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Il Mare (DVD) (Hong Kong Version) DVD Region 3

Jun Ji Hyun (Actor) | Lee Jung Jae (Actor) | Lee Hyun Seung (Director)
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Il Mare (DVD) (Hong Kong Version)
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Customer Rating: Customer Review Rated Bad 8 - 8.3 out of 10 (33)
All Editions Rating: Customer Review Rated Bad 8 - 8.9 out of 10 (136)

YesAsia Editorial Description

From director Lee Hyun Seung comes Il Mare, the 2000 time-travel romance featuring My Sassy Girl's Jeon Ji Hyun in a starring role! This touching sci-fi love story centers on Han Seong Hyun (Lee Jung Jae, from Typhoon and Last Present), an accomplished architect who moves into his father's beach house, only to find himself put in the most extraordinary of circumstances. After dubbing the place "Il Mare" ("The Sea" in Italian), Seong Hyun receives a mysterious letter from a woman named Kim Eun Joo (Jeon Ji Hyun). Strangely, the letter is addressed to the person who will live in Il Mare after Eun Joo leaves, a puzzling statement considering the fact that Seong Hyun is the very first person to ever live in the house!

Believing it to be some sort of a prank or perhaps just a misunderstanding, Seong Hyun initially disregards the anomaly, only to find himself drawn into correspondence with Eun Joo. But as the two begin conversing through exchanged letters, they eventually discover that their situation is as remarkable as it is downright unbelievable. It seems that Eun Joo is actually living in 1999, a full two years ahead of the time in which Seong Hyun resides! Disbelief gives way to amusement and intrigue as the two continue their correspondence, eventually falling for one another. But when these two strangers decide to meet up, they soon discover something that neither quite expected. Will there be a happy ending for these two? Can love cross the boundary of time? Find out in Il Mare, the award-winning Korean film that inspired the 2006 U.S. remake starring Keanu Reeves and Sandra Bullock!

© 2001-2021 Ltd. All rights reserved. This original content has been created by or licensed to, and cannot be copied or republished in any medium without the express written permission of

Technical Information

Product Title: Il Mare (DVD) (Hong Kong Version) 觸不到的戀人 (香港版) 触不到的恋人 (香港版) イルマーレ(il mare)-DVD(エリアコード=3) Il Mare (DVD) (Hong Kong Version)
Artist Name(s): Jun Ji Hyun (Actor) | Lee Jung Jae (Actor) 全 智賢 (Actor) | 李政宰 (Actor) 全 智贤 (Actor) | 李政宰 (Actor) チョン・ジヒョン (Actor) | イ・ジョンジェ (Actor) 전 지현 (Actor) | 이정재 (Actor)
Director: Lee Hyun Seung 李鉉升 李铉升 Lee Hyun Seung 이현승
Release Date: 2001-12-27
Language: Korean
Subtitles: English, Traditional Chinese
Place of Origin: South Korea
Picture Format: NTSC What is it?
Sound Information: Dolby Digital
Disc Format(s): DVD, DVD-9
Region Code: 3 - South East Asia (including Hong Kong, S. Korea and Taiwan) What is it?
Rating: IIB
Duration: 96 (mins)
Publisher: Edko Films Ltd. (HK)
Package Weight: 100 (g)
Shipment Unit: 1 What is it?
YesAsia Catalog No.: 1001821648

Product Information

Cast: Lee Jung Jae/ Jeon Ji Hyun
Director: Lee Hyun Seung

  星賢搬進遠離繁囂的海邊小屋IL Mare,收到一封很奇怪的信,信上的日期是1997年。禮貌的回覆換來一個驚人的事實∼他正和兩年後住在IL Mare小屋裡的女孩恩澍通信!〝我在火車站遺失了一部錄音機。〞99年的恩澍同樣相信她的信已超越時空,到了97年的星賢手裡,更請他幫忙到火車站找回錄音機,毫不知情的恩澍與默默在等待她的星賢擦身而過……

  一段愛情兩個時空,同在IL Mare海邊屋發生;一封情書兩位主角,愛在日落前終結?這封動人的韓版《情書》,是愛過痛過浪漫過的必看之選。


  "IL Mare" is the name of a seafront house where two lovers reside in at two diferent times. Sung-hyun in 1997 receives a strange letter one-day, reminding him to be careful of the snowstorm in 1998. But it is posted in 1999. Time travels backward again when Eun-joo sends him a letter of request, asking him to look for her lost cassette recorder at the train station where Sung-hyun finally gets a glimpse of her. Pusan International Film Festival 2001.

