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Top Ten Best Korean Romantic-Comedy Films
There is nothing as satisfying and fun as a romantic comedy. Although, there are probably lots of new romantic comedy that came out in the recent years, I want to share my favorite list of Korean romantic comedy way back in 2000, with a few bonus titles at the comment section that come highly recommended by readers. I hope all of you would appreciate the movies. All these are rated G or PG, so they are appropriate for young viewers and young-at-heart adults.
Enjoy with friends or with your special someone!
Top Ten Best Korean Rom-Com Films
1. My Sassy Girl
Cha Tae-hyun and Jun Ji-hyun
2. 100 Days with Mr. Arrogant
Ha Ji-won and Kim Jaewon
3. 200 Pounds Beauty
Kim Ah-joong and Joo Jin-mo
4. The Art of Seduction
Son Ye-jin and Song Il-gook
5. My Wife is a Gangster (1-3)
2001, 2003, 2006
Shin Eun-kyung, Park Sang-myun, Ahn Jae-mo, and Kim In-kwon
6. Please Teach Me English
Lee Na-young and Jang Hyuk
7. I'm a Cyborg But That's OK
Rain and Im Soo-jung
8. My Little Bride
Moon Geun-young and Kim Rae-won
9. Unstoppable Marriage
Kim Soo-mi, Im Chae-moo, Eugene, and Ha Seok-jin
10. Seducing Mr. Perfect
Uhm Jung-hwa and Daniel Henney
1. My Sassy Girl
Are you one of those who believe in time machines? Do you ever wonder how it would be like to meet someone who belonged to you future? Or the possibility of being with someone who resembles too much of your past love only to realize that he was after all the one for you? Then I'm sure you can relate to this romantic comedy movie.
My Sassy Girl is based on a series of true stories Kim Ho Sik posted about his relationship with his girlfriend. The movie closely follows the sequence in the best-selling book. Kyun-woo (Cha), an Engineering student had a call from his mother telling him to visit his aunt for a possible date. While on the train platform, he pulls this girl to safety.Inside the train, he stares at her who was very drunk and she throws up on a passenger and faintsafter she calls Kyun-woo "honey". He is then bullied into assisting this obnoxious girl on a train since the other passengers assume that he is her boyfriend. Being flustered of the even he decided to carry her to the nearest hotel to take care of her and clean her up. They met again after he got locked up in jail due to misunderstanding. They had soju and that night, the girl admit that she broke up with her bf that's why she gets really drunk ending up to another trip to that same hotel. After that second overnight, she became more involved in Kyun-woo's life that at one time, she pulls him out of the class and told the teacher that Kyun-woo was the father of her soon to be aborted baby.
Over time, Kyun-woo develops a deep sense of responsibility for her, which enables him to somehow tolerate her abusive personality, all the crazy mood swings she have and he was so determine to help her get through the pain that she felt inside of her.
This movie was a mega-blockbuster in Asia and was remade into an American rom-com.
2. 100 Days of Mr. Arrogant
After being dumped by her young boy friend during their 100th day anniversary, Ha-Young (Ha Ji-Won) meet a college guy named Hyung-Joon when she kicks a can that accidentally hits him in the face and causes him to scratch his Lexus. He demands that she pay him $3000 on the spot. She escapes from him, leaving her wallet behind. Hyung-Joon stalks her, demanding money to pay for his car. Since she is a poor high school student Hyung-Joon writes up a "Enslavement Agreement" for Ha-Young in order to pay for the damage to his car. Ha-Young is thrown into a nightmarish slave life for 100 days, running his errands, cleaning his house, washing his clothes, carrying his shopping, and cleaning his car.
By accident she finds out that the damage to Hyung-Joon's car only costs $10! She then takes her revenge. However, before she knows it Hyung-Joon shows up at her house as her new tutor! It made them closer to each other and once again takes advantage of her, little they knew that they're both falling for for each other. But as soon as Ha-Young caught herself falling head over heels for Hyung-Joon. He then frees her from the "slavery" agreement and kisses her but her mother saw what happened and threatens him to stay out of her daughter's life. Ha-Young tells Hyung-Jun that she wants to marry him but he only played with her. Then the next day, a new tutor arrived to take his place in teaching her.
Feeling so down, Ha-Young's determination to pass the college entrance exam increased and slowly turned her focus with her studies just to get in to Hyung-Jun's college. After the exam, she found out that she was not selected to enter that same college and her tutor consoled her and brought her someplace to take take her disappointment and also to surprise her.
