Alice in Wonder City (Taiwanese Drama 2012)

Alice in Wonder City 10.jpg

Drama Rating: 7/10

He Ting Yu is a famous violinist who’s just returned from an overseas tour. Chen Hai Jie is a hardworking dreamer who came to the big city to become a world class violin player. Lan Die Fei is a charming girl who has a beautiful voice and an ear for pitch. Alice is a mysterious girl from Japan who wonders the streets searching for the secrets of her past.

The seeds of their dreams are planted in the city; they are all waiting to see if one day the seeds will grow to bear fruit.

Excerpted from: My Dramalist

I’m quite a sucker classical music and this drama made it into one of my drama’s “I must finish at once” list. Expect to have a lot of music all throughout the episodes.

The drama had a lovely premise but it went all wishy-washy somewhere in the middle, loop holes popped up here and there into the story line because they tried to make the conflicts seem more complicated and instead it had dead ends or unexplained troubles which were left unresolved. Although those were the things I disliked about this drama, there was also the perk of seeing my favorite character end up with the girl he likes. I’m not going to mention who it is because I wouldn’t want to spoil it to prospect viewers but for me that is much of a happy ending and a drama with happy endings – works well for me BIG TIME.

Alice in Wonder City 01As for the actors/characters, Aaron Yan has gone quite a long way and has matured from that role he had from “It Started With A Kiss”. There was a really huge difference from his acting way back up to this drama and boy has he turned into a good looking guy! I like how he handled the complicated character of Ting-Yu. The seemingly bi-polar attitude, happy at times then all of a sudden angry and rigid. But when his character comes in contact with CJ which is acted by Jie Kai, Tung-yu’s character seems to be more carefree and outspoken. Both actors had this awesome chemistry of being really good friends and they looked really comfortable on acting their characters.

Alice in Wonder City 09The female leads on the other hand – I felt that they were slightly over shadowed by the male lead character, like for Alice – I know that the story is supposed to revolve more around her but it seems that her character was not written with a stronger conviction of who she really is. She was initially a nice girl, then suddenly a bad girl then gradually into the drama, she became a Alice in Wonder City 05nice girl again then bad then nice again. It was sort of annoying that the writer didn’t stick with a proper character for her. There was no sense of continuity. I know it was an act within an act, but there was not proper flow. It was too irritating to watch. As for Die Fei, there was so much potential in her character but the singing thing was like cropped out of no where. It was annoying how her story had to go in circles along with Ting-Yu’s, that everything she did was because of Ting-Yu and not basically about herself. She had to find herself because of the help of someone else, it’s sort of sad. An awakening of a person’s worth should not come from other people but from within. One thing I liked about her though was her voice, I swear it was like watching “Love at the Dolphin Bay” all over again and hearing Angela Zhang sing for the first time. My ears where momentarily in heaven. I only wished the female’s characters had stronger back bones – like the older one named Lisa. I loved her character in so many ways. It was rich and full of story and she had purpose in the first place. The actress gave justice to her role as well.

I have already re-played my favorite scenes with all the cutey stuff and musical stuff, so for me this drama is basically re-watchable. Hopefully, the story line won’t be too disappointing – over all this series is not a waste of time because it stirred my heart and made me smile a lot.

PHOTOS ARE NOT MINE. CREDITS TO THE OWNER.
Advertisements

30 But 17 (Korean Drama 2018)

30 but 17 01.jpg

Drama Rating: 9/10

This drama is about two teenagers who had to encounter unfortunate events in their lives that would forever scar them and give them a void in their hearts that only both of them can fill in.

At the age of 17, Woo Seo Ri is a talented violinist while Gong Woo Jin is a buddingStill17E01-00183-copy painter. In their own little worlds they live parallel lives watching each other from afar until one day, they are able to meet by pure coincidence. Unfortunately on that same day an accident occurs that robs years of Seo Ri’s life because she wakes up from a coma 13 years after. Woo Jin, on the other hand, seemed to be stuck in a loophole of guilt up to the age Still17E03-00056-copyof 30 due to a huge misunderstanding. Thinking that he had caused the death of his first love, he lived a life opposite of who he truly is – never getting involved in other people’s lives ever again. Fate brought them together once more not knowing who each other truly is. They started to live under one roof and slowly rediscover themselves through the help of each other and the people around them.

Intermission and crescendo.

