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I jukilnomui sarang (2005)
Had very high hopes and it never disappointed me. Was absolutely blown away
I had extremely high hopes for this series as it's Rain's newest work and since I have seen "Full House" and "Sang Doo! Let's Go To School" which I thought were outstanding, I didn't expect anything less - in fact I expected it to be a life changing thing! Haha. I was worried that I was going to be disappointed because I had such high hopes but it amazed me and managed to blow me away.
Using non-verbal communication, you can tell from the cover that it's very serious, Rain's character is going to be very cold, and just from the title you know that the story is going to be exciting and epic.
Even though it's not the first time this kind of story has been done, it still seems so original because it seemed so fresh.
The thing I enjoyed the most was seeing a completely different side of Rain. If you're a Rain fan from such series as "Full House", don't expect to see the sweet and gentle Young-Jae you saw. Rain's character, Bok-Gu, is cold, UNBELIEVABLY smooth and has the attractive 'bad boy' attitude. After watching this, I was convinced that Rain can act any role because he just nailed this character. There is nothing worse than when you're watching a film or series and you don't care about the characters. You won't find that in this you will genuinely care about the characters, pity them, hate them, understand them, be frustrated with them and fall in love with them.
You also cannot ignore the incredible music used in this. The music alone touched me and broke my heart - it was so effective. A superb soundtrack.
Girls must watch this series for the excitement of the development of the 2 lovers' relationship and see what ending will come out of this completely against fate scenario. And most importantly, in all seriousness, no joke, Rain's handsomeness. The shots used for all the characters were done so unbelievably well I melted every time Rain came on screen.
Guys get ready for a new role model. There is also so much action in this it's more than a drama. Also, follow all the courting steps in this series and you will melt any girl's heart you desire.
All the cast's acting skills were generally extremely good but hands down to Rain who once again holds nothing back and always gives it his all.
The ending is beautiful and at first you may find it very unsatisfying because you needed more closure but I was thinking about this series for days (along with tears yes it was also very sad, heartbreaking and really touching) after I finished watching it and I found that I loved it more and more. It turns out to be such a brilliant story and it's a must see. Definitely another brilliant piece with Rain.
Sangdooya hakgyo kaja! (2003)
A Real Surprise. So much more than a school story.
I bought this box set while I was in Hong Kong after I had JUST seen Rain's (Bi) "Full House" which my father bought for me. I was immediately converted to a Rain fan after watching it but I wasn't sure what to expect from "Sang Doo! Let's Go To School". If I wasn't a Rain fan, I wouldn't have bothered watching this because I was extremely sceptical, thinking because it's one of his very early work, it might not be so impressive, and the theme about school put me off slightly thinking it wasn't going to be very mature.
I was dead wrong. This is one of the funniest series I have seen! If you've seen Korean series, you'll know to expect comedy, cuteness and a touching story - this series has it all and more. School is just ONE of the themes it has so much more to offer. The show is mature in a way so you take the story seriously but also laid back enough so you get to know the characters and really grow to care about them, genuinely.
Rain REALLY gets to show his acting talents whilst in "Full House" he didn't get many opportunities to show that he is a brilliant actor. At the beginning it seems like an innocent high school love story with some good laughs but it becomes so epic you will be so captivated. It's as if the series grows up along with the characters who in the beginning were High school kids and now they're adults with real problems and it becomes such a heart touching drama.
The music is also very lovely and works so well together with the series. There's a sweetness in the soundtrack that has a high school first love feel, and also despair in the complications of 2 lovers - very effective soundtrack.
All the cast are extremely good actors and actresses but definitely thumbs up to Rain who doesn't hold anything back. By the end of the series I was crying my eyes out and thinking about it for days. I believe that the ending was beautiful it was so sad but it was also so loving, I wouldn't change it at all. Out of all of Rain's series, Full House, A Love to kill and Sang Doo, this is by far the best. A must see for Rain fans, Korean series fans and especially if you're sceptical about experiencing the Korean world of great drama.