[Orion's Drama News] From Rags to Mega-Riches 2016/06/25,
This week I talk KCON New York and HanCinema's attendance there. I also take a look at the super rich, super smart, super talented and all around perfect character of Lee Jong-suk in "W" and what he might mean in terms of how we write and experience fiction and Korean dramas. Before my upcoming drama goodies and personal watch list, I talk Dramaland ladies and introduce upcoming drama "Lady with Class",...More
KCON LA: SHINee and I.O.I join line-up & KCON NY: Special Guests Si Wan and Park Bo-yeong 2016/05/29, Source,
KCON 2016 Presented by Toyota revealed today that the pop boy band SHINee and up-and-coming girl group I.O.I will be joining the KCON 2016 Los Angeles lineup! Additionally, special guests Si Wan and Park Bo-yeong will attending KCON 2016 New York! Celebrating its fifth anniversary, KCON USA is the world's largest Korean culture convention and music festival. KCON NY is returning to the Prudential Center and will expand to two nights of concerts running June 24-25. KCON LA kicks off a month later and takes place July 29-31 at the Staples Center and Los Angeles Convention Center,...More
Jin Goo and his wife expecting second child 2016/05/17, Source, Jin Goo will become a dad of two children. An associate with his agency, BH Entertainment told Dispatch on May 17 on the phone, "Jin Goo and his wife are expecting second child" and "His wife is four months pregnant".
Jin Goo married his non-celebrity wife, four years younger than him, in September, 2014. They welcomed their first child, a son in June last year,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Incomplete Life" 2015/01/10,
Like any other entertainment industry, the Korean drama one is changing with the times. For most, this change feels quite slow and it is to be expected. Big changes happen in time. But there are always works and decisions that spark those changes or at least offer an alternative which others can choose to follow. "Incomplete Life" a.k.a 'Mi saeng' is such a work. Far removed from the usual structure and tropes, this series turns an important page for this entertainment,...More
Choi Min-sik, Yoo Hae-jin, Park Yoo-chun in Chungmuro 2014/12/08, Source,
Chungmuro was a male party. From successful movies to rookies, the event focused on actors who contributed to the film industry throughout the year. The best movies were awarded and rookies were introduced. It was disappointing that actresses didn't have much space to stand in.
# Acting God: Choi Min-sik
It's not an overstatement to say that it was Choi Min-sik's year with his greatest hit being "The Admiral: Roaring Currents". He took on the role of Admiral Yi Sun-shin and 17.6 million people have watched it. The movie re-wrote Korean movie history. This syndrome brought about historical movies once more and there was even debate about the social role of these kinds of generation movies. Choi Min-sik has a record breaking movie on his hands,...More
[Spoiler] 'Incomplete Life' Si Wan chooses to wait before he leaps 2014/12/06, Source,
On the December 6th, 16th episode of "Incomplete Life", Jang Geu-rae (Si Wan) decides to give away his project plan from him before the company forces him to give up on the proposal.
The management of One International takes away the project plan from Jang Geu-rae, on which he has spent two months without much sleep. The excuse from them is because they cannot put someone who will leave the company soon in charge of such important project. All of the team members of Sales Team 3 resent with the decision that exclude someone while they have been stressing on "We". However, each individual was powerless in front of the reality,...More
Park Yoo-chun, a good example of idol actors, affirmed by critics 2014/11/28, Source, Park Yoo-chun proves himself as a new sought-after actor in Korean movie industry sweeping new male actor awards presented by critics. It is unprecedented an idol who turned an actor receives such awards.
