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Reviews written by numinair

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  • Twins Mission (Hong Kong Version)Twins Mission (Hong Kong Version)

    Twins Mission (Hong Kong Version) DVD Region 3

    Customer Review Rated Bad 6 - 6.3 out of 10 (19)
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    April 23, 2007 Excllent Action Pastiche Customer Review Rated Bad 8 - 8 out of 10
    If ever you need your seat lifting as well as your spirits, you can rarely fail to get both by watching the Twins together in an action flick. Charlene and Gillian get back to doing their high wire thang again with continual aplomb and with a straight to the action opener the film doesn't leave you waiting. (Although the girls themselves are a little late in the movie before they really get stuck in with the action). Although TM is an action movie in the main, most of the plot is played out very tongue in check and the verbal humor is as swift and fast as the action being played out. A lot of it is very sharp as well. In fact the whole film is very much a humorous pastiche of the other two previous Twin Effects movies (with there being loads of twins!) mixed with martial arts action flicks, Bondian antics (for instance with a character hang gliding and then bumping into a train tunnel entrance....Roger Moore, then) and even a bit of Lara Croft when the Twins are suited and booted as they both attempt (with aplomb yet again!) to break their way into a building to obtain the film's 'artifact' and avoid the red laser beam alarms....with equal video game first-time-attempt impossibility. I loved the snakes gags though at the end! Interestingly, the plot leaves a strong hint of a more direct story line sequel this time, too, than the last two Twins Effect movies which had no real connections. TM might be a little less effective than the predecessors, but certainly well done, very humorous and all doubly entertaining!
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  • Solace Limited EditionSolace Limited Edition

    Solace Limited Edition DVD Region 3

    Customer Review Rated Bad 9 - 9.5 out of 10 (2)
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    April 10, 2007 A reward in Solace Customer Review Rated Bad 9 - 9 out of 10
    It seems that with this movie its good food for thought about the question of what life's priorities can be regarding love and commitment. What do you do when you have dependents that need your highest attention and to also fulfill a life that you need of your own? Suk Kyu Han's character deals with all this sympathetically and realistically by the difficulties concerning responsibility to his mentally backward brother and of a possible romantic liaison with lovely clothes designer Hye Ran (Ji Soo Kim), who frequently visits his pharmacy business. The acting by Suk Kye and Ji Soo are high (as to be expected here), but I found the actor's performance of In Ku's backward brother to be excellent. (Apparently, this type of role can be very difficult to perform although seeming quite the contrary). A somewhat serious film considering also Hye Ran's situation of her father's debt, but it does have good humorous and uplifting moments and overall a rewarding watch. I liked the befitting moment where Hye Ran returns to her old school to find out if the song "Home Sweet Home" is still played out there and the parallel of this by the child like nature of In Ku's brother. Maybe a way of saying that we all return one day to childhood natures (unless you never move out of one of course). Where we end is where we begin. This film is about that really - a childlike heart needing a child like home.

    If anyone who as seen "Christmas In August" and/or "Barefoot Gibong" I think will likewise enjoy this movie. It can be a bit difficult due to the subject matters, but I appreciated its honesty and at times humorous considerations of families with around the clock dependents.
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  • TimeTime

    Time DVD Region 3

    Customer Review Rated Bad 6 - 6.2 out of 10 (5)
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    March 26, 2007 Time Peice Customer Review Rated Bad 8 - 8 out of 10
    This film is certainly one of the more accessible Kim Ki Duk movies. The film itself is fairly easy to watch and the plot keeps you pretty well fixed throughout. Although it keeps to an even keel on the outset the movie does steer towards a more 'manic' momentum towards the end. Park Ji-yein plays the initial character of Sehie and the ever interesting Sung Hyun-ah as her 're-invented' other self and both are considerably high performances as, too, Ha Jeong Woo as Ji Woo. The previous night I watched this I also watched Korean rom-com "Operation Makeover", also about the theme of time. But looking at close takes of Hyun Ah, I noticed her cute little dot nose birthmark that I noticed actress Young So Ko also has who plays the lead in OM. A daft small point, but it was interesting considering the 2 films and "Time" having a focus on the human face. Not that these two actresses need to alter such birthmarks - they are so cute! Cosmetic surgery certainly is a good thing, though, in helping people who have suffered facial burns, disfigurements, lip clefts etc., and for healthy cosmetic improvements, but for jealousy and irrational reasons all seems to backfire according to this movie. This film isn't about cosmetic surgery or time in itself, though. Sehie is another of the "outsider" characters KKD empathies with in his films. Possessiveness and jealousy are the major themes in this film, where romantic couples show harsh forms of jealousy towards one another by a mixture of playful banter and mis-trust, shouting at each other in karaoke joints and coffee bars and mirroring similarly to Sehie's own paranoia of Ji Woo's 'interest in other women'.

