PUNCH Korean Movie Recap (2011)

Dear Yoo Ah In,

I’ve been waiting for you all my life.

Love, abby

Do Wan Deuk grew up in a cabaret where his father with a hunchback disability works as a dancer.    Carrying the weight of living in a not so affluent life, his temperament is a bit lousy especially if it involves his father. 

The cabaret goes off beat through the years and eventually meets its closure.  When Wan-deuk learns that his father and his mentally challenged adopted uncle is in the market trying to trade some cabaret items, he rushes to their aid sensing they could be in danger and just as he thought, his father was dragged and ridiculed by, so his blood rushes to avenge the cruel situation he witnessed.  

At night, he got a scolding from his father for his brawny act and for his insisting to just stop studying so he can work and help pitch to the expenses.

Wan-deuk attends to a school where his most hated person teaches, Lee Dong Jo.   Aside from teaching duties which he doesn’t normally do, his sarcasm skills is exceptional you’ll surely learn a lot from it.  To add frustration to the injury, Dong-jo also happens to be their neighbor and for some reason he doesn’t understand, the devil-may-care-attitude of his teacher always picks on him whether it may be on class or in the neighborhood.

Wan-deuk goes home seeing his father and uncle preparing for a dance routine.  His father informs him that they will be on the road for a showcase so he has to behave while they are away.  He asks Dong-jo to check on him once in a while.  The handsome rascal has always been praying for the worst that can happen to his nemesis, and when he was asked by him to attend the church, he realized why his prayers are not answered.

After his regular foul-mouthed blabber to his students, he boringly calls Wan-deuk’s attention and asks him to come outside.  He reveals to him about his Filipina mother but not knowing how to react and where his teacher is trying to get to, he runs and mopes on his so called pitiful life.

He arrives home late and is awakened by Dong-jo’s knocks on the door.  He reprimands him of running away on things he doesn’t want to hear and understand as they sit in front of beer bottles.   Dong-jo explains that he met his mother at the church which helps foreign workers in the city and tells him of her intention of wanting to see her son.   But Wan-deuk wants his father’s consent first which made Dong-jo a little mad because Oedipus complex did not hit him at all to grant a simple wish from the woman who gave him his life.  

He seeks Divine intervention again and complains of giving such a lousy role model to him.  He also whines about his recently acquired birth secret which he doesn’t know how to deal with.  He warns Jesus on the Cross that he’ll seek Buddha if he won’t get any help to eradicate Dong-jo in his existence.  Now that made me smile…

Wan-deuk attempts to open a conversion about his mother with his father, but they got interrupted by a commotion between Dong-jo and their neighbor who vandalized their newly bought second hand van for the roadshows. 

The arrogant-bad-curly-haired neighbor rants on how the vehicle was blocking the door and how he can’t stand the presence of retards in front of him.  The magic word ignites Wan-deuk and he crossed the people trying to hold on to him and punches the man who insulted his family.

Dong-jo defends Wan-deuk’s epic punch on city hunter’s ajussi and reasons out the motivation why he threw a punch.  In the end, the neighbor let it go after his sister steps in and knocks the hidden common sense in his brain.

At school, the students are passing ero comic drawing starring Yoon-ha.  Her sexy manga launches fist fight among the boys as Wan-deuk watches them ramble.  When the rage subsides Yoon-ha tears the pages and throws it at the boy fancying her.

Yoon-ha approaches Wan-deuk while he walks home and asks him if they can talk.  He brings her to the church to her wondering.  He asks what does she want to talk about so she rants her observations of him always doing things alone.  She comments that since he normally doesn’t go to school, it’s okay for her to tell him things as he will forget it eventually.

Then she suddenly bursts crying as Wan-deuk gropes what to react.  She weeps and narrates to him that she used to go out with Jun-ho and that she caught him drawing those sexy anime pictures that’s why she broke up with him.  well at least he’s so creative “kisses and draws”… *giggles.  While she’s pouring her heart out, Wan-deuk can’t help but just stares at her chest and when she prays to Jesus for her ex-bf’s death, it made Wan-deuk sighs and insists that his prayer should be prioritized.

“You’ve got a full load, God.  But don’t forget I prayed first.”

Yoon-ha calms down and thanks him for listening.  At night, he fantasizes her as he stares at the ceiling of his room.

When his male hormones betrays him, he gets up to take a breather and sees his teacher peeping at ajussi’s sister while she’s doing karate movements.  He greets the neighbor cutting Dong-jo’s private viewing.  The next day at school when Dong-jo gives him an errand, he grins remembering his perv spying last night, but his smile turns sour when he shouts about him meeting his mother at the church.

He carefully surveys the church wishing he’s not gonna bump at his mother, and to his relief the Indian guy comes in to take the stuff he brought.  He runs when he sees a Filipina who turns out to be married to the Indian guy only to reach home and sees his real mother for the first time.

He asks her if she wants ramen and invites his long lost mother inside the house.  He painfully gapes at her mother’s back and worn out shoes, and at this moment it felt like the restrained emotions Wan-deuk is feeling finds a way out of the TV screen and hits my tear nerves.


They eat ramen as his mother feels sad that her son has been used to just eating ramen.  Mother washes the dishes as Wan-deuk secretly looks at her.  She departs and leaves a letter for him.

“I’m sorry.  I never forgot you.  I miss you very much.  I’m a bad person.  I’m so sorry.  I’m sorry I can’t be there with you.”

Wan-deuk fights for the tears brimming on her eyes, but I didn’t fight hard, my faulty tearducts made me cry.
His father monentarily stops what he’s doing when he mentions that a Filipina visits him and left her number.  His father pretends he’s not interested and gives him an errand.  Wan-deuk tries another conversation opening about his mother by asking why they separated.  Father finally gives in and explains that he let her go because she was not happy with his dancing at the cabaret.

WAN-DEUK:  That’s it?  So you let her go?

FATHER:  I hated how everyone there treated her like some servant.  Like she was there to do their dirty work.

Wan-deuk draws a deep sigh and walks to step out.  While he’s at the door his father telks him that even if his mother came from a poor country, she grew up well-educated.

He steps out and sees the man who orchestrated his fated meeting with the mother and runs to give his teacher a beating.  Dong-jo reacts snappily, heads home and locks the door. 

They converse behind the door and he asks him why he directs him to their house to which he replies that he never did that and just gave his own address and the information that they are neighbors and that they are not the only neighbors he has.  Wan-deuk then thanked his teacher as Dong-jo complains why he curses at him when he just want to be grateful.  He asks him to go home and throws a trash for him to settle.

At school in their art appreciation class, the teacher discusses Millet’s painting – The Cleaners.  She calls Wan-deuk’s attention about the painting.  He replies that the painting screams “What are you looking at?” which makes the whole class laughs.

 

“The woman at the far right, she’s leering and saying, “what are you looking at?”  They look like women find into marriage from poor countries so they needed to be strong to protect themselves.  The woman on the far right, she’s about to make a fist to fight the farm owner.  The one on the far left pretends to be working, but she’s gonna throw that hay at her opponent’s face.  The woman in the middle is a pro, because she’s gonna use a rock.  It’s a dirty trick but you fight to win, and those women they received good education in their own countries.

 

And that ladies and gentlemen is Art debonair Wan-deuk stripping his teacher’s role to explain the meaning of that obra maestra.


Wan-deuk visits the church and Hassan, the Indian guy brings him to the gym to try kick boxing.  He spars with an opponent from the gym, and when he corners his opponent he rampages and threw punch after punc h that the gym trainer shouts to halt the fight. 

He points out what he lacks as a fighter inside the ring.  He adds that he might win in street fights but not in the ring.  This motivates Wan-deuk to ask permission to his father if he can try kick boxing, but his father doesn’t want to allow it.  He insists on doing what he wants and hurts his father’s feelings by hinting that he can blend in the crowd not because of his dancing, but because people pities and make fun of his disability.  Father’s heart was broken and even Uncle Min-ku knows Wan-deuk’s disrespect so he slaps his face lightly.

 

Aboji mopes at how his hunchback made him so useless in front of rice wine and Dong-jo.  The teacher convinces him to just let his son do what he wants to do.  The sister of ajussi, Ho-jeong joins them in and drinks when she’s seemingly drunk.  She tells them her work as a martial arts writer, but they are interrupted when Wan-deuk comes to fetch his father. 

Dong-jo and Ho-jeong carry on with their teasing as the son piggy-back his drunk father muttering how his beloved son has grown up well now.


Wan-deuk goes back to the gym and starts training.  When he goes home his mother left some food for him to eat.  He tastes the food and mutters that the food was salty.

His training is taking a toll to his body causing him to sleep at school lazily creating another opportunity to lovingly ridicule him.  On that same day, Dong-jo is invited for a trip to the police station.

Wan-deuk and Yoon-ha visit their teacher.  He was surprised to see the best and the worst paying concern to him.  He evades Joon-ha on the reason why he’s being held up and shows a worried face when Wan-deuk says that the people in the church were not there.

