[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Answer Me 1988" Episode 6 2015/11/21,
Taek (played by Park Bo-geum) is a Go prodigy who has been having a bit of a slump lately. I haven't felt much need to discuss Taek because, well, there's not really much more to say about the character than that. Taek's kind of an idiot outside of the whole Go prodigy thing but his friends and family love him because why wouldn't they? "Answer Me 1988" is dealing with a time period where it wasn't especially important that people fit into neat easily defined categories,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Answer Me 1988" Episode 5 2015/11/20,
Even though the young characters are the main billed actors of "Answer Me 1988", I frequently get the feeling that it's the parents who are the real protagonists of the drama. The conflict of this episode is a case in point- the three main storylines are about the worries mothers have regarding what happens to their children when they're not looking. This being 1988, there are good precedents for that. There weren't any "don't try this at home disclaimers" for silly stunts seen on television. A lack of cell phones made checking up at home difficult. And also there was the whole college student movement getting into fights with the secret police,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Answer Me 1988" Episode 4 2015/11/14,
Deok-seon wants to go to university. Her family is ambivalent about this. Which is weird to see because in the modern day this desire is so utterly banal that it barely even counts as a desire. In South Korea (and the United States too for that matter) everyone is supposed to go to college. It's not a factor that's influenced by such rational circumstances as money, career goals, or scholastic aptitude. As is usually the case with "Answer Me 1988", looking at the situation as presented in this drama mostly just makes me wonder why the world we live in today is the one that comes off weird in comparison,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Answer Me 1988" Episode 3 2015/11/13,
The opening scenes are, rather innocently enough, about how girls like boys, but don't really know anything about them. That's the problem with having a peer group that also consists of teenagers. Everybody is equally clueless, but not everyone knows that they're equally clueless. This also leads to embarassments like Deok-seon's bizarre use of makeup. That's not a process which can or should be hurried. A pity the older So-ra is too busy being aggressive to offer much useful advice to her younger sister,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Answer Me 1988" Episode 2 2015/11/07,
Seong-gyoon (played by Kim Seong-gyoon) is kind of the goofy uncle in "Answer Me 1988". Aside from doing a ridiculous dance at regular intervals Seong-gyoon also tries to show off how happening he is with modern technology by buying a camcorder. Ah, nostalgia, how sweet it is to remember that people used to consider having their every waking moment caught on camera to be weird. Seong-gyoon isn't a dork, the man's just so ahead of the curve that everyone has confused him for a dork,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Answer Me 1988" Episode 1 2015/11/06,
The real unspoken hero of the "Answer Me" series has always been whoever is in charge of the background designs. It could not have possibly been easy to pull together that much obscure eighties merchandise. Did the production team actually find this old Hidori stuff lying around somewhere, or did they have to custom order it? Everything looks so new and fresh, which makes sense because in 1988 this pop culture was both hip and relevant. Not so much today,...More
[HanCinema's Box Office Review] 2015.08.21 ~ 2015.08.23 2015/08/24, "Veteran" eyes 10 million…Ryoo Seung-wan's crime drama "Veteran" has once again emerged at the top of the pile as it enjoys a third week as Korea's number one. "Veteran" saw another sizeable weekend as it added 1.3 million admissions (43%) to move its total tally to just over 9 million ($59.1 million). Last weekend Ryoo's crime drama attracted a massive 2.2 million filmgoers, and the weekend before that saw 1.9 million flock to its screens, and now the films is poised to join an elite group of South Korea films that have claimed 10 million admissions,...More
Kim Seong-gyoon, "I'm like a snack bar" 2015/03/17, Source, Actor Kim Seong-gyoon can be a bone-chilling bad guy at one point and weaken the hearts of women with his warmth the next.
We met Kim Seong-gyoon at a café recently and he said, "I thought being rough and tough was the only way I could survive. I have been selfless not caring about the money and just continuously doing small roles. I was happy". He was happy doing what he wanted to do but now he's going a different way,...More
[HanCinema's Film Review] "The Deal" 2015/03/07,
Kang-cheon (played by Park Seong-woong) is a übermensch serial killer. While I don't have any inherent problem with serial killer tropes in general, the übermensch serial killer is especially annoying primarily because it's so heavily fetishized. Dostoevsky pointed out the issues with the idea of the extraordinary man being a murderer way back in the nineteenth century. And this was back before serial killers and their bizarre fan clubs even came into existence. Newsflash- actual serial killers are cowards who would piss their pants if they had to face a task more difficult than hand-to-hand combat with a forty kilo accountant,...More
Veteran actors shine in 'The Deal' 2015/03/04, Source,
The stellar performances of three veteran actors take center stage in upcoming film "The Deal". The plot is hardly groundbreaking - the subject matter is a serial killer being chased by a detective and a victim's husband plotting his revenge,...More
Korean movie of the week "Secretly and Greatly" 2015/02/19,
Korean movie of the week "Secretly and Greatly" (2013) Directed by Jang Cheol-soo With Kim Soo-hyeon-I, Park Ki-woong, Lee Hyun-woo, Son Hyeon-joo, Park Hye-sook, Kim Seong-gyoon,... Synopsis As a North Korean sleeper cell agent, Ryoo-hwan infiltrates the South and assumes the role of a village idiot in a rural town. He observes the townsfolk and waits patiently for his mission. One day, after 2 years of playing the role of the village idiot, fellow elite spies Hae-rang, posed as a rock star and Hae-jin, posed as an ordinary student, are dispatched to the same town as Ryoo-hwan. He helps the other two spies settle in and teach them how to adjust in the South. There is a sudden drastic political power shift in the North and all three spies receive an urgent mission: commit suicide,...More
Tiny-G's Dohee refuses to work 2015/02/09, Source, Apparently Dohee from Tiny-G is refusing to work.
