This was nothing new, only now it has become a wave to be reckoned with. Korean films have been recognized many times of their originality, but also from their gruesomeness: 박찬욱Chan-wook Park‘s Old Boy [올드보이 ](2003), 봉준호Joon-ho Bong‘s The Host [괴물] (2006), …Both producers/directors/writers had taken a stab at American cinematography, however, either had been a major box-office winner. The reason was that there hadn’t been enough Korean influence yet when these films came out. (read my reviews of The Stoker (2013), and Snowpiercer (2013), from the respective directors). But I think soon this will be changed. If New York Times has taken noticed running story after story about Korean TV and movie -makings, it has to be some golden prediction: China’s Love Affair With Irresistible Korean TV(www.nytimes.com).
So far I have seen three TV productions, and none have left me disappointed yet. The first was The Spring Day of My Life[내 생애 봄날 ](2014), the two main characters, Kang Dong-Ha(감우성Kam Woo-Sung) and Lee Bom-Yi(수영Sooyoung), had impeccable chemistry, and the story clued us into traditions of Korean marriage and family (who would know love between an older man and a younger woman is forbidden? A gentleman will avoid such situation out of respect of the girl’s parents.)
The second was Birth of a Beauty[미녀의 탄생] (2014), Director ,이창민, Lee Chang-Min. It was a cross between Drop Dead Diva (TV Series), and The Swan (TV Series). Despite a fairly big cast, at the end each character stood out on their own, and the love story between the two main characters, Han Tae-Hee(주상욱Joo Sang-Wook) and Sara(한예슬Han Ye-Seul), was carefully thought-out that carried depth.
The third was the one I want to highlight and to show good these Korean TV drama series really were. My Beautiful Bride[아름다운 나의 신부] (2015), Director,김철규,Kim Cheol-Kyu is about, love, corruption, idealism, principle, social and political zeitgeist, promises, and manipulation. First episode starts out with a raid of some local mafia, who is into human trafficking, insurance fraud, loan sharking, human organs brokering,… It took the cops, Captain Cha(이시영Lee Si-Young),three years to catch the guy with the help of our female lead, Yoon Joo-Young(고성희Ko Sung-Hee),used as an informant. So she thinks she could have a fresh start, she falls in love with our male lead, Kim Do-Hyeong(김무열Kim Moo-Yul), who works for a bank, born into a rich family.
16 episodes tell how Joo-Young can’t run from her past, and Do-Hyeong reluctant to give up hope on his first and last love. In between their everlasting love, there are corruptions among bank, police chief, and lawyers; sharks territory fights; back stabbing career climbers; mafia boss’s boss got canned; old style “let sleeping dogs lie”, and new style “rattle the cage” activism. Truly, all wrap like lettuce with Korean kalbi: mouth watering delicious!
However, it did get tedious, bit drawn out, overly sappy between episodes 9-11, but it quickly picked up again from 12 – final 16. The most amazing thing was each episode ended with a cliff-hanger that would have you said to yourself, ” What 뭐(mwo)?!”
WATCH! … find them on the Internet, 결의? I guarantee you will stop watching silly reality shows quicker than a mosquito bite.