[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Awl" 2016/01/23,
Korean drama has come a long way and at a very swift pace. Some things have not changed, of course. The adherence to certain production habits, thematic approaches as well as the reluctance to leave a desired comfort zone are still there, but works always appear from time to time that are willing to do something different. "Awl" is a series which, true to its name, goes beyond expectations in a most impressive, bold and inspiring way,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Awl" Episode 12 2015/11/29,
Try as it might with the expanded eighty-minute runtime, the final episode of "Awl" can't really overcome the fact that the most potentially interesting part of the entire drama (the strike) ends up being condensed into a single episode. What's more, most of this runtime is just Soo-in sulking about his apparent failure after he refuses to use the main dynamic storyline event to press for an advantage against management,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Awl" Episode 11 2015/11/28,
Manager Ko makes a big general mess of employee relations. I guess because...management is trying to provoke a strike? I really don't know anymore. Ever since Go-sin stopped giving lectures about the underlying causes behind labor disputes I've had a lot of difficulty figuring out what exactly the plan at corporate even is. They just seem to be stubbornly stamping their feet and refusing to acknowledge that a problem exists. Even if management could somehow win this is obviously a completely new labor environment,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Awl" Episode 10 2015/11/22,
Once again, don't watch the preview for this episode if you can help it. There's a spoiler for the cliffhanger. For "Awl" to do this twice in a row, I think, points to a bigger problem in the drama than just a bad preview editor. The reason the previews keep spoiling the cliffhangers here is that lately, in any given episode of "Awl" there has been very little in the way of dynamic action. At this point the union is in a waiting game, and corporate management can't really do anything active anymore,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Awl" Episode 9 2015/11/21,
First off, don't watch the preview for this episode if it can be avoided. The episode nine preview spoils the cliffhanger. I really hate it when dramas do that. I want some idea what's coming up next with the preview, but spoiling the cliffhangers just makes me want to give up on previews altogether, because it makes me feel like I wasted my time watching the episode. Although even on merits "Awl" does struggle in that department,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Awl" Episode 8 2015/11/15,
The fight between the union and the company finally goes public. Why it was necessary for this fight to go public is not especially clear. As of yet the union hasn't really made any demands. What ends up sending management over the edge is, of all things, a dispute over uniforms. It's a battle that's entirely symbolic in nature because, as "Awl" notes, customers don't pay attention to stuff like what's actually written on the uniforms just so long as they can tell who's an employee and who's not,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Awl" Episode 7 2015/11/14,
Director Kim Seok-yoon makes the smart decision this time of putting the character building before the action this episode. Unfortunately the character building isn't all that relevant to the usual labor struggles, which at this point I think we just have to accept as "Awl"s main permanent problem. This isn't a story about characters so much as it is about labor movements. Which is appropriate because labor movements by definition aren't individual action, but mass collective actions mobilized due to a system of mass production which treats people like objects rather than people. To be honest I'm getting kind of sick of repeating that defense all the time,...More
[Funcurve Review] "Angry Mom" 2015/11/14,
A Force to Be Reckoned With
I'll be honest, when I first heard the premise of "Angry Mom", I thought it would be silly and cheesy. But I was absolutely wrong. "Angry Mom" gave me a thoughtful, emotional drama, complete with an amazing cast and great writing. All of the characters were well rounded and had their time to shine so that we can really get to know them. "Angry Mom" truly showcases how writing should be done: straightforwardly and naturally. The drama went above and beyond my expectations and deserves any and all acclaims it received,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Awl" Episode 6 2015/11/08,
It turns out that Go-sin is all right after all, and starts the episode off with another elucidating metaphorical speech on worker's rights. This time he posits that the modern workplace is in itself an attack on a person's humanity. It's an interesting concept actually. You don't have to go too far to find articles, especially South Korean articles, that discuss work-related depression. I've suffered from that myself in fact. There's little room in conformist systems for acknowledging individuality, even as some cultures laud that as a virtue,...More
[HanCinema's Drama First Look] "Awl" 2015/11/08,
