Eversky.org A Dose of Asian Pop Culture & Entertainment

28Nov/080

Suddenly I Wanna Cry (2008)

Bong Dung Muon Khoc

Vietnamese Title: Bong Dung Muon Khoc
Genre: Romance, Comedy, Drama
Starring: Tang Thanh Ha, Luong Manh Hai, Thanh Thuy, Nguyen Van Hung, Hieu Hien
Screenwriter: Vu Ngoc Dang
Director: Vu Ngoc Dang
Episodes: 35
MPAA: PG

Synopsis
Life is unexpected. There are events that suddenly occur, and because of them our life is forever changed. The surprises that life brought for us, good or bad, bewildered us. In that moment of bewilderment, we suddenly started to cry...

This is a story about two people whose life begins to take a drastic change after an encounter one faithful night. Bao Nam is a 21 year-old and good-looking guy. His favorite past times include partying, spending his parents' money, and more partying. One night while Bao Nam was drunk he got into trouble with a local gang and was rescued by Truc. Truc is an 18 year-old, generous, and strong-willed girl who makes a living by selling used book on the street. Truc loves to be surround by books even though she is illiterate. Her dream is to save enough money so that she can open a small bookstore. Later, she was given a chance to realize her dream when Bao Nam's parents asked to make a deal with her--to teach their son how to become a decent and responsible human being in exchange for money to open a small bookstore...
Source: Eversky.org

Rating: A (Excellent)
Rewatch Factor: High
Comment: This is the second drama that was written and directed by Vu Ngoc Dang, the first one being "Tuyet Nhiet Doi" or "Tropical Snow". Like the first one, this one also focus around an old premise in Asian dramas, poor girl meets rich guy. Despite the overused premise, the drama itself is highly entertaining to watch, and this is all attributed to the great script writing and directing of Vu Ngoc Dang. I appreciated that this drama has content that can easily enjoy by people of any age, and that there is a lot of substances behind all the glam. It speaks a lot when my dad who hasn't show much interest in watching drama became glued to the the television screen when watching this drama. It all thanks to the many well thought-out comedic moments that were written in every episode, which make it seems like less of a drama and more of a sitcom. I also appreciated the fact that this drama is keeping an honest portrayal in featuring many facets of life in the current Viet Nam; not trying to include something that is unrelated or unrealistic to the Vietnamese culture for the sake of trend. Last but not least, I appreciated that the female protagonist in this drama like in "Tuyet Nhiet Doi" while poor is not your typical damsel-in-distress, and that she doesn't simply wait for "prince charming" to rescue her, she instead rescued him first.

The cast selection was also excellent in this drama. Every actors and actresses seems to play an important role and has significant contributions to the success of this drama, especially the two leads. I saw tremendous improvements in Tang Thanh Ha's acting ability from the drama "Huong Phu Sa" to this. I knew she has big star potentials when I was watching "Huong Phu Sa", and I believed that her acting ability will improve with time and practice. She didn't disappointed me. In this drama, I can see that she is able to act with more ease and naturalness. There is not one moment while I was watching that I separated out Tang Thanh Ha and her character that she played. As far as I know, they are one. The same goes for Luong Manh Hai, he is very charismatic onscreen and his acting became more natural and less forced.

All in all, this is a wonderful drama for any age. If you're a fan of Vu Ngoc Dang, Tang Thanh Ha, or Luong Manh Hai then you definitely don't want to pass this drama by. Like the title of this drama, you will suddenly find yourself in tears while watching this drama, whether it is due to overwhelming happiness or sadness.

10Sep/080

Bong Dung Muon Khoc (Suddenly I Wanna Cry)

27Mar/081

Goi Giac Mo Ve (2007)

Goi Giac Mo Ve

Genre: Drama, Comedy, Romance, School, Slice-of-Life
Starring: Minh Hang, Huynh Dong, Ngan Khanh, Tan Phat
Screenwriters: Hoang Anh Group
Director: Xuan Cuong
Episodes: 66
MPAA: PG-13

Synopsis
Goi Giac Mo Ve, roughly translated in English as "Calling Dreams to Return", is a drama about the lives of the people on a small and developing island called "Long Hai". In particular, the drama follows the lives of four young high school students named Phung, Quan, Vy, and Minh. Phung is a clumsy girl, who does not excel in many things from academic to appearance, despite coming from a well-to-do family. On the other hand, Quan (the "bad boy") comes from a poor family, who always struggling with work and school. Vy is the "rose with thorns", in school she uphold the image of the popular, well like, and perfect student. She always striving to better herself and to escape her family background, no matter the cost. Finally, Minh is the richest and most popular guy in school, who seems to have a Prince Charming Complex--he likes to rescue damsels in distress and often are undecided about his romantic feelings.

One day, the lives of these four high school students along with their dreams began to change when there was talk of a plan to build a resort on the island. What will happen to the once humble and peaceful island? What will happen to the people on the island? And what will become of Phung, Quan, Vy, and Minh when they began to see there exist other worlds outside of the island that they called home?
Source: Eversky.org

Rating: A- (Great)
Rewatch Factor: High
Comment: It has been a while that I become excited and addicted to a Vietnamese drama. The fact that I finished this 66-episodes drama in just four days is truly a testament of how much I enjoyed watching this drama. Unlike, some of the recent Viet dramas that I seen that was heavily influenced by the "Korean wave", this drama never try to be something that it is not. I appreciate the earnest portrayal that this drama gives about the less-than-glamorous life of many people who still live in poor area in Viet Nam, especially people who live on island where the main way to make money is through fishing. Despite being a drama that mainly focuses on teens and teens' issues, it does not come off as superficial or "conjured up". There is a lot of hearts and laughters in this drama, all came very natural. From the conversations high school students have with each other to everyday conversation between parents and their kids--nothing seems force and everything seems real. I also must commend this drama for bringing up controversial issue (from teen pregnancy to sexual orientation) in a fair view and not in a preachy tone.