3. 200 Pounds Beauty
Han-na, played by Kim Ah-joong is an overweight phone sex part-timer and the ghost-singer of the famous pop singer, Ammy, who usually lip syncs since her voice isn't that great. She has a big crush on Sang-jun, a director and the son of the entertainment company. During Sang-jun's birthday, Ammy intentionally shamed Han-na infront of Sang-jun knowing that she really like him so Han-na excused herself and cried in the bathroom. While crying, she overheard Sang-jun as he convince Ammy to be nice to Han-na so she won't walk away from them because they needed Han-na's voice for her career.
Feeling betrayed and heartbroken, Han-na went decided to just end up her life by shutting down the windows and all the openings of her house and let the gas leak. Unfortunately, she was interrupted by a phone call from one of her phone sex regular caller who was a top plastic surgeon. She recorded the sessions and brought them to his clinic for blackmailing so she can have a full surgery. At first he refuse to operate her but she threatens him of his secret fantasies and told him that she doesn't really want to undergo surgery to be beautiful but she needs it for her confidence, that she could live a happy life. With that, the surgeon was so deeply moved and immediately set the date for her surgery and kept her until she recovered.
Then the day finally come that she has a slender and amazing body and an angelic face that could easily catch a man's heart. She made a new identity since her old id's doesn't match her physical features that even her best friend Jung-min wasn't able to recognize her. Jung-min pushed her to audition as Ammy's ghost singer again but instead earned her own recording contract that even the director Sang-jun was so amazed by her singing and claimed that she was "all natural".
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4. The Art of Seduction
Min-Jun (SONG Il-Kook) and Ji-Won (SON Ye-Jin) are so-called the first rate "players" who are dating gurus with a 100% success rate in any dating pursuits. Following her usual systematic dating rules, Ji-Won fakes a car accident to get the attention of her target Plastic Surgeon guy and waited after he play golf to do do her mission while Ji-Won had made an appointed to his Psychiatrist interest of seduction knowing that she had recently broke up with her boyfriend like a month ago and as the way he sees it, seduction is not a technique but a science.
Then one day, while Min-Jun accompanied her Plastic surgeon man of interest for an expensive facial, she came across Ji-Won waiting area in the lobby since he too was with his Psychiatrist lady. She then had her eye on him and knew from her friend that Ji-Won has been there with different woman which sparks more of her interest on him.But before everything else happen, Min-Jun decided to bring her Plastic Surgeon man create an act as if she's being nuts just to turn him off and drive him away, at the same time, Ji-Won felt bored with his Psychiatrist so he deleted her number from his phone and browse through his phone album and his attention was caught by her stolen picture. Like always Min-Jun planned her schematic fake car accident and successfully caught Ji-Won's attention and approaches her for information and settle the damage without knowing that he feels the way that she does.
It is just the start of their bond together, with each of them knew that they're both players in this game called love. As time goes by, they get to know even more about each other's personality, who do you think would emerge victorious and become the last player standing?
5. My wife is a Gangster
Eun-jin also known as "Mantis" grew up to be a Kkangpae (Korean Mafia) gangster. During their early years at the orphanage, she was separated to her sibling named Yu-jin. She mean so much to her since she's the only family left. Years later, they were able to trace where Yu-jin was but along with their reunion was the sad news that Yu-jin has cancer and the doctor refused to operate her. Since Yu-jin won't live that long, her only wish was to see her sister Eun-jin get married.
As soon as she knew about her dying sister's wish, she assigned her followers to find him a guy that she could go on a blind date with. Romeo who was one of her underling invited a stylist to change her looks and outfit. Unfortunately, the date didn't go well and her date's parents didn't like her aggressive approached and backed out. She then again sent Romeo to find her an old couple to stand as her guardian and drove to the hospital. While Yu-jin waited in the car for her driver who have been caught in a fight with the group or drinkers, two men provoked her by insulting her due to her her car not being properly parked.
She hurriedly drove to catch up to those two guys and released her wrath to them by smashing up their car and breaking the car's windows and windshield. Meanwhile Kang Soo-il pass by them, being a kind hearted man, he tried to stop the fight and protect her but end up getting hit in the head.he was then sent to the hospital and Romeo offered a compensation but he refused and only asked if she was alright.
