Inspiring, Influential Korean Sports Movies

Sports movies are hard to come by even in movie machine South Korea, and like in other countries the genre usually brings a message of hope, inspiring the audience by featuring ordinary people doing extraordinary feats.

For the last installment of my rather short sports series – my tribute to the recently-concluded Olympic Games, I am bringing you a few Kmovies of the sports genre that I’ve watched over the years. Most on my list became popular during their release and made some impact in society. I also included a couple of related 2016 films that I am curious to see.
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#OnMyDramaRadar 3: This Week in Dramas

It’s one busy week of hellos and goodbyes in Kdramaland. But with FIVE drama premieres this week, I simply cannot (and will not!) take on all of them. Meanwhile, the Olympics makes one final pre-emption on the side of Jdramas, which will be somehow compensated come next week. So I’m skipping Jdramaland this week altogether.

As always, these mini-reactions will be short, sweet, and spoiler-free. Let’s get to it.
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Drama Pilot Week: It’s Raining Jealousy, Characters (and Controversy?) on ‘Jealousy Incarnate’

New SBS Wed-Thu romcom Jealousy Incarnate (aka Don’t Dare to Dream) is exactly what I expected on its premiere week – hilarious, quirky, and on its way to a storm of jealousy hijinks. The pilot episode’s messy editing and cluttered character intros may be a little off-putting, but overall I like it. I want to like it. There’s hope that the lead trio Jo Jung-seok, Gong Hyo-jin, and Go Kyung-pyo will come through for me, and will give me sunny romance and a pleasant ride throughout the drama’s 24-episode run.
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Sports in Varietyland: Sports Star Guestings on ‘Running Man’

What do you get when you cross elite athletes with Running Man?

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No, not *this* Running Man!!!

A different breed of entertainment. Rio 2016 may be officially over but the sports high continues in this blog, as we recall the times when famous athletes appeared on Running Man. This variety show uses the sports theme a lot (A LOT) and in different ways – from episode specials like Idol Olympics, to recurring mini games like ssireum (Korean wrestling). But Running Man gets on a different level of competitiveness and hilarity when actual sports icons take the stage.
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‘Moonlight Drawn by Clouds’ Premiere Week: Is Park Bo-gum Safe from the “Reply Curse”?

Fusion youth sageuk Moonlight Drawn by Clouds premiered this week with decent ratings, pulling 8.3% and 8.5% viewership on its first two episodes. While it falls behind competing dramas Doctors (which aired its final three episodes this week at 19.5%, 17.8%, and 20.2%, respectively) and Monster (grabbing 8.9% and 9.7% viewership ratings), it already made a big leap from predecessor Beautiful Mind, which ended only at 3.2%.

The first to premiere among the three highly-anticipated youth sageuks this year (along with another “moon” drama Moon Lovers: Scarlet Heart: Ryeo and Hwarang: The Beginning), many are curious as to how Park Bo-gum’s post-Reply 1988 drama will fare – and if he will be able to escape the “curse”.
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Dramaland Athletes: What’s the Most Popular Sport in Kdramas?

Sports dramas may not be all the rage in K-dramaverse, but various sports do get to be featured often enough thanks to athlete drama characters. Whether or not their profession is integral to the main storyline, it’s nice to see sportspeople once in a while. Actually, any job other than the usual chaebol, entertainer, or doctor is most welcome. And props to these actors for their effort in making their roles believable.

I’m kinda curious about the upcoming drama  Weightlifting Fairy Kim Bok-ju especially since it’s based on the story of a real athlete. Also, I haven’t seen a weightlifter in a drama before.(But why cast Lee Sung-kyung, though? I like her as an actress but her built doesn’t really say “weightlifter”. Anyway I’ll save this for later.)

So what are the most common sports played by our dramaland athletes? Let’s find out!
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Omo! My Five Favorite Outrageous Drama Moments

I’m also a part of the K-drama Amino community*, and every weekend the curators give out challenges for its members to encourage content creation. I had fun doing last week’s challenge so I decided to repost it here.

The task in the #MostOutrageousMoments Challenge is to select specific scenes from dramas that are downright ridiculous. And we all know there’s plenty of ’em in the whole dramaverse. But who doesn’t want a drama that can make us laugh, even if it means cringing in disbelief?
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Korean Actors Who Were Once Athletes

It’s the 2016 Rio Summer Olympics y’all! Whether you’re following it or not, it sure is affecting drama broadcast schedules. Major TV networks in Korea have pre-empted some currently airing shows for the Olympics broadcast, like W – Two Worlds, Wanted and Flower in Prison. Even the premiere of Moonlight Drawn by the Clouds has been pushed back by a week in light of this sporting event.

But enough with the violent reactions, because sports and dramas *can* coexist. In keeping with the Olympics season, I’ve decided to work on the theme “sports-meets-dramaland” in my next blogs, starting with this one. Hope you enjoy!
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Lee Je-hoon, Shin Min-a Confirmed to Play Married Couple in ‘Tomorrow With You’

It’s happening! Both Lee Je-hoon (Signal) and Shin Min-a (Oh My Venus) have confirmed for the fantasy romance drama Tomorrow With You, and I couldn’t be more thrilled. The story will revolve around the romance and married life of a time-traveler and his wife.
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‘My Sassy Girl’ Drama Remake to Replace Current “Sassy Girl”

Well, this is a shocker. A few days ago, news broke that rookie actress Kim Joo-hyun (Modern Farmer) has stepped down from the titular role in My Sassy Girl. According to reports, she is troubled by the amount of public attention she’s been getting because of the role, and by the pressure of starring in such a big project. In light of this development, it is said that the production is now offering the lead role to Oh Yeon-seo.

My Sassy Girl is an upcoming SBS sageuk based on the classic hit movie of the same title (let’s not talk about its sequel), about a beautiful but troublesome princess in the Joseon dynasty. Joo Won (Yong-pal) has long been confirmed as the show’s leading man (his last project before military enlistment), but it seems he’s going to wait a little while longer before he’s finally joined by his sassy girl.
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