    Although called "Time" this film seems to be more focused on the fear of loss and human jealousy in relationships. The need to be accepted in love and eccentric methods of achieving this goal when life stymies chances of true love becoming fulfilled. Jealousy and paranoia are the reasons Sehie decides on her plastic surgery and the way she side steps out of her identity somewhat, by making herself 'unrecognizable', shows a sort of craving to see herself on the outside - taking on another slightly different persona. She represents someone who equates the difficulty of love in a sometimes confusing world, questioning her own confidence as to use a literal mask/persona to substitute a sense of completeness. Time, for me in this film, is more about the nature of maturity and understanding with those difficulties and for even love itself to bloom needs time to fulfill all this.

    Interesting about the title of "Time" and KKD's next film "Breath" though, as they both have similar close knitted titles to Pink Floyd's album "Dark Side of the Moon" (there is a Time, segueing into a track called Breathe). Even at the film's end credits you can hear the heart beat/clock ticks that was a prominent feature on the opening/ending of that album. Is KKD a PF fan? Still, various art forms can have insightful connections and that album wouldn't be out of place with KKD. A bit like Pink Floyd's "The Wall" partly influencing Kim Hyung Tae's "Pisces" movie? Manic bits in the middle - and the end? Whatever the case, "Time" explores human frailties, stresses and distorted relationships in a very interesting Kim Ki Duk movie - definitely worth your time.
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  • Operation Makeover (DVD) (Korea Version)Operation Makeover (DVD) (Korea Version)

    Operation Makeover (DVD) (Korea Version) DVD Region 3

    Customer Review Rated Bad 7 - 7.5 out of 10 (2)
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    March 22, 2007 An Entertaining Time Yarn! Customer Review Rated Bad 7 - 7 out of 10
    Although time comedy as been visited upon us before I found this a light and refreshing romantic comedy and very entertaining film. Ko So Young and Jo An portray very well as two energetic young/mature versions of Jeong Ju. It has quite an amusing script but the aspect that amused me the most was realizing that by JJ traveling back in time (by some pretty nifty computer shareware software by the likes!) to alter her broken heart teen relationship, finds herself being able to hug, dance, go to the fun-fair and have animated conversations with herself and all without being sent to the funny farm. When JJ finds herself in 1994 its like she's found her long lost sister! She even almost grounds her teen self for not focusing on the right boyfriend! Well, its timeless knowledge that nobody in teen mode exactly favors being ordered around....but that's what Jeong Ju does here (to herself!).

    Other things could have been done with the time aspects, but it is all kept to a sober pace and the whole film is in line with rom-com un-sensibilities than in any way a sci-fi. So if you don't like sci-fi don't worry about that. Melodrama parts surface near the end, but, again, a rom-com, so not full on. I can't help thinking, though, that if JJ had simply walked causally up to the stage and kneed Hani in the nuts for naming the other girl instead of herself, she would have had reasonable vindicated memories to think back on and wouldn't have had to go through all those years feeling lousy about herself...saved all that time travel. But that would have ruined an entertaining movie! Enjoy!
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  • Lee Eun Joo Only One - Tribute to Lee Eun JooLee Eun Joo Only One - Tribute to Lee Eun Joo

    Lee Eun Joo Only One - Tribute to Lee Eun Joo

    Customer Review Rated Bad 10 - 10 out of 10 (1)
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    March 16, 2007 Eun Joo Lovley CD Tribute Customer Review Rated Bad 10 - 10 out of 10
    I first knew about Eun Joo Lee only last year and unfortunately by hearing about her sad death on the link on Yesasia's memorial site to her. After seeing the marvelous film "Lover's Concerto" I also felt somehow this film to be the most befitting considering what happened and the nature of this film - for me also to realize she actually performs the sad piano theme at the end of LC (theme also on this CD) heightened the sadness for many people and myself, I'm sure. This CD comes in a nice card sleeved digi-pack with a booklet inside the front cover slip including photos and tributes and features new and old songs plus some dialog parts.

    I know I've given it top stars, but this is a very befitting musical tribute with already credited songs in there own right. The song "Oh Beautiful Woman" from "Bungee Jumping of Their Own" is a very nice alternate take and the two different versions of "Only When I Sleep" I found gave more clarity to the recording vocal line of Eun Joo's voice, especially on the Bossa Nova unplugged version. It is the same vocal line recording of Eun Joo's, so these 2 versions don't have another vocal take unfortunately. Pity Eun Joo didn't record more songs, do more piano/keyboard work. Still, this is a very inclusive and beautiful CD.

