[Guest Film Review] "Sunflower" 2016/10/08,
Tae-sik was a true delinquent during his high school years, having drooped out of school and constantly fighting, along with his two lackeys, Yang-gi and Chang-moo. Choi Do-pil was the leader of the local mob during that period, and was desperately trying to persuade Tae-sik to join their ranks. During his last effort, he attacked Tae-sik, along with his henchmen, wishing to kill him. However, they failed miserably as he injured one of them named Byeong-jin and killed another. The result was that Tae-sik was sent to prison and Choi Do-pil's gang was dismantled,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Jackpot" Episode 9 2016/04/25, "Jackpot" came in at the bottom of the pack at 8.0%, but the quality of the show is better than it has been. There is plot movement, character development, action, and political happenings that aren't deadly dull. Not to say that the show doesn't have flaws, but the tone has settled alongside the no-longer-erratic pacing. The biggest flaw in the show is that both King Seokjong and In-jwa are nearly omniscient,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Jackpot" Episode 8 2016/04/19,
Although Jackpot's rating lowered to 8.7%, it's plot has stabilized and become much more cohesive. Save for a few moments, it has ditched the exaggerated antics that defined it in its earliest episodes. There are a lackluster backstories for our characters, especially on the part of Dae-gil's teacher, Kim Che-geon (Ahn Kil-kang). These took a backseat to the huge learning curves that brothers Dae-gil and Yeoning are suffering through. Despite the fact that they walk similar paths, both brothers have distinct strengths and weaknesses based upon personality differences and in the way they were raised,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Blade Man" Episode 18 (final) 2014/11/20, "Blade Man" has ended happily. All issues were resolved. All couples ended up together. Some of these occurrences were satisfying and well-earned. Some were explained away by exposition. The entire episode was jumpy and strangely timed. And yet, as "Blade Man" has always managed to do, the final episode ended on a feel-good note.
At the drama's start, "Blade Man" was quirky, fast-paced, fun, and full of relevant and interesting issues to be solved,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Blade Man" Episode 14 2014/11/03,
This episode focused on the return of the supposedly dead ex-girlfriend and her tragic health problems. She pretended to be dead to spare her son, Chang, and Hong-bin from the pain of living with a very sick person. Now that she's been discovered, our cast of characters has to deal with her.
I'm trying not to be too cynical about the very cliche move of bringing back a dead lover (Tae-hee) who made the noble decision to spare her loved ones pain, but it is very difficult,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Blade Man" Episode 12 2014/10/28,
I don't know what to make of "Blade Man" anymore. It's focus keeps wavering and it picks up and drops plot threads seemingly at random. What happened to Hong Bin's powers? Why do they not appear for whole episodes at a time? Why do his powers only manifest in part? What is up with Madame Yoon and why does she not feel scarier? All of these questions stem from one core problem: a distinct lack of follow-through,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Blade Man" Episode 11 2014/10/23, "Blade Man" is inconsistent. It can't decide which direction it wants to take with its plot and its tone and its character development. Perhaps it is due to the long periods of ineffective on-camera brooding. Or perhaps it is the constant time skips that gloss over all of the juicy writing points, leaving them to be explained after the fact in a way that feels more like reading a teleprompter than watching drama. However, where "Blade Man" excels is in the little moments of connection between characters, like the beautiful ones between Chang and Hong-bin. After many episodes of Chang longing for his father's attention, he finally asks - and he is obliged,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Blade Man" Episode 6 2014/09/30,
It's time for Hong-bin to actively pursue the mystery behind his blackouts and it's about time. If the strange transformations went unexplained very much longer it would have damaged the strength of the plot. Luckily, Hong-bin is intelligent and his secretary is bad at keeping secrets. Hong-bin's horrified reaction to discovering that he transforms when he's angry is quite understandable,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Blade Man" Episode 4 2014/09/24, "Blade Man" is settling into a groove that balancing plot development with the show's love of long emotional beats and reveals. Hong-bin's anger-fueled blades are as much of a mystery to him as they are to the viewers. This episode sheds a bit more light on them as Hong-bin becomes more and more fascinated with Se-dong, her fierce attitude, and her ability to make everyone around her smile. The most engaging part of "Blade Man" is the relationship between Hong-bin, Se-dong, and Chang,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Blade Man" Episode 2 2014/09/15, "Blade Man" is a show that takes the normal set-up elements of K-drama and morphs them into something new. The unexpected child is not just a silent motivator, but a full-fledged character who inspires plot movement. The female lead isn't just an airhead with no power. She has intelligence and drive. The male lead is both completely unlikeable and entirely pitiable. On top of these are the beautiful camera styling by the director.
