Posted in movies

Always (2011)

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Movie: Always (오직 그대만)
Release Date: October 20, 2011
Runtime: 108 min.
Distributor: Showbox
Country: South Korea

Plot
A love story between a struggling boxer and a blind woman. Can they beat the odds and have a happy ever after or are they destined to have a tragic ending?

Main Cast
So Ji Sub – Cheol Min
Han Hyo Joo – Jung Hwa

Review
So Ji Sub really makes sad tortured souls with a heart of gold look so dreamy. or maybe I am just a big fan of him. I couldn’t stop staring at his eyes, brushing his messy hair and hug him and say “It’s alright”.

Jung Hwa is lucky she meet a decent guy who didn’t care if she was blind, and didn’t take advantage of her. It was just a bonus that Cheol Min was handsome and sexy.

I actually didn’t expect a happy ending since Korean movies tend to go darker than Kdramas. I really thought Cheol Min will sacrifice himself by donating his own eyes to Jung Hwa because he felt guilty that he indirectly caused the accident that made her blind. Maybe because I just recently re-watched this super classic music video of Kiss – Because I’m a Woman. LOL.

I can’t say I agree with Cheol Min’s idea to pay for Jung Hwa’s surgery but I guess that’s the best that he could do given the situation. And him not contacting Jung Hwa after was understandable since he was also in pain and needed to recover.

That scene when Jung Hwa finally recognized Cheol Min made me also cry and I’m so happy when they met again!! Cheol Min accepted Jung Hwa as she were, and likewise, Jung Hwa is there to support Cheol Min too. I believe they are still together now, and still very happy!

Rating: 8.5/10

Posted in movies

New Year Blues (2021)

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Movie: New Year Blues (새해전야)
Release Date: February 10, 2021
Runtime: 114 min.
Distributor: Acemaker Movie Works
Country: South Korea

This is a story of 4 different couples a week before New Year. The movie is quite long, clocking in at almost 2 hours. Halfway I was started to get a little bored because the story kept switching between the 4 couples. I think 4 was too much. This would have been better if there were only 3 couples that we needed to focus on.

My fave couple was Kim Kang Woo and Yoo Inna (or maybe I’m just biased towards Kangwoo 😊). I like the gruff bodyguard and sweet female couple.

My fave story/ending was Lee Dong Hwi and Chen Du Ling plus Yum Hye Ran as the sister. I also cried when Dong Hwi’s character was confessing to his fiance. and laughed when he came out of the drum.

The most romantic setting is Lee Yeon Hee and Yoo Yeon Seok in Argentina although their story seems out of place. (Sidenote: why does Yeonhee keeps going abroad when she gets heartbroken lol) and the funny cameo of Choi Siwon.

The one I was confused because I didn’t know why they were fighting in the first place was Yoo Teo and Choi Soo Young’s characters. They seemed to be okay, I think it was more on guilt from the guy’s side.

Overall it was a nice holiday film.

Rating: 8.5/10

Posted in kdrama

Korean Cold Noodle Rhapsody (2021)

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TV Show: Korean Cold Noodle Rhapsody
Country: South Korea
Episodes: 2
Aired: Aug 20, 2021
Aired On: Friday
Network: Netflix
Duration: 48 min.

Review
I love noodles, esp stir fried, dry or cold noodles so I was salivating the whole time I was watching this show. I’m not a fan of noodle soups. I tend to eat the noodles and meat and not finish the soup.

I have only tasted authentic milmyeon back in 2017 when I went to Busan and it was as good as it looks!

I didnt realize there were so many ways to cook the naengmyeon broth.. there’s beef, seafood, water kimchi, and a mix of beef, pork, chicken broth. I also loved the last few minutes where they showed the new and innovative ways to serve naengmyeon. I wish I will be able to try them all!

I hope Park Jong Won continues the rhapsody series coz it’s very informative and delicious 🥰

Rating: 9/10

Posted in kdrama

Nevertheless (2021)

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Drama: Nevertheless (알고있지만)
Network: JTBC
Episodes: 10
Release Date: June 19 – August 21, 2021
Runtime: Saturday 23:00
Language: Korean
Country: South Korea

Plot
A girl who just got out of a bad relationship meets two guys who like her. One is a playboy she can’t resist, the other is a childhood friend who is in love with her. Which guy will she choose?

Main Cast
Han So Hee – Yoo Nabi
Song Kang – Park Jae Eun
Chae Jong Hyeop – Yang Do Hyeok
Yang Hye Ji – Oh Bit Na
Kim Min Gwi – Nam Kyu Hyun
Lee Ho Jung – Yoon Sol
Yoon Seo Ah – Seo Ji Wan

Review:
I’m probably one of the minority who liked this drama and the ending. Give these kids a break. They are in college so they are still immature and bound to make mistakes. Heck, even mature adults tend to be foolish when it comes to love. And society has long dictated that everyone has to be in a relationship and get married or else you’re weird or pathetic. Not everyone wants to be in a relationship, the same way that not everyone wants to keep dating. To each his own. For me, what’s important is the couple has to communicate and be honest with each other with what they want. If you both agree to date with no labels, that’s fine. No one is a “playboy” or a “slut” just because they are dating or sleeping with someone with no labels.

I think the main problem with Jae Eon and Nabi’s relationship is not talking to each other. They both like each other, but rather than sit down and talk about it, they prefer to hide their feelings (Jae Eon) or push back then keep coming back (Nabi). They also didn’t trust each other. Had Jae Eon and Nabi had talked and trusted each other in the first place, we wouldn’t have a story. Maybe Nabi would have realized that Jae Eon was really sincere. Maybe Jae On would have realized he’s a fool to let her go. Maybe they continue with their relationship and then break up within the year. Or maybe they’ll last a few years.

