Tag Archives: review

락 Rock 樂 (락락락) (Rock Rock Rock)

I can’t believe this drama has not had a lot of publicity since its release in December 2010. Why?!

Disregarding the unbelievably good-looking lead actor No Min Woo (who, by the way, did a brilliant job at portraying Kim Tae Won’s character), the concept of this four episode documentary drama is very good in itself.

We all wonder what the secret to success is, believing that there is one somewhere, when in fact, there is none. To succeed, one must first find the seed of talent within oneself, and then endeavour to nurture it into something more.

This drama is about Korea’s renown guitarist, leader of Boohwul (‘resurrect’), one of the most successful rock bands in Korean music history, Kim Tae Won. Obviously, there was exceptional guitar-playing thoroughout the drama. I believe most of these scenes were done by No Min Woo himself as he is a very talented guitar player. One must commend the screenwriters for turning Kim Tae Won’s life endeavours into a compelling script in which director Lee Won Ik adapted into a well-made drama.

After watching this drama, I quickly did a search of one of Boohwul’s initial lead vocals, Lee Seung Chul. Being a fan of ballads, discovering the king of Korean ballads was like an early Christmas present. Forget crying to Adele’s songs (which I don’t, so I do not understand why people do…), I don’t even know what he’s singing about (I don’t understand Korean), but hearing his unbelievable voice, the way he sings so effortlessly, makes me want to cry.

Here’s a link to one of Boohwul’s most popular song, ‘Never ending story’ (2002) with Kim Tae Won on acoustic guitar and vocals by Lee Seung Chul:

‘The Elegance of the Hedgehog’ – Muriel Barbery

A rather complex read, I opted to borrow this novel from my local library after finding myself thoroughly intrigued having watched a trailer of its French feature movie (will now endeavor to get a copy of the movie).

Despite its literary complexity, the author (and translator) has truly done a wonderful job. Simple things that we perceive in life, and things that we barely give a second’s thought, are elaborately philosophized  throughout this novel. I won’t go into the details, as frankly, I had a bit of difficulty understanding some parts, but was nevertheless able to grasp the concept. Perhaps in a few years time, I will have matured enough (and further developed my comprehension skills) to fully understand this brilliantly written novel.

It has been described as ‘the publishing phenomenon of the decade’ – Le Figaro. That alone should persuade you to read this novel. If not, you can find an indepth review of the book here.

Kuroshitsuji II [review]

Synopsis: http://myanimelist.net/anime/6707/Kuroshitsuji_II

Story: 5.5/10
Truth be told, the storyline is not good. I’d have much rather preferred the ending of the 1st season to have been the ultimate finale. It would have left a better impression. This second season is more for very loyal fans than the odd viewer. The plot puts an unexpected twist to the 1st season’s ending, and has an unexpected ending itself! Though I didn’t like the main story, the ending was not so bad. Here is a very brief summary of what happens:

Due to the loss of Sebastian’s arm with the engraved seal, he was unable to eat Ciel’s soul and it becomes stolen by another demon Claude. Sebastian steals back the soul but Ciel forgets everything. Ciel thinks pretty-boy rival Alois Trancy killed his parents so seeks revenge. Alois’ butler Claude wants Ciel’s soul too. Alois gets jealous. All out battle between masters and butlers. Hanna another demon steps in to help Alois with his revenge. Everyone dies…or do they??? o.O

Lol, obviously there’s a bit more to the story, but you can watch it yourself. Another disappointing feature of this season is the absence of some of characters from the 1st season (i.e. the Phantomhive servants – man, they were awesome!).

Characters: 7/10
New character designs were impeccably done as per usual. By far, the stand-out character for me was Hanna. Not only was she hot, but her role in the story was surprisingly unpredictable. And the new butler, Claude Faustus?…not so much. It might just be me, but I think his looks are fairly similar to the shinigami, William T. Spears, thus lacks originality. I didn’t really like Alois Trancy. Yes, he is a pretty boy, but Ciel’s still better.  The personas were developed well enough for a 12ep season.

Animation: 6.5/10
Animation was per usual as well (when I say this, I mean it has the same standard as season 1’s = i.e. as good). Nothing out-there or extraordinary to note, really.

Sound: 5/10
Same-same, though I reckon I liked the EP of season 1 more. Kalafina also sings one of the EPs for this season (they are awesome!).

Enjoyment: 5.5/10
The first episode wasn’t too bad, but everything went downhill from there, until the last episode where, though slightly confusing, things become resolved with a likable ending. I found some scenes particularly disturbing (and unexpected…). Bit of a pity really, because season 1 was so awesome and all.

Overall: 6/10