He received the award for New Best Male Actor in the 15th Busan Movie Critics Award by Busan Movie critics association on the 27th. The association is well known for being strict in selecting the award winners based on the artistic value of the movie and the actor's actual acting quality than the box office ranking,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" 2014/08/09,
There are a lot of reasons why some dramas just go wrong. They range from lacking material or creators to schedule issues to extensions and really remind us how difficult the current system is to create in. To create something good and have it remain good. It is also often impossible for outsiders to know exactly what went wrong aside from seeing the bad result of it. Sadly, 'Triangle - Drama' has been plagued with many issues, lacking material being what ultimately makes it all fall apart,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 26 Final 2014/07/29,
The drama's last interesting storyline question is resolved almost immediately. So, now that Yang-ha has been taken care of, how does "Triangle - Drama" spend its last hour? Not doing a whole lot I'm afraid. Bok-tae hides in a hole for awhile as the other characters try to figure out where he is. And I really do mean awhile- every possible trick is extended to stretch out this search, including a subplot about a minion Bok-tae has apparently been abusing this whole time?,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 25 2014/07/28,
The stage is set for the final engagement in the last episode, and it occurs to me, I'm not sure there ever was a plan. Ever since getting out of prison Dong-soo and Yeong-dal have mostly just been running counter-attacks instead of actually pitching their own operation. I'm not sure we ever actually even got to the part that made it clear why it was necessary for Dong-soo to learn casino stuff. It's just more Bok-tae. Hard to imagine he used to seem like a credible threat,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 24 2014/07/22,
It's fortunate that the goons working for the good guys are more competent than the ones working for the bad guys. Honestly it's pretty ridiculous- it took an entire episode of bloviating for them to manage one incompetent assassination attempt. By contrast, Yeong-dal's team is immediately on the case for an effective retaliation that pretty much nips most of the gang-related conflict in the drama right in the bud,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 23 2014/07/21,
I think I've finally figured out what Sin-hye is bringing to the team. She delivers all the messages. No, seriously, I paid close attention to see if Sin-hye ever actually does anything aside from just sit at a table, talking to one person, then to appear again later sitting at another table (or the same table) talking to a different person about what she just talked about to the last person in the line,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 22 2014/07/15,
I hope you liked Yeong-dal's ambivalence about his new brotherly bonds last episode, because this time it's pretty much the exact same thing all over again with Yang-ha. I do appreciate that the script itself admits it's hard to know what to call these guys anymore. I've been sticking with their new names since those are the ones that are used most of the time, but at the same time, their being brothers is pretty much the whole point of the drama,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 21 2014/07/14,
After some vagaries Dong-soo makes clear to Yeong-dal that Yang-ha is the last brother, and from this point Yeong-dal spends most of the episode sulking. This is pretty understandable, given that they've spent most of the drama being horribly antagonistic to each other. Although I did find it curious that the scene where Yang-ha sent Yeong-dal to jail wasn't included. Personally I'd think that was the most humiliating put down in the relationship, not the one where the little brother mocks Yeong-dal's English,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 20 2014/07/08,
And once again, gambling makes up the dramatic stakes on which the hopes of our characters are hinged. Given the narrative set-up this was probably inevitable. The bad guys were going to have to take on some sort of counter-move in order for there to be any kind of dramatic tension. At the same time, though, when the outcome is quite literally determined at random, it's difficult to take any kind of reassurance in the ability of the heroes to save the day,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 19 2014/07/07,
Yeong-dal gets to work on organizing some quality schemes here. It's the kind of gangster style corporate warfare I can really get behind- it's sneaky, and taking advantage of various character's personalities. But most significantly, it's not a direct attack against any of the antagonists. They're clearly tense and waiting for team Dong-soo and Yeong-dal to pull something. However, the immediate offensive objectives are vague, so for the most part everyone's caught off guard,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 18 2014/07/01,
The bad guys really need to have a meeting about the terrible quality of their plans. First an assassination attempt, and now a kidnapping? Really? All of this just to counter Dong-soo and Yeong-dal's plan? It bears repeating here- we barely even have any idea what their plan actually is. These are desperate actions taken by men afraid they're about to lose everything. It's absolutely nonsensical for the story to go this direction when hardly anything has even happened yet,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 17 2014/06/30,
And now this is a revenge drama. Granted, we always knew that Dong-soo had a specific grudge against Bok-tae, but for the most part Dong-soo has been pretty good about having that just be one bullet point on the giant list of terrible things Bok-tae does on a daily basis. This opening of this episode clearly demonstrates, though, that it's what Bok-tae did to Dong-soo's family that really makes him a bad man. The other criminal enterprise stuff not so much. Dong-soo only just recovered from an assassination attempt and that on its own was apparently not a good reason for revenge,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 16 2014/06/24,
