Directed by: Kwak Jae-yong
Written by: Kim Ho-sik, Kwak Jae-yong
Starring: Tae-hyun Cha, Gianna Jun
Based on an internet diary of a relationship, My Sassy Girl was a big and untypical hit in its native Korea, so much so that a very pale American re-make was produced in 2007. While it is a first outing for its male star he was however already a well liked TV personality and pop star. Its female lead was at the time well known for her previous roles where she had played a mostly pleasant and bubbly persona. This untypical role was however her breakthrough moment and is now so associated with the part that it is hard to imagine the film doing so well without her.
The story itself concerns Kyun-woo (Cha) a student slacker who seems to invite too much trouble with his antics. On his way to an arranged date he happens to rescue a drunken belligerent girl (Jun) from falling under a train. Because everyone assumes he is her girlfriend he has to take on the resultant responsibilities. This leads mostly to scenes of mayhem and disorder with Kyun-woo usually bearing the brunt often in a painful and embarrassing manner. While all the other conventions of the genre are here too and well portrayed it is this slapstick, physical comedy and undercurrent of violence that set this romantic comedy apart from the rest of the field.
Great credit must go to the leads for their respective portrayal of their characters especially Jun in what she does in making us like her difficult and often cruel character despite her waywardness. While the movie steers a course through the conventions of the genre it also veers into fantasy sequences and other genres (Jun being a scriptwriter) and delves deeper below the surface into themes similar movies would not go near like fate, destiny and the future.
It is so refreshing to see a movie that is so willing to go outside the boundaries and offer us real characters rather than the usual stereotypes that populate the rom-com genre. My Sassy Girl is such a movie in that it figures we as an audience are intelligent enough to realise that not all films should reflect us as we wish to see ourselves but show us as we are. A painful funny Love Story. Share your comments about the movie.
MoviesCrunch Rating – 8/10