Category: KDrama, JDrama, TwDrama, ThDrama, FDrama, CDrama

Dramas and films from the South East Asian nations: South Korean, Japan, Taiwan, Thailand, Philippines and China

The Dark Lord (Chinese Drama Review & Summary)

Drama

The Dark Lord (Chinese Drama Review & Summary)

The Dark Lord still

  • Genre: Historical Costume Drama fiction, Romance, Policing, Magistrate
  • Date Released: 2018)
  • Origin: China. Based on a novel by Yue Guan
  • CDrama: 48 Episodes

Cast:

  • Song Zuer as Xia Ying Ying
  • Joe Xu as Ye Xaoi Tian
  • Yu Tong as Tian Miao Wen
  • Luo Guan Lin as Xu Bo Yi
  • Emily Chen as Lady Ya

Episode 1`

Xiao Tian is a money grabbing prison officer, who was begged by an imprisoned corrupt government official to deliver his last will and testament to his wife to ensure that his young daughter from his concubine get enough money for her dowry one day and not to suffer from his wife’s tightfistedness.

After traveling miles to reach the Yang mansion, he realised that the family was very unpopular for good reason.

They were a bunch of tugs and get away with it as the wife is sister to the magistrate.

Xiao Tian declared that prisoner Yang, before he was executed had given her hand in marriage to him, wrongly thinking that  Ying Ying was the daughter instead of a 6 years old girl.

Anyway, he can’t go back on his word so he took both Ying Ying and the little girl with him to get out from the mansion.

Outside he told them to make their own way as he was out of there.

As fast as he walked, he can see the two just behind him.

He noticed some horseback riders, who he surmised were there to kill them.

Ching Ching begged Xiao Tian to take them to the little girl’s aunt.  He asked her who she was exactly.  she told him that she was running away from a forced marriage.  She then came to the rescue when she saw the maid beating up the little girl.

Xiao Tian said that there is only one reason, he would help them and that is if she becomes his wife..

Episode 2

Xiao Tian, Ching Ching and the little girl tagged along with the new magistrate of Haiyan on their dangerous trek into the mountains.

While the three were answering the call of nature, the magistrate and his men were attacked by bandits killing everyone.

After burying the bodies in a shallow grave the three continued on to Haiyan where they reported what happened to the magistrate.

The government officials were in a panic as the minister of taxation was about to deign them with his presence.

To report that the new government official was dead would be catastrophic.

They forced Xiao Tian to pretend to be the dead magistrate.

Episode 3

Xiaotian doesn’t have much choice but takes the temporary position of a magistrate.

He asked them thought to arrange for the little girl to be delivered safely to her aunt in Tongren, while ensuring that Ching Ching must stay with him.

 

My Love From The Ocean (Chinese Drama Review & Summary)

Drama

My Love From The Ocean (Chinese Drama Review & Summary)

My Love from the Ocean poster

  • Genre: Romance, Drama, Fantasy, Mermaid
  • Date Released: June 2018
  • Origin: China
  • CDrama: 28 Episodes

Cast:

  • Li Hong Yi as Chi Lu
  • Zhou Yu Tong as Dai Xi
  • Howie Hwang as Dai Tao
  • Wang Xiu Zhu as Gu Yan
  • Hu Hao Bo as Cheng Hao
  • Chen Mei Lin as Gao Yi Wen

 

I must say this drama escaped my drama radar.  It was first shown during the middle of this year but I did not really hear anything about it.

I hope it is a good story.

 

Episode 1

I have to say the first episode is not exciting enough.  In fact, it was a bit boring, with over-acting, terrible action.

Dai Xi runs a bookstore that has very uneven hours as she leaves and closes the shops when she feels like it.

One day, she had a customer.  She saw him while cleaning the glass windows from the outside.  The customer was Chi Lu who was sitting by the window.

For very strange reason Dai Xi started touching the back of his neck.  🙁

At the moment I am not sure if I wanted to continue with this drama but perhaps I shall give it another try just because it stars Li Hong Yi.

