Friday, March 22, 2013

Korean Dramas and Movies

I love watching Korean dramas and movies. Some can be boring and repetitive, but mostly they are kind of funny and charming in their own way. Apparently I like the high school ones and arranged marriage ones. Here is a list of the dramas and movies I have seen. If you know of any good ones to watch let me know!

DRAMAS:
18 vs. 29 (열여덟 스물아홉) This was a good one, but a bit slow in some parts.
Air City (에어시티 ) unfortunately I could not get pass the first episdoe, it just didn't draw me in.
All My Love (몽땅 내사랑 ) I started it, but haven't finished it, 210 episdoes is a lot to watch. JoKwon is of course hilarious.
Arang and the Magistrate (아랑사또전) this was a really good one and it showed how Koreans view death and ghosts. Really interesting.
Assorted Gems (aka Jewel Bibimbap) (보석비빔밥) this is a 50 episode show, but it goes pretty fast. There aren't a lot of flashbacks like in Dae Jang Geum, which makes it a lot easier to watch. The characters are interesting and there is a bit to learn about Korean drama writers since one of the main characters is one. But the last episode I felt was horribly rushed and a bit was left unexplained.
Bad Man (나쁜 남자) I only got to episdoe 3. I really want to like it and watch more, mostly because of Kim Jae Wook, but I really don't like it.
Big (빅) this show was really good, but the ending was too vague for me.
Cheongdamdong Alice (청담동 앨리스) I am currently watching this, on episode 9! (EDIT:8/8/2013) The show started off well, but it really dragged towards the middle. The last four or five episodes were really hard for me to get through.
Cinderella's Sister (신데렐라 언니) I only got to episode 3, which is too bad since 2PM's Taecyeon doesn't appear until episode 5.
City Hunter (시티헌터) This was a great show. My husband didn't even complain too much, normally he whines the whole time I am watching a Korean show.
Coffee Prince (커피프린스 1호점) This one was fun, but I don't know why the main character Go Eun Chan, didn't come out and say she was a girl right away. There seems to be a genre of girls dressing as boys and have a boy fall in love with the girl while thinking that she is a he. Very strange.
Dae Jang Geum (aka Jewel in the Palace) (대장금) This is a very long show, 54 episdoes. The problem with watching Korean dramas all in a row is that that is not how they are viewed in Korea. They show one episode a day and you get maybe two episodes a week. So, with the longer running shows they will show flashbacks to make sure the audience hasn't forgotten things that happened in the beginning of the show. It happens more and more often towards the end of the show. So, watching them all in a row I had to fast forward a lot. But it was a really interesting show, I did like seeing all the cooking, since court cooking is extravagant. And really it is hard to believe there was ever a time when Korea didn't have red chili peppers to use in their cooking.
Delightful Girl Choon Hyang (쾌걸 춘향) This show is loosely based on the legend of Choon Hyang, but set in modern times. It is another high school show.
Dream High (드림하이) I really enjoyed this show and the cast is full of ideols (2PM's Taecyeon and Wooyoung, Miss A's Suzy, IU and even more have cameos throughout the episodes.) This show was very easy to watch.
Dream High 2 (드림하이 시즌2) This show had the same amount of idols, but it didn't have as good of a story line, it just fell kind of flat. I couldn't really root for any of the characters, they were mostly all shallow.
Faith (aka The Great Doctor) (신의) Loved this show! I was waiting very eagerly for this show to be subbed every time there was a new episode. Lee MinHo (이민호) is a great actor. I do wish there had been a bit more between the two main actors in the last scene, but it was a great show.
Flower Boy Ramen Shop (꽃미남 라면가게) I did watch this show, but for me it was a bit hard to get through. I really can't believe that any grown woman (25) would fall for a high schooler (I believe he is 17 at the beginning of the show.) It doesn't make sense to me.
Full House (풀하우스) I started watching this, but didn't finish it, because I went on vacation and when I came back I couldn't remember what website I was watching it on. I think it was hulu.com, but I'm not sure. I need to check. It has Rain (비) in it.
Goong (aka Princess Hours) (궁) This is the first Korean drama that I can ever remember watching. This is a show that I have watched over, a couple of times, and still enjoy it.
Goong S (aka Prince Hoo) (궁S) I think I only watched two or three episodes. I couldn't get into the show at all. It lacks the cuteness of the first Goong and the story line isn't related to the first Goong at all. The characters are all different.
Gu Family Book (구가의 서) Great! Great! The story was so good, I don't know why k-netizens were complaining about Suzy's acting. Choi Jin Hyuk had a great voice and presence as Gu Wol Ryeong.
Iljimae (일지매) I haven't been able to finish this one yet, only on episode five, because the rest of the episodes haven't been subtitled. But so far the store is interesting. It is a historical drama, but it doesn't have just nobility characters.
In-Soon is Pretty (인순이는 예쁘다) I cannot remember how far I got into this series, maybe episode three or four.  It was too depressing, I couldn't finish it.  Nothing ever goes right for the main character.
Marry Stayed out all Night (매리는 외박중) This was a cute show with Moon Geun Young, Jang Geun Suk and Kim Jae Wook.  It was a bit slow in some parts, but rather easy to watch.
My Girlfriend is a Gumiho (내 여자친구는 구미호) This was a bit fun, a bit sad, and some times a bit tedious.  No Min Woo was great in it though, and I wish they would have explained a bit more on the background of his character.
Obsetrics and Gynecology Doctors (산부인과 여의사)  Song Joong Ki was really cute in this drama.  It is too bad that his character is so ruled by his parents, he dumps his girlfriend because of his parents and then tries to get back together with her once his parents find out that her family won the lottery (but his parents don't know that it is the same girl.
Pasta (파스타) Another show where I am not quite sure how the main female and male character end up together.  The male character played by Lee Sun Gyun treats the female character, played by Gong Hyo Jin, horribly.  He fires her several times and is always in a bad mood around her, but some how she falls for him and his bad temper means he likes her?  This seems to happen a lot in Korean dramas.  Any way, No Min Woo is in this show too, as a minor character, but he plays a drums only cover of 2PM's Heartbeat (you can see it here, be forewarned he is topless, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rJNU1omNUdQ&list=PLDA2B6260380210A0&index=21 .) Ah, I kind of miss him dressing up as a girl.
Playful Kiss (장난스런 키스) I thought that this was a really cute show.  It is based on the manga Itazura na Kiss (イタズラな Kiss) and stars Kim Hyun Joong of SS501 fame.  Kim Hyun Joong's character is supposed to be a super nerd, althetic and cute.  Oh Ha Ni is the character that likes him, but she is rather dumb (and kind of annoying at times), clumsy and supposed to be plain.  I don't know why this show didn't do well in Korea, but I know it was very popular with international fans.
Sunkyunkwan Scandal (성균관 스캔들) This show was interesting at times, it shows what women were allowed and not allowed to due during the Joseon Dynasty.  It could be slow at times, but it had Soong Joong Ki and of course he was cute.
Tamra the Island (탐나는 도다) Set in what is in modern times Jejudo. (Jeju Special Self-governing Province) (제주특별자치도) For me this was a hard series to watch.  I don't understand why they had Pierre Deporte portray an English man instead of a French man, since he is duh! a French man, even if his Korean is really good.  I don't know if it is because the show had an archic dialect, but I could not get into it at all.  I think I stopped after the third or fifth episode.
The Moon that Embraces the Sun (해를 품은 달)  I only watched the parts that had the main characters as kids, they were really cute, the rest of the show hadn't been subtitled at that point.  I am sure if I go back now they will be done, just have to find the time.
Tree with Deep Roots (뿌리깊은 나무) I started this on viki.com, but I didn't finish. Not because I didn't like it, but because the rest of the episodes didn't have subtitles yet. I will have to go back and see if any more of it is done. It is about King Sejong, the credited inventor of the Korean writing system and about the conspiracy surrounding the king at that time.
You're Beautiful (미남이시네요) I think this is the first drama I watched that had Jang Geun Suk and/or Park Shin Hye in it.  I liked the show and enjoyed it, but I didn't understand Shin Hye's character at all.  Geun Suk's character is such a grump.  I think if Shin Woo, Jung Young Hwa's character, had actually gotten so real nerve up sooner that she would have ended up with him, and probably been happier in the long run.
Who Are You (후아유) I think this is Taecyeon's third drama, not sure. It is the third drama I've seen with So Yi Hyun, she was my favorite sister in Assorted Gems. Kim Jae Wook is also in it, hasn't appeared very much yet, only the 4th episode has been released.