Love is a gamble. Use both your head and your heart (not just one or the other). Whomever you choose, be ready to face the consequences. If you feel the relationship is not right or you made a wrong decision, be brave to get out of the relationship or yourself and your partner. I was actually fine with whoever Nabi chose to be with, whether it’s Do Hyeok or Jae Eon. Just like what the professor said. “Eat what you want. And do what you want to do. Like the people you like.” But i’ll add “As long as you’re not hurting anyone.”

Comparing between Do Hyeok and Jae Eon, I felt that Nabi has no romantic feelings for Do Hyeok. Some people are saying, Nabi doesn’t deserve Do Hyeok. Well, Nabi never liked him more than as a friend anyways. Likewise, just because Do Hyeok is nice doesn’t mean he has to get the girl. You can’t force feelings. Wouldn’t it be worse if Nabi accepted Do Hyeok even if she didn’t like him? It would be better to stay as friends. And both of them deserve to be happy with someone who loves them back.

A person can be super sweet in public but abusive in private. A bad person can also change with the right person. Let’s not make judgements based on rumors or what other people say. Interesting to me that Jae Eon is made to be a bad guy but why do Bitna, Sol, Jiwan encourage Nabi to go out with him? Either they know the real Jae Eon is nice or they are lousy friends. There was also this scene where the girl that Jae Eon dated was badmouthing or lying about him to her friends. I guess that’s where his reputation started. I wish we had more scenes showing Jae Eon’s point of view so we actually get to know him better and what he really feels. Most of the time, it’s one sided, we only hear Nabi’s thoughts, it was only in the last 2 episodes we hear Jae Eon’s thoughts about her. There seems to be a background story why Jae Eon refuses to be in a relationship. It’s probably because he grew up without a steady and loving relationship with his parents, that’s why he is cold and doesn’t let people in. Or he pushes back the minute he starts feeling something or the girl is becoming clingy.

This drama also made me realize that we as viewers (ranting on the internet) plus all of Nabi’s friends are commenting and gossiping too much on Nabi and Jae Eon’s relationship when we aren’t even part of the relationship! Just like how we do with our own friends, we meddle and gossip about other people. I realized we should all mind our own business coz we don’t know what’s happening between them. All we can do is give advice (if they need or want it) and support them.

The best character for me is Kyu Hyun. Probably the only mature one in the group. So I’m not happy he ended up with Bitna who seems really immature. This drama also hyped too much on Sol and Jiwan’s relationship. I wasn’t sure why. They didn’t really do anything but have misunderstandings all throughout the drama. And i didn’t like Jiwan. I don’t know if it’s the acting or that’s really the character, but her aegyo wasn’t cute, it was annoying. She looked so immature compared to the smart and sensible Sol. But i guess for these 2 couples opposites attract, and both seem happy so again, let’s mind our own business 🙂

The downsides of this drama are the too many references on butterfly. Like, okay I get it Nabi. butterfly tattoo, butterfly lighter, real butterflies in Jae Eon’s house, butterfly sculpture. Yeah Yeah. I honestly find butterflies creepy, because there’s this superstition that when you see butterfly (esp white or black), it means someone is going to die or someone dead is trying to make themselves felt.

Also, the second half dragged and the scenes and conflicts were repetitive. Push and pull. Argue, make up, fight. Okay maybe this really happens in reality. I know the feeling of being insecure or being in that ‘are we or aren’t we together’ phase and it is scary and uneasy feeling. So I totally felt for Nabi. The ‘I don’t like you but I can’t resist coming back’ is a feeling I know too much and trust me, it’s terrible and really difficult to cut off. But 10 episodes (already short in Kdrama standards) still felt too long considering the quality of the story. Maybe 8 would have made the story tighter. Or they could have explored Jae Eon’s pov more.

Lastly, I wanted to see everyone’s exhibition projects, not just Nabi’s and Sol’s.

Rating: 8/10

Posted in movies

The Terror, Live (2013)

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Movie: The Terror Live (더 테러 라이브)
World Premiere: July 26, 2013 (PiFan)
Release Date: August 1, 2013
Runtime: 97 min.
Genre: Suspense-Thriller / Media
Distributor: Lotte Entertainment
Country: South Korea

Cast:
Ha Jung Woo – Yoon Yonghwa
Lee Kyung Young – Cha Dae Eun
Jeon Hye Jin – Park Jung Min
Kim So Jin – Lee Ji Soo

Review:
A gripping thriller from start to finish!! I was so tense, i didnt know how this would end. 🥺

A guy called up Yoon Yeonghwa’s radio program threatening to bomb the Mapo Bridge and he did! Instead of reporting to police, Yeonghwa instead tried to talk to the caller for an exclusive coverage. Will they be able to find the caller before he kills more people?

The whole movie takes place in Yeonghwa’s radio show. Ha Jung Woo is always amazing 🥰

Of course there are a lot of unbelievable events like how the terrorist was able to plant so many bombs everywhere, and even the twist of who it was, was.. not so surprising, but more on disbelief on my side. There also wasnt enough background about the terrorist to feel sympathy for him or understand how he planned everything. The voice was so familiar that i was surprised when the real culprit was shown. Turns out #KimDaeMyung was the voice actor!!

It also makes you think if you were Yeonghwa, what would you have done? How can you resolve the terror while minimizing the damage? I still think the terrorist was wrong but i can understand why he did it. And the last thing that Yoon Yeong Hwa did 🤯

Rating: 9/10