Disclaimer: All posts are just containing my OPINION. I don’t mean to offend. I mean to give only my honest feedback.
I know I haven’t been doing any drama/film news for a while(???) now so here’s my newest picks for the first quarter of 2014. Hopefully you, the reader(s), like such a format. (Heh) >.<
What the format is: The comments for the films and dramas below will be my zeroth impression (please click the links for more on the drama). I try to not be influenced by what I had heard about the drama/film as much as possible because it could spoil the fun. I don’t necessarily dislike the opposite but I do prefer shows that experiment (find something new in the old/ deals with different perspective) or have a new genre. Also, as this format makes such posts more towards a recommended list, I apologise if I do offend because of what I choose.
If there’s anything that has been more frustrating when reading Korean entertainment news, it’s reading who A, B, C, etc are in rumors and scandalicious news(?) reports, and then forgetting who takes what role.. -__-’’ <Tabloid News> is a film that turns the whole picture around and identifies the bigger picture – is the article in question deserving of our attention, or the ones behind the article? The mystery thriller has already hooked me for the subject matter it’s taking on – other than Kim Kang Woo seeking justice for the late artiste he was managing, what exactly did the masterminds behind the article commit?? The show seems dangerous (A gangster in the mix??)! Just what kind of things did the masterminds do, and WHO THE HELL is the ‘murderer’?!
<Elegant Lies or Thread of Lies> is a film adaptation of the novel with the same title by Kim Ryeo Ryeong. The melodramatic story seems simple and touching, and yet it hints that darker things are only waiting to surface – just what happened between Kim Hyang Gi and Kim Yu Jeong‘s characters that led the former to such a fatal decision? Or was it to do with something else? With the message the trailer is sending, I believe there’s going to be something for all of us to learn. I swear, I was already on the verge of tears when I burst out laughing at Yu Ah In’s appearance. 😛 Other source: Asianwiki
<Another Family> is a true-story inspired film adaptation about a father (depicted by Park Cheol Min) going against a reputable yet unethical company, to seek justice for his daughter who passed away. Gahh..I’m already about to cry. This movie’s gonna be awesome. I could and would never pass a touching underdog story like this. >.<
<December> has a more interesting write-up at hancinema, hence the link. (Yes, Asianwiki has some spoilers. Argh! ) The romance melodrama paints a story of a couple (Shin Myeong Jin, Kim Dong Won) – or are they? A contemplative and artsy, yet intriguing indie movie to consider.
When I read the synopsis for <Warm Words (or A Kind Word)>, I was quite surprised (and impressed) that the writer dared to put the leads (Han Hye Jin, Ji Jin Hee) as the cheating pair, and not their spouses (Lee Sang Woo – LOL when will he ever get the girl?, Kim Ji Su). ( <A Thousand Days’ Promise> did such a plot too, but got bogged down by clichès.) It’s a nice change from the usual ‘innocent’ OTP that the drama scene is used to and I am really looking forward to how the show will conclude the affair and then, make the leads ‘wholesome’ again (especially since there’s no sob story at the outset). It’s always refreshing (and awe-inspiring) to see a writer dare to put their leads in a negative light, only to effortlessly give them a chance to redeem themselves. The casts seems to be a dependable lot, so why not? Other source: Asianwiki
Crime thriller <14 Days> takes the perspective of a mother (Lee Bo Yeong) (instead of fathers in ‘2 weeks’ and ‘Joseon Fugitive’) who travels back in time to save her kidnapped daughter before she gets murdered in present time. It’s definitely interesting to see the contrast between an emotionally, physically weaker parent and the daunting task of trying to find the kidnapper and her daughter (Kim Yu Bin). I usually prefer to see strong females. But I think having the mother herself, be an (unwilling) obstruction to the case, can make for some good internal conflict. I have always found internal conflict more intriguing and engaging to watch. But if mom’s gonna go all kickass, I’m not complaining either. 😀 The mystery portion of the drama will definitely put pressure on the time for good measure. I’m really excited for the drama. ^^
