17 January 2018

Jeong Do Jeon Review

Title: Jeong Do Jeon
Genre: Historical, Political, Drama
Episodes: 50
Broadcast period: 2014-Jan to 2014-Jun
Cast: Cho Jae Hyun, Yoo Dong Geun, Park Young Gyu and Lim Ho.

This story is about the man who changed the corrupt Goryeo by making laws to help the low class and poor, and helped establish Joseon, by installing a new king on the throne.
Jeong Do Jeon (Cho Jae Hyun) is a low-class noble working for the government as a scholar in Sungkyunkwan. When the king, who was betrayed by his most loyal servants repeatedly, trials Do Jeon, the two come to an agreement, and decide to work together to fix the crumbling Goryeo. Unfortunately, the king is assassinated, by his guards, and the prime minister, together with his allies, put a young prince on the throne, to manipulate him behind the curtain. In opposition of this, Do Jeon becomes labeled as a traitor, and is forced in exile.
Loosing all hope and desire for the future, he meets the peasants of Goryeo, the ill treatment they suffer, and decides to once again help the government, but soon notices how bad the political situation in Goryeo is, so he decides to do the unthinkable: if the problem is the government, we change the government…

As a history buff this idea made me all excited, since it’s one of “those” stories/highlights of Korean history. Even if this has a lot of storytelling and a lot of moments, I kind of don’t understand the necessity of 50 episodes - which was one of the things that made my brown frown, when I started it. But as I went along with episodes, I noticed the “change” in history, which made me annoyed. Even if it didn’t change the overall history part it kind of made it “sentimental” or “emotional” without it being it. Also, simply historically incorrect. I don’t want to spoil, so I’m just going to say, trying to make a man seem like he is “feeling” bad for the poor people when he doesn’t care for his own family in the same sense is plain weird. Though I must give the production credit for portraying Jeong Do Jeon as he is portrayed in history books, and not some hero, is what made me continue this drama (even though the above mentioned annoyed me A LOT). Plus: Cho Jae Hyun is perfect casting. The rest seem okay, but the acting just seems like how any actor would act in the given roles - I mean like it doesn’t give anything extra. Besides that, this drama can seem boring - there is sooo much political TALK. They keep talking and talking, and unless you can see the history part, you’ll be bored. So they didn’t really think about that while making this drama.
OKAY, summing up: a fine drama with mostly accurate storyline, but has some flaws that just aren’t acceptable as a history buff, and can be quite boring for those who aren’t.

☆☆☆½ / 3½ out of 5 stars

♥♥♥ / 3 out of 5 hearts

21 December 2017

The Host Movie Review

Title: The Host
AKA: Monster
Genre: Thriller, Suspense
Origin: Korea
Release Date: July 27, 2006
Cast: Song Kang Ho, Byun Hee Bong, Park Hae Il, Bae Doo Na and Go Ah Sung.

Park Gang Doo (Song Kang Ho), a mentally man and father of Park Hyun Soo (Go Ah Sung), runs a street vendor with his father Park Hee Bong (Byun Hee Bong), right next to Han River. On the day of his sisters Park Nam Joo’s (Bae Doo Na) archery competition, tourists sight a weird creature near the river. The creature, swimming closer to land, gathers the attention of most people, and soon enough also Gang Doo. While everyone is intrigued, the creature jumps out of the water, and starts grabbing and killing people. In the confusion Hyun Soo runs out, and becomes pulled underwater by the monster.
The victims and survivors of the incident are evacuated, and the Park family, Gang Doo, Hee Bong, Nam Joo and the big brother Park Nam Il (Park Hae Il), gather to mourn Hyun Soo.
While the situation becomes noticed by media, and the government start covering it up, Gang Doo gets a call from Hyun Soo, giving him hope of her having survived, and the family decides to go and find Hyun Soo. The family manages to escape the military holding, but due to the cover-up, the entire family becomes wanted, and now must hide while trying to rescue Hyun Soo…