The concept of realism is often a difficult one to define, but also something which the receiving audience of fiction has different ideas on from person to person. Korean drama is mostly homogeneous in its output and served audience and realism is sacrificed for the sake of idealistic solutions and easy to follow plots. Even so, series that tackle ugly realities for what they are exist. Some even do it wonderfully. So far, "Awl" manages both,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Awl" Episode 5 2015/11/07,
The first portion of this episode deals with the quasi-legal Kafkaesque nightmare that is directed arbitration. Basically, most corporations (and these days, universities) have a system in place to insure proper cause for dismissal. Such arbitration vaguely resembles a legal system but it is not actually a legal system. Lawyers can't help you there. Joon-cheol (played by Yesung) actually has a slight advantage compared to most in that. He at least had some idea ahead of time what the charges were going to be,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Awl" Episode 4 2015/11/01,
As it turns out, "Awl" is still in the preparation phase. I'm trying to be patient here but there's definitely times when the drama feels more like a lecture on the nature of labor markets than it does an actual story in its own right. Which is part of the point. Labor markets are a complicated subject so of course Go-sin has to spend an inordinate amount of time explaining how these issues work. As has been noted frequently, workers are very ignorant about these issues even though it's literally a matter of their livelihood,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Awl" Episode 3 2015/10/31,
To date So-jin (played by Kim Ga-eun-I) has not had that much to do in "Awl" except hang around Goo-sin's office. This episode it's revealed that she in fact has a very important role to play- as Soo-in's love interest. This initially seems kind of silly given that "Awl" is literally a drama about labor relations and unions. About the last incentive I'd expect to hear is that you can meet pretty girls while labor organizing,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Awl" Episode 2 2015/10/25,
Soo-in continues to wait with mounting dread for the situation to finally culminate in disaster. The constantly recurring analogy of the animal trapped in the headlights is an appropriate one. The paradoxical aspect of all this is that the episode practically happens in slow-motion, and yet Soo-in is constantly incapable of taking any sort of decisive action to just try and resolve the situation himself. It goes against all Soo-in's training- but not his instincts, ironically enough,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Awl" Episode 1 2015/10/24,
The time is summer, 2003. At a grocery store, the employees all have a good mutual working environment. A visit by a bunch of men in suits seems to confirm that the employees are, in fact, doing their job correctly and that there's nothing to worry about. Then there's the manager Soo-jin (played by Ji Hyeon-woo). He seems unnecessarily gloomy. Then we get the flashbacks explaining just why it is that Soo-jin has such a pessimistic outlook- and realize that his overall estimation of the true situation is almost certainly correct,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Preview] "Awl" 2015/10/18,
Arriving soon to JTBC and adding yet another genre to the channel's output is "Awl". "Awl" is so far marketed as a type of office drama and while it has not generated much international buzz, it seems there is some good talent and a popular work behind it with a faithful fan following. Whether this almost obscure series will gain more attention after it stars airing remains to be seen,...More
"The Stone" Jo Dong-in mesmerizes the film industry 2014/06/10, Source,
Rookie actor Jo Dong-in from the film "The Stone" has impressed the film industry with his Park Hae-il-like looks and originality, as well as the film's uses on the subject matter involving a game of delivering a message about life.
After a successful press conference and VIP premiere, "The Stone" is currently trending because of Jo Dong-in, who took on the role of Min-soo, an amateur but genius 'go' player. Having some knowledge about the game of 'go' is what got him this role and a successful completion of "The Stone" with Kim Roi-ha and Park Won-sang. He delivers a life story with the game of 'go' and shows some action in the movie as well,...More
Best 5 Issues to Wrap up the Entertainment Industry in 2012 2013/01/01, Source,
The year 2012 in the Korean entertainment industry was a delightful one, filled with the stars' actions and words which made the public laugh and cry. It is now time to check out the Korean entertainment world and what took place in 2012. Lets check out the best 5 hot issue makers right this minute! The weddings of the stars are in the spotlight every year and the press competition is extremely fierce. In 2012, Hyeon Yeong, comedian Jeong Joon-ha and many other celebrities tied the knot. In particular, we could meet the top star guests at celebrity weddings, and they are always in the spotlight. And on November 30th! Multi-entertainer Ha Ha and singer Byul tied the knot,...More
Ji Hyeon-woo dispatched to Wonju 2012/10/10, Source, Ji Hyeon-woo who joined National Service in August has been dispatched to Wonju in Kangwon-do.