They walk home and Wan-deuk suddenly mentions about love letters.  The smart Joob-ha picks up easily where he is heading and smiles at the thought that he wrote her one.  She asks him to give it to her, and reads it excitedly.  waaaa yoo ah in, I want a love letter too!

“Everything I see these days looks like you.  The clouds, the flowers, and even the moon.”

Joon-ha teases him and plays catch-me-and-your-letter-if-you-can with him.  You lucky girl! 

At home, father and uncle min ku see the food prepared by his estranged wife.  He smiles when uncle comments that it’s salty.

Wan-deuk brings Joon-ha to the gym, and the trainer finds a purpose for her to do which is to referee his sparring with her boyfriend.

Dong-jo is resurrected and goes straight to his waiting class whom he misses so much.  When the girls in front complains he smells, he shortly reminds them to study for the exams and heads to the shower.

Wan-deuk and his family go to check on Dong-jo and he explains to father why he was taken by the police.  Apparently, he reported a business man slaving unfairly the illegal immigrants in the city which he’s trying to help.  Wan-deuk asks about Hassan, and he replies that he was deported and adds that most illegal immigrants don’t know when their visa expires and some employers take advantage of them.

Wan-deuk realizes that the church is like their gathering place and when he retorts he thought it was a cult that’s why his prayers are not answered, Dong-jo asks him what he prayed for so he evades the question by saying he’s going home.

Wan-deuk continues with his training, his constant grocery catch session with his teacher, and cute moments with Joon-ha.  The kickboxing mentor notices he’s already ripe and announces that he’ll spar with a fighter soon.

Wan-deuk arrives home and senses another person in their house.  Equipped with his kickboxing skills he lands a punch on the intruder’s rib who happened to be Dong-jo.  He carries his injured teacher and summons all the help he can get from the Heavens.  He complains that he prays for him to die but not him doing it.  hahaha be careful what you wish for.


 
Dong-jo settles in the hospital, and when Wan-deuk pays a visit he encounters his father who turns out to be the rich man enslaving the illegal immigrants.  Dong-jo reported his father’s factory causing disappointment to his father.  Dong-jo sees Wan-deuk arriving and trying to give father and son moments with them but he calls him to come in. 


 
Father lectures the sociology teacher to stop helping foreigners and just focus on teaching.  His son retaliates by reminding him of his injustice of an old employee who cut off her finger while working but ended going home without proper compensation.  Father marches out in anger and frustration of having a son and enemy at the same time.


 
Wan-deuk wonders why he pretends to be poor when he came from a rich family.  He complains about how ironically their lives are different but the teacher made him realize that he should not hold grudges of his parents struggling life.  He tells him he’s acting pathetic blaming everyone but not himself.

Wan-deuk heads to leave as Dong-jo reminds him to be good to his mother which he counter reply with him not taking care of his father.  Dong-jo winces in discomfort and mutters how his favorite student always gets the last word.

Wan-deuk visits his mother and asks her if she wants to meet his father.  They go to the market where his father performs to his father’s shock.  His parents engage in a heated discussion involving Wan-deuk so he has no choice but to cut their who’s the best parent debate.

They head home and Wan-deuk enters a shoe store and ask for shoes for his mother.  awwww sweet  Mother is hesitant to try the shoe, and when her mother tries to get the change, the store keeper mutters how the two of them are together so Wan-deuk retorts that the woman is his MOTHER.  you’re up for running as the best son ever Wan-deuk!

While they wait for the train to come in, he asks his mother if she already knew her father’s disability before she came to Korea to become a bride.  His mother replies that she didn’t know and it didn’t matter because the goodness of the heart is important to her.

Mother thanks her son for the shoes and he responds by telling her the food she prepares for him is a bit salty and that he doesn’t eat like his father.  He also encourages her not to be so nervous everytime.

Mother whispers his name and tells him how she yearns to say his name.  She asks if it’s okay for her to embrace him, and he obliges making me no longer able to contain my tears anymore.  They hug each other making mother cry and Wan-deuk smiles.  Now that Yoo Ah In knows a few things about Filipino culture, I think we are soon gonna meet and get married.

Wan-deuk spars with a superb fighter who knocks him down but leaves him smiling after his defeat.  From then on he realized what a real fighter is about.  His coach applauds his performance informing him that he fought well against the third best in the district.

Yoon-ha worries if he’s feeling well, and the closeness of their distance dudn’t help Wan-deuk to cross the line and give her a kiss.  I want that kiss too.

Yoon-ha is bewildered of the kiss but Wan-deuk can only reply thay they have to go because Dong-jo might arrive.  On cue their teacher comes in and catches the two lovey doves sitting close to each other.

Wan-deuk tells him they kiss to his amusement.  He inquires what the teacher is doing there and learns that he’s actually a minister there.  Wan-deuk is perplex and is in the brink of questioning whether the place is a valid church so the teacher is lefy no choice but to convince him that it was.  He tells Yoon-ha that it’s never too late to come to her senses and not to hang out with him but the new almost lovers decide to leave him.  Dong-jo follows and asks his student what he did to win over a smart girl’s heart, but he won’t give in so he goes to Yoon-ha.

Wan-deuk’s father visits his estranged wife at her workplace and finally talk about what is best for all of them.  Meanwhile at the class Dong-jo lectures sends off hus students to their vacation and remind them that college is not the only college out there.  He declares to them that the world is waiting to teach them.

The class is dismissed and when his seatmate asks Wan-deuk if he wants to eat ramen, he makes his first friend connection and agrees.

Wan-deuk goes with his mother to the market to buy food for the new year celebration.  They feast on a dinner prepared by mother as ajussi does his usual complaining over the hard to chew chicken that was bought by mother because it’s what her husband likes.

Dong-jo slips a love letter to ajussi’s sister’s book while they eat.  Dong-jo asks about the viand he tastes, and father explains that it’s a Filipino food.  Ajussi of course didn’t like it and when he’s up to whine, Uncle Min Ku smilingly blabbers a bad word towards him.  Wan-deuk tries to cool him down and introduces his retarded uncle and Filipina mother as his family and with some stroke of intervention, he stayed nice and blurts that his good looks came from her mom.

Dong-jo brings out his proposal to aboji of a project he’s trying to launch.  To the benefit of the people who didn’t know what they are talking about, he explains that he’s setting up an art business, a dance school at church.

They drink, dance and had fun, and when the night wavers Dong-jo makes a move to sister.  She reads the love letter who turns out the same as what Wan-deuk gave Yoon-ha.  He approaches her says “iloveyou” and apologizes for being forward and drunk, but she holds his face and kisses him, he stops and kisses her back.

The cultural center is finally open for public, and the whole cast show us a glimpse of having the blessings of struggles and how our friends and family completes the life we decide to have.


 

COMMENTS:

When I learned of the teaser of punch I thought it was just a yoda-luke kind of sports movie, I didn’t know that it was sort of family film and that they also incorporated something close to my culture.  I’m from Manila, Philippines.  When I was studying in college I tutor Korean High School and Grade school students for my part time job, that’s why maybe I became closer to anything Korean-ish, it’s just secondary that the lead men are cute and the stories are so full of love that I became engaged and immersed to their culture, haha nah, it’s actually the primary…  When I was in elementary school I already knew that I live in a third world country, but I didn’t care that much because in my young mind, I was not exposed to the realities of life yet.

I am aware that women from poor countries sometimes have no choice but to marry for convenience, and I’m lucky I was able to get another option aside from that.  This movie is invoking, and I appreciate that they did not stoop down to immigrants, but instead emphasized on presenting the viewers what a strong person they are to live in a foreign land to survive.  

To put up the essence of the movie without giving any aspersions is something the filmmaker should be proud of.

The main actors Wan-deuk and Dong-jo set a new kind of bromance, that which bickers amusingly but accidentally brought out the best of one another.

This was a blithe tale of accepting who you are and what extent you can be by embracing the life you did not choose but fought hard to decide the best shot on it.

Once In A Summer Korean Movie Quick Review (2006)

It is one of the sweetest “summer love” movie I’ve seen unfortunately though they didn’t get their ever after.  Lee Byung Hun translates to the man you won’t regret committing infidelity if you are currently in a relationship.  He’s just so manly in an I-want-to-throw-myself-in-your-arms-kind-of-way.  Su-Ae has such an expressive eyes and her blithe nature in this love movie complements the endearing character of Byung-hun oppa.

A television staff was forced to promise she can feature a famous professor in their TV program to compensate for her abysmal performance.  The aloof professor declined at first to remember his long lost love but was eventually persuaded and took a trip down to the memory lane to reminisce the girl she loved one summer.

Suk-young and his fellow classmates decided to visit and extend help to a small suburb village and from there he met at a local pretty girl, Jung In, who tended the town’s library.   Jung In thought he was a pervert when she noticed his presence while she was scratching her shapely leg.  They met again at night when Jung In was put on the spot by Suk-young’s friends and was asked to sing a song which she forcedly did in her amusing off-tuned rendition.

Suk-young teased and grew fond of her over time and their sweet moments felt like a love binge which will remind you why you like the beginning part of all those romances you’ve had.  There was that scene when Suk-young eavesdropped as she reads a book to the old men.  Not realizing that it was an erotic book, she tried to change the ending to the disappointment of the oldies who were really anticipating a steamy story and to Suk-young’s amusement.