The summary might seem detailed, but I managed to only cover bit of the beginning.
If you are a variety or drama watcher, you will at some point get to hear about this movie, as it is referenced and mentioned a lot. So, I kind of needed to see what the hype was about.
When I began it, I expected it to be a horror movie, but was pleasantly surprised of the fact that it is a monster movie (like Godzilla or like that). It’s been ages since I’ve watched one, and I really didn’t feel like another ‘The Wailing’. Of course, it has horror elements, where you get freaked out, but it’s more of a rescue mission or/and “clear image of the enemy”-kind of movie. I like the cast, and I like that the movie didn’t succumb the “American/Hollywood”-hype, though I disliked the beginning - where an American is to blame for the creation of the monster (don’t worry the first 10min of the movie shows this, so not really a spoiler).
I don’t want to comment that much, as this is a movie classic, where my opinion can change your judgement. So, I’m leaving it with this: a good movie with deserved reputation, though a few dislikable situations and I have to admit, weird backstory - I felt like the director sometimes took a bit of the intelligence of the audience for granted.
But all in all, enjoyable.

☆☆☆½ / 3½ out of 5 stars

♥♥♥ ½ / 3½ out 5 hearts

16 December 2017

Aogeba Toutoshi Review

Title: Aogeba Toutoshi
AKA: Brass Dreams
Genre: School, Music, Delinquents
Episodes: 8
Broadcast period: 2016-Jul to 2016-Sept
Cast: Terao Akira, Tabe Mikako, Mackenyu, Nijiro Murakami, Anna Ishii and many others…

Hikuma Koichi (Terao Akira) is a music teacher, strongly believing in involving all is students in all the performances they make, no matter how well they play. After having troubles with the music club Kanagawa Public Misaki High School invites Koichi to help them, in order to join the national competition. Soon Koichi notices the biggest problem of the club: the five members that don't want to return. The five had been a band, but due to other students ruining their performance, the five end up leaving everything that involves music. Because of their attire (being delinquents), no one wants them to return... except Koichi, who makes it his mission to get them back, and have all the students play at the contest. But it is not easy, as the five firmly refuse to return. How will it turn out?

Again, I apologize of the summary: I recommend you watch the trailer.
After watching almost every single Yankee drama out there, I kind of missed the genre. I tend to re- watch old ones, so this was a nice drama to come by, as it is new and fresh. I didn’t watch another Gokusen, and this drama wasn’t like that.  Yes, there were Yankees, and a teacher “believing-in-the-students-and-so-forth”, but this one is a bit different. It felt a bit “heavy” as in quite an amount of emotions, I didn’t expect to feel. It took me on an emotional rollercoaster, I wasn’t ready for it. The cast was good too, much better than the average Japanese youngsters/newbie actors, so that contributed too.
The overall story was real, and I think this is one of those that is underrated, if you ask me.
All in all, a fine drama, with great cast, and decent story.

☆☆☆☆ / 4 out of 5 stars

♥♥♥♥ / 4 out of 5 hearts

12 December 2017

Nou ni Sumaho ga Umerareta Review

Title: Nou ni Sumaho ga Umerareta
AKA: The Smartphone Guy
Genre: Comedy, Sci-fi
Episodes: 11
Broadcast period: 2017-Jul to 2017-Sep
Cast: Ito Atsushi, Shinkawa Yua and Kishitani Goro.

Orimo Keita (Ito Atsushi) is salaryman working at the fashion company Exaltant. He is dull guy, divorced, with child, and has hopes of reuniting with his ex, but is let down when he finds out his ex has a fiancé. To make matters worse he becomes a target of restructuring, and he is asked to voluntarily retire. One evening while sitting in the park, he is suddenly struck by a shooting star, only to wake up, and be able to peak into other people's phones: he has become a smartphone on his own. At first, he hates the idea: finds out his coworkers dislike him, and that his closes friend tries to get him fired. But soon enough a girl appears in front of him, Ishino Ryuko (Shinkawa Yua), telling to use his powers for good. Ryuko wants Keita to help her take revenge of their boss Kurube Jin (Kishitani Goro), who had made her business go down, by stealing her ideas.
Wanting to help her and deciding to use his power for good, the two become a great team, but soon enough they notice that everyone other "smartphone-human" they had encountered before, seems to disappear one by one...

