My Sassy Girl
Director: Kwak Jae-Yong
Cast: Jeon Ji-Hyun, Cha Tae-Hyun
With a fruitful plot and many unforgettable moments, My Sassy Girl is definitely the best Korean film made in 2001. It is a film that requires multiple viewings. The more you see, the more fun you can retrieve from it.
The story of this film is adapted from a Korean novel published on the internet. The plotline is quite simple and direct indeed. Cha Tae-Hyun plays a benevolent college student who has a strange encounter with the drunken Jeon Ji-Hyun. They soon become friends. Because of Jeon's unique personality, they have a hard time getting together. Later, Cha discovers that...
After reading this brief synopsis, you may wonder what is so special about this story. Why is this film so great? At first glance, the story may really look typical, but the director was wise enough to turn banal subject into good drama. Surprise keeps popping up since every scene is handled creatively and every dialogue is built up brilliantly. For instance, the arrangement of Cha and Jeon's first "date" in the motel is a courageous and innovative idea. What is cool about it is that, contrary to the typical assumption that motel must be connected to sex, this scene does not imply any sexual meaning at all, yet it is still very funny and surprising. Other scenes like the kidnapping at the theme park, delivery of flower in the lecture hall, or even the soft conversation under the tree are all remarkable. The story keeps you refreshed by bringing you unexpected moments again and again.
Without doubt this film is a comedy, the jokes and the performance of the actors are excellent, yet the romantic part is also impressive. Considering that it is a light-hearted comedy, the sincere conversation of Jeon Ji-Hyun at the end is much more susceptible than I expected. The romance is depicted more faithful and passionate than many pure romance films.
Apart from love and humors, this film also contains certain sci-fi elements. As the director admitted, UFO does appear in the film once, so as the man from the future. These elements may not affect the major plot of the story, but it increases the rewatch value of the film to a certain extent. If you didn't know about all this bonus materials before, it is time to rewatch it again!
Talking about the cast, both Cha Tae-Hyun and Jeon Ji-Hyun have done a splendid job. As we all know, both of them are new actors, but they were able to humanize their characters and make them look appealing. They also succeeded in commanding the emotions of the audience at will.
My Sassy Girl is a well constructed work. It is easy to make a conclusion for this review - go watch it! If you have missed the theatrical release, it's time to get the DVD now!
DVD (HK version) - The DVD version contains two disc. Disc one is the feature film with two audio track, Korean and Cantonese, and some deleted scenes. Disc two contains many special features, which includes trailer, "making of" documentary, music video, a coverage of Jeon Ji-Hyun's promotional tour in Hong Kong and an interview with the dubbed version artist Miriam Yeung.
Cool guy(s) - Jeon Ji-Hyun, Cha Tae-Hyun
Reviewed by: Kantorates