Suitable DVD Codes 3
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YumCha! Asian Entertainment Reviews and Features

Professional Review of "Il Mare (DVD) (Hong Kong Version)"

February 13, 2004

This professional review refers to Il Mare Special Edition
Il Mare (Italian for 'the sea') is the unlikely title for a captivating South Korean romance. An audience favorite at the 2000 Pusan International Film Festival, Il Mare combines the correspondence of You've Got Mail with the time-travel complexities of Frequency to create a refreshing and heartfelt story about two lonely people who become connected via a 'magic mailbox'.

The story begins at the tail end of 1999, as voiceover actress Eun Joo (Jeon Ji Hyun) moves out of a seaside home named 'Il Mare'. Before leaving, Eun Joo leaves a Christmas card in the mailbox, with a message asking the eventual new owner to forward any mail of hers to her new address in the city. Meanwhile, exactly two years prior in 1997, Il Mare's first owner, architect Sung Hyun (Lee Jung Jae, who co-starred opposite Shim Eun Ha in The Interview), receives Eun Joo's card. Thinking it to be a joke, he writes back to Eun Joo and asks her not to tamper with his mailbox anymore, while pointing out that the 'current year' is 1997.

However, after a bit of back-and-forth banter, all doubt about the magical properties of the mailbox are soon erased, and Eun Joo and Sung Hyun begin sending regular correspondence to each other. In addition to finding out that they are both kindred spirits, they come up with new uses for their unique connection: Sung Hyun is able to return a tape recorder that Eun Joo lost two years ago, while Eun Joo is able to send back a still-unpublished book by Sung Hyun's estranged father. Eventually, they agree to meet in person - an uneasy task given their separate time periods. Though the agreed-upon day is only a week away from Eun Joo's perspective, it is still a full two years from where Sung Hyun stands. Will these two lovelorn pen pals meet?

The most obvious standout aspect of Il Mare are the time-constrained interactions between Eun Joo and Sung Hyun's, which result in a number of gee-whiz moments and thought-provoking scenes, such as the film's ending, which is heart-wrenching, uplifting, and mind-blowing at the same time. However, what makes Il Mare so memorable is the well-told love story at its core. Without resorting to overt melodrama, director Lee Hyun Seung chronicles the blossoming romance between his two protagonists and how their regrets of the past threaten to tear them apart, brought to life by the natural performances of the two leads. In addition, Lee conveys a mood of both warmth and melancholy through some stunning cinematography that makes good use of the seaside setting. There is also some good tension generated as Eun Joo and Sung Hyun edge closer towards meeting each other in person, though at times, it seems a little needlessly drawn out. Thankfully, this oversight ends up being redressed with a third-act revelation that only heightens the emotional resonance of their connection.

Despite what could have been a 'gimmicky' premise, Il Mare is far from insincere in how it details the emotional bond that develops between two people separated by time. Like two other recent Korean romances of note, Christmas in August and Art Museum by the Zoo, Il Mare goes about its business with a quiet eloquence. True, the script may strain some credibility in terms of delaying the eventual union of its two lovers, but overall, Il Mare remains a smart and stirring entry in the romance genre, a bittersweet confection that is not easily forgotten.

Anthony Leong, a part-time film critic since 1997, is the author of Korean Cinema: The New Hong Kong, a guidebook to the 'Korean New Wave' that is available from Trafford Publishing. Information on his book, as well as his reviews of Korean films, are available at

Editor's Pick of "Il Mare (DVD) (Hong Kong Version)"

Picked By Siu Heng
See all this editor's picks

April 13, 2007

Travelling Through Time in Tranquility
The success of Korean director Lee Hyun Seung's 2000 movie Il Mare, starring Jeon Ji Hyun and Lee Jung Jae, paved the way for a Hollywood remake The Lake House six years later. I point out this fact just to prove the quality and attraction of the original, without any intention to compare the two - let's leave that to the critics.

A film dealing with time travelling (in this case, only the protagonists' letters instead of the characters themselves) often contains flaws in logic. But Il Mare has done quite a good job, basically without logical loopholes. Switching between two different points (1997 and 1999) on the timeline, the narrative creates a conformable pace (I understand those who are too used to Hollywood movies/action films might regard the film's pace as slow) without confusing the audience with the different time frames.