I find "Blade Man" a delightful surprise because its promotional material made it seem like "just another" K-drama with nothing innovational,...More
Korean drama of the week "Arang and the Magistrate" 2013/08/29, Source,
Korean drama of the week "Arang and the Magistrate" (2012) Directed by Kim Sang-ho-I Written by Jeong Yoon-jeong Network : MBC With Lee Joon-gi, Shin Min-a, Yeon Woo-jin, Kwon O-joong, Han Jung-soo, Hwang Bo-ra,... 20 episodes - Wed, Thu 21:55 Also known as "Tale of Arang" Synopsis Arang is an aggrieved ghost who happens to suffer from amnesia. She sets out on a journey to find her true identity but first she needs to find someone in the living world who can see her and help her. That person is Eun-oh. She makes a plea to Eun-oh to help her recover her memories. Eun-oh jokingly tells her that he would only help her if he becomes the district magistrate and so Arang cleverly finds a way to have him appointed as a magistrate overnight. This drama brings the supernatural romantic story of Arang, a ghost who seeks answers to her untimely death, and Eun-ho, a young district magistrate who abhors ghost!,...More
Top musical actor Park Gun-hyung will make his debut in the play "Fool For Love" as the opening performa,...More
[INTERVIEW] Han Jung-soo - Part 1 2010/05/28, Source,
Korean actor Han Jung-soo [photographed by Chae Ki-won/10Asia] Han Jung-soo says "2010 was the luckiest year of my life" Three years ago, when Han Jung-soo was appearing in the SBS TV series "King and I", he had the words "Justice, Courage, Passion, Wisdom, Faith" set as the background on his mobile phone screen. This sincere man who said he "wants to live with a sense of justice, not like a coward" and believes "how you live life is more important that what you achieve in life" is a rare find in the 21st century. And this year, in KBS TV series "The Slave Hunters" and SBS' "Prosecutor Princess", he played characters that were most similar to himself. And during that time, his mobile phone has changed to an iPhone, and its background from those five words to cartoon characters from his favorite comics "One Piece". 10Asia met with actor Han Jung-soo, who has remained the same in his beliefs over the years,...More
[INTERVIEW] Han Jung-soo - Part 2 2010/05/28, Source,
Korean actor Han Jung-soo [photographed by Chae Ki-won/10Asia] Q: You often played characters that were considered "cool" by men rather than women. Han: Yeah. I want women to like me but I think they like sensitive and affectionate men like the character Lawyer Seo (played by Park Si-hoo). Well, it's fine. Being an actor that men like... (laugh) Q: Your abs caused a stir during "The Slave Hunters" and I heard that you are extremely into sports -- you once even said that you wanted to be a mixed martial arts fighter. What kind of influence do you think training one's body has one's mental health? Han: I like exercising by myself, so I just work out at the gym more than anything. I think that, as a man, you start to feel confident psychologically when your body gains a certain amount of strength. So I tell younger actors, "Don't just drink every day. Do some exercise. It's good for your health and good for your mind too". Contrary to how I look, I can't drink alcohol so I don't have any other way to relieve stress. It's either going to the gym or going to sleep. (laugh),...More
[INTERVIEW] Actress Choi Song-hyun 2010/05/13, Source,
Korean actress Choi Song-hyeon [photographed by Lee Jin-hyuk/10Asia]
My name is Choi Song-hyun. I was born on April 11, 1982. I have a jinx where bad things have happened on all my previous birthdays, but this year I was very happy because I celebrated my birthday on set with the staff and other cast members. My family consists of my parents and my two older sisters. Sometimes my parents still call me 'baby' because I'm the youngest. (laugh) My oldest sister and I are five years apart and I'm two years apart with my other sister. They are both married and I have two nephews. All five of my closest friends got married last year and I'm the only bachelorette. They all met good guys and are living happy lives, otherwise they would have called me up to badmouth their husbands,...More
[FOCUS] Wednesday/Thursday drama rivalry - Part 2 2010/04/19, Source, 6. Work and Love, Love and Work: The story for all three stories are set at the workplace
"Prosecutor Princess": It is impossible to perfectly reenact the process of investigation that prosecutors carry out unless the program is a reality documentary. However, "Prosecutor Princess" adds an abundance of detail into depicting the daily life of a civil servant. The show has received reviews that even regular office workers can relate to the portrayal of the job description of a rookie prosecutor. "Princess" could become a good example of an office drama if it lays out the process of investigations with common sense.
"Personal Taste": One can't really say it is specialized. The drama does not explain through what process a house is designed, how to trim the different kinds of wood in order to make furniture, or what the necessary preparations are in carrying out a bidding. The scenes where Park Gae-in takes part in a furniture exhibition and has Jun Jin-ho cut the acrylic from a blind in order to avoid an emergency situation adds onto the sense of reality in telling the difficulties one struggles as an employee.