Suddenly this Summer (Chinese Drama Review & Summary)

Drama

 

Suddenly this Summer (Chinese Drama Review & Summary)

Suddenly this summer poster

  • Genre: Romance, Youth, School
  • Date Released: April 2018
  • Origin: China
  • CDrama: 30 Episodes

Cast:

  • Bai Yu as Zhang Yuan
  • Bu Guan Jin as He Luo
  • Lu Peng as Feng Xiao
  • Zhang Shu Wei as Li Yun Wei
  • Fang Wen Qiang as  Zhao Cheng Jie
  • Hua Wen as Ye Zhi
  • Liang Hao as Da Gang
  • An JI as Shu Ge
  • Lu Xiao Lin as Teacher Lin
  • Yang Yue as Zhang Wei Rui

Just started watching this drama and so cute so far.

I’ve seen male lead before in another drama called Love 020.

 

Episode 1

He Luo was aboard a bus when she noticed a thief trying to get the purse of an elderly man.  At first she chose to overlook it but in the end, she pretended to bump into the dozing elderly man, who moved his bag in a safer place.  The thief was annoyed with her and tried to intimidate her but suddenly a boy pretended that he knew her by being slightly familiar.

The boy got out during the next stop.  She did not even know his name but suddenly he became a hero of her fantasy.  She likes reading manhwa.

The next day, she told her friends about the handsome kindly boy who helped her on the bus.  They were commiserating with her for having not gotten his name.

But she should not be too upset because a new A+ transferee was just about to join their class.  It was Zhang Yuan, the boy on the bus.

Zhang Yuan does not want to know her.

Episode 2

Poor He Lou was second to the last in her class standing.  But she wanted to go to university and study, of all things, science. Everyone was looking at her as if she had gone mad especially when she wanted to apply at the best university.

During a science quiz, she really studied for it and memorised everything.  Her effort worked but not as she wanted it to be.  Because her score improved so much, their teacher accused her of cheating.

Episode 3

He Lou started giving Zang Yuan treats which scared him a bit.  He asked her whether she likes him.  She laughed so much.  She said she wanted to ask him a favour.  Can he be her tutor?

Episode 4

 

 

 

Fates & Furies (KDrama Review & Summary)

Drama

Fates & Furies (KDrama Review & Summary)

Fates & Furies poster

  • Genre:  Chaebol/Poor Woman Romance;  Comedy; Drama
  • Date Released: 1 December 2018
  • Origin: South Korea
  • KDrama: 40 Episodes

 

Cast:

  • Lee Min-Jung as Goo Hae-Ra
  • Joo Sang-Wook as Tae In-Joon
  • So E-Hyun as Cha Soo-Hyun
  • Lee Ki-Woo as Jin Tae-O

Quick Precis: 

A beautiful woman lied her way into the love and affection of a chaebol.

Rampant (South Korean Film)

Film

Rampant (South Korean Film)

Rampant, promotional poster

  • Genre: Historical super fiction :), Martial Arts, Zombie Movie, Royalty, Supernatural, Fantasy, Action
  • Release Date: 2018
  • Origin: South Korean

 

Cast:

  • Hyun Bin as Lee Chung
  • Lee Dong Gun as Kim Ja-Joon
  • Lee Sun Bin as Deok Hee
  • Seo Ji-Hye as Concubine Jo
  • Kim Eui Sung as King Lee Jo
  • Jeong Man -Sik as Hak Soo
  • Jo Woo-Jin as Park Eul Ryeong
  • Jo Dal Hwan as Monk Dae Gil

Quick Precis:

Second son return to his kingdom to save it from ruins and zombie attack.

 

I really enjoyed this film, lots of action and the lead, Hyun Bin, is just gorgeous and Lee Dong Gun is charismatic.

This is a zombie movie but without the thrill and excitement of Gong Yoo’s Train To Busan.  Perhaps it has something to do with it being a costume drama and therefore it is less familiar to oneself and therefore the feeling of helplessness and hopelessness is less relevant.

