7.1/10
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8 user 9 critic

Someone Special (2004)

Aneun yeoja (original title)
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A struggling for love, Baseball players discovers he has terminal illness and meets a girl who has had a crush on him since times immemorial. The twists and turns of events bring them together.

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Cast

Credited cast:
...
Dong Chi-seong
...
Han Yi-yeon
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Jin Jang
Young-nam Jang ...
Accident woman
Gyu-su Jeong
Hye-Jeong Kim
Hye-na Kim
Hyeok Kwon
Ji-yong Lee
Ji-Young Min
Seung-hyeon Oh ...
Chi-seong's ex-girlfriend
Mi-suk Park
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Storyline

A struggling for love, Baseball players discovers he has terminal illness and meets a girl who has had a crush on him since times immemorial. The twists and turns of events bring them together.

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Comedy | Romance

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Release Date:

25 June 2004 (South Korea)  »

Also Known As:

Someone Special  »

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2.35 : 1
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The film's opening title does not appear until over 10 minutes into the movie. See more »

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User Reviews

 
Genre rules parodied and reabsorbed
20 January 2008 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

The movie that I'm glad that this film turned out not to be is the parody that exists within the movie. As that movie-within-a-movie goes on, the protagonist of this tale comments on how illogical and tedious it is, being a story of two lovers who are parted and somehow one can send his love to the other through a magical telephone pole as they both die. That movie-within-a-movie grabs all the trite clichés that infest Corean melodramas and brings them to their ridiculous conclusions.

Someone Special or A Woman I Know (direct translation) is a romantic comedy, but it's build on a completely different foundation than the typical Corean melodrama. In fact, the closest analogue I can come up with to this film is Punch Drunk Love, which is also a completely different kind of romance. Unlike Punch Drunk Love, however, Someone Special is completely aware of all the genre rules and even follows them in parodic (but not spoofing) fashion, subverting clichés of terminal illness, tear-jerking moments, and remarkable connections between lovers. And even though it acts as a parody of the romantic comedy genre, it still retains the heart of a romantic comedy.

The story, on the surface, is a little unremarkable. It's essentially about heartbroken baseball player and a young woman who has a one-sided crush on him. The comedy is derived partially from parody, flights of fantasy, erratic behavior and comedic situations, as well as some sharp awkward dialog. A few directorial touches that I love is the inversion of background and foreground and the overall approach to the look of the film.

Another thing I love about the film is the acting. First of all, the male lead doesn't have model-like features--he's a rather average looking guy. And the female lead portrays her rather bizarre character with gusto and while she's costumed rather dumpy, she conveys a genuinely addictive naiveté. The rest of the film is peopled with rather amusing persons all played well by their supporting actors.

I did have some issues with the editing, which I felt didn't do enough to cut down the running time as there were more than a couple moments where I felt like we could have more elliptical storytelling. Also, although I remain neutral to it, there are many setups where a hand-held camera is used and it can be distracting to those who expect a still camera when shooting a still scene. It's a little unorthodox and I can't find a compelling reason to shoot it the way it was shot, but at the same time, it's a rather memorable technique, even if excessive. Finally, sometimes the music was mixed too much up front and while I understand the use of pop songs in certain parts, as part of the genre critique, at other times, it was just a little overbearing and distracting.

Despite that I felt like a few more things could've been done to improve the film, I still have to admit that I was really entertained by the film and loved its intelligent and yet still genuine take on the romantic comedy genre. With great characters, atypical amusing comedy and a really unique energy, Someone Special ended up being something special for me: a really enjoyable romantic comedy that considerably pushes the genre into a new place. 8/10.


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