What Happened in Bali – 2004 & Dirty Carnival 2006

13 06 2011

Something Happened in Bali, also known as What happened in Bali stars the lead from Secret Garden Ha Ji Won.  I think I would have liked her more in Secret Garden if I had seen this series first, but maybe because I have seen her in that it helped me like her so much in this.  I loved Ha Ji Won in WHIB, she was plucky, spirited and I could relate to her attraction to both men.

This series also stars Jo In Sung, who I recently saw in Dirty Carnival or Mean Street, a movie that was really awesome BTW.   Jo In Sung made that film and in similar fashion his presence here was unspeakable.  He moves the screen with every scene he is in.  He isn’t afraid to show every emotion with skilled acting.  His charisma is like a drug and gives me the same feeling I had toward Lee Min Ho in BOFs.  Jo In Sung displays that same unbridled passion and I can’t help but swoon.

So Ji Sub plays Kang In Wook, though I’ve never seen him before, he was very, very nice to look at and hope to see him in future shows.  Kang In Wook always kept me guessing and was a much more layered character than I originally expected.  Though he often didn’t speak much, he conveyed so much through his slight facial expressions and I felt for him.

Park Ye Jin rounds out the fourth lead as Choi Young Joo and for several episodes I kept wondering where I knew her name from.  I looked up her list of films and none really rang a bell for me – yet her name seemed so familiar.  I finally made the connection that she was one of the family members on the variety show Family Outing.  She was so different here that it took me quite a while to make the connection, but seeing her in this makes seeing her in Family Outing lots more fun.  As a side note, Family Outing is a show I just continue to watch and enjoy as I know more Korean celebs it just gets funnier and funnier.

Overall this show has a slower pace, it can even get a little one note at times, but it also has some amazing chemistry and really made me feel more for the characters than I have in a long time.  I think it is entirely worth the slow moments and the gut wrenching ending.  If you haven’t seen it -watch it, if you have lets chat about it…

I really loved all four leads for different reasons and related to each one and where they were coming from.  For the longest time, I really found a charm to both lead men and wasn’t sure which way things were going to go or who would eventually couple with who.  After the first episode I thought maybe Jae Min and In Wook were going to fight over Young Joo.  It kept you guessing and the writers would just start to show a spark between two of the characters and then they would go the other way with the other two characters.  The first 10 episodes just bounced me around like a shoe in a dryer.  I mean it in a good way because as much as you hate it, you also loved the back and forth. But by the tenth episode I was craving more. Even in hindsight you realize  that Soo Jung and Jae Min were falling in love, but they didn’t really let you totally know.  Even when she was preparing dinner for Jae Min she was thinking of In Wook, but when she was with In Wook she would be drawn to Jae Min.

I don’t have too many complaints about this series, mostly superficial things mostly related to the fact I am watching this 7 years after its release.  My biggest complaint would be that they could have cut out a bit of the back and forth to develop relationships, or better put, to let the viewer enjoy the relationship with Jae Min and Soo Jung, but I know they didn’t want to reveal too much too early either.  The second big complaint would be the weird fashion choices from everyone, but a stand out was Jae Min’s fashion…. His outfits left me wondering if flares were  “in” in Korea in 2004.  In general he just had some really weird, ugly clothing… the jean sports jacket.  ugh! I also felt bad for Young Joo and they never gave her a break.  It would have been nice to see her atleast turn vengefully on Jae Min too and walk away with her pride.

What really worked in this series was the incredible acting of all the leads with a particular nod to Jo In Sung.  I also loved the heat and chemistry between Jae Min and Soo Jung, even though they really didn’t have many physical scenes, just a few kisses, man they were hot not even in the actual on screen action, but you could just feel the heat between them and the heaviness if your chest.  I was telling one of my friends what is wrong with me… Between two guys, both cute, one stoic, but kind, the other wealthy, crazy, abusive with a tendency for psychotic behavior and I am all about the crazy… jeeesh what does that say about women?  or worse yet, me??

If you want to long, hurt, or just feel …than I suggest you try this series, if you aren’t into it by the 3rd or 4th episode you can give it up, but I just loved it.  It is the first series in a long time to crack into my TOP 10 of all time best K dramas.  If you haven’t checked out my list it is in the tab for Best of … lists.  or here is the link…  https://kormerica.wordpress.com/best-of-lists/…. actually it came dangerously close to cracking the top 5.  Although I think someone is about to get bumped because I am 8 episodes in on Greatest Love and am totally loving it!!! Doh!

The ending was a little hard to swallow.  I loved the conversation between In Wook and Soo Jung, loved it, loved it, loved it, but then just boom, boom.  I just wanted to go back a few minutes and tell Jae Min to figure it out.  Of course she loved him, couldn’t he feel it too.  argh!  Heartwrenching.  I just didn’t want it to end, but I guess in the end how was it ever going to be alright between them anyway.   I leave this series, a huge fan of Jo In Sung, he just made this series for me.  I know I mentioned that he actually reminds me of my feeling toward Lee Min Ho, just a different age group and they use the same passion and intensity to draw you in. They aren’t afraid to go for unattractive to be at their most attractive. The thing I am most excited for is that he, Jo In Sung, was just released from the military and to say that I can’t wait to see him in his next project is a huge understatment!!! argh!!! can’t wait to see him in something new.  Overall grade: A-

Trailer for Dirty Carnival…

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