Anyway, the story goes that Lee Chung is the second son of a king of the Joseon Empire who was bestowed to the Qing Empire as a political hostage for the sake of peace and diplomacy between nations.

But after hearing that his older brother, the crown prince had committed suicide it was about time to come home after 10 years of womanizing and self-indulgence.

He and his able man-servant, Hak Soo, were surprised when they came into a village, which was totally empty of people and animals.

They quickly wised up when they encounter a ferocious zombie.  They were rescued by some villagers who just suddenly appeared on rooftops.

They were taken to their hideout, where they found many people,  some are wounded.

Anyway, Lee Chung was told that the zombies usually hide in the forest or houses when it was daylight and they come out en-masse as soon as it got dark.

Each day they are multiplying in numbers.

The backstory was that a few days ago, a German ship, selling guns and ammunition docked nearby.

The person, the Crown Prince sent to negotiate with the German saw more than he meant to see.  There was another German sailor who was tethered in iron handcuffs who was behaving abnormally.  The Korean got too close and got bitten.  Before long the soldier had turned and bitten his way into the village.

The news of zombies finally reached the King, but it was too late as one of his concubine got it and bit him.

Lee Chung was very reluctant to be the king, but then again, there was a willing minister who all along wanted to topple the monarchy so that he could start his own.

He was having a secret meeting with the other ministers of his plans when they noticed that he was bitten by a zombie.

Despite knowing that it was really all over for him, he did not give up without a fight.  He killed all the ministers and then cut off his bitten hand.

He became so strong as a half zombie.

He had a prolonged fight with Lee Chung, who was trying to blow up the palace where he attracted the attention of the zombies.

He did manage to do it in the end and at last as in most movies, the cavalry arrives just after the nick of time.

He will be king.

 

 

 

 

Memories of the Alhambra (KDrama Review & Summary)

Drama

Memories of the Alhambra (KDrama Review & Summary)

Memories of the Alhambra poster

  • Genre: Mystery, Gaming, Business, Si-Fi, Romance
  • Release Date: 1 December 2018
  • Origin: South Korea
  • KDrama: 16 Episodes
  • Netflix Original

Cast:

  • Hyun Bin as Yoo Jin-Woo
  • Park Shin Hye as Jung Hee-Joo
  • Park Chanyeol as  Jung Se-Joo
  • Park Hoon as Cha Hyung-Seok

Quick Precis: Race against time:  the search for Jung Se Joo.

Hurrah Park Shin Hye is back and with the most handsome leading man as well in Hyun Bin.  They almost starred in Fox Bride, thank goodness they did not take the roles.

Episode 1

The drama started with Jung Se-Joo (Chanyeol) who was in Barcelona.  He was on the public telephone to Jin Woo.

Their conversation was cut short because Jung Se-Joo was being followed.  He ran for the train going for Granada and nervously sat on one of the bunk beds in the sleeper compartment, waiting and counting every mile until the train reaches its destination.

He did fall asleep but woken by the announcement that they were approaching Granada Station.

The sudden burst of thunder and rain worried him, he opened the compartment door and then there was a gun being fired and blood splattered all over.

(The other person in the compartment wondered why the boy (Se Joon) left the cabin without his rucksack. Strange that he did not hear the gunshot and there were no blood in sight!  Hmmm. – What is going on?)

Meanwhile, Jin Woo, CEO of Jaywon Holdings, was also in Spain after introducing a smart lens, which revolutionalises virtual reality programs, thereby putting South Korea in the gaming map.  Jin Woo also invests in games development.  He was the person Se Joo was speaking to before he caught the train.

Se Joo, during their telephone conversation, arranged to meet up with Jin Woo in Granada, whose most famous landmark in the palace of Alhambra.

When Se Joo mentioned Cha Hyung Seok being a bad man and he doesn’t want him to get his hand on his game, Jin Woo was more than intrigued.

