a building. Then we cut. A drunken man in a police station. Frame passes by, frame by frame. Then we're in a room, a monologue narrates across the scenes. We watch in fascination as the drunken man evolves in the room he is imprisoned. It's fascinating, the audience is curious. When he is finally free of his tiny prison he embarks on a quest to answer the questions we had at the beginning. It's an awesome start to the film I must admit. Couple ALL of this with some gorgeous cinematography and BOOM BABY. It's beaut. But it's around here things start to get weird. Like. Real weird. I'm pretty sure I had a permanent WTF face for at least an hour of this film, and I can't even say why without spoiling it for you.
It's certainly an experience to watch, I understand the good ratings.
What makes this film so powerful, away from the fact some weird shizzle goes down, is probably the way it tries (and succeeds) it capturing the raw emotion of the human being. Not only do we see our protagonist get stripped bare, both metaphorically and not, we also get our own walls taken down. The innocent moments we enjoy are torn down and peed on, making us almost disgusted at our own moments of happiness within the movie. We, as humans, find a strange fascination in the protagonist as he falls again and again, pitifully scrambling against his unknown opponent.
I would advise those not fond of needles, blood or sex to bring a pillow with you into viewing, it gets a little graphic especially towards the end. I was super surprised at seeing naked boobs in this, it's a Korean film! Tbh though, this is not a genre I often explore. Then again I didn't notice the thriller tag until AFTER I sat down for two hours and watched it, wanting to know wtf I just watched and why there was so much violence. At least it distracted me from my ever looming exams.
It wasn't really my kind of film I must admit, but it was very well made and a unique experience to watch nether the less. Thrillers really aren't my kinda thing and I have a thing about not wanting to see teeth pulled out or needles stuck in, so i shall probably never watch this film again unless I want to weird a friend out. That being said it is very hard to ignore how pretty this film is, hence I shall give it an 8.
Fun Fact: This film was inspired by King Oedipus, a mythological Greek king. Whether you know of this lovely man or not, the fact that this story mimics a Greek tragedy should give you an idea of what you're in for. They really did like tearing down their hero's over there.
Edit: Just thought I should point out that I felt physically ill when it ended. Just putting that out there.
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The film itself focuses mainly on Min-soo (Kim Dong-yoon), a gay but closeted man who marries a lesbian woman, Hyo-jin (Ryu Hyun-kyung), to hide within the closet and away from his peers. Both of these main characters are doctors and although Min-soo marries for the social aspect, his wife only wanted to be able to adopt a child with her girlfriend. The main background characters include Min-soo's lovely boyfriend, his quirky and queer walking stereotypical gay possy (drag queen included), and Hyo-jins (also stereotyped) girlfriend. Each background character has their own story which builds subtle layers into the story, enriching the plot around them. If one can't relate to the main characters then there is probably a character for you to fall in love with behind the scenes. With this said I wouldn't say there was much depth or development of the characters until the end, not that they had NO depth, it was just limited. I would perhaps lay this on the actors as they, according to the director, didn't quite understand the concept of homosexuality within their acting. We could link this back to towards their overplaying of the gay stereotype.
My favourite character was Tina, just for the way he lived as a background character and yet became such a key character in Min-Soos character development. He was a shoulder to lean on and made you smile in his appearances.
There is a balance within the movie between the comedic value and the actual message the movie is trying to portray to its audience. There are a lot of fine lines within Korea's attitude towards LGBT+, a few of which they ignored in the movie which I was pleasantly surprised at. After finishing the movie I found out that it was directed by Kim Jho Gwang-soo, who just so happens to be one of the few openly gay directors (and unofficially married!) within Korea. Two Weddings and a Funeral was his fourth movie about the gay community, if you wish to check the previous films out then they are as follows: Boy Meets Boy, Just Friends?, Ghost (Be With Me) and LOVE, 100°C. I am not acquainted with them so I don't know if they are good or not. Sorry. There was some slight dislike towards the almost fairytail like way the male lead and and his boyfriend so quickly fell in love, but to be honest it was not a factor which greatly impacted the flow. I did um and ar when the idea of running away to Paris came up. However I was more enamoured by the story then minor details such as that. The overall story gave an effect which gives the viewer a bittersweet movie and a sad smile on their face at the end.
I personally enjoyed the music within this movie, despite the complaints that it sounded amateurish. It was sweet and matched with the scenes well. The musical numbers were interesting to a certain standard, not ones I had heard before. There isn't much I can say about this aspect apart from that I will most likely add the soundtrack to my collection of random music.
Overall I would say that although the acting, the music and the story didn't completely standout for me it is still an excellent movie. Somehow the combination of these elements fills a satisfying hole inside. As one of the few successful queer films which Korea has produced, it certainly sets a stepping stone in the Korean LGBT+ community. Yes. It's VERY much a stereotype. But it is a gay film directed by a gay director who is showing his representation of how he sees and is involved in his own gay community.
If nothing else it's a cute movie which made me both smile and cry. 100% recommend. What more do you need to know?
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