Plenty of time is spent at the hospital this episode, as characters agonize over whether or not Dong-soo is going to make it. Thankfully that question is resolved at the end, so hopefully we don't have to endure any more of these extremely sad regretful lengths of the soundtrack which establish how awful the whole situation is. I'm upset that Dong-soo was stabbed less because I care about the character and more because these scenes are so obnoxiously overwrought,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 15 2014/06/23,
Well, huh, apparently the incompetent out-of-nowhere assassination attempt really was as stupid an idea as it looked. I had expected the drama to just gloss over the details of the assassination so we could pine over Dong-soo for awhile. And for a fair amount of time that's exactly what "Triangle - Drama" does. We get a full flashback of all the big story events between Dong-soo and Yeong-dal and oh, it's all so terribly terribly sad,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 14 2014/06/17,
Yeong-dal's melodramatic memory recovery session is actually pretty effective, all things considered. Presented at the beginning here without context, all I see is a crushed child who's lost his entire family. Then we get back to the rest of the drama and I'm left remembering that even though the unknown relationship between the three brothers is the entire hook of "Triangle - Drama", it doesn't seem to actually have anything to do with the revenge / romance plot currently in session,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 13 2014/06/16,
As determined as "Triangle - Drama" was to skip past the prison stuff, in this episode it falls right back to the same slow pacing we'd seen up until this point. There's not even any gambling. Mostly it's just meetings where the bad guys discuss how suspicious it is that Dong-soo is obviously up to something, or where the good guys discuss the plan in just vague enough terms that we'll still be surprised whenever it finally gets around to happening,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 12 2014/06/10,
This episode marks a shift to a radical new direction for this drama. Specifically, a more generic one. Dong-soo and Yeong-dal now have to work together, unambiguously in the cause of justice, to take down Yang-ha and Bok-tae. You might be thinking that this will be somewhat difficult, what with Yeong-dal being in prison and Dong-soo with his hands tied in a similar fashion. Well, the drama helpfully skips a whole year just so we can get right back to this plot thread,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 11 2014/06/09,
There's a nice contrast here between the physical appearance of the prison and Yeong-dal's attitude. So far as we can see, it's a relatively pleasant place. Outside people are playing soccer, and inside they're playing Go. Then Yeong-dal shows up and starts a fight for no reason. The man is deadset on living out his gangster fantasy wherever possible, and quickly learns that while prisoners aren't as vicious as they are in the movies, they still have very little patience for rude aggressiveness,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 10 2014/06/03,
The best laid plans are all toppled down thanks to unforeseen circumstances. Well they're not really unforeseen circumstances. We know who all these characters are, we know they all have their own agenda, and we know that they like to keep secrets from one another because why not? But they don't know that about each other. So when an opportunity comes up for one to betray the other to help another, inevitably most of the cast gets blindsided,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 9 2014/06/02,
There's a fair amount of irony this time- let's start out in the romantic department. Yeong-dal makes some fairly standard loverly inroads on Jeong-hee. He's got himself a little money, so he treats her to a nice night, all that stuff. And all this time I kept wondering about Yang-ha. That guy's made of money. So why is it that Yeong-dal's pretensions at a high class life come off more impressively than Yang-ha's being the real thing?
Well, the drama doesn't go into a lot of detail in that department, which I appreciate honestly,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 8 2014/05/27,
The gambling scenes in this drama are a bit inexplicable without the context of the rules. For the poker game that makes up the opening, what you need to know is that one character has about an 87% chance of winning, and the losing character either needs a straight, a flush, or four-of-a-kind in order to beat his rival. As far as baccarat goes forget it. Even if I knew how that game works there's no way I could explain it succintly in a single sentence.
The essential thing to understand about these games is that they're played according to rules, and that outside of cheating, there's no such thing as perfect play,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 7 2014/05/26,
Until this episode I don't think I fully appreciated how many characters there really are running around here and how surprisingly interconnected everyone is. This isn't really a recap episode, but it's an excellent one to watch if you want to get a hold of how they're all related to each other. Nearly all of them have some sort of direct personal or business relationship with at least two other characters directly and clearly defined.
It's an interesting conceit taken in concert with the drama's core concept- these three men are brothers, but they don't know it,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 6 2014/05/20,
Last episode Yeong-dal's crazy scheme exploded right in his face. This episode, undeterred, he continues to come up with more terrible ideas. Yeong-dal really does not have the slightest clue. The guy genuinely believes he's at the center of this story where destiny is going to be made. The shame of it all is that Yeong-dal's got decent enough charisma. There's so many good things he could be doing with that. But Yeong-dal chooses to to buttress his pride and act like a gangster instead.
Unreasonable pride is the main calling card of "Triangle - Drama", and it's only accentuated by the fact that none of our three leads even have anything to be proud about,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 5 2014/05/19,
Yeong-dal's plan predictably ends in disaster. Well, actually, not really. Compared to what gangsters normally do to people who try to steal from them, I'm surprised Yeong-dal got off as lightly as he did. In typical form, though, the mancompletely fails to appreciate how incredibly lucky he is that things did not go much, much worse, and spends most of the rest of the episode sulking in his injured pride.