When Suk-young saw Jung-In off to have a trip to the town, he followed her and tried to pester her.  When the rain caught them on their way home, they killed time at the abandoned house they first met, and from there he learned that it used to be Jung In’s house and that she was an orphan.  The city boys set up an outdoor big screen to stream a movie, and Suk-young scored a point in Jung In’s heart when he prepared a back seat so they can view it alone.

The situation in Seoul was getting worse as protests against the administration were surging high so the city boys decided to leave.  On board the train, Suk-young battled with his heart and reason, but his heart prevailed and claimed her in his arms.  They go to the city together but he lost her when they stopped by at the school.  The rebel students staged another uprising and they were caught by the police. 

They were both jailed but his father pulled his strings to get him out of it but he was advised to deny that he knew Jung In.  He begged his father to help his girl, and she soon was also released.

That moment when they were both standing and facing each other teary eyed was my favorite scene.  I was feeling what Suk-young eyes was saying at that moment… “I only wanted to love her and not cause her pain”. 

Unaware that she will not stay long by his side, Suk-young bought some medicine for her, and when he got back to the spot he left her, she was not there anymore.

Suk-young and the TV staff were able to trace Jung In’s location when he found a cypress leaf on the letter of encouragement the TV staff gave him.  When they arrive at where she stayed, they learned that she already passed away and as he stared at the cypress tree she planted, we see a flashback of Suk-young visiting the place Jung In once told her to place fish-shaped stones… and then we see Jung In crying while she held the stones he has collected for her.

 

COMMENTS:

A felicity filled tale that will leave you fetching and at the same time agonizing.  It was a sweet melancholic movie of finding love and holding on to it even if it has long been gone.

Images Source:  asiabeam

Hello Ghost Movie Recap (2010)

MAIN CAST:  CHA TAE HYUN

Sang-man has been living all alone, and because he has no reason to live, he has been resorting to suicide, but he was rescued from his attempts. 

After another unsuccessful trying, he met new friends, and for the first time in his life, he will not be alone as he meets up new friends imported from after-world.   He is left no choice but to adopt a ghost family… a kid, a crying lady, an old alcoholic man, and a man who smokes cigarettes incessantly. 

The hilarious living in with ghost strangers transforms Sang-man into doing things that he didn’t try before. After a nasty hangover from soju-showdown with grandpa ghost, while his ghost family scarily watches a horror movie, (their scary faces while watching the horror film are priceless, ghosts scared of a horror movie… go figure) he made a fuss over wanting them to leave his life.

He seeks a shaman for an advice, and he explains that they want closure and only he can do it for them.

 

He tries following the Shaman’s advice, but his ghost friends are TV addict, they won’t budge, but when he bargains that they can use his body to do what they want, they all go into business.

 

The quest of fulfilling his dead friends’ bucket wishes will be the only guarantee that they will leave him, so off he set to do the bucket list while assuming their characters in a hilarious way as they teach him how to enjoy and value life.

 

First up is the alcoholic granny who wants to get his long lost camera.  After being jailed, they side trip to visiting granny’s friend in the hospital where the guy fell in love at first sight with a pretty nurse, Yeon-soo.

 

Next wish granted was the little kid’s wish to watch a cartoon movie.  By virtue of creating romance plot, Yeon-soo, the man has a crush on was also there with a kid who is so amazed with his eating prowess lent of course by the kid.  When they won a game in the fair, the little boy doesn’t want to give up the prize of the giant candy fish to Sang-man’s crush.  Confirming Sang-man’s eccentricity of talking to himself, she just tells him not to give the prize.

 

The cigarette loving man comes next with retrieving a car owned by a man living in the depression land because his wife left him.  They promise to help him, and when they try to approach the wife, they learn of her illness and her pregnancy.  

Sang-man encounters Yeon-soo again and reveals to him that the wife is sick.  The wife and husband meet to clear things up as the car is retrieved by Sang-man and the cigarette dad.  They stop by a beach and conversed about life.  The bored ghost coaxes Sang-man to go skin dipping even if Sang-man doesn’t know how to swim.

Sang-man goes to buy cartoon videos for Yeon-soo, and on the way the policeman stops them for a street violation and paid another visit to the police station.  The officers shake their head as Sang-man does his ghost-driven-self-interaction yet again…

Do you know what day most people die?  New Year, Thanksgiving, Christmas.  Those kinds of days.  Because they are lonely.  You go through life thinking you’re not the only lonely person.  But on these days, everybody else looks happy.  Then I think I’m the only one like this.  This is how my life was meant to be.  I just thought I’d work as hard as I needed to, meet a girl I like and get married, have children or two, and no matter how difficult we’d be together.  That was my dream, but for a bastard growing up with no family, it’s just impossible.  I worked hard so that no one would look down on me.  I mean it’s not like families are born in sets.  One is just created after another.  Only photos I’ve seen were other families, but I try to imagine that mine is also among them.  The family I can’t see, I try to imagine… becoming the father… the mother appears… it’s just wishful thinking.

After he delivers his life story speech, Yeon-soo who is standing there all along, embraces him and bails him out of the prison.

 While Yeon-soo drives, she narrates how she dislikes having her family, but after hearing his story, she feels blessed to still be having a family.  Their connection move up to another level, giving candies and cartoon videos, sharing a bus ride, listening to heartbeats, the latter was my favorite, and I’d like to try that sometime.

 

Last bucket list is set to be rolled, and the crying lady just wants to cook something for someone she likes, and of course Yeon-soo’s participation is again summoned.  I’m beginning to think that these ghosts were cupid in their past lives specifically tasked to match people losing hope in life.

 

Sang-man approaches Yeon-soo and her father joyfully thinks that he its hey boyfriend.  She raises her voice when her father persists on extending the small talk with Sang-man and argues with Sang-man on calling out her attention on how she treats her father.

 

Sang-man feels bad after that encounter, and decides to throw his things away.  When the doorbell rings, another ghost shows up needing his help.

 

He goes to Yeon-soo’s father’s funeral and reveals to him his after-life ability as well as his father’s message to her about his gift that he left in his favorite spot, but she remains stoic of her emotions and reckons how her father has disregard her and her sick mother when she was growing up.

 

The crying woman sheds her tears again so they head off to the market and prepares the dinner.  

 

Yeon-soo stops by at his place to give the camera to him, and he invites him to stay for the dinner.

 

They eat and chat with his ghost friends chipping in the conversation.  Yeon-soo is confused with his third eye tale but hints how he might have been struggling because he can’t commit to who he really is.  Sang-man demands the dead intruders to leave as he has granted their wishes and broods to depression land again and relieves his memories with Yeon-soo.

 

When Yeon-soo’s favorite kid patient died, she eases the grief at his father’s hideout, and there she sees the gift his father left for her.

Sang-man visited Yeon-soo in the hospital, and tells her of his intention to go on living… happily living if possible with her.

He smiles.  She beams.  And they are off to go ever after.

Yeon-soo mentions a different ingredient he used last night on his recipe, and he tells her that he got it from his mom, and suddenly his memory of his mother dawns on him, who turns out to be the crying woman.

He runs back home as pieces of memories of his family goes back to him. 

We see little boy Sang-man held by the ghost kid looking at the cartoon movie video, his father showing his wife and his father a new car.  When his father announces they will be going out to the beach the next day, his grandfather forcedly borrowed his friend’s camera.  On their way to the beach, his father happily tells Sang-man that he’ll teach him how to swim, but a truck hit their car, and his whole family failed to survive except him, although his trauma made him forget his family.

 

Sang-man goes back home demanding his family to come out, his big little brother comes out and tells him that he’ll leave the toy robot for him… then his grandfather shows himself and inquires if he has already confessed his love… then behind him, his father wonders at how tall he has grown, and brags how he taught him how to smoke and how to drive, and this was the scene that triggered my faulty tear ducts.. Last to present herself is her mom, she apologizes for leaving him to live alone at an early age.  She promises him that his family will stay by his side as they have always been. 

They took a family picture and Sang-man parted ways finally with his family as we see his pictures of the best memories he has with fading in presence of his family beside him.

 

 COMMENT:

Tae Hyun oppa once again showed his exceptional acting ability on this comical-sixth-sense movie.  His shifting from different characters is one of the reasons why he’s one of my favorite actors.  I was close to going to Hogwarts Forbidden Forest to attempt to retrieve the Resurrection Stone for the perky family to live through.   I have to watch Tae-Hyun oppa’s Sad Movie, next week.  He has made me cry twice already this week.

This is an amazingly done supernatural family movie that you will enjoy watching with your family.  The twist won me over willingly and no questions asked.  It was just the perfect icing on the cake. 

The cast ensembles did their respective job in keeping up with the sunny vibe and upbeat tone throughout the movie. 

 

 

Come Rain, Come Shine Quick Recap (2011)

CAST: Hyun Bin and Im Su Jung

Come Rain, Come shine is narrated through a lot of conversations between the main couple.

