Ha Ji Won's Movie "Korea, As one", very inspirational, latest addition to her collections of best movies and drama
Let me talk first of my personal feelings while watching
I can't explain my feeling while watching this film, reminded me of that kind of "high" when I played basketball with my former boss and we won the female basketball. My boss was a good shooter, and I used my height in defense so she can shoot more and our opponents cannot. I love the feeling, some office mates thought I really played basketball, probably thinking of my cousin who was a Philippine Basketball Association Player , but I never played basketball, not really into sport, I don't know why I loss that part of me....but my boss was a varsity player when she was in highschool, so she was the real hero of the game.
Watching "As one" reminded me of that heroic feeling, when people believe you can bring your team to championship. Though my "being" a basketball player was just temporary, it was different with the table tennis players in this story, because playing and winning for them is their lives, and table tennis is their life long acitivity.
Korea "As One", is a true to life story of a popular Table Tennis Player Hyun Jung Wa, played by my favorite actress "Ha Ji Won" actually I look forward to this movie because of her. As usual I am excited of what is she going to do this time.
Hyun Jung Wa's Choice and Instant Younger Sister
Because of this movie, friendship blooms among actors and actresses, well just judging from the behind the scene photo of Ha Ji Won and Bae Doo Na in one of the photos I posted here. But anyway the real Hyun Jung Wa became a close friend with the lead actress "Ha Ji Won", I watched them appeared in one variety show and I enjoyed watching them while telling their funny story when they met accidentally in a sauna, I also like it when Hyun Jung Wa said that Hajiwon can drink more than one bottle of Soju.
Ha Ji won is Hyun Jung Wa's personal choice to play as "her" in the movie "As One". She said the decision was made at the time Secret Garden was still showing, and Gil Ra Im became a very popular character.
I also like the values that she shared Ha Jiwon when Jiwon almost gave up filming Korea, because she felt like she can't learn table tennis when she should be the first one to learn. Not the exact word but something like this "it's good the she felt something like that, because she can use the feeling to get encourage to learn", and so the rest is history.
Appreciating Bae Doo Na
I never knew Bae Doo Na and I don't remember watching her or seeing her in some Korean Drama or Movie. But playing the role of the North Korean Li Bun Hi, I think she was excellent. She was cold and stiff, and when she played the ping pong she really looked like a player, with all the sweat plus the hair all over her face. She and Jiwon were quite boyish in this movie, but in reality both were so lady like. I heard Bae Doo Na is also a fashion model, I saw her filmography and she has done a lot of films and drama too. Her ex-boyfriend was the actor the in the drama "Brain". So Yes I started reading about her... she is also a fine actress that I am not surprised now how good she was as "Li Bun Hi".
OH and I need to acknowledge her playing here as Left Handed when her dominant is right. the real Li Bun Hi is left handed so Bae Doo Na, needed to learn to use her left hand, handling the paddle and fight with it... (read this part in Seen in Jeonju blog archive or http://www.koreanfilm.org/tom/?p=3858)
Ha Ji Won as Hyun Jung Wa
JIwon still has her short hair here, quite longer that her Gil Raim hairstyle, but still short which complimented her boyish movement in the movie. Ji Won is definitely pretty in all hairstyles but I don't know why I specially like her in short hair. Is it because her hair was short when she met Hyun Bin? (sorry for that he is not included in the movie, just a teaser to Jiwon-Binnie fans), moving on, no one among the players have long hair anyway...
I can say that I like Ha Jiwon's acting here....acting here does not only mean crying in the entire duration of the movie, but how she carried herself as the Hyun Jung Wa... She was good when expressing sarcasm towards Li Bun Hi, of course to act out the aura of a champion table tennis player is another thing.
I really like the championship against China part. During the double game with Li Bun Hi. There was a part there when Li Bun Hi almost collapsed during the game and Hyun Jung Wa said "let's stop here, it's good enough that".. but Li Bun HI said "you must bring your father the gold, be true to yourself Jung Wa", and she stood up; ., Hyun Jung Wa said " sure I want the gold, and I want to win but I don't want to lose you for it,", and Li Bun HI answered "the Gold is important for me, Gold medal for you and me and our team", and she started to move getting ready to play again. I like Jiwon here, tears are already dropping from her eyes, but in order not to get too emotional she jumped and jumped and breathed deeply... what a way to restraint the emotion to get in the way..
Well I can say that I am bit relax here as compared to her other films that I watched. I was not at the edge of my seat while watching, but I was crying almost in most part of the movie especially in the latter part.
What I like about the movie
I like the friendship and the values shown in this movie.... Sportsmanship and honesty... there was a part there when Hyun Jung Wa and her partner in were playing against Li Bun HI and partner. Whoever wins will play in the championship. Hyun Jung Wa hit the ball but the ball missed hitting the corner of the table meaning, it was in favor of Li Bun Hi's team, her team mates insisted it did hit the table, and arguments started between North and South Korean players. But Hyun Jung Wa said, "no it did not..." although it would mean her team's disqualification in doubles final, she chose to tell the truth and walked out.
The sad part in the story was at that time, it was impossible to connect with friends in North Korea, that is why when North Korean players needed to leave immediately, it was very painful for them and no one among them knows when to see each other again...
The Story is short and simple...but the productions and stars really took their time with this film. The actors need to learn how to play table tennis first to make their portrayal realistic. Again this movie talked about reunification of North and South Korea.
© 2012 Maria Cecilia
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