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Operation Makeover VCD

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Operation Makeover
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All Editions Rating: Customer Review Rated Bad 7 - 7.5 out of 10 (2)

YesAsia Editorial Description

Contrary to what one may gather from the title, Korea's latest romantic comedy Operation Makeover is not about changing appearances, but rather changing fates. Life is always full of "what ifs", and this film asks a simple question: what if you could go back in time to your first love? Knowing how things work out in the decade following, what would you do differently? First-time director Kim Chang Rae, who previously served as assistant director on the blockbuster Friend, spins a fun and interesting story in Operation Makeover (a.k.a. Project Makeover and Go Go Sister), topped with a hearty dose of 90s nostalgia. Actress Ko So Young (Apartment) and her younger counterpart Jo An (Holiday) present delightful portraits of the same woman at different ages. Backdropped by the music of popular 90s group DEUX, Operation Makeover revisits first love and reckless youth through a bumpy journey of romance and self-discovery.

Jeong Ju (Ko So Young) is a disgruntled 30-year-old woman with no boyfriend and a go-nowhere job. Bitter with how her life has turned out, she traces all her misfortunes to her first love Hani (singer Kim Jung Min in a cameo), a playboy who broke her heart and is now a famous singer. One day, she bumps into her high school friend Tae Hoon (Lee Bum Soo), who used to be a nerd but is now a rich and successful businessman. Jeong Ju knows that her life would be so much better if only she had fallen for the right guy in her teenage years. Unexpectedly, a chance to right wrongs comes up when a mysterious computer program transports Jeong Ju back in time to 1994. She is determined to show her 18-year-old self (Jo An) the correct path in life. Free-spirited teenaged Jeong Ju, however, is a lot more interested in the disingenuous Hani (Lee Joong Moon) than the doting Tae Hoon (Yoo Gun, Hello God), and she will not be so easily swayed.

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Technical Information

Product Title: Operation Makeover Operation Makeover (VCD) (韓國版) Operation Makeover (VCD) (韩国版) お姉さんが行く (VCD) (韓国版) 언니가 간다
Also known as: Project Makover Project Makover Project Makover Project Makover Project Makover
Artist Name(s): Lee Bum Soo | Jo An | Kim Jung Min | Ko So Young | Yoo Gun 李凡秀 | 曹安 | 金政文 | 高素英 | Yoo Gun 李凡秀 | 曹安 | 金政文 | 高素英 | Yoo Gun イ・ボムス | チョ・アン | キム・ジョンミン | コ・ソヨン | ユゴン 이 범수 | 조안 | 김 정민 | 고 소영 | 유건
Release Date: 2007-06-15
Language: Korean
Subtitles: English
Country of Origin: South Korea
Disc Format(s): VCD
Shipment Unit: 1 What is it?
YesAsia Catalog No.: 1004894514

Product Information

서른 살, 화려한 의상 디자이너를 꿈꿨지만 당장 의상실에서 디자인 보다는 주로 잡일을 하고 있는 나정주(고소영). 서른 살이 되도록 변변한 남자친구 하나 없고, 게다가 사랑 따윈 믿지 않는 소극적인 연애관까지 소유하고 있다. 사실 그녀는12년 전 마지막 남자라고 믿었던 첫 남자 조하늬로 부터 크나큰 상처를 받은 것이 원인으로, 그 후 그녀는 사랑 뿐 아니라 자신의 인생까지 심하게 꼬였다고 믿으며 살아가고 있다. 그 때의 일을 잊고 잘살아 보려 무던히 노력하지만 조하늬는 현재 잘 나가는 최고의 톱스타가 되어 TV와 각종 광고 에 출몰하며 매일 같이 정주의 심기를 건드린다.

패션쇼 준비로 분주한 어느 날, 호텔 로비에서 나정주는 우연히 고교동창 오태훈(이범수)을 만나고 깜짝 놀란다. 고교시절 자신을 그렇게 쫓아다녔지만 거들떠 보지 않았던 매력제로 범생이 오태훈이 연 매출 100억 달러의 C.E.O가 되어 몰라볼 정도로 멋지게 변한 것. 게다가 너무나 완벽해 보이는 태훈이가 저녁 식사에 초대해선 여전히 나정주는 영원한 오태훈의 첫 사랑이라며 고백까지 한다. 태훈과의 행복한 미래를 상상한 것도 잠시. 12년 전 고교시절이야기를 하던 중 하필 태훈은 하늬와 정주가 떠난 춘천 밀월 여행 이야기를 얼떨결에 얘기하게 되고, 그로 인해 나정주는 그만 조하늬 얘기에 욱하는 마음을 참지 못하고 일순간 자리를 박차고 나와버린다.