As Japanese dramas go, this one is right up their ally. It’s absurd, funny, silly, teaches you about morals and explains values, all at the same time. If you aren’t used to those dramas, you’ve been watching the wrong type, because that is why I love Japanese dramas. It’s not serious, and does not have a heart wrenching romance or plot, but still manages to make you like all characters. It might not be the most well-written screenplay, or even make sense most of the time, but I believe that is the charm.
I am a fan of Ito Atsushi, but I can’t explain why. I seriously check him out to see if he has new dramas, because I want to see him acting - I think it’s his acting I enjoy most. The female lead I don’t remember, but she does look familiar, so I might have seen her before.
All that aside, it is not a drama most ‘drama-lovers’ would enjoy (except people like me, or Japanese drama lovers), but I think it’s an okay drama. Unfortunately, not one I would recommend.
So, all in all: an okay drama, which I enjoyed watching.

☆☆☆ / 3 out of 5 stars

♥♥♥ / 3 out of 5 hearts

10 December 2017

Four Gifts Review

Title: Four Gifts
AKA: The Gifts
Genre: Romance, Family
Episodes: 24 (DVD) / 15 (TV)
Broadcast period: 2010-Sep to 2010-Dec
Cast: Li Kang Yi, Cynthia Wang, Jozie Lu, Suki Low, Xiu Jie Kai, Nicholas Teo, Nylon Chen and Andrew Tan.

“For love, the princess and the cello player stayed in a simple house. Very soon she gave birth to three little princesses, happily wanting them to inherit the secret of beauty. On the day of her 28th birthday, she gave every princess a beautiful secret. The oldest princess, Ruo Tian, got a scarf. The second princess, Ruo Wei, got a mirror. And also, for the one inside her, whether it was a princess or prince, she prepared a secret gift. As for the third princess Ruo Yi, which is me, a suitcase - something that no matter how you look at it, doesn’t seem like a gift for a princess. More like a gift for a maid. It was thick and burdensome, and couldn’t be moved. Dad once said that mom left a letter. The letter would explain the meanings of the gifts. He said he would wait until we find our happiness before he read it to us. We haven’t found our happiness, so we don’t seem to have the right to read Moms letter” (introduction).
Zhang Ruo Tian (Li Kang Yi), Zhang Ruo Wei (Cynthia Wang), Zhang Ruo Yu (Jozie Lu) and Zhang Ruo Yu (Suki Low) are four very different sisters. Ruo Tian, the oldest, is a fussy prosecutor, known to do thing in her own style. Ruo Wei, the second oldest, is known as the beauty of the fashion queen, always succeeding due to her smarts and looks. Ruo Yi, third oldest, is the most filial daughter of the bunch, spending most time taking care of their father, even though she runs her own business. The youngest, Ruo Yu, is a student, not listening to anyone, and decides everything on her own.
Living apart and going after different things in life, the four are brought together again after their father goes missing. They soon find him, and are told that he has late stage Alzheimer’s, which leads them to move back in their old home to take care of their father.
At the same time, all four are at different stages in their love life.  Soon even they entwine, and the sisters have to deal with work, love and family relations, all at once…

This is one of those that I was supposed to watch years ago, but kept putting it off due to several reasons. I have always loved Taiwanese love dramas, and this one reminds me a bit of the past dramas that introduced med to drama world. Unfortunately, it is one of those I call “half-half”, meaning it has a lot of ‘older’ drama feel to it, and yet they are trying real hard to make it ‘newer’ or more ‘modern’ - which by the way makes it slow in pace. I don’t hate it, but I rather see a drama with either an old feel, or a new feel - not a mix/blend.
The cast was quite average, and idol-drama-like, except for Xiu Jie Kai. He is kind of growing on me - haha.
The good, and the bad parts of this drama, is the sisters and their bonds, so it is a good family drama. But I had moments when I really was annoyed at most of them - I mean character growth, please~!¨
Anyways, not a drama I would recommend, but not an overall bad drama.

