(참을 수 없는)

Loveholic ( 참을 수 없는)
Made in: South Korea
Language: Korean
Director: Kwon Chil-In
Starring: Choo Ja-Hyun, Han Su-Yeon, Jeong Chan, Kim Heung-Su
Year: 2010

Synopsis: Ji-Heun (Choo Ja-Hyun) is a young independent woman working for a publishing company. After suddenly getting fired, she loses her apartment and breaks up with her musician boyfriend.

After a night of drinking and disorderly conduct, Ji Heun ends up in jail. At the end of her rope and figuring she needs to straighten out her life, she reluctantly agrees to temporarily move in with her best friend, Kyeong-Lin (Han Su-Yeon).

Kyeong-Lin is married to Myeong-Won (Jeong Chan), a successful doctor. Hers is a life of comfort, luxury, and security. Although a devoted and dutiful housewife, Kyeong-Lin is secretly dissatisfied. Her husband is a decent enough guy, but he's rigid, follows a predictable and regimented daily routine, and is pretty passionless.

Things get complicated when Kyeong-Lin begins having an affair with her strapping radiologist, Dong-Ju (Kim Heung-Su), who just so happens to work at the same hospital as Kyeong-Lin's husband. Ji-Heun discovers this and even though she strongly disapproves, agrees to keep the affair a secret.

But the situation only gets more heated when Ji-Heun and Myeong-Won develop a mutual attraction.

The Good: Loveholic is well directed and acted. The production values are strong, and the story elements for an intriguing guilty pleasure of a story are all there. 

The Bad: However, the movie does little to distinguish itself from other soap-opera plot lines that we've seen and/or read about before. 

Familiar elements such as the bored housewife, marriage and security vs. singlehood and excitement, and the role of career-minded women in a once patriarchal society are all present.

Yes, these are legitimate issues, but Loveholic doesn't do anything remarkable with these themes beyond merely bringing them to our attention.

And the most glaring mistake in the story is that there's no time-constraint element driving the plot. In just about any other movie you watch, there's almost always some sort of metaphorical (or literal) "time bomb," in which the story must be resolved within a specific time frame. But without the time limit, this movie just sort of plods along, resulting in an unnecessarily slow feel.

Who would like this movie: This one's geared towards fans of chick flicks. It's a well-produced film and the actors are very natural in their roles (and pretty believable as real people). 

And although the themes of personal drama and relationships most likely reach across most cultural barriers, there's nothing particularly memorable in their presentation.

(2 out of 4 stars)

Review written by: Joe Yang

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