Whenever I think about what makes a Korean romcom, it is the wacky plot, and the no-nonsense yet long-winded, angsty period (AKA the rom-com time bomb) that will interrupt the OTP’s happy-ever-after. <Sly and Single Again> fits the bill and I like that it already has a natural conflict getting itself ready in the back burner – the question of whether one is making the right choice given a second chance. Plus when one considers the issue the drama is dealing with, it’s more than just a couple in love facing difficulties – it’s having to face a decision that will affect one’s future especially when it has been experienced before, and with the same person at that. I’m quite curious how a sensitive topic like this will be approached, and in a romcom no less. (Another drama going with the same concept is . I do like better because it has a more comical set-up from the get-go.) As for the romcom part of the drama, despite the premise having a certain predictability to it, I’m actually looking forward to the hilarity from our OTP (Ju Sang Wook, Lee Min Jeong) going all out when playing their mind games and taking petty revenges. If all goes well, the drama can be a silly, yet thought-provoking drama to watch out for. Hopefully *Fingers Crossed!*
Taking the same backstory as films ‘I Am A Murderer’(2012) and ‘Memories of Murder’(2003) [Omg, reading its synopsis made me feel like puking. >.<], is tvN’s upcoming(?) April mystery crime thriller, <Gapdongi>. All are based on the true story of a serial rapist and murderer that was never caught. (I wonder if the real guy has been arrested with the current technology we have….) Regardless, the tvN series is proving to be another interesting take on the cold case when the murderer ‘Gapdongi’ takes another life. Even the characters of ‘Gapdongi’ (Yun Sang Hyeon, Seong Dong Il, Kim Min Jeong, Kim Ji Won, Lee Jun) complement the mysteriousness of the plot very well. Acting seems like another plus for the series. I just hope it’s not as violent and disgusting as the 2003 film. Or my memory will need some clearing. >.< For those who wish to watch the webtoon introduction for the series (Erm, don’t ask me what is it or how scary, k?), here is the link.
Funny that SBS has <Three Days> and <14 Days> lined up in around the same time, when both are more or less similar. (Also, there are quite a number of thrillers coming out too… 2014 – the year of thrillers??) Nonetheless, political-mystery thriller <Three Days> is something to look forward to as well. I have watched ‘Sign’, which is a relief of some sort. I love it when the writers are not ‘overprotective’ of their leads. It’s always fun to see how the writers test their characters and pull them back wittily (Just like how <Warm Words> might be). (I wonder why the president’s alone..) Almost all our characters (Son Hyeon Ju, Park Yu Cheon, Park Ha Seon, So Yi Hyeon, Choi Won Yeong, Jang Hyeon Seong, Yun Je Mun) are shrouded in some kind of mystery in one way or the other, that it’s hard to conclude whether the president is on the good or bad side for now. That’s why I loved that Son Hyeon Ju was casted for the role – it’s so clever! (To think that even Son’s versatility can bring twists to the story.) The rest of the cast is also a steady bunch, except for maybe a few names. I do hope the series has some darn good cliffhangers to keep things unpredictable. (LOL The posters look like some Harry Potter inspired look – you know in the 5th film where Harry and Dumbledore’s Army goes to the Ministry of Magic’s Department of Mysteries(? Mystery?…Memory fail >.<))
<Kang Goo> will be a 2-ep (noona)romance-human melodrama headlined by Lee Dong Wook and Park Ju Mi (Omg, their age gap!!…Ok fine, Secret Love Affair is worse). If done right, the short special can be a heartwarming cosy weekend fare, with some hot chocolate to go. I’m just wondering how the 3D effects will happen since it is on normal tv. (If dramafever works in your country, you could watch the short series with eng subs with this link! Sweet!)
<The X> is a short but dark film that places Kang Dong Won and girlfriend Shin Min Ah in an interesting turn of events.
