On a recent trip to Ktown, I was looking fairly fine, so I decided to buy some Korean movies at the bookstore. And when I say buy Korean movies, I actually mean visit my fake Korean boyfriend who works at the video counter. Now me and Fake Korean Boyfriend go way back–I mean from my first visit to KTown back for the BigBang concert.
Thus far our relationship as consisted of me looking at each individual movie case (as they are all in Korean and I have no idea what movie is what) while he sits behind the counter watching Korean Television as I slyly glance over at him through the corner of my eye–too embarrassed to actually say something. (Oh yeah, I’ve got mad game.)
A few visits ago, after he gave me a big discount on my videos because “I see you here all the time.” I realized–this was it–we were totally dating now!
I shudder to think what his parents will think of me.
So scene is set, I was there, he was watching some sort of variety show, and I made my move. Which for me, is bringing my videos to the counter. This time I’d chosen from the indistinguishable bunches, Sector 7, an action movie with Ha Ji Won actually mentioned in Secret Garden, something that looks like a thriller-y detective movie (it’s all about the pictures on the cover, as, as I said, I understand nothing of the wording.) The third movie looked to be some sort of family drama, where there was a family on the cover, all looking happy.
Now I’m fairly careful when I pick out movies (well, again, as careful as I can be without being able to actually read what it’s about). Here is my list of no-no’s:
1) Is it super sexual? For those of you who aren’t really experienced in Korean movies, as much as the Kdramas are super innocent, the movies are decidedly not. You think you’re in for a regular drama and then all of a sudden your watching soft porn. (Not. Kidding.) Not that I have anything super against the soft porn, but all boxes are being filtered with the reality that I’m going to have to hand my choice over to my Fake Korean Boyfriend. Someone perving it up on the cover is just not going to work.
2) Does it appear to be a horror movie? To which I say, no thank you–partly because I don’t know what that would say about me to my FKB–but also, I don’t really want to watch them. I know I’m really just buying them in an attempt to lure FKB into my clutches, but I’m also cheap and won’t buy something I won’t watch.
3) Does it look like Cha Tae Hyun is in the movie? Blech. If so, that is an immediate no for me.
4) Does it appear to be horribly depressing? Now this one is slightly harder. When you are reading the synopsis or a description of the movie in English, it’s easier to avoid these. If it says “bittersweet” anywhere on the packaging and you don’t want to cry your eyeballs out? Stay away. Far away. If you’re going by pictures alone, it’s a little harder to spot these movies. Some things to look out for? Sad people. If the people look sad and depressed, chances on the sobbing scale are high. Is Jung Woo Sung in it? As hot as he his, I’ve learned it’s best to avoid his movies which include the likes of A Moment To Remember where he plays a husband losing his wife to early onset Alzheimer and Sad Movie, which is just…so sad. Does it have a couple who look like they have fallen upon hard economic times clutching each other? Yeah, in Korean Movies it’s not enough for poor people to be poor, they must be poor with horrible things happening to them.
So that’s a fairly detailed list of things to watch out for. Looking at this video box filled with with happy looking people hugging each other, I thought I was in the clear. I figured I was in for a warm family drama.
I figured wrong.
I don’t know what that family was smiling about. The entire movie (The Last Blossom) was about a taken for granted wife and mother…DYING FROM CANCER. Come on Kmovies, why you gotta be like that? I knew almost from the first 5 minutes that in about 2 hours I’d be crying. And waddya know? Indeed I was.
Is it me or does there seem to be an inordinate amount of tear-jerking movies out there? Now granted, it might be cold-hearted to say that this wasn’t an ugly-cry movie, there was no full out sobbing (as you should know there is a difference between crying and sobbing and the difference is UGLY) but still, I’d done my due diligence! I’d looked at the cover saw people smiling and said “Yes, this one.”
Why didn’t Fake Korean Boyfriend not warn me ahead of time? Why didn’t he give me the heads up that this wasn’t what I was looking for? He could have looked at the title and given me some sort of signal, a shake of the head, a blink of the eye, heck even a change of the channel, to let me know that this movie was not going to work out the way I’d hoped–that despite my careful research, by watching this movie I’d up with the ‘trying to hold back tears’ headache I was trying to avoid?
It’s like he doesn’t even know me at all.