The movie opens with the husband and his wife on the way to the airport for the wife’s business trip for 3 days. When the husband reveals his intention of leaving architecture for good, the wife also discloses of her intention to move out of their house and her relationship with him that has long been gone.

On the day of her departure, heavy rain pours in the city, just as their emotion flows heavily within them. While packing up, the pieces of the estranged couple’s love story unfolds. They were married for 5 years, but the wife engaged in an illicit affair, and the husband remained passive and forebearing.

When the wife asked why he was not mad at her when the situation calls for him to be really furious, he just replied that getting angry won’t change anything and that he knows there’s no going back once she made up her mind. This shows how the husband knows her faults but has loved her anyway.

My favorite scene was when the man lights a cigarette for her (he knows where she hides her cigarettes around the house) and she tries hitting him out of frustration for having such an understanding husband who can’t get mad at her infidelity.

When a stray cat scratched his hand, the wife tends to his wound as he suppresses his wanting to kiss the wife he will soon have to let go.

I cried big time when the wife’s other man called their landline and was answered by the husband. While she talks with her bf, you can feel the pain the husband was feeling.

The movie wraps up when they have to cancel their reservation to the wife’s favorite restaurant because of the heavy rains. The husband prepared the dinner, and was helped by the wife. The wife noticed him crying while chopping onions so she asked him to wash it up. While she prepares their dinner plate, she sees the stray cat, and keeps talking to herself that everything will be okay.

I’m trying to understand the wife’s character, and how could she become unfaithful to a very sweet, homey kind of husband, and why the husband loved her so much to even bear being nice to her when she has been unfaithful to him.

The break up theme, the sad tone and the slow pacing are evident throughout the story. It is such an emotion driven film that if the actors won’t portray their ends well, you won’t feel it, but they did a great job touching my tear nerves.

When you have your last day with someone you used to love, and probably someone you still love, how would you react on it? How would you throw the memories and accept the fact that the love was not really meant to go on? These questions sum up what this painfully break up movie was about.

When I watch a romance movie, it helps me a lot if I put myself on the lead couple’s shoes, that way my perspective will be fair. It’s like dating someone and sharing a part of him, if it won’t work, it’s inevitable that it will hurt, but at least I can proudly say that I was with him the whole time.

I can barely recall the feel of heartache, but my memory knows it’s painful. I feel like I can create a mini Pacific Ocean as I watched the movie. It was such a nice watch for couples in the brink of falling out of love.

I have yet to have a break up like them, all my parting ways were full of tears and going on to the 5 stages of grief. I hope someday I can have a mature acceptance when I deal with things that cannot stay within my reach.

Only the brave can let go.

Sometimes you have to throw things out without leaving any regret.

My Little Bride (2004) – MOVIE RECAP

CAST:  Moon Geun Young and Kim Rae Won

Park Sang-min grins while he stares at a young girl’s picture.  When he notices the hot girl beside him, he tried following her and gets surprised when she embraces an ugly fat guy.

His eyes roam around the pretty ladies in the airport and spot a girl in front of a flower shop.  He places his mobile phone to sneak a peek on the girl in the cute mini skirt but gets busted by the girl who turns out to be Seo Bo Eun.

Bo-eun complains on how playboy he is as Sang-min is surprised to see her all grown up with curves and arresting beauty.  While inside the airport shuttle, he teases her when he gives her a pretty padded brassiere to her smiling annoyance.

They get home and Sang-min is happily welcomed by the rest of the family.  When they meet grandfather, Bo-eun helps grandfather eat, and when he’s done, he calls hers and Sang-min’s attention.

Grandfather narrates how Sang-min’s grandfather and him were best friends and war comrades.  They made a pact that they will marry their children, but they had two sons so it was passed to the next generation who turned out to be Sang-min and Bo-eun.

Both of them think grandpa is only joking but stop when they see his serious-Vito-Corleone-ish look that he means business, and made his peaceful death as a collateral for them to submit to his request.  Bo-eun rebuts that she’s only in High School, but her father backs up his father by saying that anyone over 15 can marry with their parent’s consent.  Grandfather pleads to his beloved granddaughter but she firmly holds to her ground and says no to it as Sang-min politely utters that he will just forget everything that were said that day.

Sang-min announces his return to his friends and marvels at the new faces he is seeing in their department.  His friends wonder why he suddenly got back, and he explains to them he’s going to get married soon.

Meanwhile Bo-eun helps grandpa clean a camera and sings happily with him.  When he dozes off, she lays him down to comfortably rest.

At Bo-eun’s school she meets up with her friend as the rest of the girls watch the campus crush walks by.

Now grandfather is beginning to be impatient so he calls Sang-min’s father and tells him to just back him up to make his marriage wish come true.  

Occupied with watching a suspense, loud, action movie, Sang-min and his mother are not wary of Sang-min’s father batting the front glass window of their car, and when they take notice of what he’s doing, Sang-min surrenders to the marriage idea.

While Bo-eun watches the cute campus crush’ baseball practice, she remembers her grandpa’s wedding wish and feels sad about it.  Sang-min picks her up in the school and have some snacks.  He coaxes her to just agree to the plans, but she strongly refused.  Then Bo-eun’s phone rings and they hurriedly go to the hospital.

In the hospital, grandpa checks the medical paraphernalia he needs for his dying production number, and then Sang-min and Bo-eun come in. 

They panic when the machine depicts no pulse and when their parents go in, grandpa wakes up. 

While the parents finally agree to the elder’s stubborn wish, grandpa goes to the second act of his hospital play and tells Sang-min and Bo-eun that he used to have a secret love with Sang-min’s grandmother, but when his friend died, he hid those feelings and just took Sang-min’s father as his real son. 

He explains how his promise to his old friend was so important, and then he orchestrates another attack as Bo-eun wails begging for him not to die, and finally agreeing to his marriage’ wish.

Bo-eun sulks in her room as his brother teases her not to be sad, because even if her grades are behind, she’ll be the first person in modern Korea to get married.  He warns her that Sang-min will discover her lop-sided behind, but he gets cut off when their mother comes in.  Her mother apologizes for not being able to do something.  She shares her fears of the possibility of her married life being revealed in the school, but her mother assures her that everything will be fine.

At a club, Sang-min’s friend’s smilingly stares at their friend’s upcoming acquittal from being a bachelor as ladies in mini-skirt playing billiards distract their views and hurt Sang-min even more.  To add damage to his already painful realization of his playboy life’s end, sexy women hit the dance floor as his friends join the ladies.

Then came the wedding, Bo-eun tells her mother that she now realizes grandpa might have scammed her and threatens not to push through with the wedding, but her mother appeases her reminding her of not turning the wedding into a funeral.

After the wedding, Sang-min’s father reminds him to be careful with Bo-Eun on their honeymoon trip and not to touch her but he playfully jokes he’ll do as he wishes with his young wife.  Bo-eun is assured by Sang-min’s mother that her husband is getting a word from his father not to do “it” yet, which Bo-eun’s young mind doesn’t understand yet.

The newly-weds head to the airport, but Bo-eun excuses herself to go to the wash room, but then eventually escapes the supposed trip with her husband of a few hours ago.  Sang-min tries to bargain some more time with the flight attendant but he is not permitted to look for her anymore. 

Adding to his already furious self is an annoying couple who talks bad behind his back and steals his cab on his way to the hotel.  Sang-min gets his revenge to the annoying couple as he showers them with toilet water while they are loudly making out below the hotel room where Sang-min is staying.  Sang-min bumps with Hye-won and Bo-eun’s classmates who are having their field trip at Jeju Island.  He accidentally slips and lands in front of Hye-won and is accidentally witnessed by the teacher who chases Sang-min thinking he is a pervert.

Bo-eun kills time at a movie house and gets scared when a middle-aged man approaches her.  She goes to her school and spends time with her crush playing outside.  On the same day, Bo-eun gets married; she also gets a new boyfriend.  She then heads to a Bath House where her parents also visit to clear their worries on their daughter’s early marriage. 

When their honeymoon trip ends, Sang-min sees Bo-eun standing outside the house and drags her to change clothing.  They meet the family and enjoy a sumptuous feast and drinks. 

The two families visit the couple’s new apartment as Bo-eun’s mother insists on separate rooms until Bo-eun finishes her studies. 

When Bo-eun chats with Hye-won the next day, she narrates how she disappeared at the airport and also reveals to her of her going out with the baseball cutie, Jung-woo.  Hye-won is in mixed emotions as she also secretly likes Jung-woo.

Meanwhile, Sang-min is with his friends and boasts that Bo-eun will come over to drink with them as soon as he demands her to do it.  Bo-eun in her schoolgirl uniform awkwardly walks in the restaurant and join Sang-min and his friends.  Alcohol intoxicated, he teases and makes fun of Bo-eun. 

 

Sang-min drops her in the school as he complains she did not prepare something for his hang-over.  She retorts that it’s his fault to drown in liquor the other night, and promises him she’ll cook dinner for him at night which made him smile.  In the school, the three bully girls confront Bo-eun to warn her of not spreading news of her dating Jung-woo, but knight-in-baseball-uniform comes in to rescue his princess and affirm her relationship with Bo-eun to the 3 bully girls’ anger.  They stay in the gymnasium as Hye-won watches in hiding looking sad and disappointed.