"Cinderella's Sister": Everyone gathers together at the makgeolli brewery called "Daesungdoga". However, this Goo Dae-sung's world of abundance and is one of the things that Song Gang-sook wants, but it does not display any characteristics as a work place. One might forget that it is a brewery, if it did not show the scene of Goo Hyo-seon (played by Seo Woo) drinking the residue left after rice liquor is drained before going to school. As a whole, the story of the self righteous self-made owner, the femme fatale-like new lady of the house, and the naive yet talkative workers and large family all seem like trite set-ups,...More
Kim So-yeon says "Ma Hye-ri and I are very similar" - Part 1 2010/04/08, Source,
The cast of TV series "Prosecutor Princess": (from left) actors Park Si-hoo, Choi Song-hyeon, Kim So-yeon and Han Jeong-soo [SBS]
Press conference for SBS TV series "Prosecutor Princess" On the first week of the battle amongst Wednesday andThursday evening dramas by three broadcasting networks, SBS TV series "Prosecutor Princess" came in third in viewership ratings. But the figures are not the absolute criterion of how entertaining or well-made the show is and the transformation Kim So-yeon has made -- who played a female warrior in KBS' "IRIS" and came back as an innocent prosecutor Ma Hye-ri who has no clue about working in an organization -- is a success. The comedic acting by colorful supporting characters also catches the viewers' eyes,...More
Kim So-yeon says "Ma Hye-ri and I are very similar" - Part 2 2010/04/08, Source, Press conference for SBS TV series "Prosecutor Princess"
Actress Choi Song-hyeon [SBS]
Q: Your acting seems to have improved a lot in this drama. Are you still stressed about being called the actress who used to an anchorwoman? Choi Song-hyun: I think some people still feel awkward and uncomfortable about seeing Choi Song-hyun as an actress. People feel good when others tell them that they are great at what they want to do and what they are doing, and get upset when they hear they are doing a bad job. But I think that even telling someone they are bad at something comes out of their attention and affection for them. Personally, it's very flattering to receive attention but I'm worried that I might cause trouble for the director, staff and senior actors who are working hard to make a good show. But like they say, even someone who you don't like will grow on you when you keep seeing them, so I think if viewers keep seeing me on the screen as they tune in to watch the show, they might feel less uncomfortable about me,...More
Son Ye-jin says relieved Lee Min-ho "not young-looking" (2) 2010/03/26, Source,
Actor Lee Min-ho and actress Son Ye-jin pose at the press conference for their upcoming MBC TV series tentatively titled "Personal Preference" in English, held at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Seoul, South Korea on March 25, 2010. [Lee Jin-hyuk/10Asia]Q: If you were to compare your character [in "Personal Taste"] with Wang-son from "The Slave Hunters"? Kim Ji-suk (Kim): First of all, the two are different genres and the two are different characters. If Wang-son was the youngest character who was comic and provided fun to the drama, Chang-ryeol is a main character who has to lead the story. And he is also different from Wang-son in terms of appearance, so people might feel like they are seeing a little of Wang-son in the character, I expect viewers to quickly fall in love with Han Chang-ryeol. Han Chang-ryoel is the most luxurious character that I have ever played. What is crafty about a person's mind is that, when I was working on "The Slave Hunters", I wanted to do a modern drama. But now, with so many things to worry about including my appearance, I've come to think that dramas are all the same,...More
A sneak peak into the set of "The Slave Hunters" 2010/02/11, Source,
Actor Jang Hyeok acts out a scene for KBS TV series "The Slave Hunters" at Unju Temple in the South Jeolla Province of South Korea on January 27, 2010. [Lee Jin-hyeok/10Asia]
On a cold winter day in January, director Kwak Jeong-hwan of KBS TV series "The Slave Hunters" was at Unju Temple in the South Jeolla Province. It is the place, mentioned in the tenth episode, which Dae-gil (played by Jang Hyeok) guessed correctly right away when told Tae-ha (Oh Ji-ho) went to where a statue of Buddha lies on its back facing the sky. "There is a statue of Buddha laid on the ground and facing the sky in the Unju Temple. It is said to contain the unfulfilled hopes of the commoners. I couldn't not go to shoot there after hearing that story", Kwak explained of his reason in choosing the temple as a location which would also symbolize Tae-ha's yet-to-be opened world and the dream of the slaves.,...More
(PREVIEW) KBS TV series "The Slave Hunters" 2009/12/22, Source,
The cast and producer Kwak Jeong-hwan of KBS TV series "The Slave Hunters" pose during a photo session of a press conference held at a CJ CGV theater on December 21, 2009. [Chae Ki-won/10Asia] In times when one who slaughters animals was called a butcher and looked down upon, a The Slave Hunters was considered even more lowly than beasts for their job of hunting down human beings. But Dae-gil (played by Jang Hyeok) decides to become such a The Slave Hunters to make a living after he becomes the only one left of his once-wealthy upper class household which has exterminated from a fire set by a servant under his control. Dae-gil, who takes on the boss of the top Chuno gang of the Joseon Dynasty, composed of Jang-goon (Han Jung-soo) who ruins both himself and his family after failing to pass the military service examination and former thief Wangsoni (Kim Ji-suk), one day receive a request to capture Tae-ha (Oh Ji-ho), a man slave in government employ, who has taken flight. Dae-gil, who must catch Tae-ha in order to maintain his reputation for the job and also to accumulate wealth in preparation for his old age, becomes involved in the mission he must complete while avoiding the threat of a mass of servants who have formed a society.,...More
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