Monthly Archives: September 2016

Why Train to Busan is probably not for the faint-hearted

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Train to Busan is the first South Korean film I’ve watched on the big screen, and it certainly didn’t disappoint.It was a nerve-wracking, heart-pounding, hair-tearing experience. It’s not just a film; it’s an experience.

Like many other romantics, I’m also a fan of South Korean comedies and dramas but I’m not overly fond of the zombie genre. Needless to say, I wasn’t expecting that much, though I’ve seen nothing but praises and recommendations of the film on Facebook. Maybe because after watching the South Korean film, The Host (2016), I can’t take the whole monster thing seriously.

To avoid major spoilers, I’ll just tell about the main story. Seok-Woo (Gong Yoo from the Coffee Prince) travels with his young daughter, Su-an, to a train to Busan to deliver her to his wife whom he is estranged with. We learn that Seok-Woo works as a fund manager in an agency and seldom spends time with his daughter. His workaholic and seemingly indifferent attitude distance him from having any relationship with his daughter who would rather prefer living with her mom following the separation of her parents.

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Onboard the train is some characters who are not just zombie meat but actual people you’ll grow to care for. We have this school girl with an adorable crush from one of the guys on the baseball team, a couple expecting a baby boy, two elderly sisters and a homeless guy who may look clumsy and idiotic at first but has a golden heart (I wouldn’t spoil this too much)

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Gong Yoo is so good in this. I mean, all characters are, even the infuriating ones. And let’s not forget the grotesque, cringe-worthy performance of the zombies. We are left with so many questions and speculations with how exactly the infections started, or if the infection already spread globally, and how the survivors are going to survive the aftermath. Even with that, we left the cinemas greatly satisfied, adrenaline singing in our veins as we babble on how awesome that experience was.

Train to Busan is not just a horror and a zombie flick. It has a heart and the team behind this movie know exactly where they wanted the story to go. And it actually reached its destination. The ride will leave you breathless and it will leave you wanting for more despite all the tension and stress you’ve experienced. It will be the longest roller coaster you’ll ride on.

At this point, all I wanted to say is, “Well done, South Korea. You’ve done it again. We wanted a sequel deserving of this one, you hear?”

ADDITIONAL NOTES: Maybe in the SEQUEL, we can have some action from North Korea as well. It will be so good!

For the trailer, watch the link below:

Train to BusanTrain to Busan

 

 

 

 

 

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[On Writing] After a two-month break

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So after a two-month hiatus, I finally decided to add a post. I’ve been meaning to update my blog for goodness knows long but there’s this one big wall that’s pressing against my face and I can’t find my way around it.

The wall is coated with black, ugly letters written in blood and grime. Everytime I blink, the words seemed to grow bigger and thicker until I cannot erase the image in my mind and I’m so overwhelmed by the message that all the ideas and thoughts I was hoarding in my brain were flushed down the drain.

“YOU HAVE NOTHING TO WRITE ABOUT” 

Really, how many times did we ever think of this? I guess most writers, from the budding ones to the veterans, have to struggle with that little voice in their heads. Words like “This is not worth writing about” or “This pathetic excuse of a writing” would always float above our consciousness until the droplets of doubt and insecurity accumulate into an angry, ominous cloud which rains down our enthusiasm and vigor until we’re left feeling nothing.

To top it all that, we have to lead two lives. One that is rooted to the reality of paying bills, earning enough for the family, running ahead of the rat race, expanding our social circle and business networks, taking our families or partners to a date, finishing our masters degree and working hard for a promotion. Mundane stuff. We have responsibilities and we cannot just push it all away as easily as we push our laptops, papers and pens away.

The other world is something we created by our own. Here, we dream our biggest dreams and deal with our nightmares, our fears. We thread on that thin line between striving for it and  losing it. Our imagination can only go as far as we allow it to go. We escape into this world oftentimes but staying too long, as comforting as it sounds, is dangerous.

So to deal with that, we create a pathway between these two worlds. We weave our feelings and thoughts into words. Our experiences, the people we meet, the failures and milestones, are mulled over in our heads until we immortalize these into words, stories, anecdotes, into art. We often get the inspiration from the real world. Anything we find memorable, happy or sad, gets into the paper.

During my two months of hiatus, I learned that I don’t necessarily need to experience a big change, or a life-changing moment in the real world, to inspire my writing. It was a miserable two months, and everyday I was consumed by guilt over my lack of enthusiasm and self-hate for not ‘truly living enough’. I learned that it’s so easy to hate yourself, that it’s so easy to trap ourselves in the world we created and to hide behind the words you kept so close to yourself. I learned that this is the biggest mistake you could ever do in your life, in your two lives.

And so, I’m returning to this blog, chipping away the big, bad wall. Behind that, I know I’ll face heavy downpour but I’ll persist and plow my way up..or down. It doesn’t matter as long as I reach the place where I wanted to be. Where I can find inner peace with myself and accept the fact that life doesn’t figure itself out right in your face.

But despite the randomness and craziness of it all, remember that there is always something worth writing about.

 

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