In the grocery store, Bo-eun points to Sang-min what to get for their dinner recipe, and accidentally falls off the cart and hit the boxes and the ground.  She ends up staying on his back, and enjoys pleasingly the piggy-back ride.  He suddenly touches her butt and teases her as he shouts in the neighborhood of his wife’s lopsided bum.

They prepare the pasta recipe and eat happily, and when the time comes for washing the dishes, Bo-eun lost the rock-paper-scissor-game so she ends up doing the tedious job.  Then Sang-min comes fresh from the shower, and while he’s not facing her, she mischievously pulls down her pj’s and laughs crazily.  Sang-min always game to have fun with Bo-eun faces her and threatens to remove the remaining clothing he has which makes her close her eyes and begs him to stop doing it.

The next day Bo-eun shares sushi lunchbox with Jung-woo as she attends their baseball game.  Sang-min wakes up, eats sushi, browses the TV channels and settles to the coverage of the baseball game of Bo-eun’s boyfriend.  He gets excited seeing the young bloods engage in a fight, and stops when Bo-eun is caught by the camera.

Bo-eun approaches Hye-won in their PE class and they argue on Bo-eun’s complicated relationship status.  Hye-won lectures her of the possibility that her family might know what she’s doing but thrilled with her infatuation towards Jung-woo, she disregards her friend’s advice.  Hye-won softly cries, admits that she also likes Jung-woo and walks out of the gym.

Sang-min plays his friend’s painting subject, and as he demonstrates positions, their senior enters the room and announces their High School teaching assignment which turns out to be Bo-eun’s school to Sang-min’s bewilderment.  Later that night, he paces around the house finding the right timing to tell it to Bo-eun but he ends up shouting in frustration.

Sang-min is warmly welcomed by the Principal and Bo-eun’s class adviser whom he has an encounter in Jeju island.   While Bo-eun sits apart from Hye-won, she gets surprised when the class’ noise stops as their room teacher and her husband comes in. 

Later that day, Sang-min joins the faculty for a drink and as the class adviser openly flirts with Sang-min, he flinches at how horror-like it is.  She forces him for another round of drink, and when he can’t control her drunk self declaring her intention of getting even closer to him, he leaves her inside the cab.

Sang-min wakes up the next day late and when Bo-eun refuses him to use the toilet while she’s brushing her teeth, he pees in the kitchen sink.  They are running late for school so Sang-min accidentally grabs Bo-eun’s lace underwear thinking it was a handkerchief.  The hang-over from last night is giving a toll to Sang-min, and when he pulls what he thinks to be handkerchief, Bo-eun distracts the class for him to notice that it was her underwear.

After class, Hye-won approaches Sang-min and advises him to look over her wife’s side affairs.  As he ponders on it, he hears Teacher’s Kim disillusioned-I-want-to-be-your-woman voice.  The students witness Sang-min forced to eat Teacher Kim’s prepared lunch box.  She asks questions about his family and tries to connect the possibility that they are possibly meant to be.  Bo-eun confronts Sang-min on the cozy lunch under the sun, and when he concludes that she might be jealous, she rejects the idea.

Sang-min visits the baseball field and looks for Jung-woo.  With suppressed anger in his voice, he asks him if he enjoyed the sushi and to do well, he throws the baseball at him and leaves to Jung-woo’s confusion. 

Bo-eun can’t focus to her studying as she overhears the noise from the sexy film Sang-min is watching.  She storms to his room and turns off the TV.  He complains that he can’t take away his hobby and goes to a remote control possession battle with her. 

Sang-min finally gets the control and while he’s lazily slouching, Teacher Kim pays a surprise visit to the couple’s apartment and their secret is almost revealed if not for Bo-eun’s stunt ability.

While Sang-min is discussing an art lesson, a student raises her hand and inquires Sang-min of his first romance.  He politely dismisses the query, but the class wants to listen to his story so he has no choice but to recount the story of his first love.  He reveals that his first love was the only girl who visits him in his military service stay but the girl is not aware of how much she meant to him.  When they raise a follow up question if he doesn’t have plans to reveal his feelings, he gives a vague answer of either a possibility or fate.  Bo-eun thinks of a girl who Sang-min is describing, pouts and looks outside the window, as Sang-min stares at him from afar.

Sang-min and his friends meet their senior instructor to check on their teaching assignments.  He vocally complains of being with his bossy wife in their house and at school.  His friend who sympathizes with his situation on cue hands a military service notice which they will all be attending.

The next day Sang-min marches to the military camp and reminds Bo-eun of her assignment.  After their morning exercise, the buddies happily chat on how they still have the form, and proceed to get their lunch ration.  Sang-min declines the food as Bo-eun arrives with a lunch box for her honey. 

Then Sang-min’s bully Marines’ seniors come by and recognize him and order him to do some muscle stretching.  Bo-eun who can’t understand why her husband is dragged just like that scolds Sang-min’s friends not to touch the food, and speeds to rescue him.  She demands Sang-min’s seniors to stop but they won’t budge.  The oldest man boasts that he is a marine but she shouts at him that her grandfather is also a marine.  Sang-min attempts to calm her down and feels happy at that time that he has a bossy wife.

After the military activity, they visit a videoke house to have some fun.  On their way home, they encounter hoodlums who think Sang-min is her sugar-daddy.  He tries protecting her but punches are thrown at him so Bo-eun takes a wooden bar and hits the bad men damaging their faces big time.

At the police station, the inspector doesn’t want to believe Bo-eun is his wife.  The Principal come to support their marriage statement and so is Teacher Kim whose wedding dreams are now again shattered.  When they get home, Bo-eun nags at how he can’t defend himself in the big world as he rolls egg on his face. 

The next morning, Teacher Kim who suffered a broken heart overnight picks on Bo-eun as she assigns her for the backdrop decoration of the upcoming school festival.  Sang-min tries to convince Teacher Kim that Bo-eun will have a hard time decorating the wall but she won’t budge on her decision.

Bo-eun faces the wall and wonders how she can fill it with colors.  Hye-won watches from a distance then Sang-min drags her and asks her a favor to help her friend.  Hye-won tells her that she’s a lesbian because she likes her friend more than a boy.  And the estranged besties are back in each other’s shoulder again.

After class, they stand chatting on a bridge.  Hye-won voices out how she finds Sang-min cute and nice, but Bo-eun just let it passes her ears.  She reminds her of being careful of her feelings, because she’s so focus with Jung-woo; she’s overlooking how Sang-min feels.  She thinks that she also likes Sang-min, but she responds that she sees him as her big brother only.

Then we see Sang-min carrying paints and staring at the big wall as the three bully girls pass by the hall and wonder why the student teacher is working on the wall. 

At night, Sang-min’s mother pays them a visit and cooks some food for dinner.  He insists on her staying overnight so they have no choice but to share a room. 

Sang-min dreams of him kissing Bo-eun and then suddenly wakes up not getting the kiss.  He sees Bo-eun peacefully asleep and reaches for her so she can sleep in his arms.

Teacher Kim approaches Bo-eun and Hye-won belittling their hard work might not be enough to finish it before the big event.  Sang-min also seeks his friend’s help to finish painting the wall which makes him stay more than late at night causing Bo-eun to sulk thinking he is not even helping her.

Unfortunately, the 3 bully sisters overhear Bo-eun and Hye-won’s conversation about Sang-min.  So they come up an evil plan to get back at Bo-eun.

Bo-eun’s brother is out with his friends.  He orchestrates a video of him hitting on a girl but his friends notice Bo-eun who is with Jung-woo on a date.  Bo-eun forgets the family dinner and excuses herself to Jung-woo when she gets Sang-min’s message that she must come. 

Bo-eun arrives late, and after dinner his brother makes a declaration that he’ll show his new girlfriend.  The family stares at the TV screen and are shocked when they see Bo-eun and Jung-woo together.  Bo-eun drops what she’s holding, runs to the park, sits on a swing, and cries.

Sang-min follows her and sits beside the swing.  To appease her and not to feel so bad of herself, he reckons…

“When you were little, I always pushed you on this swing here.  You love it so much.  But one day, you fell off the swing while I was pushing.  I actually did it on purpose.”

Bo-eun utters an apology to Sang-min realizing he’s trying to ease the emotions she’s feeling at that time.  She stands up and leaves him alone in the park.  Bo-eun who is still feeling bad sulks on her mother’s lap as she runs her gentle hand to her hair. 

BO-EUN’S MOM:  Don’t think about it anymore.  Your grandfather forced you to do it.  But the truth is, we want to have Sang-min as our son-in-law.  Do you remember how often you would cry?  But whenever Sang-min came, a smile would spread on your face.  You would fall all the time, scraping and breaking yourself, but Sang-min felt worse than I did.  He carried you on his back all the time, that Sang-min.

