I bring you more Korean movie-reviews today! I think many of us have a favorite genre among movies, and mine is without a doubt the romantic comedy. What more could a person ask for? You get the laughs AND the oh-so-cute coupling. I feel like the same issues come up over and over again in Korean movies and dramas if you watch enough, but sometimes that’s comforting.
- 100 Days with Mr. Arrogant: Starring: Ha-Jiwon, Kim Jaewon
This movie was good but I’m always a bit miffed when there is abuse passed off as disguised affection. I know it works in fiction-land, but in real life I know a relationship like the one depicted in 100 Days With Mr. Arrogant would be toxic. I hope everyone realizes that if your crush/significant other shows you “love” by making you hurt in any way, then you are probably in abusive relationship. It must be said! That aside, in the fantasy world of movies, guys and girls alike might be monsters one second, but realize how to change as soon as they get a taste of some good-old-fashioned (stubborn) lovin’. This movie was pure fiction, to be honest. I enjoyed it decently and could be “okay” with the age gap because the female protagonist was a senior.
Honestly though, putting aside all my moral dilemmas and distaste of the way certain things were handled, this was a cute movie worth watching. After all, the movie is about “Mr. Arrogant,” so you have to expect a heartless guy! In the end, you get warm and fuzzy over his inevitable transformation (don’t even try to tell me this a spoiler!). I haven’t seen Ha Ji-won in anything before, but she really is a good actress. In this case, she was in her mid-twenties acting as a girl around the age of 18-19. Very cute and convincing. Four stars?
- The Beast and the Beauty: Starring: Shin Mina, Ryu Seung-bum
This movie was an utter surprise. I accidentally stumbled upon the synopsis and was intrigued, so I took the plunge and watched. This was my first time seeing Shin Mina act in anything. For some reason I didn’t care for her before, but after this movie I loved her to absolute pieces. She expresses a sort of “innocent joy” in her acting, even if she’s being serious. I’m sure she can play a different type of character, but I couldn’t get over how even MORE beautiful she looks when she is grinning her face off. She is just so likable.
Anyway, this movie was pretty adorable. There were points I could argue about (such as the selfishness and foolishness of Dong-gun, the “beast”/boyfriend), but all the so-called bad points showcased a realness of character, even in a movie that evokes a fairy-tale feeling. To me, a big point of this movie was that no matter our faults, the people who love us most will be able to love and accept us for them. And ughhh, when you see how sweet the main couple’s relationship is… I just loved it. It’s hard to say any more about it, because I simply want you to go out and watch it! Four and a half stars.
- My Little Bride: Starring: Moon Geun-young, Kim Rae-won
I usually hate “1, 5, 10 years later” type of things, but this movie could have definitely used some of that. It was all types of cute and funny, but there was an unsettled worry in me the whole time because the girl was a FRESHMEN in HIGHSCHOOL (16) and the guy was a SENIOR in COLLEGE (presumably 22). Put her a least two years up and it doesn’t seem so creepy, but it was especially icky considering how adorably young Moon Geun-young appears in this movie, and how summerly perverted-ajusshi Kim Rae-won looks in contrast.
Ignoring all of the weirdness surrounding this (MGY’s character does point out that she would be married in the “olden days”), the movie was pretty cute. Nothing “weird” happens despite the fact that KRW’s character is a horny college student (lol), and we do get the cute forced-relationship happy-end Korean media always pushes. Arranged marriages typically get romanticized in any country’s media (I have no idea why); it’s interesting to watch as someone who will never have to worry about that. I love watching arranged-relationship scenarios in fictional media because the idea of it working out is so precious, but I still struggle with the concept if it’s with people I know. What do you think? Am I alone in thinking it’s a fun plot theme in movies and TV, but a bit off-putting in the real world? Maybe it’s the freedom-of-choice loving part of me that rebels against being forced into a life-long commitment that might not bring happiness.
Anyway, this movie was very entertaining, but I wish they resolved some of the issues that made me nervous throughout the whole movie. Maybe it would have been better if they were married in name until a certain age, or they still lived with one of the parents, or SOMETHING. Come on–at some point her husband is her teacher, so you can’t tell me that was 100% un-weird. I still think this movie made it to about four stars, although time might cause me to pull it down to three and a half (after all, the things that bothered me really bothered me!).
I have another set of three movies reviewed, and then I’ll have to wait a bit before posting more because school wants to kill me.