MOVIES:
200 Pounds Beauty (미녀는 괴로워)  This movie is a bit disturbing, I think mainly because it shows how Korean people deal with idol culture and plastic surgery culture.
Baby and Me (아기와 나) A cute movie with Jang Geun Suk (You're Beautiful) as a teenager.  A baby is dropped off at his house with a note saying that he is the baby's dad.  Fun to watch, not serious at all.
Il Mare (시월애)  Keanu Reeves and Sandra Bullock started in the 2006 remake called The Lake House.  I watched the full move of The Lake House, but I honestly cannot remember if I watched all of Il Mare.  I might have to go back later and watch it again.
Mr Idol (Mr. 아이돌 ) About and idol group's reunion.  The only actor in the movie who is actually is an idol is Jay Park, he was in the idol group 2PM before he dropped out.  A enjoyable movie, but there are a tone of things the actors do to "train" that I don't believe idols do.
My Little Bride (어린 신부)  This movie is kind of cute, but at times it is just really creepy.  Also, my husband thinks that Moon Geun Young's face is really messed up.  I have to admit some times I think she is either cross-eyed or wall-eyed.  Sorry "Korean nation's little sister."

There are a ton of new shows coming out, or have already started that I want to watch, but I think I need to finish some of the ones I have already started before adding anything new.

Currently Reading:


The Eye of the World: Book One of 'The Wheel of Time' by Robert Jordan

I tried reading this book once before, but I really couldn't get into reading it.  I am trying again with my book club, we'll see how it goes.

P.S. I can't find my camera, so mad.  It has all the pictures I have taken on how to make various Korean recipes.  I might have to start over if I don't find it soon.


Swagbucks it is how I make money for amazon gift cards!

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