    Would be interesting to hear what other people think of this CD or maybe what other tributes could be made. Maybe a DVD visual tribute?
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  • One Day Suddenly : 4 Horror Stories Limited EditionOne Day Suddenly : 4 Horror Stories Limited Edition

    One Day Suddenly : 4 Horror Stories Limited Edition DVD Region 3

    Customer Review Rated Bad 7 - 7.3 out of 10 (3)
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    March 13, 2007 ApPariTions on 4th Floor Customer Review Rated Bad 8 - 8 out of 10
    This is my second but last post on this for "Forbidden Floor". As for the movie its a very good debut from Kwon Il Soon for this series of HD films. The CGI effects, although used sparingly, are cetainly effective considering the apparent budget and the quality is quite high considering. The two main actors Seo Hyung Kim (mum) and Yoo Jung Kim (daughter) are excellent in this, too!.

    I read that Ahn Byung-Ki was producer on this movie and I could tell by the opener - the dramatic prelude sequence that kicks off this film brings his film "Phone" to mind by the elevator scene and anyone who saw that film will realize the immediacy that film had. This film does have a similar feel to "Dark Water" although the patch in this film is represented by the hidden and mysterious 4th Floor (a superstition that the number 4 in Chinese sounds like the word death in Korean pronunciation, so South Korean high rise blocks rarely have a 4th floor) that opens up some ghostly apparitions below the room the mother and child occupy in the apartment high rise they both move into. To say any more about the mystery room would spoil the plot, but I can say that the revenge factor in this film, due to the nature of the person's demise (no spoiler there, there has to be a demise if there is a ghost film), is more convincing and logical than some similar made films. Even though the ghost is garbed in Sadako's outfit.

    Its another good film with atmosphere, too. Erie juxtaposed corridors of past and present and unwavering pacing keeps this film abrupt to the core and you rarely feel that the film shifts it plot tactics. Its a good script with a well meaning story of events and like the other film "Roomates/D-Day" is routed within Korean society mores than merely a supernatural ghosty flick. It s a good film and a pity that first time directors who begin with horror/ghost movies rarely return to make another one (apart from Ahn Byung-Ki of course) Worth seeing!
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  • Between Love and Hate (DVD) (Special Edition) (Korea Version)Between Love and Hate (DVD) (Special Edition) (Korea Version)

    Between Love and Hate (DVD) (Special Edition) (Korea Version) DVD Region 3

    Customer Review Rated Bad 4 - 4.5 out of 10 (2)
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    March 12, 2007 there is lots of shouting! Customer Review Rated Bad 6 - 6 out of 10
    If you wish to have a quiet night in to watch a romantic DVD with partner, spouse, friends or hamster, realize that this may not be the ideal choice for such an occasion. In this film there is lots of loud verbal shouting, boisterous shenanigans and so much emotional tumult that you may need a good pair of ear mufflers to dampen all the shouting after a while, plus a bottle of something to calm your nerves down, too. Kim Seung Woo and Jang Jin Young battle it out at such a high crescendo in expressing their passions that I wished that they had used mime sometimes. As a story it was okay, although reflective of such relations, I found it hard to feel sympathetic of exactly where these 'mutual' lovers were intending to go with their relationship, as the two characters highly volatile natures only enabled them to find temporary solace after the storms. The guy didn't really want to hold on to the girl he marries and the considerations of the hostess worker were so self inclined that they both end up desperately wanting to be with each other, but with such minimal true compassion for the others feelings. Its doomed-romance-street scenario.

    As mentioned its a loud film - and the 'pillow fight' verbalizing from the character leads get a bit repetitive after a while (or is it a wail!) I'm sure Bjork's song "Its Oh So Quiet!" would have been befitting over music for the trailer, due to the irony of the song. Please Jin Young and Seung Woo if you make another movie together, make it a more quieter and positive affair. After watching this I needed a good horror/ghost movie to calm me down (watched Korean film "Forbidden Floor" the next day). Overall BLAH (thats what this film is abbreviated, don't blame me!) is entertaining and a well made film, great performances by all the cast, everything spot on....its just so LOUD.
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  • He Was Cool (Give-Away Version)He Was Cool (Give-Away Version)

    He Was Cool (Give-Away Version) DVD Region All

    Customer Review Rated Bad 9 - 9.3 out of 10 (3)
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    March 8, 2007 God Bless You Da Bin Customer Review Rated Bad 8 - 8 out of 10
    I watched and enjoyed this film last year and thought it to be a very worthy film to watch. I read, though, recently on a web site about the sad death of Da Bin Jung who performs the female lead in this film and feel really sorry to hear about this terrible news. She had talent in her career as an actress by what I have seen in this film and surely she would have returned again to the screen. Such another unnecessary situation that depression can cause, but as with all things that can cause negative thoughts, these 'dark dwellings of the self' should never even get into the back door. As with Eun Joo Lee my prayers go out to Da Bin's families, friends and associates. Guys, never let depression get the better of you in this life.