A source claimed, "Dohee has changed her mind about singing after debuting as an actress. She's refusing to do anything with her team and it seems like she's set on leaving the team",...More
[HanCinema's Box Office Review] 2014.10.31 ~ 2014.11.02 2014/11/03, "Gone Girl" stays put…
Last week's number one, David Fincher's "Gone Girl", retained the top spot during its second week out, only this weekend the victory was a little more convincing. Fincher's latest added another 452K admissions (34%) to bring its two-week total now to 1.2M ($9.1M). Its closest rival came again via Jang Jin's "We Are Brothers" (starring Jo Jin-woong and Kim Seong-gyoon), which managed to register just over 243K (17%), but Jin's comedy drama still finds itself 200K short of that million milestone,...More
Seong Yoo-ri's behind cuts, 'glow' 2014/09/18, Source,
Actress Seong Yoo-ri's unedited behind-the-scene cuts have been revealed.
The advertisement she modeled for is for cosmetic brand Sisley and she can be seen wearing a shoulder-revealing purple dress. Despite the fact that the pictures are unedited, Seong Yoo-ri's skin still looks flawless and amazing,...More
Kim Seong-gyoon in "Answer Me 1994" 2013/10/16, Source,
Actor Kim Seong-gyoon takes on the role of Sam Cheon-po, a college boy from the outskirts in the new tvN drama "Answer Me 1994".
Pictures of the actor were released by his agency on the 17th and he's transformed into a country boy. He is wearing a long coat with wide pants. He is looking up into the Seoul sky with a determined look on his face which reflects the image of a newly Seoul-bound country boy,...More
[HanCinema's Film News] New Korean Films Inbound... 2013/10/05, K-Films Coming Soon:
★★★★ "The Hero": A single dad who plays a super hero on T.V. decides to really become "Thunder Man" for his son after his show gets cancelled. (10/08)
★★★★★ "Hwayi : A Monster Boy": A young boy is raised by five talented fathers into a life of violent crime, but begins to question his past when he is forced to pull the trigger on their latest job. (10/09)
★★★ "Red Vacance Black Wedding 2": An unmarried woman is harassed by a persistent suitor, a dangerous man who doesn't take no for answer. (10/10),...More
[HanCinema's Film Review] The Bystander Effect: "Neighbors" 2013/01/26, Film: "Neighbors" (이웃사람; I-woot-sa-lam)
Director: Kim Hwi Writer:Kang PoolStars: Kim Yoon-jin, Ma Dong-seok, Kim Sae-ron & Kim Seong-yoonReview Score: 4 / 5
Neighbors, they are those shadowy individuals that lurk outside and within your shared spaces. The ones who you sometimes hear through a shared wall, or perhaps run into while attempting to dump your unsorted garbage late at night. They know more about you than you think, and you know less about them than you should. In "Neighbors", all-round creative wizard Kim Hwi fearfully probes the difference between being apathetic towards these blank faces that sleep under the same roof as yourself, and a real sense of community that comes from a collected sense of being, shared goals, and the will to act for that illusive greater good.
Released in 2012, "Neighbors" is another successful adaptation of one of Kang Pool's web-based comics (called webtoons in Korea). In fact, "Neighbors" is Pool's most successful adaptation to date,...More
'Project 577' wraps truth in laughter 2012/08/30, Source,
Actors Ha Jeong-woo, front left, and Kong Hyo-jin, front right, star in "Project 577", an uncategorizable film masterminded by Ha and directed by Yi Keun-Woo. While these two bare just their feet and not much else personally, the film delivers a critique of the state of Korea's film industry. / Courtesy of Dasepo Club
By Kwaak Je-yup Categorizing this film is a perplexing job; the promoters are describing it as a "real variety movie", which does not help. "Project 577", masterminded by Korea's most in-demand actor Ha Jeong-woo and directed by relative newcomer Lee Keun-woo, claims to be a documentary about Ha and his friend trekking for 577 kilometers, from Seoul to Haenam, South Jeolla Province, the peninsula's southernmost point,...More
"Nameless Gangster" released in North America 2012/03/28, Source, PREFACE
"My reason for wanting to tell a story from the '80s is because I feel that the current societal climate is very similar. About 3 years ago I got a feeling that the era of my deceased father was suddenly coming back, an era in which everyone's good will is only reserved for their own survival and well being. But like my own father, I did not see these people as selfish fools, but sympathized with them. I wanted to portray these characters not as criminals who were on the wrong side of the law, but as people who tried their best to survive and thrive despite the conditions they were in. People innately follow the times they live in and those who ride it architect the next generation. The '80s in South Korea were an incredibly volatile decade in which a single person's decision could change the direction of an entire era. Following men who lived through that decade, I wanted to show that the eighties had more dramatic appeal than any other decade. I wanted to inquire whether it was the times that were changing the people, or if it was the people that were changing the times. Most of all, I hope that the audience can laugh and identify with these men who lived like kings in the face of loyalty, betrayal, and ambition".,...More
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