☆☆☆ / 3 out of 5 stars

♥♥♥ / 3 out of 5 hearts

01 December 2017

Deserving of the Name Review

Title: Deserving of the Name
AKA: Live Up To Your Name
Genre: Medical, History, Romance, Time Travel, Comedy
Episodes: 16
Broadcast period: 2017-Aug to 2017-Oct
Cast: Kim Nam Gil, Kim Ah Joong, Yun Ju Sang and Yoo Min Kyu.

Heo Im (Kim Nam Gil) is an oriental doctor in 1592s Haeminseo. Due to his low status he isn't allowed in the palace, but the people of Joseon know him as a nice and unworldly. Unfortunately, Heo Im is very ambitious, and spends his nights healing rich people, in exchange for payment. The positive reputation leads him to an invitation from the King to cure a migraine. Thrilled, Heo Im prepares a new set of needles he found, but while trying to heal the king, his hand starts to shake and he is accused of treason. He manages to escape, but is met with the royal army and is shot down with arrows, and wakes up in 2017 Seoul. Bewildered he walks through the city, and bumps into Choi Yeon Kyun (Kim Ah Joong) who thinks of him as a weirdo especially after he tries to save a man passing out, by using acupuncture.
After seeing the wonders of 2017 Seoul, Heo Im decides he wants to stay, as he sees possibilities in becoming richer and more powerful. Sadly, he doesn't have a license, so he tried to find a Haeminseo. Here he meets a man, who seems to know about him, and as fate has it, he is Yeon Kyungs grandfather...

I am sorry for the weird review, but I tried hard not to spoil the drama. And to be honest, this is one drama you need to watch. I loved every part of it. I mean this drama took such a turn suddenly making me fall in love even more. Kim Nam Gil is officially one of the great actors: first Pandora and now this one. Okay, he has some we won't mention, but the 2017 dramas/movies are awesome. Kim Ah Joong is an okay actress, wasn't that into some of the older one, but this one fits her like a glove – being beautiful and smart really suits her.
I like that the drama was close to actual history, and the chemistry between the leads, as well as the pace... you'll understand once you see.
So: all in all.... recommendable.

☆☆☆☆☆ / 5 out of 5 stars

♥♥♥♥♥ / 5 out of hearts

24 November 2017

The Gentlemen of Wolgyesu Tailor Shop Review

Title: The Gentlemen of Wolgyesu Tailor Shop
AKA: Laurel Tree Tailors / Bay Tree Tailors
Genre: Family, Comedy, Drama
Episodes: 54
Broadcast period: 2016-Aug to 2017-Feb
Cast: Lee Dong Gun, Jo Yoon Hee, Cha In Pyo, Choi Won Young, Hyun Woo, Shin Goo, Kim Young Ae and Oh Hyun Kyung.

This drama follows four men, who get affiliated with a small tailor shop called “Wolgyesu Tailor Shop”.
Lee Man Sool (Shin Goo) is the second-generation owner of the Wolgyesu Tailor Shop. After being unable to get anyone to take over the shop, he decides to leave his family, leaving them with a letter. His son Lee Dong Jin (Lee Dong Gun) is wealthy manager in a clothing company owned by his wife’s diseased father. Due to internal conflict he is outed of the company and returns home. Here he meets Na Yeon Sil (Jo Yoon Hee), a seamstress that was supposed to get married, but her fiancĂ© was arrested on the wedding day.
Due to the vacancy of a tailor in the shop, Bae Sam Do (Cha In Pyo) a former pupil of Man Sool, finally manages to persuade his aggressive wife Bok Sun Nyeo (Ra Mi Ran) to close down their chicken shop, to start living in the Lee household. At the same time Lee Dong Sook (Oh Hyun Kyung), the daughter of Man Sool and sister of Dong Jin, persuades their mother to let her first crush and forgotten singer Sung Tae Young (Choi Won Young) live in the house, only to create even more havoc. Kang Tae Yang (Hyun Woo) is the youngest of four, who is the childhood friend of Yeon Sil. After getting dumped by his longtime girlfriend for a rich CEO, Tae Yang decides to join the company - which happens to be the company Dong Jin was fired from.
Soon enough the four create an alliance and together they fix the issues surrounding their family and new home…