Due to that incident, he had become Eun-jin's prospect to be her husband so they settle everything from the date to their wedding until after Eun-jin got married, Yu-jin made another wish for her to bear a child and get pregnant. With Eun-jin's gangster life, would they make it to the happy ever after?
6. Please Teach Me English
Park Mun-su (Jang Hyuk) and Na Young-ju (Lee Na-young) are classmates in a private English class. Mun-su frequently chases women while working in his shoe shop. However, Young-ju has an unreciprocated interest in him. They eventually become friends, and frequently sit together in class.
One day, Young-ju boasts about a pig on her grandparents' farm who can recognize the English alphabet. The class decide to visit the pig, only to discover it has been eaten the same day and Young-ju just invented the whole story. Young-ju tries to train a piglet to recognize the alphabet; and when Mun-su finds out about her efforts, he tries to help her. However, the pig escapes, and has to be recaptured. The class and Young-ju's family have a party that night.
One day, while riding the bus, Young-ju catches Mun-su showing the photo of a woman who she mistakenly believes to be his girlfriend. Discouraged by this, Young-ju skips English classes. Her teacher, an Australian woman, tries to convince her to return to the classes. Young-ju attends a farewell party for the class, but Mun-su is not there. Afterwards she meets Mun-su's mother, who is looking for him. She discovers that his mother is about to meet the girl in the photo.
The girl, known as Victoria or Mun-young, speaks no Korean and needs Young-ju to translate. Dressed in a hanbok, Mun-su's mother and talking to Victoria, Young-ju, who thinks Victoria is her rival, purposefully translates incorrectly telling Victoria; "You looked more beautiful in the photo." Victoria is astonished. Young-ju tells Victoria that everybody hates her because she is not Korean. Victoria asks her to tell Mun-su's mother that she came with good intentions and leaves. Mun-su arrives to find his mother weeping. Young-ju hides. Victoria has checked out of the hotel, but Young-ju stops her car, and admits that she lied. Victoria reunites with Mun-su and his mother. Ashamed, Young-ju boards a train but Mun-su follows her, leaving his family behind. She tries to hide from him, but Mun-su finds Young-ju, loudly confessing to her that Victoria is not his girlfriend, but his long-lost sister from New York. They make up, kissing in the train, with the entire train cheering them on. They marry and have a baby.
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7. My Little Bride
Bo-eun (Moon Geun Young) is an ordinary high school girl who worries about grades and has a crush on her school's baseball team ace, Jung-woo. One day, Bo-eun's grandfather orders her to marry Sang-min (Kim Rae Won) because of a pact he made with Sang-min's grandfather during the Korean War. Despite the grandchildren's opposition, they are both forced to marry because of Bo-eun's grandfather's strong influence. Bo-eun's undercover married life begins: She pretends that she doesn't have a husband and starts dating Jung-woo. Bo-eun believes that she can manage both men and live a double life. Everything goes smoothly until Sang-min visits Bo-eun's school as a student teacher. There, a teacher called Miss.Kim flirts with Sang-min and she later found out that Sang-min and Bo-eun are secretly married. She punishes Bo-eun by making her paint a huge wall of a stage. Sang-min then helps Bo-eun with the work of painting without letting her know. When the entire family are having their monthly get together, Bo-eun's elder brother accidentally shows a video of Bo-eun with Jung-woo. Then after that she realizes her mistake of cheating Sang-min and apologizes to him. She also learns from her friend that Sang-min had been helping her. She then breaks up with Jung-woo. During a cultural festival at Bo-eun's school where Sang-min is asked to make a speech, it is revealed to the entire school that Sang-min and Bo-eun are married. Sang-min then tells everyone that Bo-eun was forced to marry him and begs everyone not to discriminate her and treat her just like others.Now, Bo-eun comes to the stage and tells Sang-min that she is not a kid anymore and tells that she loves him.
You won't want this movie to end! This is about a sweet high school girl and a college boy whose parents arrange for them to marry. Neither wants to marry the other (they both like other people) and it is funny and sweet to watch what happens.
Clocking in at almost two hours that you never want to end, My Little Bride is simply just what Korean romantic comedy needs at a time of trite formula and My Sassy Girl rip-offs. As the second biggest domestic film of 2004, it shows its right to be there in spite of a slightly offbeat story and change of pace from your average film of the genre, which could have disagreed with your common viewer.