    Enjoy this film though - as its a worthy tribute in these circumstances. RIP Da Bin.
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  • One Day Suddenly : 4 Horror Stories Limited EditionOne Day Suddenly : 4 Horror Stories Limited Edition

    One Day Suddenly : 4 Horror Stories Limited Edition DVD Region 3

    Customer Review Rated Bad 7 - 7.3 out of 10 (3)
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    February 26, 2007 D-Day - Good Movie! Customer Review Rated Bad 8 - 8 out of 10
    Although I have only seen D-Day (Roomates) from this set so far, and the rating can only be for this, I found this to be a fairly good movie, similar to the high school ghost movie "Whispering Corridors" (not connected to this series though). Although this is a horror, the film's main emphasis is on the pressures of high school achievements, as the high school girls in this having to re-take their college entrance exams after failing them first run. The film certainly address the harsh teaching methods that can be used on young people (or were) and hopefully are not used in times to come. The cast, especially the young ones, performed excellently and although a budgeted movie and a directors debut, its a very well made film. If anyone liked "Whispering Corridors" - "Voice", I would recommend this set for this alone. But with 3 other movies in the package (and some good recommendations from Rain here), its well worth the purchase. Hope to see more debut horrors like this!!
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  • Dasepo Girl Series Limited Edition (English Subtitled) (Superaction TV Series)Dasepo Girl Series Limited Edition (English Subtitled) (Superaction TV Series)

    Dasepo Girl Series Limited Edition (English Subtitled) (Superaction TV Series) DVD Region 3

    Customer Review Rated Bad 8 - 8 out of 10 (1)
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    February 23, 2007 Super Naughty Action Customer Review Rated Bad 8 - 8 out of 10
    Considering that it may need a bravery award in reviewing Dasepo material, I was contemplating someone may review this first. Like Indiana Jones in ROTLA and Sallah's words to Indy of "snakes, very dangerous, you go first", this could also apply to Dasepo NG...."Dasepo Girls, very dangerous, someone review first". Funnily enough, one of the girls in this does have a whip, just like Indy.

    So, whatsitallabout? In a nut shell a lot more of what the movie featured adapted from the "Multi Cell Girl" comic strip. The series is also split into two box sets, this being series 1 of the first 40 episodes of 100 (I think) and each episode being 15 minutes running time. More characters from the original manwha (manga) comic are featured here (some pretty scary ones, too!), but with no real central character like Ok Bin Kim's in the movie. Poverty Girl, although a central film character is featured as a part in this TV series, and her story doesn't get under way until disk 3 (part 5). Overall, more insight is given from the manwha due to there being a whole lot more of the "Multi Cell Girl" universe to play with (although I've never read the manwha). There are a few musical numbers, too, check out the boy/girl rap in part 4! One thing to mention....expect ANYTHING to happen in this version (well almost anything). If you were offended by the movie, you are going to blush dramatically at this (and possibly need a sick bag at times) as the Dasepo adult content bar is raised a lot more so than the DNG movie. More naughty bits this time.

    Best bits? The F4 boy band and the Two Eyes sequence of episodes are one of the best I've been corrupted by (sorry watched!) so far (in part 2) and I'm now watching part 5 at this moment - where Poverty Girl's story is re-told but in more detail. Cast wise I think the sex education teacher is played excellently! In fact all the young cast are as equally as good as their film counterparts.

    This Superaction series of crazy, funny, bizarre, serious, vulgar and honest with a twisted and satirical humor as its strongest flavor. Its a TV series following the heart of anime comic strip with all the uniform vogue trappings and fan service innuendo you would expect, but with a lot more I couldn't possibly mention here. DNG is not for everyone, but it is very good and there is more to it than first meets the initial watch. It could be a cult classic one day! Dare I say more.....no way!!!
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  • Traces of Love Director's Cut Limited Edition DTSTraces of Love Director's Cut Limited Edition DTS

    Traces of Love Director's Cut Limited Edition DTS DVD Region 3

    Customer Review Rated Bad 9 - 9 out of 10 (3)
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    February 13, 2007 Lost and Found Love Customer Review Rated Bad 8 - 8 out of 10
    I enjoyed director Kim Dae-seung's movie "Bungee Jumping of Their Own" and the theme of returned love through re-incarnation, but found this film a lot more credible of a similar situation where love can be regained.

    Certainly this film is beautiful. The scenery, the music, the people and the intent are all heaven sent. Min-joo's poetic descriptions of the natural world, the communique she believes all human beings can have with the environment holds a key significance to the benefit of our own personal souls. That nature and humans do support each other, like the breath of trees are our oxygen. When Mon Joo described to Hyun-woo that the silent sound of rain in the sky needed to be heard on the ground, on the leaves of trees, umbrellas so that its beautiful sound can be understood is nature spoken in the human heart. Or when she describes how two people's hearts grow in love together, likened to a barren desert on the outset yet nurtured by experience, bringing a forest of love with maturity to those hearts - a metaphor she spoke as she envisioned her future marriage with Hyun-woo. These are small poetic things from this film, but so important in fully grasping the nature of the story. Although this poetry is what portends the tragedy that is to follow by the 'disaster' in this movie and the experiences of how Hyun-woo had to rediscover the loss of the beautiful woman he was about to marry.