I remember reading about this drama long before it came out, and I was more than excited to watch it because of two of the leads, Cha In Pyo and Lee Dong Gun. Besides the fact that they are great actors, I have never seen them act together in a movie or drama - which made it even more exciting. Unfortunately, I felt quite confused in the beginning, because of the huge number of plots entwined in the main plot - making me forget not only names, but also the relationships between the characters, both kinship and other. This made me forget about the two leads, as I tried to wrap my head around it, and when I finally figured it out, they all kind of became less ‘famous actors’, and more their characters. The story and screenplay were great, even though I felt the acting could’ve been a bit better, I was satisfied with the overall.
So, all in all, it is a good family drama that made me laugh, and happy.

☆☆☆☆ / 4 out of 5 stars

♥♥♥♥ / 4 out of 5 hearts

19 November 2017

The Chaser Review

Title: The Chaser
Genre: Action, Thriller
Episodes: 16
Broadcast period: 2012-May to 2012-Jul
Cast: Son Hyun Joo, Kim Sang Joong, Kim Sung Ryung, Ko Joon Hee and Ryu Seung Soo.

Baek Hong Seok (Son Hyun Joo) is a senior cop, and devoted father and husband. His life takes a drastic turn when his daughter is killed in a hit-and-run accident. At first, he believes in the system, and helps the police find the murderer PK Jun, a famous idol, but soon enough the powerful start their play. After he reveals that the actual murderer is Seo Ji Soo (Kim Sung Ryung) daughter of a wealthy CEO, and wife of the famous politician Kang Dong Yoon (Kim Sang Joong), Hong Seok realizes that the system is rigged against him.
He decides to take law into his own hands, but unfortunately, he ends up killing PK Jun, and he now must run for his life, and at the same time prove who killed his daughter…

I’m not sure of you can guess from the review, but this is one of those about a fugitive trying to fight ‘the big guys’. I’m generally a fan of those, which you probably noticed in my previous reviews with the same genre. Compared to others this one is really sad, and quite realistic, but I got to say I was bored a lot - not because it lacks action and all that, but because of all the “planning” and (I guess you can call it) politics. I watched this a few weeks ago, but I can’t remember much, which means that it really didn’t leave much of an impact sadly. I tend to like those things, but somehow this just didn’t cut it. Besides the two leads, and some acting of the supporting cast, most of this drama is average - including some of the intense scenes.
Besides that, the drama is a good and very sad drama, about not only the realism of power and corruption, but also what actually happens if you decide to do what he did at the end… no spoilers haha!
All in all, a fine drama, but I guess I just wasn’t in the mood for…?

☆☆☆½ / 3½ out of 5 stars

♥♥♥ / 3 out of 5 hearts

16 November 2017

Chief Kim Review

Title: Chief Kim
AKA: Good Manager
Genre: Drama, Comedy, Real Life
Episodes: 20
Broadcast Period: Jan-2017 to Mar-2017
Cast: Nam Goong Min, Nam Sang Mi, Lee Jun Ho, Jung Hye Sung, Kim Won Hae, Kim Kang Hyun, JO Hyun Shik,

Can corporate politics turn a bad person into a good person? Kim Sung Ryong (Nam Goong Min) is a skilled accountant who works for gangsters. He makes his way into a company called TQ Group as a middle manager in the accounting department with the intention of embezzling money from the company. As he contends with hot-shot accountant Yoon Ha Kyung (Nam Sang Mi), financial prodigy Seo Yool (Lee Jun Ho) and peppy intern Hong Ga Eun (Jung Hye Sung), Kim Sung Ryong finds himself embroiled in office politics and notices other shenanigans by those in power that threaten to bring down the company. Kim Sung Ryong slowly comes to realize that he’d rather fight against corporate corruption and fight for employees’ rights than complete the mission he originally came to do. Can he succeed at his new objective against all odds?

