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Movie and Series Review South Korea

As the Netherlands is still completely under lockdown, and probably will be for a long time. What else is there to do than to scower the internet and watch every single movie and drama there is? A while ago I saw a movie of a former Kpop artist I used to really like, Ok Taecyeon of 2PM. With my predisposition for soft cute things but also scary things I tried the series where Taecyeon plays a young man called Park Bong-Pal who, since his young age has been able to see and touch ghosts and demons. Half raised by a ghost hunting, alcoholic monk after the death of his mother and disappearance of his father he makes money by secretly hunting and defeating ghosts.

Having taken up the job as exorcist and banishing ghost by fighting them through posting advertisement online, “Will face off with your ghosts. Chances of winning: virgin ghosts 80%, bachelor ghosts 40%, child ghosts 97%, the rest 50%.” He only started the job to make 1 billion won so he can have surgery so he won’t be able to use his gift any longer.

 

In the first episode Bong-Pal is called out to an abandoned school to fight a strong female student ghost in an abandoned school, while two of his schoolmates, who run GhostNet as school’s extracurricular, are trying to capture ghosts on live stream in that same school. While fighting Hyun-Ji, the female student, she reveals not to have any memories of herself or her death but when they fall down the stairs and accidentally kiss (or more bump lips)  some of her memories come back and Hyun-Ji after talking to a friend who happens to also be a ghost (though different from her) decides to continue stalking Bong-Pal to try and kiss him again in the hopes of gaining more memories. Besides from the female student there happens to be another ghost in the abandoned abandoned school and the two GhostNet students, Choi Cheon-sang and Kim In-rang film Bong-Pal fighting the pervert ghost, thus uncover Bong-Pal’s secret of being able to see and touch ghosts.

Faith changes their paths and in some twisted way Bong-Pal becomes friends and business partners with Choi Cheon-sang and Kim In-rang and the ghost Hyun-Ji. Together they try to uncover Hyun-ji’s past and death and Kim In-rang meets Hyun-Ji after falling down some stairs and falls hopelessly in love with the angel he’s seen.

Bring it on, Ghost! is based on a webtoon/manga by Im Insu which ran from 2007 until 2010 and as far as I can find since it’s been ten years ago since the last release the reactions to the webtoon were mixed. The tv series, which came out in 2016, were much better received, especially with the cast. So well even that is was ranked ninth place for most watched in 2016.

싸우자 귀신아 Ssawooja Gwishina – ( Bring it on, Ghost (English title) / Let’s Fight Ghost (literal title)
Country: South Korea
Language: Korean
Genre: Comedy, Fantasy, Romance
Release Date: 11 July 2016 (South Korea)
Duration: 60 min (per episode) 16 episodes.

Directors: Park Joon-hwa, Myung Hyun-woo
Writer: Lee Dae-il (Manga by Im Insu)
Stars: Ok Taec-yeon, Kim So-hyun, Kwon Yul

Where to watch: Netflix,  Viki, Youtube

Opinion
10 out of 10

This clumsy, romantic, dramatic but also suspense filled series shows that Ok Taecyeon’s step from music to movie was a good choice. He is an absolute heartthrob again in these series though my ultimate favorites are Kang Ki-young and Lee David as I love goofy characters a lot. The series are good, it’s not dragged out or sped up in any way but it builds character and each relationship up well. I would watch ten more of these types of drama if I could (I probably will though). Though I haven’t seen anything else with Kwon Yul in it, I think he absolutely nails his role as professor Joo Hye-sung. I watched these series with a couple of weeks break but I didn’t need to reconnect at all, I fell right into where I left off and binged the hell out of it. When you think that the peak of the story has been reached they throw the entire plot into a different direction and I absolutely loved it. From the stupid jokes they make, the overdone acting that you usually see in Kdrama’s.

What mostly kept me watching is that the entire series wasn’t solely based on romantics but also family troubles, the paranormal and academics. The balance of the entire series is drawn out perfectly and it makes it easier to watch, the tiny little jump scares make it fun! I noticed that recently the series have been expanded from Korean to a Thai remake and I might give it a try to see if it’s as good as the Korean one.

I have no bad remarks about this series though I am confused as to why Netflix has parts of the items or street names blurred out. Which for me makes it harder to watch because I’ll focus on the blurred out items…. especially when a couple of frames later they forget to blur it and it’s still on screen. All in all, Bring it on, Ghost is awesome and everyone crazy about Kdrama’s should watch it if they haven’t yet.

 

Marjoleine’s top picks: South Korean movie &  Drama
1. Bring it on, Ghost!
2. #Alive
3. Last Child – 살아남은 아이

 

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