Bo-eun goes home and phones Sang-min’s senior when she didn’t see him home.  She tells her how envious she was of her because Sang-min would rather spend his time to work on the school festival wall painting than finish his graduation exhibit preparations.  Upon hearing his senior’s revelation, she rushes to the check the laundry basket and finds her husband’s shirt covered with paint marks.  She steps out of their apartment and runs to her school but didn’t notice Sang-min who just came out of the cab. 

Bo-eun sees the hall wall painted beautifully.  It was a picture of a young boy pushing a girl happily sitting on a swing in a breath-taking forest background.  She weeps as she realizes how much she overlooks the “love” that grows with her since she was little. While realizing how much time she wasted not giving back her husband’s love for her, Sang-min is cleaning up his things on their apartment.

When she wakes up in the morning, she hurries to look for Sang-min but finds his room all boxed up.  She notices his photo album and organizer.  When she opens his organizer, she sees the letter she gave to him when she visits him when he was on military service.

Then we have a flashback of young Bo-eun with her family visiting the military camp.  Unfortunately there was an emergency handled by Sang-min’s troop so they were advised that they might not be able to see him.

BO-EUN’S LETTER

Oppa,

I came with the family to see you, but we were advised that there’s an emergency in your squad so we just go home.  Are you doing well?  A few days ago, a heavy snow came down in Seoul.  The Han River is frozen as well.  It’s colder here right?  Don’t catch cold.  And this is a secret, but my mom says that I am a woman now.  I’m a bit behind than the other girls, but being an idiot that you are, you won’t understand what I mean, right?  It’s strange but when you were around I hated your guts, but your absence had me missing you.  Are you feeling the same?  Then be good to me from now on.  The disappointment of not being able to see you makes your mom cry.  Anyway, this letter, I hope it reaches you.

Bo-eun asked a soldier in the camp to try and give that letter to Sang-min and she is not aware that it reaches him.

Then the school festival came.  The school was all perky, celebrating and happy.  Bo-eun looks for Sang-min to no avail and bumps on Jung-woo.  She apologizes for being selfish and breaks up with him. 

She proceeds to the school hall and sits beside Hye-won.  She asks her is she saw Sang-min and points to where he is sitting.

After the 3 bully girls’ production number, Sang-min goes to the stage to share a few words but the leader of the bully girls interrupts him and reveals to the crowd that he is married to Bo-eun.  The crowd murmurs of how can something like that happen so Sang-min who always want to protect Bo-eun admits the revelation. 

He explains that Bo-eun has no choice, and that she just wants to fulfill her sick grandfather’s last wish.  He narrates that even if she is married, she is still a typical high school girl who goes crazy eating spaghetti.  She also loves cute, sushi-loving baseball players and gets stressed on studying ad applying to Universities.  He begs the crowd not to judge her because of a marriage certificate. 

Bo-eun comes on the stage teary-eyed and tells Sang-min that she’s not kid anymore.  She tells him that since she was a little girl, he was always beside her and that’s why maybe she was not aware of the strange feelings inside her. 

She says “I love you” to him which made Sang-min speechless for a second or two and then crosses the line between them to embrace and kiss the little girl he has loved all his life to the audience’ approval.

After a few years, we see Bo-eun in her usual bossy self and Sang-min in his usual obedient self scolding their crying son as their family visits along with grandpa who is surprisingly alive still.

 

COMMENTS:

My Little Bride is a sweet tale of young love.  It reminds us that sometimes we may become blinded or too pre-occupied to notice a “love” that has been there all along.

We should not mistake thrills over true love.

I don’t have a childhood sweetheart, books perhaps, but isn’t it amazing to be sharing the rest of your life with someone who has been there with you and who stayed without you demanding it.

My Little Bride offers a lot of feel good vibe and upbeat tones perfect for a weekend if you want to destress.  If you have time, come see it with your hometown friends.

A Moment To Remember (2004) Movie Recap

CAST

Son Ye-jin and Jung Woo-song

A MOMENT TO REMEMBER

A bum stretches her body for yet another day observing and chatting with strangers.  He chats with a man, Choi Chul-soo, about memory. 

At a different day, the bum tries talking with a sad-looking and anxiety filled woman, Kim Su-jin, but she stands up and walks away when she admits to herself that the person she’s waiting will not come anymore.

She goes to a convenience store to buy a soda, but her distracted self forgets to bring the soda as she walks out of the store. 

She soon realizes what she left so she marches back to the store but a man keeps blocking her way.  She gazes at the store counter for her own soda, but her sight can’t catch it.  He opens the soda he’s holding, she grabs it from him, and she drinks it straight leaving no less than a drop for him to drink, and burps. 

She walks away, rides a bus, but she again realizes she forgot her wallet at the store.  She goes back and the store keeper hands her the wallet and the soda.

She reaches her home and she faces the teasing of her sister as her mother worries about her.

The next day at work, Su-jin can feel most of the eyes of her fellow office mates on her.  She is welcomed by the department head but she gets humiliated when a woman reveals her illicit affair to a married man whose wife happened to be her friend.

While sitting beside her father, she vents on how much she has disappointed him, but his father is just thankful sitting beside her and advises her to learn from her mistakes.  They drop by at her father’s workplace, but she stays inside the car because it is dusty outside.

Su-jin’s father fixes a slight issue between the foreman, Chul-soo, and another construction staff.  He explains that the foundation is not yet ready and that it should not be force less the outcome of what they are building will fail. 

Chul-soo takes a breather after showing Su-jin’s father that the materials are not yet ready.  He goes down and she sees him, and remembers her encounter with him, just then her father enters the car complaining his foreman’s temper and then they leave the building’s premise.

Su-jin’s immediate superior worries about not being able to finish the construction of a flat because the previous head worker took off not finishing the project, so she offers to help him try to find options for solutions. 

She asks her father’s help and he sends his construction minions to help resolve the problem.  He warns her though that she will be dealing with a sort of rough man.  When the elevator opens, Chul-soo steps out to Su-jin’s surprise. 

She hides when her boss walks him through where the repair is needed.  While his manly hotness, Chul-soo, asks question to her boss, she shyly peeks at him unnoticed.

When Su-jin gets a soda can from the vendo machine, repeating what she did with his coke in can during their first meet up, he grabs it from her, drinks all of it leaving no less than a drop for her to drink, and burps.

Smiling while she walks after a day’s work, Chul-soo comes in from nowhere and asks her if she is heading home.  She replies, she’s about to take the taxi.  He went to his untidy truck, settles shortly, and then opens its door when an evil-pudgy-rider-in-black snatches Su-jin’s bag.  He bumps to the truck’s door as Chul-soo helps her to fix her bag.

She stares wonderingly and amusingly as he pushes the broken glass front window.  He asks her to enter from the other door and gives her a spade to hold on to as they sail on a literally rough, windy ride.

She grins when she sees him wear goggles to evade the unruly wind, and then he hands her a construction goggles as well.  She stares at him beneath the goggles and tries to spark a conversation.  She apologizes for snatching his coke the first time they met, and she blames it on her being “forgetful”.  But no matter how she fishes for his response, he remains uncaringly unresponsive.

Su-jin prepares a pretty self and heads off to bring lunch for Chul-soo, but she just got disappointed because he was on the building site.

Su-jin goes to the construction site and peeks on Chul-soo’s truck, she’s about to open the door when someone stops her from what she’s about to do.  Then Chul-soo comes with other construction guys, so she escapes to hiding.

Later that night, together with her girlfriends, they hunt Chul-soo who was sharing drinks with his friends.  Chul-soo indulges Soo-jin’s flirting, and they end up drinking with them.

Chul-soo pours her a glass of soju and dares her that if she drinks it, she will be his girl.  Su-jin asks him the consequences if she will not oblige.  He retorts they’ll end up being strangers for the rest of their lives.  She looks at him, drinks the soju and they share their first kiss.

Officially dating, they spend wonderful moments together.  They walk sweetly in a park, play baseball in the batting range, and exchange kisses and sweet nothings.   They basically just love each other as much as they can.. everywhere, anyhow, anytime…

Chul-soo introduces the “bet the winning card” game to Su-jin as well.  It’s a game where Chul-soo shuffles the card on a table with his very fast hands and weird in between childish and gambler chant as Su-jin chooses the correct card, if she picks it right she gets a prize.

When Su-jin smells his perfume, she reckons smelling that scent somewhere.  She keeps thinking if it’s her uncle, the bus or in her dreams.  But he disregards it and keeps himself busy loving her.

Su-jin visits an old friend who reminds her of a past she is trying to forget.  She cleans up her stuff in their old apartment and leaves the keys in the mailbox.

Chul-soo lectures her about how annoying love is.  He points out how love can be painful and yet many are still falling for it.  Su-jin gets offended and she storms her way out.  He makes peace with her, and as she is trying to pity herself falling in love and getting hurt afterwards, he appeases her to forget about it.

Su-jin makes a suit for Chul-soo’s Architecture exam and waits patiently for him outside when he asks her not to.

Su-jin’s father notices her sunny mood and assumes he is seeing someone.  He asks her to have him meet them but Chul-soo disagrees.  She patiently chases follows him around to say yes in meeting her parents…

 

It would be a sin not to share some of my favorite scenes. Here’s the first one I’m sharing.   It is when Soo-jin keeps convincing him to acquiesce in seeing his family and also his firm conviction that he loves her.