He flew immediately to Granada and stayed at the Bonita Hotel as advised by Se Joo.

Hotel Bonita is a rat infested, derelict backpackers/student hostel.  It is run by Jung Hee Joo.

Seeing that Jin Woo looks very prosperous, Hee Joo tried to discourage him from staying in her hostel.

There was only one room that caters for a single traveller and that was located on the 6th floor.  To reach the room would involve navigating a long and winding staircase.  Jin Woo got a shock when they finally got to the room.  It has not been cleaned for months or even a year or two.  There were cobwebs everywhere and inch-thick dust covering the top furniture, rats are running loose, the toilet is blocked and there were no suitable sockets to charge his mobile phone.

But he did not overly mind as he was thinking of the game that Se Joo had sent him.

He called his programmer in South Korea, and then he was advised that everything has been arranged.

He went to the piazza and it then got mysterious and magical.  Suddenly there was an explosion.  Before he can collect himself together, he saw a knight in steel armour riding a horse coming towards him.  He noticed that the knight had about 5 arrows firmly embedded on his back.  The knight then collapsed in front of him.  He was aghast but his trouble was just beginning.  The hero on top of the monument suddenly came alive and ferociously jumped down in front of him and sliced his arm.  Blood started dripping and pouring into the ground … and then from his right eye, there was suddenly a message that the game was over, he is dead.

It was a game!  And He was mighty impressed.  It was so addictive. It was a 3D (3 Dimensional) – 4D holographic sort of a game.  You feel it, you do it.

He can reset it as many times as he wishes to increase his experience.

He was excited and wanted to meet the creator of the game immediately.

He went back to the hostel and hoping to see the creator of the game.  He was charging and answering his phone in the kitchen when the smoke alarm set in.

Hee Joo had trouble stopping the noisy alarm.

The tired and sleep-deprived Jin Woo took his frustration out of Hee Joo.  He made her cry.

He then learned that the creator of the Alhambra game was a minor at only 17 years of age.  So he needed a guardian to sign the contract for him.

Yep, you guessed it, the guardian was the crying Hee Joo.

Jin Woo then tried his most winning dimpled smile on Hee Joo.

So far so good but I have to be totally honest here as I always am: remember Honesty is the best policy.

Anyway, as much as I am loving this drama, I thought the gaming scene went a bit too long.  I have to be honest here, the gaming/fighting scene was boring.  I got it, it was trying to make a point that Se Joo was a genius boy who created very innovative and exciting virtual reality game but I realised that during the first instant that it showed Jin Woo, the gamer died at the hands or sword of the Nasher guy.

I hope this drama will be more on reality rather than inside a virtual bubble.

Episode 2

omg, Hyun Bin is just so gorgeous!  Whatever angle you look at him, he is perfection!  A real oppa! ha ha ha.

Anyway, this episode introduces the characters a little bit more.

Jin Woo is now on his second marriage, which only lasted a year as his current wife who is an actress wanted a divorce and half of his fortune in alimony.

His first wife, who he still feels a little tenderness but a lot of bitterness, was stolen by his friend and business partner, who co-founded his company, Jaywon Holdings.

This episode is slightly confusing because Se Joo was shown on his way to Granada as per the first episode.  Jin Woo took a plane from Barcelona to Granada that’s why he arrived in Granada ahead of Se Joo.

Anyway, after upsetting and making Hee Joo cry, Jin Woo used his cuteness to calm her down.  It did not work much. 🙂

He learned from her the time of Se Joo’s train arrival.

He went to the station to wait for him.  Se Joo never showed up .  He then found it strange that Hee Joo and her family seemed not overly bothered with the brother’s no-show.

While at the station, he bumped into his ex-wife, the first one, who he was so surprised to see was heavily pregnant.

She said that they had been in Granada since yesterday and that she was going back to Barcelona with her sister.

He put two and two together and realised that Cha Hyung Seok must also be in Granada.

