Thursday, 10 January 2008

Almost Love (2006)

Korean title: 청춘만화 (Cheong-choon-man-hwa)

What's popping:

Kwon Sang-woo - he can do melodrama (Stairway to Heaven), action (Running Wild) and comedy so well. Is there anything this versatile actor can't do?

The chemistry between Kwon Sang-woo and Kim Ha-neul is explosive. It is so fun to watch them together. Their roles call for them to be chummy buddies, and they do that extremely well here. (These two were paired up in the popular 2003 rom-com My Tutor Friend).

Childhood friends Ji-hwan (Kwon) and Dal-rae (Kim) are the bestest of friends, OK BFF. The duo even have their own secret handshake.

They tease each other like nobody's business, get into squabbles all the time but are friends who care very much for each other. Like that time when Dal-rae played lookout while Ji-hwan and her boyfriend both took a bath in the public toilet.

Knock, knock: Rub-a-dub-dub...

The ribbing between Ji-hwan and Dal-rae is a hoot - bushy armpits, anyone? And Ji-hwan's physical comedy does tickle the funnybone. You've just got to check out the pair singing karaoke and that "chest bump" dance.

Singin' & dancin' machines: Ji-hwan (Kwon, right) and Dal-rae (Kim)
show us what they've got

The story is well-written and when the flick veers into melodrama territory, it doesn't feel too dragged-out but nicely keeps up with the flick's original pace.

The main characters are nicely fleshed out through flashback sequences showing how close they were as kids.

A throughly enjoyable watch, and to think I wasn't too keen on watching it in the first place because Kwon Sang-woo has "mushroom head" (tung ku tau - Cantonese) in the movie. That bob hairstyle ala Jackie Chan's early years is hilarious, no?

The plot:

College student Ji-hwan is an action star wannabe who takes on jobs as a stuntman. His dream is to become an action star like his idol, Jackie Chan.

His best friend Dal-rae is an aspiring actress who usually fails auditions because she shakes like a leaf when speaking in public.

Good friends: 'BFF! Hwaiting!'

While others think the pair of childhood friends are so right for each other, both Dal-rae and Ji-hwan are actually seeing other people.

However, when a tragedy strikes, the pair begin to realise that maybe, just maybe, they are meant for each other after all.

Watch it:

I raided a friend's DVD stash while at his house one day. Muah ha ha ha ha...please, get the DVD. I think I will get a copy for keeps.

Pics credit: HanCinema

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meiruo_chan said...

상우 오빠! I watch this movie last year around summer? Nice movie indeed. Kwon Sang Woo and Kim Ha Neul have great chemistry, don't you think? But of course, I prefer their first collaboration (My Tutor Friend) the most. But Kwon Sang Woo really great too in this one. I love the 'The Beatles' hair! Never thought he can pull-off that look. Haha...what a cutie!

Anonymous said...

Wow what a bod in that shower scene!

fraulein said...

Thanks for the review, i went out to rent my copy earlier, will watch it tmr and tell u how i feel about it ...

Liz said...

Ok fraulein, do tell us how you liked the show :-).

Anonymous said...

It was ok, I still think their first movie together, My Tutor Friend, is better than this one. And yes, the mushroom hair looks cute and funny!

Orchid said...

i LOVE this movie. if i wanted to introduce someone to Korean movies, this will be in the list. It's a wonderful story about friendship.

We borrowed this DVD from a friend who's a movie buff - not a Korean movie buff mind who just has a penchant for good movies. And this was in his collection! Then i read the cover of the DVD and it said that this is one of the best Korean movies in 2006! =)

I have not seen My Tutor Friend. Will definitely look out for it now...


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