Nam Gong Min is so much fun to watch, I think he's done such a great job with this character. At first I thought it was a bit over the top, but now it just seems more natural, despite his outlook on life and the fact that he's a criminal he's just too funny and likable. In the beginning I wondered what kind of character he will turn out to be, I like how he's different compared to a lot of other drama leads who are usually always "righteous" and on the "right side" of the moral fence. So I really enjoyed this drama so much, that I wish it didn’t have to end. No character felt unnecessary, everyone had a role to play, and I loved how it all comes together somehow. So definitely a fresh breath to all the lovey dovey, and fantasy dramas out there, this is from a realistic point of view.

☆☆☆☆☆ / 5 out of 5 stars

♥♥♥♥♥ / 5 out of 5 hearts

Queen of the Ring Review

Title: Queen of the Ring
AKA: Three Color fantasy – Queen of the Ring
Genre: Romance, Fantasy
Episodes: 6
Broadcast Period: Mar-2017 to Mar-2017
Cast: Kim Seul Gi, Ahn Hyo Seop, Yoon So Hoon, Hwang Jung Min, Jeon No Min, Lee Tae Sun, Choi Tae Hwan,

Story about a girl Nan Hee (Kim Seul Gi) who does not believe in herself because she feels she does not look as pretty as others. One day she receives a ring which holds a family secret. Due to the magical ring, she gets Se Gun (Ahn Hyo Seop) who's a handsome guy but has a cold-blooded personality to see her as his ideal type.

It’s a very short cute love story. I don’t have much to say about it than if you have an evening where you are not doing anything, this would be a nice way to fill up your time. Kim Seul Gi never sieze to amaze us with her humoristic acting. And Ahn Hyo Seop is a newbie who I’m pretty sure everyone is looking forward to see more of him. All in all, I wouldn’t let this little gem go lost.

☆☆☆☆  / 4 out of 5 stars

♥♥♥♥ / 4 out of 5 hearts

Hwarang: The Beginning Review

Title: Hwarang: The Beginning
AKA: Hwarang: The Poet Warrior Youth
Genre: Historical, Youth, romance, Comedy
Episodes: 20
Broadcast Period: Dec-2016 to Feb-2017
Cast: Park Seo Joon, Go Ah Ra, Park Hyung Shik, Choi Min  Ho, Do Ji Han, Kim Tae Hyung, Jo Yoon Woo, Kim Ji Soo,

Queen Jiso (Kim Ji Soo) has ruled the Kingdom of Silla as regent since King Beopheung passed away, keeping her young son Sammaekjong(Park Hyung Sik) hidden outside of the capital Seorabeol and safe from enemies and assassins. As Sammaekjong comes of age, nobles, citizens, officials and Sammaekjong himself have all grown impatient for the queen to cede power. However the powerful nobles that tried to usurp power in the Kingdom continue to eye the throne and Queen Jiso fears the consequences of her ceding it. In order to break the power of the nobles, who have grown accustomed to their privileges under the bone rank system, Queen Jiso plans to create a new elite, the Hwarang, that will cut across the existing power factions, and to bind them to Sammaekjong and the throne. As this new elite of male youths bond and grow they are unaware that within their number is their future king, Sammaekjong, and Kim Sun Woo (Park Seo Joon), a commoner with a secret even he is not aware of.

A really surprisingly good drama. I got hooked really fast and couldn’t let go. I can’t deny all the pretty actors didn’t have an effect but oh well. They knew how to get their fans hooked. The storyline progressed fast, however you figured out the ending pretty quickly. Which was a little turnoff, but nevertheless you continue for the sole purpose of just watching the pretty actors. Go Ah Ra is a good actress, but she’s not on a wow-level I think, or maybe this performance wasn’t her best. What I like the most is that Park Soo Joon managed to get over the fact that this is about pretty soldiers, after all it is called Hwarang; the flower knights. It was like he didn’t use that as his main goal, but more found depth in his character. Which is why I’ve started to like Park Seo Joon more as an actor, he managed to stand out without using his good looks to his advantage but rather excellence acting. I’m looking forward to more projects from him. All in all a good drama, that I do recommend to all period drama fans.