While Chul-soo plays baseball…

Chul-soo:  Hell No!

Su-jin:  Why not?

Chul-soo:  Look here!  I’m dating you.  What does it got to do with your parents?

Su-jin:  You have to meet them if we are going to get married.

While Chul-soo checks on the lumber…

Su-jin:  Why not?  Don’t you love me?   You love me, right?

Chul-soo:  It may fade away.

While they are walking somewhere…

Su-jin:  Is it that hard to say I love you?

Chul-soo:  I’m getting tired of this!  Wake up!  Will you?  You’re a princess and I’m a beggar.

Chul-soo:  Why do you like me so much?

Su-jin:  (Points at the convenience store they first met) You remember that store?

Chul-soo:  No I don’t!  Go Away!

Su-jin:  I’m so scared!

While they are on the construction site…

Su-jin:  Can you live without me?

Chul-soo:  If we live together, can we die together too?  You come and go alone.  That’s life.

Su-jin:  (crying)

Chul-soo:  You cry baby!  Have you lost your parents or your country?

While they were having a dinner…

Su-jin:  Why do you want a woman to feel miserable?  What’s wrong with wanting to marry a man she loves?

Chul-soo:  (Not paying attention) This is delicious

Su-jin:  (gets her face sculpture) Why don’t you use this since you are so uncaring?

Chul-soo:  I can’t make a commitment.  Actually, I don’t want to commit.

Su-jin:  Why?

Chul-soo:  You scare me.

Su-jin:  Why?

Chul-soo:  You are too confident.  Do you have any idea how cruel life can be?  Say we get married, can we be truly happy?

At that dinner, Soo-jins family suddenly comes and her father was surprised to see his foreman.  He attempts to stand up to leave, but Su-jin grabs his hand firmly.

The dinner becomes a battle of who will talk first as they sit and no sound seems to be moving.  Soo-jin excuses herself to go to the rest room which leaves Chul-soo and her father in a more awkward situation.

Su-jin’s father breaks the ice, and starts the inquisition.  It was definitely not a pleasant “question-and-answer” portion, and as the tension heats up, Soo-jin faints outside.

Chul-soo hurriedly carries Su-jin to the hospital and she hugs him when she sees him.  Su-jin’s father surrenders to what his daughter’s heart desires.

They got married as Chul-soo becomes officially an Architect.  He patiently understands her weakness on forgetting things, and continuously being a good husband to her.

Chul-soo’s father-in-law introduced a friend who seeks a good plan for a house he wants. 

In preparation for his design presentation, she asks him about the inspiration of the house plan, he responds that his wife is the inspiration because he had the chance to see her happy with her family.  He adds that how people move under one roof is very important in building a house.

Chul-soo finally makes his presentation and is able to sign the contract to Soo-jin’s happiness.

In the morning, Chul-soo makes a coffee for Su-jin while she playfully hides her amusement looking at her husband’s lipstick-covered face.  When he realizes what she did he smiles at his wife’s mischievousness.

Su-jin meets up with her girlfriends, and they envy the happiness emanating from her married life.  Soo-jin confides that she’s been having some troubles going home as she forgets familiar streets, but they did not pay attention to her query.

Su-jin sets home looking worried if she is on the right track.  She opens the door and sees a new kitchen made by her husband.  (I can’t keep my eyes of Jang Hyuk, why did you marry without meeting me yet?  Full of glee she checks on her new kitchen, and when she faces Chul-soo, she utters how she loves him.  Late that night, she ponders while he sleeps well in her arms.

Su-jin sees a specialist to deal with her recent “forgetting” episodes.  The doctor asks her if she has been in an emotional breakdown recently, and she chronicles how she loved a married man before that when he didn’t show up to the train station for them to elope, she was left heartbroken and dying.  She also reckons meeting her ex-boyfriend’s wife in an unpleasant manner as she was hurt physically by her.  The doctor explains that she must have suffered a lot of stress and advises her to come back next week to run some tests.

Meanwhile, Chul-soo moves to his new office as his old friends from construction shares his success.  Then a surprise visitor comes in.  She looks at Chul-soo and Su-jin’s picture and comments that young girls don’t know how to cook anymore.  Chul-soo expresses anger on his estranged mother’s not so needed visit.  She is in money trouble with loan sharks so she asks him for a favor but he ignores her making her so mad and throwing unkind words to him.

Chul-soo and Su-jin ride and settle in an open space.  They plan and imagine their dream house.  He tenderly begs her to wait some more because he’s going to buy it for their family.

Slowly, Chul-soo’s cold exterior was warmed by Su-jin’s love.  They went to visit Chul-soo’s old teacher and share a picnic near the woods.  Granny in his brusque manner complains why they came only after the wedding.  He also frets on how his wood carving was not correctly done, frustrated, he excuses himself to get some water and leaves Soo-jin with his teacher.  Granny questions Soo-jin if she already met Chul-soo’s mother, and when she replies that she hasn’t met her yet, Grandpa mumbles that Chul-soo should have forgiven his mother already.

Su-jin waits for Chul-soo to fall deeply asleep, and heads to investigate about his things to find some clue about his mom.  Her investigative stint pays off and she is able to get his mother’s address.  She pays a visit and sees that her house is off to be seized by the bank.  She voices out what she discovers to Chul-soo, but he is not willing to extend some help to his mother, and they engage to a heated argument.

Su-jin keeps convincing him to forgive which causes him to be furious and making her cry.  Chul-soo angrily speaks that he can’t cry anymore because he cried all night when his mother left him for another man.  So he promised himself he’ll never cry again over his mother nor give her a penny.

Su-jin halts to her moping and pick up the torn pictures of his mother.  She tells him that forgiving isn’t that hard and it’s like giving away a plain room in your heart.  She also says that her grandpa used to say that a true carpenter is someone who can build a house in his heart but he gave all the room in his heart to his mom and his hate, that’s why he wasleft outside shivering and became so distant.  She holds his wounded hand and wipes the blood out of it.  She whispers how her father remembers that wisdom that when she almost ran off with a married man, he remains to be her loving and understanding father.

Chul-soo visits his mother in prison; he remains silently staring at her as she blurts how she should have just gotten an abortion than to have an uncaring son like him.  She reprimands him to go and live a life without a mother as his bleeding hands holds on to a piece of white cloth for strength.

Chul-soo painfully gives his hard-earned money to bail his mother out as he pictures Su-jin in the field of their dream house.   Later that night, they drink and Chul-soo vents that they are officially broke, but Su-jin in her positive demeanor takes the cigarette between his lips, gets a deck of playing cards and copies his “bet on a card” routine.  Chul-soo smiles at his endearing wife and gives her an embrace full of love.

Su-jin attends another session with her doctor.  They talk about her family.   She was asked if she has a sibling, and she fails to give her sister’s correct age and birthday.  During her tests, her problem in remembering things is very evident.

In Su-jin’s work place, she gets a surprise when she learned that her ex-boyfriend is in town and will be working in the same company as hers.  He talks to her and tells her he’s now single and hints that fate must have been playing with them because she’s now married.  He tries to explain why he didn’t show up that day, but she cut his sentence and leaves.

Su-jin and Chul-soo sit in their living room.  While putting some glue on a card board, she suddenly stands up and walk around the house, he watches her movements and when she sees him, she questions where he was, she sees the cardboard she was putting some glue on earlier and asks him if he put some glue on it.  Noticing something weird about his wife, Chul-soo inquires about her sessions with her doctor but she said she hasn’t gotten the result yet.

Su-jin meets up with her doctor for the result of her tests and sessions, and he reveals to her that she has Alzheimer’s disease thus she has some problems remembering things.  She denies accepting her being senile asserting that she’s young to acquire such disease, but the doctor was very positive with the results.  He advises her to prepare for the inevitable and to settle her affairs as she will be forgetting almost everything soon, even herself.

Su-jin wallows in self-pity and tears as she walks in the busy street thinking of what will happen in her life now.

Later that night, she tells Chul-soo of her plan to leave her job.  She requests him to do his “bet a card” game, but she walks out and pours her desperate tears realizing she might soon forget it.

Su-jin resigned from her job and stays home doing her role as a loving wife.  She receives a phone call from her ex-boyfriend, and he expresses frustration on her sudden quitting.

Chul-soo grinningly sits with his construction friends carrying the lunchbox prepared by Soo-jin.  He gets some teasing, but they were all surprised when both lunchboxes have rice on it only.

Chul-soo meets with Su-jin’s doctor and learns of her condition.  He is furious on why the doctor told him everything to her.   When denial can’t keep of Chul-soo’s anger anymore, he bargains with the doctor if Su-jin really has the disease, he is so angry he takes it on the doctor but the hospital staff calms him explaining that the doctor’s wife died of Alzheimer’s too, and that he spent half of his life doing research about it.

Su-jin faints while she heads to her workplace and a kind policeman helps her find her way.  Chul-soo calls her but a man picks up her phone saying he found the hand phone in the street.  Su-jin and the policeman see her ex-boyfriend, and he takes Su-jin from there.