    This is a very rewarding movie if you look at the subtle parts and it certainly leaves its fragrance with you after it finishes. Director Kim Dae-seung has really tried to unlock something good here. Ji Tae performs well and it was nice to see him in this type of movie for a change. Ji-soo Kim (who plays Mon Joo) and Ji-won Uhm play their roles beautifully. Recommend this movie to those who love positive romantic movies. Also maybe to somebody who loved "The Lakehouse" (Keanu Reeves) but may have not tried an Asian movie before. (ie a pressy for somebody!)
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  • Live Good (AKA: Mission: Sex Control) (DVD) (DTS) (Korea Version)Live Good (AKA: Mission: Sex Control) (DVD) (DTS) (Korea Version)

    Live Good (AKA: Mission: Sex Control) (DVD) (DTS) (Korea Version) DVD Region 3

    Customer Review Rated Bad 8 - 8 out of 10 (1)
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    February 7, 2007 Birth is Zero? Customer Review Rated Bad 8 - 8 out of 10
    I found this film to be a really interesting treat. Its not perfect by all means, but I did find it enjoyable. Beom-soo Lee and the very pleasant Jung Eun Kim act out well here. Although this film being about parental birth control by the government in S. Korea in a time deemed necessary to curb an over population explosion, the story does keep mainly to a humorous route without over preaching too much about its subject matter, but still addressing the importance of it. Bits of the "Sex is Zero" humor seem to come to mind when the villagers are being taught birth control methods, but all in a more lighter and less abrupt manner. It dishes out the pathos/melodrama later on, but the film's mirth is mainly its ingredient. Both the main actors perform excellently as also does Mi-seon Jeon (she was in "Love is a Crazy Thing" in 2005) who plays an excellent supporting role as Beom-soo's wife and definitely needs to be in more major roles.

    Don't expect a meisterwerk here with this, but you'll certainly be pleasantly surprised, I think, by a nicely light comedy with finally played acting. Recommended.
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  • Bye June (DVD) (Korea Version)Bye June (DVD) (Korea Version)

    Bye June (DVD) (Korea Version) DVD Region All

    Customer Review Rated Bad 6 - 6 out of 10 (1)
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    February 6, 2007 Dispossessed Young Dudes Customer Review Rated Bad 6 - 6 out of 10
    When I first saw this retro DVD release was available I jumped at obtaining it due to it being another film that featured Ji Yae Yoo and Ha Neul Kim together, as their highly popular film "Ditto" is quite a favorite of mine (as are the actors). But as to be expected by its brief synopsis, this movie is so far removed from the genteel nature of "Ditto" as to be its polar opposite. If "Ditto" could be thought of as a sweet blossom tree in a misty field, "Bye June" in contrast, would be a craggy old tree with a night sky and lightening flashing in the background. Okay, thats only regarding the connection of the two main actors and these two films are completely different, but expect "Bye June" to be a very gritty affair concerning society ills amidst a very confusing and sometimes frighting backdrop of the world we live in - especially to young vulnerable teens depicted in this.

    Its a dark mix of a movie concerning a group of dispossessed young adults who fall into drug addiction, sexuality and self abuse as their only means, due to the difficulty of their angst filled lives after leaving high school, intensified by the death of one of their number, a charismatic musician named June. With its hyper 'out there' visual style (pop video/Velvet Underground type chic), I felt that I had entered a Pink Floyd album cover at times, watching this retro (or nitro!) Korean movie and this is a predominate style of the film throughout. It also portrays adolescent trials of abortion and sexual matters that are limiting to mention here, but are at times quite disturbing. There is a romance with Ha Neul's and Ji Tae's characters, fractured concerning each of their own personal fragility they harbor due to the Kurt Cobain type death of the guru character June. Yet through all of this film's dark quagmire of anti-social idioms and the self destructive nature of the main characters, it does have a light at the end of its tunnel - that the possibility that something good other than life's banal trials (or perpetual pretensions?), can be experienced if only by overcoming the blind and dazed realities these characters destructively peruse. But, whether these characters found that, I'm not sure.

    Verdict : Very dark movie. Spaced out visuals. Not for the usual Ha Neul Kim fan. Similar to Korean films like "Bad Movie" and "Tears". Although, interesting to see a (very) young looking Ji Tae Yoo and Ha Neul Kim.
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  • Fly High Limited EditionFly High Limited Edition