☆☆☆☆   / 4 out of 5 stars

♥♥♥♥ / 4 out of 5 hearts

31 October 2017

Bokura no Yuuki - Miman City SP

Title: Bokura no Yuuki – Miman City Special
AKA: Our Courage – Miman City Special
Genre: Sci-fi, Mystery, Suspense
Broadcast date: 21 July 2017
Cast: Domoto Koichi, Domoto Tsuyoshi, Matsumoto Jun, Aiba Masaki, Kohara Yuki and Mukai Osamu.

20 years ago, Shindo Yamato (Domoto Koichi), Takigawa Takeru (Domoto Tsuyoshi), Eguchi Morio (Matsumoto Jun), Inagawa Akira (Aiba Masaki) and Okamoto Kiichi (Kohara Yuki) made a promise to reunite again at Makuhara. 20 years later, they meet again, but only Yamato, Takeru and Akira arrive, and the Makuhara they know, now looks completely different than it used to. The city has been trying to get on its feet after the cover up, and a lot of money has been invested in the rebuild.
One year later both Yamato and Takeru realize that something weird is happening with Akira, and while asking around they find out that he has been asking around for money. Morio had turned Akira down, and wants nothing to do with the past, so the duo decides to find him. Soon enough they realize that Makuhara isn't as safe as it is made out to be, but compared to before they might be too grown up to deal with the threat...

If you haven't watched the 1997 drama this summary might very well confuse you. I remember the drama being one of the first dramas I had watched in my early drama watching days, and I was so hooked due to the 'dark' elements of it. This special took me right back to those days, but it also took it up a notch. I was amazed that I didn't see 20 years of difference in their acting, and the reality of 'becoming a grownup' is so clear even in this special. Of course, I noticed things (such as lacking acting and lousy cover up) that made my eyebrows wrinkle, but it doesn't ruin the overall experience. It made me very nostalgic, and happy.
To sum up: a good special of the continuation story, of the 1997 drama – but I would recommend to watch the drama before the special.

☆☆☆½ / 3½ out of 5 stars

♥♥♥♥ / 4 out of 5 hearts

22 October 2017

CRISIS Review

Title: CRISIS
AKA: Crisis: Public Security Mobile Investigation Unit Special Investigation Team
Genre: Police, Action
Episodes: 10
Broadcast period: 2017-Apr to 2017-Jun
Cast: Oguri Shun, Nishijima Hidetoshi, Tanaka Tetsushi, Nomaguchi Toru, Araki Yuko and Nagatsuka Kyozo.

This drama follows an elite squad focusing on the national security, the Special Security Squad (SSS)
Inami Akira (Oguri Shun) is a former SDF (Special Defense Force), but due to a traumatizing event he was discharged. His partner Tamaru Saburo (Nishijima Hidetoshi) is a stoic character, specializing in undercover work. These two are the 'legs' out of the quintet group, containing the chief Yoshinaga Mitsunari (Tanaka Tetsushi), a biochemist Kashii Yusuke (Nomaguchi Toru) and hacker Oyama Rei (Araki Yuko). The group deals with terrorists, bomb threats and other national emergencies.
Soon a terrorist group called the "Heisei Restoration Army" begin to unveil their plans of political ideal, and it is up the SSS to stop them...

I started this drama because of Oguri Shun, and I finished it because of him. When I started it, it was very exciting as I hadn't seen any Japanese dramas with such a quality fighting – but unfortunately, I felt bored towards the end. Not the fighting or even the story, but the overall progress and direction. I was a bit hopeful halfway through, but noticed very fast how it would end, and which way the narrative went. This ruined the experience for me, but it might not be like that for everyone. The action and acting is good, and the dialogues were good as well. So it might be your cup of tea.
All in all, a good drama, but not a favorite of mine.

☆☆☆☆ / 4 out of 5 stars

♥♥♥ / 3 out of 5 hearts