Another thing I love about this drama is the great actings. Minh Hang in particular was able to show me that she has grown as an actress. She definitely has finer acting skill and more confidence in the role that she played than when she was in Cai Bong Ben Chong. In short, her role as a mischievous and clumsy Phung is lovable and believable. Huynh Dong also gave me a good surprise for being very natural in his role as Quan. I love the on-screen chemistry between him and Minh Hang--as Phung started to fall for Quan so did I. The supporting cast was also well-picked for this drama, everyone managed to hold their own ground and bring to life their character whether through tears or laughters.

Needless to say, this drama has restored my interest in Viet drama. Hopefully, in the future there will be more dramas with substance like this one and not just soulless dramas with only pretty-face cast. In sum, if you're Vietnamese and you haven't watched this drama yet you're missing out on something great!

29Nov/072

Tuyet Mien Nhiet Doi (Tropical Snow) Fan MV 2

Artist: Nguyen Hong Nhung
Song: Em Se Nho Mai
Creator: chibimikki

Composer: Duc Tri and Bang Kieu
English Title: I Will Always Remember
Translated by: Mikki

It only took one passionate glance from you
To convince me that it was the shining star in the sky
Falling in this heart with endless love
I hope that shining star will always rest here

I won't forget this moment
And your eyes that never part
A touch of warm lips have glided pass here
Making the world seems to stop suddenly

These moments will always remains within me
Like the glowing stars when night came
You have made me warm again
Despite that there are still coldness within my heart
Please always stay close to me

And I will always remember every heartfelt moments
When you embraced love in your heart
Embracing the ray of light from the cold and bitter days
Giving much warmth to this life

Like a thousand droplets of spring rain
Enriching the young bud of love
Come here with me
So I can always embrace and have you in my life

29Nov/070

Tuyet Mien Nhiet Doi (Tropical Snow) Fan MV

Artist: Thuy Tien
Song: Giac Mo Tuyet Trang
Creator: chibimikki

11Mar/070

Tropical Snow (2006)

Tropical Snow

Vietnamese Title: Tuyet Nhiet Doi, Tuyet Mien Nhiet Doi
Genre: Drama, Romance
Starring: Anh Thu, Manh Hai, Thanh Hang, Duy Tan, Duc Nghia, Thanh Hoai, Ngoc Quyen
Screenwriter: Vu Ngoc Dang
Director: Vu Ngoc Dang
Episodes: 30
MPAA: PG

Synopsis
Hang, 19-years-old, is a girl who lives one of the slums in Sai Gon. Although poor, she possesses a bright and strong personality and a caring heart. Because of that, she has left a memorable impression on Hai. His encounter with her left him in many situations full of laughter and tears causing his everyday life to go haywire. Being close to her, Hai learns more about her life and her personality. Since Hang possesses beauty, Hai introduces her into the modeling agency. However, things aren't perfect as they seem and as they begin to become closer to each other, neither of them could predict the troubles lying ahead.
Source: Eversky.org

Rating: A- (Great)
Rewatch Factor: Medium
Comment: Tropical Snow is Vietnamese drama with a story very similar to a Cinderella fairy tale. With every fairy tale comes the romance as well as the villain, and Tropical Snow has both elements. I think this is a great drama that's enjoyable for everyone. There are some parts that I do find unbelievable but then again, even the title, Tropical Snow, suggests that. Everyone knows that a place with a tropical climate will never have snow, pretty much like how a girl from the slums in Sai Gon is not likely to become Cinderella. But in this drama presents the impossible making us think that it could be possible. There are flaws in this drama, especially a few episodes before the ending. A few episodes before ending is where I thought it gotten a little draggy and annoying. I admit, I used the fast forward button when watching the last few episodes. Other than that, this drama is a great fairy-tale-like drama. Sure, there are some parts that are romantic and mushy, but hey, it's a fairy tale after all.

10Mar/070

List of Viet Dramas

This is the list of all the other Viet dramas I have seen.

V-Dramas
39 Do Yeu (D+ -- Borderline Terrible)
Bong Dung Muon Khoc (A -- Excellent)
Cai Bong Ben Chong (C+ -- Satisfactory)
Chuyen Tinh Yeu (C- -- Fine)
Giot Dang (C -- Average)
Goi Giac Mo Ve (A- -- Great)
Hoa Da Quy (D- -- Very Bad)
Hoa Thien Dieu (C- -- Fine)
Huong Phu Sa (C+ -- Satisfactory)
Kinh Van Hoa (B- -- Good)
Kinh Van Hoa 2 (B- -- Good)
Lo Lem Thoi @ (B- -- Good)
Mot Ngay Khong Co Em (C -- Average)
Ngon Nen Hoang Cung (B -- Wonderful)
Mui Ngo Gai (B- -- Good)
Nhip Dap Trai Tim (C- -- Fine)
Tinh An (B- -- Good)
Tinh Yeu Con Mai (C- -- Fine)
Tinh Yeu Con Lai (B -- Wonderful)
Tuong Vi Canh Mong (C -- Average)
Tuyet Nhiet Doi (A- -- Greate)

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