<Rough Play (or An Actor Is An Actor)> will depict the ups and downs of an actor, with Lee Jun leading as the titular artiste. I’m not very fond of the extreme nature of the show (both in directing and storyline) which I acknowledge, has circumstances that I’m sure has happened before. On another note, I think the film could be a good way for Lee Jun to be recognised for his acting skills – his intensity in trailer was quite good. Other source: Asianwiki
<Hot Blooded Youth>: Posters and trailers
ON THE FENCE
<Kundo: Age Of Rampant> includes big names such as Ha Jeong Wu and Kang Dong Won. But I’m not as excited as I think I should be, mainly due to the plot that’s been used (too) many times. I’m still looking forward to the show, especially with an able cast and leads, minus the intimidating swords and knives. Other source: Hancinema.net
<Age Of Feeling> could be a make or break drama for Kim Hyeon Joong, who hasn’t shown his acting potential/range so far. The rest of the (huge) cast like Kim Gap Su and Im Su Hyang (from the trailer), do make things seem more promising. On another note, I’m afraid of the amount of violence the show has, as seen in the comments section of one of DB’s post on the drama. Also, the fact that one actor quits, while a main writer leaves, is something to note.
<Twenty Years Old> (2014, web miniseries on CJ&EM and tvN/Channel M): Lee Gi Kwang, Lee Da In, Kim Hye Ji, Kang Tae Oh and Kim Dong Seok. The premise sounds fit for a cute and fluffy romcom, great for a weekend sleepover with your girlfriends. Or anyone seeking something sweet. 🙂
I’m not too sure how I feel (positively or negatively) about jtbc’s newest and scandalous noona romance between Yu Ah In and Kim Hee Ae in <Secret Love Affair>. For one, I know I feel uncomfortable about the huge age gap. That’s where the acting (and then the storyline) has to come in, to prove to me that the age gap is nothing to worry about. The leading cast seems dependable (Could this finally be the it show for Yu Ah In once again??), while the script is another matter altogether – while gimmicky, the premise can only sustain viewers for so long before things get awkward. The other issue is that, I’m not so much of a melodrama fan when I’m not in the mood for it. Nonetheless, the plot is already piquing my interest. Teaser here!
KBS’s <Full Sun> or <Beyond The Clouds> will be Yun Kye Sang and Han Ji Hye’s newest melodrama that puts the two of them on the thin line between love and hate. I’m not that crazy about the story and its genre. Instead, the only probable reason I would be considering this drama, is the last part of the KBS teaser – Yun Kye Sang’s acting and the directing. That ending really changed my mind, for some reason…
<A Kind Of Goodbye> is a miniseries which has been very vague on the plot, yet somewhat specific on the characters (Seo In Guk, Wang Ji Won). It is to the extent I’m not even sure what I am supposed to expect and it feels as if spilling more will be akin to giving away the whole show/ . It seems a little too extreme from the teaser. So I guess, it’s something I’d have to watch to find out!
<A Blue Bird> is TV Chosun’s 3-ep omnibus miniseries special. The plot doesn’t sound ambitious at first look, but if the drama ever follows KBS Drama Special , I will be sure to catch it. 😛 (Btw, besides Go Ju Won, Lunafly’s Yun and BEG’s Narsha will be taking part in the special as well!)
The other trend happening in recent years is drama/film adaptation of webtoons or manhwas, and 11-part <Aftermath> tells the story of high school student who gains the power to help prevent murders from happening. There have been many supernatural crime thrillers, and my question is how a rookie actor like Kim Dong Jun, will be able to carry the show through both seasons? Or will there be an antagonist/actor (Kim Hyeong Geon) that does his part better? What could be holding me back the most is that the synopsis (and trailer) gives too clear an idea of what’s to happen, which greatly diminishes my excitement. Then again, I’m sure there’s a catch somewhere.. Teaser LINK
Sageuk <Jeong Do Jeon> chronicles the life of a politician who assisted the emperor during the early days of Joseon dynasty. Jo Jae Hyeon, Yu Dong Geun, Park Yeong Gyu, Seon Dong Hyeok etc, stars in the 50-part weekend series. I am never a huge fan of politics and I didn’t like the way the show was filmed. But I saw snippets of the series when the guests came on Happy Together and thought that the acting in the show was commendable.
Im Hyeon Shik and Park Won Suk adorably parody a scene from popular romcom ‘Man From The Stars>, with hilarious dialogues.
Thanks for reading and Hope you enjoyed!