    Fly High Limited Edition DVD Region 3

    Customer Review Rated Bad 8 - 8 out of 10 (2)
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    January 22, 2007 Good Film! Should Fly Higher! Customer Review Rated Bad 9 - 9 out of 10
    Although this film story seems familiar - girl and boy romance, girl has terrible illness, lots of light comedy and banter to begin with followed by sadness and tears in the melodramatic second, I found this movie to be a rare treat. I really liked the style of this film and its easy to slip into pacing, and the director Kwak Ji-kyun has done a really good job here with this. The film is quite captivating with a fresh up-to-date film style and the natural energy of the actors/characters come across as very genuine with this combination, making it a movie a bit different to the usual. Even the movie's trailer has been made from promotional film footage with the two main characters and general public in a street scene interwoven with actual scenes from the film, which is quite innovative. It certainly has charm, especially with Ji Hyun-woo's infectious character and of his methods of trying to date Min Hyeon (who he first meets in a gent's washroom) and the overall younger cast make this an engaging film alongside the main players. The pathos of the terminally ill Min Hyeon isn't over charged, either, as the film looks more towards the infinity of love (the aurora of her dream) than the illness itself. It is a film of charm and grace than too depressive or overly sad!

    One thing that struck me (although it might be me!) was that Im Jung-eun as Min Hyeon reminded me visually a bit of Shin Eun-kyung from the "My Wife is a Gangster" movies. Ji Hyun-woo's vitality with his cheeky smile and charm brought Cha Tae-hyun to mind a bit, too, but both of these talents played out wonderfully together in this. The actress who played Min Hyeon's mum was also very good in the sparse moments she is featured, and the supporting cast all added to the aforementioned 'spirit' of this film. It seems every one enjoyed making it and it certainly reflects in the film.

    This is definitely a fantastic romantic drama and deserves to be seen - as its 111 minutes of worthy viewing time! Don't let this one pass the train station, if you know what I mean!
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  • Woman is The Future of ManWoman is The Future of Man

    Woman is The Future of Man DVD Region 3

    Customer Review Rated Bad 7 - 7 out of 10 (1)
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    January 19, 2007 Kooky Character Study Customer Review Rated Bad 7 - 7 out of 10
    This is one of a few Hong Sang-soo films I have got around to seeing of late and probably isn't the ideal film to begin with, due to a more seeming ambivalent script than to Hong's other movies. It can be somewhat confusing with scenes that are fractured and disjointed (reflecting the three characters here) and it does have a sudden abrupt end that indicates no finalization seems possible with the nature of their lives - none of the 3 characters seem to know where their goal posts are. The story is taking place in a 30 hour time frame, although told at various points and angles and hinged by intricate character dialogue concerning mainly sexual ambivalence with the 3 main protagonists. In fact this film's script seems so precise that you feel the need to take in all facets of the conversations to understand them, yet - ironically - all 3 people seem so out of kilter that precision and order is the last thing you would expect with them. Yu-Ji Tae's character as a university art lecturer has a bad memory, for instance.

    The film is certainly built around the themes of irony (and very humorous at times) and certainly a study of student type relationships. Contradictions are a plenty in this! The two male leads also behave as if they are still routed in their student days themselves. I liked the bit about a waitress in a Chinese restaurant at the beginning getting asked by Kim Tae-woo, whose character studied film making in the U.S., to be an actress and later (symmetrical style) Yu Ji-tae asking her to be a nude artist's model, which I found reflected the actual talents of Sung Hyan Ah who plays Seonha in this film - who is an actress and a model in real life).

    Still, I'm no intellectual or Hong expert. But, if you are familiar with Hong films this could be worth a visit (and plenty of re-visits afterwards to get more out of it!) but if not, try another of his movies like "Turning Gate" or "Virgin Stripped Bear ..." first.

    One last thing, this DVD is an ALL region and not just a 3 as advertised according to my copy.
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  • Fly, Daddy, Fly Limited EditionFly, Daddy, Fly Limited Edition

    Fly, Daddy, Fly Limited Edition DVD Region 3

    Customer Review Rated Bad 9 - 9 out of 10 (7)
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    January 10, 2007 Who's the daddy? Moon-sik! Customer Review Rated Bad 10 - 10 out of 10
    This film is certainly worth all the 5 star credits its been getting and is a very rewarding movie. Lee Moon-sik is excellent in the role as the frustrated father who's daughter is subjected to violence from a bad egg of a rich school boxing champion and the direction and production of this film is high. I thought the words were poignant when Jun-ki's character said that "violence is neither justice or evil, but merely violence", concerning Moon-sik's fazed reaction to some of his training and of his pursuit to justify his daughter. The film's style surprised me, somewhat, as I expected that the pitch of the movie would have begun with a more street cred black-and-white noise filtered affair for the opener (like "The Guy" or "Romance of their Own") or comedy fisty cuffs of a "Manner Zero", but with a more honest sympathetic approach to the bullying subject matter, the first third of the film is a more subdued and serious tone.

    Lee Jun-ki eventually appears to save the day (huzzah!) and agrees to train the father for a boxing contest with the bully. Fear not all your young dudes, Jun-ki portrays his super cool character to good aplomb, so rich rewards for fans here. Its from then that the film turns more towards comedy drama, which elevates it from the more sombre beginning, right up until the poignant and sober logical end. The ending is not overdone, either, refusing to submit to a ridiculous possible gung ho scenario where the father could have triumphed over the bully easily, that would have certainly fell flat if that had been the case.