태훈과의 데이트도 망치고 첫 남자 때문에 꼬여버린 자신의 인생을 한탄하며 울며 잠든 그 날 밤, 마법 같은 선물이 도착한다. 단 일주일 동안 자신의 과거로 돌아갈 수 있는 기회가 주어진 것이다. 그 순간 나정주는 자신의 인생을 괴롭혀온 94년으로 돌아가 조하늬와의 첫 사랑을 말끔하게 지우고, 그 대신 오태훈과 사귀어 행복한 현재를 만드는 프로젝트를 꿈꾼다. 곧바로12년 전으로 돌아간 나정주는 열여덞살의 자신과 대면하게 되는데.. 부처님 손바닥처럼 완벽하게 통제 할 줄 알았던 열여덟의 나정주(조안)는서른살 나정주의 뜻대로 움직여 주지 않은 채 몰래 몰래 조하늬를 만나고 다니고, 어제 만난 멋진 오태훈과 달리 열 여덟의 오태훈(유건)은 매력이라곤 전혀 찾아볼 수 없어 대대적인 변신 계획이 필수적이다. 나정주의 예상과는 달리 곳곳에서 돌발상황은 터지게 되는데. 과연, 나정주의 인생을 뒤바꿔줄 은밀한 계획은 성공할 것인가?.
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YumCha! Asian Entertainment Reviews and Features

Professional Review of "Operation Makeover"

April 30, 2007

This professional review refers to Operation Makeover (DVD) (Korea Version)
Operation Makeover (a.k.a. Project Makeover and Go Go Sister) marks the directorial debut of Kim Chang Rae, who previously worked on the classic coming of age blockbuster Friend. Here, he bridges the generation gap in a very different fashion, with a time travel-themed romantic comedy which revolves around the eternally popular cinematic fantasy of being able to correct the mistakes of the past.

The film opens with Jeong Ju (Ko So Young, recently in Ahn Byeong Ki's APT), a thirty-year-old girl working a dead end job as a fashion assistant whose life is going nowhere, apparently due to the fact that she was betrayed back in high school by her supposed sweetheart Jo Hani, who has since gone on to be a famous singer. Fortunately for her, one day without warning, instead of crashing, Microsoft windows offers her the chance to travel back in time to try and persuade her past self to take a different route. Magically transported back to 1994, she poses as her cousin Alice and quickly insinuates herself into the life of her teen self (played by actress Jo An, also in Holiday), hoping to change the future by persuading her to switch her affections from the vain, floppy-fringed ladies' man Jo (Lee Joong Moon) to a socially inept though kindhearted nerd called Tae Hoon (Yoo Gun) who she now happens to know will grow up to be a multimillionaire.

Operation Makeover is a film whose sugary sweet nature manages to gloss over all of its flaws, from the inherent absurdity and inconsistency of its time travel gambit to the fact that Jeong Ju is not particularly a likeable character, being blatantly obsessive, shallow, manipulative and even suicidal. What the film focuses on is pure wish fulfilment rather than any kind of self improvement or emotional life lessons, and it certainly works well on this level, particularly for its female target audience, offering a dream big sister relationship fantasy that gives the proceedings a fairytale feel. Certainly, there is very little in the way of depth aside from a vague moral lesson on acceptance, though arguably the lack of melodrama or complications only works to the film's advantage, allowing for the fun to play out unhindered by spurious drama or worries of cause and effect. Of course, this only works due to the fact that the cast are a charming enough bunch, with Ko So Young and Jo An being well matched and believable as older and younger versions of the same person, and with Yoo Gun giving an entertainingly inane performance as the comical though suspiciously old looking nerd. Although the plot itself is inherently predictable, the film is likeable enough even to keep more cynical viewers interested, if only to see which of the broad stereotypes the silly girl will end up with.

Surprisingly, director Kim shies away from the kind of face pulling and odd slapstick which tends to characterise Korean comedies, and instead goes for laughs mainly by packing the film with pop culture jokes and references from the early 1990s. Whilst some of these are likely to be lost on non-Korean viewers, there are enough nods to other popular films and universal teenage lifestyles to give anyone a sense of amused nostalgia. Most of the physical humour comes from the male characters, who are a clumsy, bumbling lot, particularly Tae Hoon and his awful attempts at wooing, which almost always seem to end up with him inadvertently grabbing poor Jeong Ju's breasts. The mix of gags works quite well, and the film is consistently funny throughout, if somewhat lacking in the kind of wild wacky abandon which might have been expected.

The film also benefits from some fittingly bright and breezy direction, and Kim throws in plenty of little visual flourishes to give the proceedings a real bubblegum feel. Although the pacing is a little off here and there, especially with some of the plot developments regarding time travel which seem to materialise out of thin air, things move along at a brisk pace, helped along by a bouncy pop soundtrack and the general lack of angst.

It pretty much goes without saying that Operation Makeover is a film aimed predominantly at female viewers, though it should also appeal to anyone looking for a fun-filled childhood flashback. Offering guilt-free laughs and one of the daftest depictions of time travel ever committed to celluloid, it stands as one of the better and least self-conscious romantic comedies from Korea in recent times.

by James Mudge - BeyondHollywood.com

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

Customer Review of "Operation Makeover"

Average Customer Rating for All Editions of this Product: Customer Review Rated Bad 7 - 7.5 out of 10 (2)

Rhoda
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July 15, 2007

This customer review refers to Operation Makeover (DVD) (Korea Version)
Very interesting Customer Review Rated Bad 8 - 8 out of 10
This is a light comedy and love story in one. Its different from the other movies that shows a time zone. At least this one has a happy ending. Nice movie. Recommend to get a copy.
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numinair
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March 22, 2007

This customer review refers to Operation Makeover (DVD) (Korea Version)
2 people found this review helpful

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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