These are the two words that got stuck in my mind while I watched this drama. I love the fact that they used these words to interpret an event and describe the character’s life, that’s how both words became very meaningful. I like how Seo Ri was able to think positively despite all the hurdles she faced with the mindset that her life was simply put on hold like an intermission during a concert and that her crescendo finally came to let her resume her life performance. Simply thinking about it sends tiny tingly feels all over Dramas-With-a-Side-of-Kimchi-2.w16-5me. Aside her character being a roller coaster ride with all the ups and downs, there’s one set back that I didn’t like about and that was her decision making. She changes her mind during critical times but given that she’s still in the state of being a 17 year old instead that of a 30 year old woman, she’s bound to make a lot of mistakes and learn from them. Shin Hye Sun as Seo Ri, was able to portray her character thoroughly and stay true to her supposedly age and experiences, as if everything simply happened yesterday after she got into an accident. Her emotional turmoil upon finding out devastating things and coming out from depression to move forward was another plus props for her. Seo Ri’s life may be far fetched from reality but she’s a character that I’ll keep dear in my heart. Her counter part Gong Woo Jin, the guy who has been cold, aloof and indignant to people is the total30but17_E1516_00019 opposite of Seo Ri. He’s a man who has been scarred for life and unable to let go that’s why his mental state was in total shambles forgetting that he had a lot of people caring for him. I’m just glad that the way Seo Ri and Woo Jin met again didn’t seem forced but it was as natural as they have met during the first time. The fact that Seo Ri became his healing person all throughout their time together was a plus. What I like about him is the way he changed from being a bubbly person to being anti-social then back again. When he was being a loner, he has these pair of head set which is his way to close off himself from people who are trying to approach him. He had different antics on how not to care about people because he thought that the more he care, the more others may get hurt and at the same time it would cause him yet another unbearable pain. So basically being with Seo Ri was a contradiction to his own belief because she was simply able to turn his life upside down. Woo Jin was able to open up because of her and slowly revert to the same person he was before. Kang Sejong nailed this character all throughout. I’m glad that his acting is consistent and that he’s getting better as time goes on as well. Other charactersStill17E30-00266-copy worth mentioning are the following: Jennifer – I like her not just because of her character but because of the actress who portrayed her. Ye Ji Won is a veteran actress who usually has a supporting role but she always always brings light to her character and co-stars. I realized that her role as Jennifer the house keeper, was very essential in the drama. She made everything into a full circle. It felt like she was the glue that held everyone together. The fact that she also cooks mountain of food for everyone, is a quirk that she has. It’s as if Still17E02-00627-copy.jpgshe lives to feed other people. Jennifer also loves to quote books since she had spent most of her time reading which will be showed in the drama as to why she does it and how she became who she was. Yoo Chan – the household teenager and the nephew of Woo Jin. When he was younger he adored Woo Jin with all his heart and vice versa. They looked so cute together during their younger years but now that both are older, he got taller than Woo Jin and is actually proud of it. Heh. The thing that makes Chan lovable is that he’s so energetic, understanding and supportive to the people around him. He may be clueless still-17-filming-location-episode-2-the-forest-garden-koreandramaland-b-1461x800or a klutz at times but once he understood the situation, he’s able to get to a meaningful conclusion for himself and the people he loves. Deok Gu and Hae Bum – These two are Chan’s best friends and teammates in the rowing team. They may be a bit of a throw in for the whole drama but they make things more bubbly. They also help out Chan a lot and makes his character more significant than it is. I like both of them because they seem to uplift the scene whenever I see them eating and joking inside the house or around Chan.

All in all I love this drama to bits and would probably re-watch it again soon. The main cast and supporting actors were great, I wouldn’t want anyone else to take on their roles. Cinematography wise it was alright, nothing much stunning to look at since most scenes are taken in doors or around the city and it wasn’t much artistic to look at. The OST gave me more of a classical vibe since that’s what Seo Ri was good at, but there’re some songs that did caught up to me specially during the funny moments.

30but17_E1718_00101

It’s kind of sad that I wasn’t able to follow through with this drama during it’s airtime because I read bad reviews about it and the summary I read somewhere didn’t sound appealing at all. Hopefully my version would make a lot of people more interested in it. Nonetheless, even though I missed the actual air date, I was able to binge watch it in 4 days. I was trying to finish it in 3 but since I’m a pregnant mom with a toddler to take care of, I only have a couple of hours to spare when the baby is asleep. It was actually hard to put it on hold and resume watching because each episode is chock-full of heartwarming details that I had a hard time restraining myself from watching. I’m recommending this to those who are into dramas with a lot of uplifting moments and to those who hasn’t exactly moved on from their teenage years.

PHOTOS ARE NOT MINE. CREDITS TO THE OWNER.