Film Review 24: Il Mare 시월애

Whenever I feel like watching a melodrama or romantic movie, I know I could always depend on Koreans.

IlMare.jpg image by stephsioco

You might be familiar with “The Lake House”, the Hollywood remake of Il Mare which reunite Keanu Reeves and Sandra Bullock. I wish Il Mare had gotten the same kind of exposure as The Lake House. Anyway, for the sake of those who have not seen any of the two movies, here’s the story;

The film starts in late 1999s when Kim Eun Joo (Jeon Ji Hyun, My Sassy Girl) moves out of her house by the sea, she leaves a letter for the next occupant asking for his/her favour to forward an important mail she has been waiting for to her new address. Strangely, the letter finds its way to the past. In 1997, Seung Hyun moves into his newly built home and he finds Eun Joo’s letter in his mailbox. He is puzzled by the letter and writes back to Eun Joo, thinking she must have sent it by mistake. However, later they realise they are two people living in different years, connected through a magical mailbox. They started corresponding and embarks on a journey that leads to a beautiful relationship.

The film is not about a magical mailbox which connects two people in two different time dimensions. It’s about two empty souls who find each other through a mysterious way and by corresponding with each other, it leads not only to a relationship but also self-fullfilment. The mailbox is just a vehicle, the true magic lies in the two characters finding each other.
At the end of the movie, I wasn’t wishing for a magical mailbox but I hope I could meet someone who could understand and share common thoughts with me, just like Eun Joo and Seung Hyun did.

Although there’s no explanation in how the mailbox could travel through time, I did not care about the logical stuff and engrossed in the movie. The soundtrack by Kim Hyun Chul is most heartbreaking. I don’t know why my eyes were brimmed with tears whenever his music started playing. The setting is calming yet sorrowful and the house by the sea lures you into expulsion. Jeon Ji Hyun shows herself as a worthy actress. No wonder her career skyrocketed after this movie. Lee Jung Jae performs very well as a man living in exile. As you know, the Hollywood even remade this film, so the script’s credibilty is not in question. All these elements add up to create a beautiful, melodramatic picture.

Here’s the music video which is enough to make me cry.

I’m going to watch this movie a second time, third time,…till I ran out of tears.

Mel says: 7.8/10


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