Ji was given basic military training for 4 weeks before being dispatched. A picture of the troop was revealed and attention has been focused on the base that he's been put in,...More
Ji Hyeon-woo and Yoo In-na are in a relationship 2012/06/18, Source,
Actress Yoo In-na (30) opened her heart to actor Ji Hyeon-woo's (28) love confession. While she didn't show a response to his public love request, she accepted it and enjoyed a late-night date with her younger boyfriend in the end.
Ten days after the love propose on the 17th, Ji and Yoo were seen together in a park in Bundang, Kyeonggido. It seems their love from the tvN drama "Queen In-hyeon's Man" came true in real life. Their date was as sweet and romantic as the movie. They walked the park in front of her house, hand in hand. They made eye contact and laughed like people in love,...More
Film to portray making of K-pop idols 2011/10/06, Source,
The main cast of "Mr. Idol" pose for the camera during a promotional event last week in Seoul. From left, Ji Hyeon-woo, Jay Park, Jang Seo-won and Kim Randy. / Courtesy of Cinergy/Lotte Entertainment By Lee Hyo-won
K-pop is all the rage as the media has taken notice of fan bases in Europe and beyond, and a new movie will focus on the making of an idol band.
The press junket for "Mr. Idol" (working title) was held in Seoul last week, ahead of a fan meeting in Busan this weekend during the course of the Busan International Film Festival (BIFF). The country's largest cinema event kicked off Thursday and continues through Oct. 16,...More
Sin Ae-ra, Lee Bo-yeong, Seo Yeong-hee take over the screens 2011/07/07, Source, Select after this |
'Returned singles' will take over the home screens.
MBC drama "Indomitable Daughters-In-Law" currently on air, is telling the success and love story of a 'returned single' Oh Young0sim (Sin Ae-ra) whose husband recently passed away.
Oh Young-sim who was married into the family of Manwoldang, a house with a tradition of 300 years, witnessed her husband having an affair and suddenly became a widow as her husband passed away while she was preparing for divorce,...More
"Dong Yi" continues to lead Mon-Tue dramas 2010/05/06, Source,
Official poster of "Dong Yi" [MBC]
MBC TV series "Dong Yi" continued to bring in high ratings this week, taking the lead in the rivalry amongst shows in the Monday and Tuesday primetime slot.
Research firm TNS Media Korea revealed that "Dong Yi", into its seventh week of showing, recorded an average viewership rating of 22 percent on May 3 and 4, decreasing a slight 0.1 percent from last week,...More
"Dong Yi" steams past competition on Mon-Tue nights 2010/04/28, Source,
A scene of Dong Yi (played by Han Hyo-joo) from "Dong Yi" [MBC]
MBC's traditional TV series "Dong Yi" remained the top Monday and Tuesday night drama as its ratings continued to steam forward this week, according to statistics on Wednesday.
Research firm TNS Media Korea revealed that "Dong Yi", now into its sixth week of showing, scored an average rating of 22.1 percent on April 26 and 27 to record its highest rating to date and a 2.7 percent jump from the previous week,...More
"Dong Yi" keeps strong lead on Mon-Tue dramas 2010/04/21, Source,
Official drama poster of historical epic "Dong Yi" [MBC]
MBC TV series "Dong Yi" continued to score high ratings this week, maintaining a strong lead amongst dramas aired on Monday and Tuesday nights.
According to statistics released by AGB Nielsen Media Research on Wednesday, viewership ratings for the historical show stood at 19.2 percent on Monday while dropping one percent the following day. The show had recorded average ratings of 18.4 percent last week,...More
"Dong Yi" takes over "Rich" 2010/04/13, Source,
MBC historical drama "Dong Yi" [MBC]
MBC TV series "Dong Yi" made noticeable progress in ratings this week, beating out KBS' "Birth of a Rich Man" from the top spot of dramas aired on Monday and Tuesday nights.
According to statistics released by TNS Media Korea on Tuesday, the prime time show jumped in viewership ratings by three percent from its previous episode to 17.2 percent, the highest figure the show has seen since its premiere late last month,...More
[2007 Drama Highlights] Best Kiss scenes 2007/12/27, Source, The drama market of 2007 had been flooded with a large number of high-quality dramas, range from large-scaled dramas of billion dollars worth production cost to much smaller-scaled, but of rich conten,...More
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