Il Mare is generally a very quiet movie in terms of the amount of conversation. Neither does the film offer a lot of ups and downs in the plot. But the calmness establishes a very soothing atmosphere, allowing one to immerse into the enchanting romance between two lovers who cannot see each other. And when they meet, Eun Joo (Jeon Ji Hyun) in 1997 cannot recognize Seong Hyun (Lee Jung Jae), for she only falls in love with him in 1999.

The film captures the feeling of a love in an extraordinary situation of separation by time, which actually carries a lot of nuances for such love does not exist in reality yet it is not too remote from what we have all experienced. The unique sensibility towards love and emotions is what I find most charming about Il Mare. The beautiful and serene views of the gorgeous house by seaside ("Il Mare" is actually Italian for "the sea") and that stylish mailbox where all the magic lies, of course, help establish the tranquility and at the same time offer great visual pleasure.

This original content has been created by or licensed to, and cannot be copied or republished in any medium without the express written permission of

Customer Review of "Il Mare (DVD) (Hong Kong Version)"

Average Customer Rating for this Edition: Customer Review Rated Bad 8 - 8.3 out of 10 (33)
Average Customer Rating for All Editions of this Product: Customer Review Rated Bad 8 - 8.9 out of 10 (136)

cuddley bear
See all my reviews

July 22, 2007

This customer review refers to Il Mare (Hong Kong Version)
story impossible Customer Review Rated Bad 6 - 6 out of 10
I was expecting an interesting time travel story but apart from the pretty face of the female lead, and the unusual site of the house, the rest is quite unrealistic. Surely any little thing you changed when you travel back in the past would have a huge impact on the future. It is impossible. The ending is a happy one but very unlikely to happen.
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October 22, 2006

This customer review refers to Il Mare Deluxe Limited Edition DTS
1 people found this review helpful

errrr... Customer Review Rated Bad 5 - 5 out of 10
I had high expectations for this movie but it has "failed" me. The pacing of the story was slow which kind of bored me.

The last part is to be looked forward too though.
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September 1, 2006

This customer review refers to Il Mare Deluxe Limited Edition DTS
1 people found this review helpful

Just Ok Customer Review Rated Bad 8 - 8 out of 10
I wasn't really impressed in this movie. Actually, you really have to put you heart into it while watching otherwise, you may not understand why and how it transcend into another time.

I was surprised that Hollywood bought the rights of this movie when there are other korean films that i would say better than IL MARE.
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August 18, 2006

This customer review refers to Il Mare
Love transcending time Customer Review Rated Bad 10 - 10 out of 10
Having never seen the US re-make (The Lake House), I am afraid I can't provide a comparison. But on it's own, I truly enjoyed this movie. Even though the premise is clearly unrealistic (if that bothers you, maybe you should stop taking everything so seriously...), the romance feels real enough to keep your eyes fixed on the characters. My primary concern was that the characters would just leap right into the unrealistic premise without any explanation, but my prayers were answered and this film delivered it well. I really enjoyed how these characters seemed to find eachother at just the right time in their lives... they both really needed eachother. And that is what adds to the tragedy of the ending (yes it does have a relatively sad ending... I mean come on, it's a Korean movie).

Bottom Line: The bond the two forlorn characters form through the means of a "magic" mailbox will stick in your mind. And while some bits of foreshadowing are a little too obvious, the performance of the actors and the innate romance make this a movie worth seeing (and probably worth owning).
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August 9, 2006

1 people found this review helpful

Il Mare (HK Version) Customer Review Rated Bad 2 - 2 out of 10
For a romantic drama I would rate this movie a 3.5. Although the story and ending were predictable, the movie was well paced and enjoyable.

Having to watch this movie with english subtitles, I have to admit that I was thoroughly disappointed. Often times the sentences were incomplete or cut-off and as a result made little or no sense, this problem was compounded further during important dialogue. Hence I would give this version of Il Mare a lowly score of 1 overall.

Given that this is an official release from Edko Video, I have to say I'm doubly disappointed. I had similar problems with "My Sassy Girl (HK Release)" also from Edko. At least for that one I could understand the cantonese, but the english subtitles were attrociously inaccurate. Very disappointed - YesAsia should make the US edition of Il Mare available on their global site.
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