    "Fly Daddy" is not altogether an high energy fight flick or a film that would only appeal to boxing aficionados, the story is solid, the delivery excellent and overall a rewarding and entertaining movie. Its uplifting and should appeal to a wider audience. Check out Moon-sik's bus race and his first boxing experience with Jun-ki "to go beyond his fear"...priceless!

    Just one last thing about region codes. Some guys having trouble with this, but there generally is no trouble viewing DVDs on computer with software or region free players. If you really want this DVD as a collectible, get this one now then wait for a region ALL version when it comes out. But, you can watch this on a computer with the correct software.
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  • The Fox Family Special Limited EditionThe Fox Family Special Limited Edition

    The Fox Family Special Limited Edition DVD Region 3

    Customer Review Rated Bad 7 - 7 out of 10 (1)
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    January 9, 2007 Shi-yeon - (Brave) Foxy Lady! Customer Review Rated Bad 7 - 7 out of 10
    The Fox Family (who may be some sort of parallel world version of the Addams Family?) is a pretty decent comedy musical horror. It has humorous entertaining moments of song, dance and Gothic circus horror interspersed with juggled limbs, an armless daughter (whose not quite so harmless on public transport), and a cute child with dog possession syndrome to name but a a few of the antics going on here. All delivered in a slapstick style with sudden bursts of song and dance throughout (even break dance at one point).

    In many ways the story is fairly cliche, but favorable, about a family of human nine tailed foxes who need human livers to eat so that they can remain in a human form at the imminent time of a total eclipse, or else change and remain as foxes. They form a family circus to do this so to attract a lot of adult humans, but I couldn't help thinking why they didn't decide for an annual ticket subscription at a baseball game as there would be more humans there or to work in a hospital organ donor department where there could be plenty of livers. But they form a circus and scare everyone away with their acts! Alongside this, a con artist escaping from some money owed gangsters hides with the family at the circus (along with his vulnerable liver).

    Shi-yeon Park as the elder Fox daughter (one of the "My Girl" Gals) sings two sweet little ballads and with a pretty decent singing voice, but she may be more remembered for the film's sub train seduction dance in this, when she attempts to seduce a male passenger. The music in the film was okay, but I thought the songs could have been a little better. Entertainment wise, I think this film succeeds more with the visual gags and drool humor, albeit with derivative bits and bobs. The self mocking script about horror movies in one of the songs shows some panache and the film is very lively and zestful. The acting verve of all the cast parts were good, especially the actor who played the con artist who I thought played a convincing mix of obnoxious deviant with a good flare of comedic timing. Oh, okay, and Shi-yeon's foxy little number dance! (I thought Shi-yeon said she was shy).

    I would recommend this film more to people who enjoyed "Dasepo Girl" in the main and crazy musical comedies, but there being not too many of these I think its good to support them.
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  • Almost Love DTSAlmost Love DTS

    Almost Love DTS DVD Region 3

    Customer Review Rated Bad 7 - 7.4 out of 10 (5)
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    January 8, 2007 Mostly Love - Lovely Film Customer Review Rated Bad 8 - 8 out of 10
    Although I might be breaking some sort of cardinal rule here, I actually think I enjoyed this film a bit more than "My Tutor Friend". Maybe this is due to the more caustic nature of Sang-woo and Ha-neul's characters in MTF that it seemed Love had to work overtime for them to eventually hit it off, (which they did of course...by some miracle), where in this film they are more connected by their childhood and affectionate memories together and are less at the verbal feisty cuffs. On top of that the OST is just wonderful and I really advise all who loved this film to get it. I have been playing this a lot recently and its worth all the high merit it gets - such great eclectic mixture of music and emotion.

    Anyway, the film. Well, it isn't connected to the former dynamic duo's last film together as the references to "wanna die" etc., were jibes at MTF cliches (and deriving from "My Sassy Girl" of course). Saying "Almost Love" is a sequel to MTF is similar to saying that Shin Eun-kyung and Park Sang-myun being to together at the beginning of "A Perfect Match" is where their characters left off after "My Wife is a Gangster". So, its not a sequel. But, its nice to see these respected and highly likable talents together again and its certainly a good movie with a heart warming script and plenty of romantic allure. Interesting the message of understanding where Dal Rae's boyfriend concedes his love for her character after he read's Ji Hwan's written film script testimony. Heartbreaking. Maybe the film could have been a bit better, but the sentimental ending didn't lose itself as it easily could have, as the ending did hit home the fortunate ally that Sang-woo had in Ha Neul's character all along, helping him out of tragedy and pointing him in the right direction, not allowing him to give up. The last scene with Ha-Neul and Sang-woo was illuminating for me too, as I have never seen Ha Neul's face look so emotionally captivating and lovely in the snow scene that the film makers, I think, caught something really good there.

