After seeing some films starring “King: Eternal Monarch’s” Kim Go-eun, I realized how different Korean films are from dramas. Whereas there is more time allowance in dramas (which sometimes allows for a more fleshed out story), films can have greater impact and, sometimes, better production value. This has led me to delve into the filmography of some of my favorite actors. First one on the list is Son Ye-jin whose performance as Yoon Se-ri in “Crash Landing On You” delighted me. Seeing as Go-eun has also shown how much she could give as an actor on the big screen, I also wanted to see the difference between Ye-jin’s acting in TV and movies. Here are some films that show Ye-jin’s capabilities as an actress:
“The Truth Beneath”
In this movie, Ye-jin plays Kim Yeon-heong, a housewife married to a politician. Just 15 days before the national elections, their daughter, Min-jin, disappears all of a sudden. As a mother whose heart aches for her daughter, Yeon-heon investigates Min-jin’s disappearance. As the days pass, she learns that her daughter has actually already died. In my opinion, Ye-jin’s performance here has got to be her best acting yet. Despite not being a mother in real life, I saw how much dedication she has with her on-screen daughter and it felt as if they were actually real-life mom and daughter.
“The Last Princess”
Based on a true story, “The Last Princess” is all about the life of the last princess of the Korean Empire and is an adaptation of the novel of the same name. During the Japanese colonial era, Princess Deokhye was taken hostage in Japan. This led her to struggle maintaining the hope of her people. Her childhood friend Kim Jang-han, who also happens to be fighting for Korean independence, has sailed to Japan to rescue her and return her to Korea. I didn’t think it was easy to show so much strength when one seemed weak—but by humanizing an archetype that’s exactly what Ye-jin did playing the role of Princess Deokhye.
“A Moment To Remember”
“A Moment To Remember” shows the sacrifices of Cheol-su for the sake of his wife Su-jin (Ye-jin), who suffers from Alzheimer’s disease. What I admired about Ye-jin’s acting here is how she depicted the pain and confusion people suffering from Alzheimer’s experience as they tried to make sense of the world around them.
This movie follows the story of Ji-hye (Ye-jin) who becomes the ghost writer of her best friend’s Soo-kyoung’s love letters to their shared crush, Sang-min. After being touched by the letters he received, Sang-min asks Soo-kyoung out—which saddens Ji-hye. While cleaning the house one day, Ji-hye comes across a box of her mother’s old love letters.
The best thing about Ye-jin’s performance here is that she was performing two different characters (Ji-hye and a younger version of Ju-hee, her mom) in one film. She’s one of the few actors who can actually succeed in doing so, because there are some who tend to use the same acting techniques for both roles they’re playing. Another notable is how young she was during the filming of the movie (she was 21 years old then)—which tells you that, from a young age, she already had so much potential.