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[HanCinema's Drama Review] "My Secret Hotel" Episode 3

2014/08/25 | | Permalink

...And it's right back to the present, where we're stuck with the aftershock of murder. On first glance the two episode flashback doesn't seem to have accomplished that much. We really don't know all that much about the main characters. This is at least partially by design, since for all we know Sang-hyo and Hae-yeong were responsible for the killing. About the only character we can clear as a suspect right now is Soo-ah, because she's the only person publically upset about the fact that a dead man fell from the ceiling into the wedding reception.

This is why the first two episodes are important, looking in retrospect. Remember how everyone was completely stoic and unreacting in the face of an obviously upset Sang-hyo? They're displaying the exact same lack of emotion now that there's a murder investigation going on...More

[HanCinema's Box Office Review] 2014.08.22 ~ 2014.08.24

2014/08/25 | | Permalink

"Pirates" and "The Admiral" tussle at the top…

It's been a thrilling month for Kim Han-min's "The Admiral: Roaring Currents" as it quickly became the highest grossing Korean film in history by surpassing the 13M admissions "The Host" put up back in 2006. Kim's epic depiction of Admiral Yi Sun-Shin's legendary role in the Battle of Myeongnyang may have been pushed down into second, but the additional 802K (29.9%) it cornered over the weekend pushes this mighty piece of moviemaking to a record 16.2M admissions ($123M)...More

[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Fated to Love You" Episode 16

2014/08/24 | | Permalink

This episode was the last episode of Geon's charade as Kim Young-ja, the "woman" who bought Mi-young's painting and gave her emotional support. It is also the end of this stage in this stage of their relationship, the stage where they're forced to reckon with lingering emotions and the repercussions of splitting so suddenly. While the relationship between Mi-young and Geon is full of nuance and development, the other relationships stall in wait for the last phase of the drama.

It is good that Geon's Young-ja charade ended as it was just about to reach the end of its useful life...More

[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Fated to Love You" Episode 15

2014/08/24 | | Permalink

Mi-young and Geon are dancing around each other now, trying to make heads or tails of their ill-defined relationship while everyone else watches and waits for the fated couple to work things out. Words are what trip the couple up along with their messy past.

Both Mi-young and Geon are in denial about their feelings for each other...More

[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Fated to Love You" Episode 14

2014/08/24 | | Permalink

"Fated to Love You" is in the midst of re-establishing the relationship between Geon and Mi-young - that is to say, they really don't have a relationship anymore. It is also now that we see that not all is well with Mi-young, and that Geon cannot seem to let her go. The episode is inwardly turned as it explores the troubles of not only Mi-young and Geon, but of their families and Daniel. Se-ra is still conspicuously underdeveloped.

The biggest revelation this episode is the fact that Mi-young has a decided aversion to all things related to Geon...More

[HanCinema's Idol Actors] Park Yoo-chun and Seo In-guk

2014/08/23 | | Permalink

Park Yoo-chun

Famous idols who go into acting often share a very similar issue. The position of the roles they get is very central compared to what their skills at the time can actually handle. Park Yoo-chun showed promise straight away, by managing to carry the role of a lead in his very first work a lot better than what a lot of idols or other rookies manage...More

[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Nine: Time Travelling Nine Times"

2014/08/23 | | Permalink

There are a lot of issues with the Korean drama industry and the fact that new ideas can rarely escape the confines of the drama formula is one of the big ones. Romance is almost inescapable and overly melodramatic tropes and devices turning cliche are another such element. Even good writing cannot always escape those and often does not even try. 'Nine: Time Travelling Nine Times' is a series which had great potential and has many virtues, but it also has a few problems, its biggest issue being that it fails to incorporate a solid romance into its plot and goes cheap with its melodrama...More

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