The funniest part about Yeong-dal is that he often makes right decisions but for really dumb reasons,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 4 2014/05/13,
Taken out of context from the rest of the drama, the first scene here actually looks pretty mainstream. You've got the rough guy from the wrong side of the tracks running from gangsters, holding his love interest by the hand, then there's an epic fight scene and a rather fuzzy intermittent period where we're left wondering, what exactly happened to Yeong-dal? It's a question that lingers over the rest of the episode.
From the few snippets we do get of the guy, the impression is pretty clear that he's not doing well,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 3 2014/05/12,
Somehow this drama still doesn't have a plot. I was sure after the last cliffhanger we'd get some sort of conflict or tension, but after an extended brutal opening it's pretty much right back to business as usual. The three brothers continue to persist in their apparently purposeless lives. Even events that seem like they should be important, such as Yeong-deol running into Yang-ha, lack any kind of real urgency.
Again, it's pretty obvious that this is all part of the point. These are characters who make bad decisions mostly because it takes a really long time for the consequences to actually set in,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 2 2014/05/06,
The ambience takes an odd turn this episode. It's actually almost kind of optimistic. Granted, there's only so far mood can take us when events are this bleak. Yeong-dal (played by Kim Jae-joong) very nearly gets killed, and survives his brush with death entirely thanks a supporting word from one of his superiors. He has, naturally, learned pretty much nothing from this experience.
What makes Yeong-dal a bit strange here is that he's not particularly arrogant,...More
[HanCinema's Drama Review] "Triangle - Drama" Episode 1 2014/05/05,
This drama is quite sleazy. That shouldn't be too surprising, given how much sex, gambling, and anger issues factor in to the plot- but it's really all in the presentation. Directors Choi Jeong-gyoo and Yoo Cheol-yong portray a world of basically pathetic people who are only barely scraping by on their emotional and physical needs. Choi Jeong-gyoo also directed last year's "Two Weeks", and the tone here is quite similar. Whatever minor successes and failures our lead characters achieve here, they're all largely emblematic of purposeless lives,...More
Acting idols: Si Wan vs. Lee Joon 2014/04/30, Source,
The number of acting idols is increasing. Doesn't matter main role or not, there isn't a drama or movie without one. There have been negative reviews about them getting in the way of rookie actor and actresses. They're easily brought into the cast because of their fame as singers. However, these idols have proven to be much better prepared than imagined and therefore, people's views about them are changing.
- ZE:A's Si Wan, 10 million audiences,...More
Kim In-kwon, fingers paralyzed? 2014/01/22, Source,
The press conference for "Apostle" was held in Lotte Cinema on the 2nd and Kim In-kwon talked about the filming.
He said, "I was tied up by the arms to a wall to film a torturing scene and lost feelings in two fingers. It didn't come back for a month",...More
Si Wan stars in "Hope For Love" 2013/07/29, Source,
ZEA's Si Wan joins the KBS 2 part drama "Hope for Love".
He takes on the role of Jeong Jin-gook in the drama. He is a character who will reflect the awkward relationship methods of those beginners in Korea. He will remind you of the feeling of first love, with butterflies fluttering in the stomach,...More
[HanCinema's Film Review] "Misaeng" 2013/07/27,
The six characters in the "Misaeng" omnibus live lives of quiet desperation. They all want something out of life. What they don't know is how to get it. Or, more accurately, they have difficulty motivating themselves to believe that they want something enough that they'll do whatever it takes to achieve their dreams. Circumstances and the so-called reality of the modern world have worn down their resistance to little more than a general ennui-based entropy.
This is all pretty existentially gloomy stuff. And none of the problems identified in this film ever actually get solved. What does happen is that the characters are all able to latch onto a small twinkle of hope- a realization that there is a difference between survival and living,...More
ZE:A performs in front of 4,000 fans for first solo concert 2010/11/09, Source,
Korean idols ZE:A on stage for their first solo concert in Japan at the Blitz Hall in Tokyo on November 6. [Star Empire Entertainment]
Korean idols ZE:A rocked the stage for their first concert in Japan over the weekend, according to their agency Star Empire Entertainment.
Star Empire announced Tuesday that the nine-member boy band performed in front of 4,000 fans for their sold-out concert titled "ZE:A Premium Live in Japan" held at the Blitz Hall located in Tokyo on Saturday,...More
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