Friday, June 24, 2011
My Sassy Girl (2001)-Jun Ji-hyun,Cha Tae-hyun
There is a reason why the original version of My Sassy Girl has been hailed as Asia's pre-eminent romantic comedy, the movie is absolutely funny yet able to make you cry at the right moments, without it feeling forced or ludicrous.
The film follows the story of Gyeon-woo, a young male engineering student who meets a drunk girl on a train station. Due to some strange circumstance where the girl in her drunk stupor calls him "darling" and drops unconscious, he is somewhat forced to look after her and brings her to stay overnight in a motel. This chance encounter would eventually lead them to a strange and as the korean title implies "bizarre" love affair, where the male lead is forced to do more absurd favors for this girl. Looking from a movie-goer's viewpoint, one would make the mistaken notion that this sort of thing would never happen in real life, which is false, My Sassy girl is based on a true story, most of the things that happened in the film are actually based on a series of blogs written by a Love-struck korean for his sassy girl. But then again when watching this gem of a movie that sort of information is un-needed . Ridiculous as most of the situations are, you do believe in the connection and the romance brewing between the two characters. One scene could start out real funny and end up touching you. Like the pivotal scene where Gyeon-woo sneaks inside an all-girl school, to present a rose to his sassy girl while she performs pachelbel's canon in the auditorium.
My Sassy Girl in effect, seems to be better than most romantic comedies that Hollywood churns out. In fact Hollywood did try to make a remake in 2008 which absolutely flopped both critically and financially. They forgot to add the elements which made the original so successful, which is a screwball storyline infused with strong asian romanticism, and the ability to make the ridiculous look so natural and believable . And then of course there is the two leads, Jesse Bradford in the remake was too clean and good-looking to match Cha Tae-hyun's goofy yet endearing performance, and Elisha Cuthbert wasn't as Sassy or bizarre as Jun Ji-Hyun. Jun Ji-Hyun was the absolute star of the original, she carried the character and the film , My Sassy Girl wouldn't be as great as it is without her in the title role. Watch it if you haven't yet, it is one truly amazing film.