They sit on a bench and he asks her if they can still go back to what they were two years ago.  Su-jin who is having her memory episode at that point thinks that they are together.  When she wakes up from her memory lapse, she runs and leaves him.

Chul-soo finds her in the baseball batting range.  She asks him if he knows that she has an eraser in her mind.  She brings out divorce but he declines it.  She asserts that she will soon forget her love for him but he insists on remembering how much they love each other. 

I cried buckets of tears in this scene, so I really want to share it to you in verbatim!  It was a perfect scene.

CHUL-SOO:   Hey fool.  Keep your eye on the ball.

SU-JIN:  It’s strange.  I only got 9 balls; it’s actually 10, right? Isn’t it?  (It’s really 9balls and she forgot it)

CHUL-SOO:  (stares at her with so much pain, confirming that she’s really sick)

SU-JIN:  Did you find out?

CHUL-SOO:  What?

SU-JIN:  That I have an eraser in my head.  Let’s part ways.

CHUL-SOO:  what?

SU-JIN:  You were right.  One can’t be happy forever.

CHUL-SOO:  What are you talking about?

SU-JIN:  It’s all over.  Think about it, what’s love good for if my memory is gone?  Don’t be so nice to me.  I’ll forget everything.

CHUL-SOO:  I’ll remember everything for you.  You know I’m smart.  I passed the Architect test on the first try.

SU-JIN:  You’re too confident.  Life can be very cruel.

CHUL-SOO:  You didn’t forget that.

SU-JIN:  How could I?  You’re so mean.

CHUL-SOO:  (voice breaking because of tears) Don’t worry.  There will be a cure.

SU-JIN:  You cry baby!  Have you lost your parents or your country?  I’ll just leave.  Please let me go okay.

CHUL-SOO:  (grabs the baseball bat) Let’s play, let’s bet on it.  Damn!  Why are you crying?  I said I’d remember everything for you.  You know what, if you forget everything, I will pop up out of nowhere.  Like this and I’ll flirt with you, you won’t be able to turn me down.  We will start afresh every day.  Like permanent dating, isn’t it wonderful?

SU-JIN:  You are going to grow a goatee again?  Let’s forget everything while we’re happy.  I’ll forget everything soon.  I won’t know why you’re with me.  You’ll be gone out of my head.  And so will I, you understand that?  As my memory disappears, my soul will vanish too.  I’m scared.

SU-JIN KNEELS AND CRIES AS CHUL-SOO WEEPS…

CHUL-SOO:  Why would your soul be lost?  Get up!  Leave it to me.  I’m your memory.  I’m your heart.  Do you understand?  Don’t cry anymore.

They embrace and leave the place holding hands, unsure of what will become of them.

We see their house surrounded by post-it notes as Chul-soo writes another and as Su-jin browse at their wedding album picture.

He hands the pills on her hand while he confirms if she remembers their address, his name and her name.  When she takes the pills, she jokingly says that she felt better already.  Chul-soo goes to work hesitantly as we see an ID hanging on Su-jin’s neck.  She reminds him to be home by 6pm, and when he forgets their plan for that night, she motions her pills which he might be needing because of not remembering his mother’s birthday

While preparing to cook a dish, Su-jin had another memory lapse.  Someone knocks on the door and she sees her ex-boyfriend holding her box of things from work.  He senses something wrong with Su-jin, and as he asks her if she’s okay, Chul-soo comes in.  The ex-boyfriend tries to explain, but he punches him.  Su-jin tries to stop the violence but cuts Chul-soo with the knife she’s holding.  Even with a broken face, the ex-boyfriend boasts that Su-jin still cares for him that’s why she wants to go back to the days she was with him.  Chul-soo becomes madder and continues hitting him just as their guests arrive and Su-jin faints.

The family learns of her condition, and Su-jin’s father offers to take care of her, but he politely refused.  Just as they are arguing on who will take care of her, Su-jin walks in and pees in her night gown.  Chul-soo rushes to her, closes the door and hugs her.  He takes off his shirt as he wipes her pee while weeping silently.

After sending off their guests, Chul-soo goes to his work room to create a miniature house and cries in silence.  In the morning, he showed it to Su-jin who smiles while staring at it.  When he heads off to work, she calls him by her ex-lover’s name and tells him “I Love You”.  He mutters he’ll be coming home early, and outside the front door, he sheds his tears again.

Chul-soo sees Su-jin’s doctor and informs him that she doesn’t recognize him anymore and that she looks straight in his eyes calling him by her ex-lover’s name.  He worries her ex-lover is still in her heart that’s why she misses those days.  The doctor advises him not to drown himself about it because her sickness makes her lose her recent memories first, and that he’s the only person who can be sure of who she really loves.

Su-jin walks around the house looking on the reminder notes and staring on her pictures with her husband.  Then she notices Chul-soo’s things, and remembers him.  She cries as the memory of their first meeting comes back in her mind.

Chul-soo comes home finding his wife not around.  He sees a letter and reads it as he weeps…

“I’m sorry.  I’m so sorry.  I never meant to break your heart.  What have I done?  Are you crying now?  I don’t want to see you crying or in pain.  I wanted to make you happy.  But all I have done is out you in agony.  I love you Chul-soo.  Don’t get me wrong.  I only love you and only you.  I only think of you.  I only remember you.  How badly do I wish to show you my heart!  IS there any way I can do that while my memory remains?  I, Kim Soo-jin love you Choi Chul-soo, only.  I don’t want to forget that.  I must not.

Can you see that?  Can you feel my heart?  I’m afraid my memory will leave again that’s why I have to tell you everything.  I love you and I’m sorry.  I met you because I was forgetful.  I’m leaving you because I’m forgetful.  You were the best thing that ever happened to me.  How thankful I am to God for sending you as gift to me.  I don’t have to remember you.  You are a part of me.  I smile, laugh and smell like you do.  I might forget you, but nothing can drive you out of my body.  Although you’ve never told me you loved me.  I know deep in my heart that you love me.  Forgive me for leaving you.  For the last time I have a favor to ask please see my father.”

Chul-soo meets her father, and he hands him the Divorce papers which he just tear in frustration and sadness.  His father-in-law urges him strongly not to waste what he worked hard to achieve and commands him to go back to work.  (And here’s my last favorite scene in text)

CHUL-SOO:  Do you know the saying…“Forgiving is just giving your hate a little room in your heart?  She’s given me a lot.  I have something to tell her before she forgets me completely.  If I don’t, my life will be meaningless.

Chul-soo files for a “missing person” report for SU-jin.  Missing her badly, he traces the wooden sculpture of her face while he looms in sadness.

Chul-soo plays in the batting range, and reliving his memory of her cheering for him he talks to her memory about not giving him a chance and her being inconsiderate of leaving him alone again.

Bunch of letters are in the mailbox when Chul-soo is about to leave their house.  He checks on the mail and reads a letter coming from Su-jin.  He travels on the road hoping he can see her for the last time as Su-jin reads the letter in the background. 

She said she wrote the letter because she remembered him that day.  She thought of writing as it might be the last time she will remember him.  She bragged about remembering the measurement of mountains, being familiar with Santa Claus and Christmas, and equating it to him to stop worrying about her.  She gave him permission to forget her so that he’ll get even with her and to date someone again and be happy.  She reminded him that he’s not cute when he’s losing his temper.  She thanked him for being a good husband to her and pleaded him not to look for her anymore.

He finally reaches his destination.  He puts on some perfume and gets out of his truck.  As he walks to Su-jin’s room, the nurse explains how life has been with Su-jin in the mental facility.

The nurse calls Su-jin’s attention while she is sketching something.  Chul-soo stares at his wife as she stares back at him.  She stands up, and her drawing book falls.  He picks it up and sees his many faces drawn on its pages.  She thanks him when he gives the drawing book to her.  He asks if she recognizes him, but she can’t remember him so he introduces himself to her.

While he observes her as she eats, Soo-jin faintly smells Chul-soo’s perfume and remembers knowing that perfume from her memory.  She feels sad not being able to completely remembers it, and asks him why he was crying.  He covers his eyes with shades and stares lovingly and painfully at her. 

He begs for permission to take her on a trip, and accompanied by the nurse, Su-jins walks on the sidewalk across the convenience store they first met.  She walks towards it and we see Chul-soo inside looking at her. 

He opens the door, opens a can of coke, but she continues to enter the store.  She sees her doctor, Chul-soo’s teacher and mother, and her family inside.  She turns back to face Chul-soo and asks him if the place is heaven.  He says yes and holding her hand, they take a ride. 

He gives Su-jin her face sculpture as he says “I Love You”.  She remembers him and throws her arms around him.

COMMENTS:

This movie sent me to tear-land when I first saw it, and while recapping it my heart was still moved.  This is such a strong love story, the kind of love tale you’ll share your friend who has currently having inhibitions about love.  Considering the premise involved “sickness” as a conflict, I think what made this movie so strong is because of the superb performance of the lead couple.

One of the few movies, I dearly keep in my heart.  ^_^