Jin Woo’s programmer and his manager who were monitoring him in real time were surprised to find that Jin Woo commenced a game rather than look for the still missing Se Joo.

Through his virtual smart lens, he was advised that another person had joined in the game.  He and his minders thought that it might be Se Joo but Jin Woo was not surprised when it turned out that it was Cha Hyung Seok himself and he had a higher level, thus better weapons.

Jin Woo was ready to duel but his minder reminded him that one nik from Cha Hyung seok’s blade would kill him in the game.

So they postponed the duel.

Meanwhile, Hee Joo was informed that Jin Woo was far from being a poor man who wears knock-offs because he is actually the CEO of the biggest company in their area of expertise.

Thinking that he was going to sue her, Hee Joo agreed to meet Jin Woo in a nearby cafe.

He told her that she should renovate her hotel or better sell the current one and buy a better and bigger one because Granada will become a magic city, where tourists would stay for months.

One year later… Jin Woo was on a train, looking rather unkempt.  The train was just approaching Granada when he stood up and went into the lavatory where he sorted his guns.  He then went out and started shooting masked terrorists.

So exciting, that the minutes went so quickly.

Episode 3

Apparently the gorgeous Park Shin Hye is trending.  Some netizens think her acting only comprise of one expression:  confused with a bunny rabbit teeth.

So many mean people.  I think she is doing a good job.  I wanted to see more of her, or rather more of her and Hyun Bin together,

Jin Woo offered to buy the Hostal Bonita from Hee Joo for 10,000,000,000SKW which is about 7,794,000 Euros.

After thinking over, she sold the hostel;  it was a no-brainer really.

What Hee Joo did not know at that time is that Hostal Bonita owns everything connected to the game her brother had created.  So Hee Joo unknowingly sold all the rights on the game and merchandising.

Oh come on, I would have sold the game for £100K. LOL  She got £7M+.

Feeling happy with himself, Jin Woo called Cha Hyung Seok to commence their duel.

Jin Woo had been practicing and improving his level all day long.  He has the assassin sword.

Within the game, opponents are not allowed to touch each other.  Fighting should only be carried out with the level allotted weapons.

However, the two ex-friends did have a bit of psychological warfare.  But in the end, Jin Woo prevailed.  He beat and cut up Cha Hyung Seok well and good.  He left him catatonic on a bench in the park.

He then caught a plane to Barcelona.

He was dog-tired when he got to his apartment/hotel room but woken up the next morning with a call from his assistant who stayed in Granada.

He bears bad news.  The police found Cha Hyung Seok cold and dead in the park.

Episode 4

Jin Woo raced back to Granada.  His ex-wife blamed him for the death of her husband.

He then went to the hospital morgue to see Hyungseok’s body.  The pathologist remarked that there was something weird with the body.  It looks like it had been drained of blood and yet there is no visible sign of wounds for the blood to drain.

Jin Woo then went to the park bench where Hyungseok died.  With his smart virtual lens he saw that Hyungseok inside the game was bleeding to death.

The most extraordinary happened.  He had to kill Hyungseok all over again within the game as he had come alive.

To investigate, he went to Hostal Bonita and asked if he can use a high specs computer, which of course Hee Joo would offer him the use of her brother’s gaming computers.

He stayed looking around at the brother’s bedroom and found some useful information.

He then told Hee Joo not to just lend her mobile phone to anyone as she will get into trouble, after returning the phone to her.

Hee Joo innocently smiled at him saying there is nothing of value on her phone.  Their chemistry is electric in this part.  So cute.  Hyun Bin had turned into a sexy wolf, momentarily only though.

He spent the night in his old room on the sixth floor.

He was just about to doze off when there was a loud knock on the door.

He opened it and it was the bloodied Hyung Seok  They ended up having another sword duel.  He tried to call his programmer but it was too late.  Jin Woo fell into the ground floor from the 5th floor at least.

Was he going to die in the hands of someone existing only inside a game?.

Can’t wait for the next episode.

 

 

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