My Bride My Love (Na-ui salang na-ui sinbu) (1990)|
Director Lee Myeong-Se
Production Company Sam Ho Films Co., Ltd
Date of Rate 1990-12-20
Date of Theatrical Release 1990-12-29
Running Time 111 min.
Writer Lee Myeong-Se
Opening Theater Piccadilly Theater
Producer Park Hyo-Seong
Director of PhotoGraphy Yoo Young-Kil
Gaffer Kim Dong-Ho
Music Jeong Seong-Jo
Park Jung-Hun, Choi Jin-Sil
Young-min (Park Joong-hoon) proposes to his college sweetheart Mi-young (Choi Jin-sil). On their wedding night, Mi-young, overcome by anxiety and a vague sense of sadness, locks her new husband out of their hotel room. Thus, their marriage gets off to an awkward start. One day, Young-min arrives at the coffee shop where he is supposed to meet Mi-young for a movie date, and sees her sitting at a table with a strange man. The man is an old boss (Song Young-chang) of Mi-young's, whom she happened to run into, but Young-min mistakenly believes that his wife is meeting an ex-boyfriend. While Mi-young is visiting with her parents, Young-min calls out a female coworker (Kim Bo-yeon). The two of them have a few drinks and head to a motel. Meanwhile, Mi-young receives a letter from her old boyfriend. Feeling nostalgic for the past, she sets out on a trip to a strange town. Young-min and Mi-young carry on their married life amid repeated misunderstandings and reconciliations. They even argue on the day Young-min is thrown a party for winning a prestigious literary competition. Alone in the house after Mi-young is hospitalized for appendicitis, Young-min discovers the empty place left by his wife and rushes to the hospital.
"A cheerful rebellion against Korea's desolate reality and the domestic film industry's reverence of serious, weighty movies" (Kim Hong-suk)
My Bride My Love is Lee Myeong-se's second movie. Whereas his directorial debut, Gagman (Gaegeumaen), enjoyed critical acclaim but fizzled at the box office, his follow-up film achieved both critical and commercial success, thus clearly signaling the emergence of a new cinematic sensibility known as "Lee Myeong-se." The movie is composed of eight episodes, including "When a Man Meets a Woman" and "Fantasy Serenade," that take as their subject aspects of early married life with which anyone can easily identify. For those who expect a dramatic love story with a clear build-up, climax, and resolution, My Bride My Love may seem a trifle unfamiliar due to its relatively diffuse structure and lack of suspense. Nonetheless, Lee Myeong-se's film maintains both its entertainment value and a solid cinematic construction without relying on dramatic elements (Cho Hee-moon). It neatly captures the minute and delicate texture of emotions generated by trivial, everyday events. The two protagonists love each other and share an unquestioning faith in each other's love, but at the same time they become jealous and get into misunderstandings over the most trivial things. Mi-young thinks Young-min is about to break up with her when he is in fact trying to propose. Young-min, in his turn, mistakes her ex-boss for her ex-boyfriend. Such misunderstandings, or differences in thinking, become the starting point of virtually all of the eight episodes, and much of the film's laughter also derives therefrom. Lee Myeong-se visualizes the couple's contrasting thoughts using a variety of formal devices like divided screens and cartoony speech balloons that create a dreamlike, fairy tale atmosphere on the screen. In an important sense, visual style constitutes the real protagonist of My Bride My Love: in the film, props and settings are so effective in evoking the necessary emotions that they seem to go beyond merely existing in the background to speaking in their own right. A steaming manhole, raindrops dripping from the eaves, an alley lit by a street lamp such everyday spaces and objects attain ample expressiveness through perfectly-tuned camera work and lighting. My Bride My Love also provides a glimpse of Choi Jin-sil's cinematic appeal at a time when she was soaring into the spotlight as a movie star for the younger generation.
Director Bio: Lee Myeong-se (1957- )
After graduating from the film department of the Seoul Institute of Arts, he worked as a production assistant to director Kim Soo-yong. After his discharge from the army in 1983, he worked as an assistant director to such directors as Hong Pa, Kim Jeong-il, and Bae Chang-ho until 1988. In 1989, he made his directorial debut with the film, Gagman (Gaegeumaen), which is considered one of the most unique films in Korean cinematic history. He used a wide variety of visual techniques and created a unique aesthetic style by incorporating even the most trivial of details - such as the props - as an essential part of his films. He is without doubt Korea's greatest cinematic stylist. His most important works include My Bride My Love (Na-ui salang na-ui sinbu) (1990), First Love (Cheossalang) (1993), Affliction of Man (Namjaneun goelo-wo) (1994), Relentless and Ruthless (Injeongsajeong Bol Geot Eopda) (1999), and Duelist (Hyeongsa) (2005).