8. I'm a Cyborg, But That's OK
The film takes place mostly in a mental institution filled with an eclectic menagerie of patients. Young-goon, a young woman working in a factory constructing radios and who believes herself to be a cyborg, is institutionalized after cutting her wrist and connecting it with a power cord to a wall outlet in an attempt to "recharge" herself, an act that is interpreted as a suicide attempt. Her delusion is characterized by refusing to eat (she instead licks batteries and attempts to administer electric shocks to herself), conversing almost solely with machines and electrical appliances and obsessively listening to her tube radio at night for instruction on how to become a better cyborg. Her apathetic mother is interviewed by the institute's head doctor, to determine the roots of Young-goon's psychosis; despite claiming ignorance of her daughter's delusion (it is later learnt she knew but was too busy to make her seek help), she reveals that Young-goon's mentally ill grandmother had previously been institutionalized for delusions of being a mouse, a trauma that sparks Young-goon's own lapses from reality. As a result, she frequently fantasizes of finding her grandmother and seeking revenge on the "men in white" who took her away.
Il-soon, a young male patient hospitalized for anti-social behavior and kleptomania (stemming from schizophrenia) becomes fascinated with Young-goon; he is described as having "no sympathy" for his fellow man, believes he can "steal" other people's souls/attributes, and frequently wears handmade rabbit masks. He fears that he will eventually "shrink into a dot" and is seen compulsively brushing his teeth when nervous or upset. His habit of covertly taking the traits of his fellow inmates makes him the frequent target of scorn, but he only takes the traits willingly and returns them to their owners after he is done.
When Young-goon persuades Il-soon to take away her "sympathy" in order for her to be able to kill the men in white, she has a hallucination of going on a rampage, slaughtering the doctors and orderlies of the hospital. When she is given shock treatment owing to her refusal to eat, she believes that she has been recharged. In reality, her physical condition begins to deteriorate rapidly, and the doctors begin force-feeding her to keep her alive. Il-soon, now wracked with sympathy for Young-goon, hatches an elaborate plan to get Young-goon to eat, convincing her that he can install a food-to-electrical-energy conversion unit (a "rice-megatron", as he calls it) in her back. After eating her first meal at the hospital, and confiding her secrets to the head doctor, Young-goon ponders the meaning of a recurring dream in which her grandmother explains to her the purpose of her existence. Interpreting the lip-read message as that she is in fact a "nuke bomb" that requires a bolt of lightning to detonate, she goes out into a horrendous storm with Il-soon, intending to use her radio's antenna as a lightning rod.
9. Unstoppable Marriage
Unstoppable Marriage follows two very different families seeking to get connected by marriage. The comedy is about two young lovers who struggle to get parental permission to tie the knot. Actors Eugene (Yoo Jin) and Ha Seok-jin play a couple who are in for a bumpy road as their parents go all-out to break the engagement. The film has the combination of romance, humor, and a family-oriented theme. Eun-ho, a daughter of Ji-man the Feng Shui expert who lives up to tradition inheritance, and Ki-baek, the only son of Mal-nyon who is both a tycoon in Kangnam-gu and a leader in luxury, rode a para-glider and had an minor accident. Growing up and living in the different backgrounds,the two would always fight like a cat and dog over everything. Like the saying goes that 'The more you hate, the more you love', they come to fall for each other behind all the bickering. Then later on, become a couple and get married as soon as possible even though they hate each other at the same time. The only matter right then and there is their family. it's a matter of convincing their parents to allow them to get married. His single parent mother wants him to marry into the highest class of society…her single parent father wants a stand up man with character to marry off his daughter. As the story progresses the two parents face off time and again to decide the fate of their children. Anyway, the only thing that they can agree upon, it seems, is their mutual desire to break up the engagement of the couple. The parents eventually discover that the other family isn't as awful as first appeared and they both want what's best for their child in any case, so hey what's wrong with this marriage after all?
10. Seducing Mr. Perfect
Min-joon, an absolute believer in true love, dedicates herself to the men she dates, but each time it results in a painful breakup. Today, she's going through the most disastrous heartbreak ever - being dumped on her birthday! The confident professional Min-joon can be so clueless when it comes to love. Distracted from this unpleasant surprise, she bumps into an exotic foreign car. A very handsome young man steps out of the car angrily. To escape from the scene, Min-joon pretends not to understand English, but when Min-joon arrives at work, she finds out that the foreigner, Robin, is none other than her newly appointed boss.
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