    Again, I's say that all who enjoyed the film to get the OST- you won't regret it. Love Ha Neul and Sang-woo's clowning around picture on the cover (as to this DVD too!). And to any who have not seen this movie yet, yeah, its a lovely film with a sentimental ending, but certainly worth adding to your collection.
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  • The Uninvited  (DVD) (Korea Version)The Uninvited (DVD) (Korea Version)

    The Uninvited (DVD) (Korea Version) DVD Region 3

    Customer Review Rated Bad 8 - 8.2 out of 10 (17)
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    December 13, 2006 A Psychological Apartment Customer Review Rated Bad 8 - 8 out of 10
    This is not the usual ghost horror normally expected. No long haired Sadako leitmotiv here! But certainly a very disturbing and quite depressing social horror concerning infanticide and disturbed childhoods. Although there seems to be divided opinion here, I do think the film has interesting linked themes about strained motherhood, alienation, mental aberrations, narcolepsy (sleep disorder), religion and social disorder. Although due its over wrought content, different viewers will focus on some areas than others and certainly this film needs to be seen a few times over to grasp more of the none superficial themes. Its like " A Tale of Two Sisters" in that case. The meaning behind the two character's visions are made more clearer as the film progresses, as they journey through blocked memories unraveling dark secrets about their individual pasts. The supernatural is played down to things like coincidences with the two main characters eventually meeting each other and having oddly similar mental conditions, or the ghost visions of the children. Still, I couldn't understand all the aspects of the infanticide victims when the main focus seemed to be with the male interior designer's visions of the children in the tube train and at the dining table for 4 at his apartment. Was Yeon's baby dropped from the window not one of the children at the "table for 4"? Ju-hyun Jeon also plays an understandably sombre role here of Yeon and a complete contrast to the lovable and slightly crazy character of "My Sassy Girl".

    I think this film is also viewed more from a woman's perspective, due to lady director Lee Su-yeon and to the film's concerns of troubled motherhood and child rearing. Mother hood itself is a major theme and of how it can be shaken badly by an individual's disturbed past. It also features a quite complex and woven script concerning religious and symbolic themes connected to psychological trauma. The acting is very good by both main leads and worth seeing for Ji-hyun's performance in a more serious role. Certainly well filmed and quite atmospheric, but with a more subtle and slower pace than with similar ghost flicks. Still, this is more a psychological/social debate sitting alongside similar films like "2 Sisters", "Into the Mirror" and "Whispering Corridors". So don't expect an Ahn Byung-ki "Apartment" even though these urban high rise cloisters are featured here and do reflect the alienation of living alone in such tenements. Certainly some nasty scenes of the children's deaths in one or two scenes could disturb some people, which jolted me quite a bit at one point. One scene is really quite nasty. As mentioned this is a depressing film, but I think a well written cathartic exercise, that does leave some food for thought after it finishes. Its meaning is all in there, but can be somewhat muddling at times. The religious links, for me, though, were quite interesting especially regarding a mother's acceptance and belief of her child, alongside the acceptance aspects of Christ. Although in this case a very disturbed and suffering woman with an injured past. Definitely recommended if you haven't seen it yet, but try to stick with it to the end. Re-watchable.
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  • You Are My Sunshine (DVD) (2-Disc) (Korea Version)You Are My Sunshine (DVD) (2-Disc) (Korea Version)

    You Are My Sunshine (DVD) (2-Disc) (Korea Version) DVD Region 3

    Customer Review Rated Bad 9 - 9 out of 10 (4)
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    November 23, 2006 Let the Sunshine Bright! Customer Review Rated Bad 9 - 9 out of 10
    A very touching and charming story. Fantastically acted by both Jeon Do-yeon and Hwang Jeong-min in a romantic story which is funny, tearful, tragic and poignant. Although this film seems to have a radical theme concerning a prostitute relationship, its not a heavy film (like "Downfallen/Ch'ang"), as its so pitched at the right 'temperatures' with its blend of melodrama, tragedy and humor that radical never really comes to mind when you slip into this film's well paced and comfortable story. Get ready with the eye wipers, though, as its sad moments feature at the latter part. I liked how Jeong-min's character instantly falls in love with the girl, too, as she rides her moped into town: the fact that she is a sex worker makes little difference - his dropped jaw at her 'heavenly vision' says it all. No matter what the backgrounds of anyone, too, this film well expresses the universal nature of human love that shines through in the human heart, where love can conquer all. Yep, for the romantically inclined, get this movie while its still available and I'm sure that it will give you hours of sunshine.

    Check out Do-yeon's other films too, (if you haven't seen these) "My, Mother, the Mermaid", "The Contact" and "Harmonium in my Memory" are all recommended, but these examples show how she can meta-morph into her amazingly adaptive and creative persona's. Sorry, Jeong-min I haven't seen enough of your other films, as yet, to compare.
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