Changing Partners [지금 사랑하는 사람과 살고 있습니까?]
Uhm Jung-Hwa, Park Yong-Woo, Han Chae-Young, Lee Dong-Gun, Choi Jae-Won
Kim Seon-Mi, Kim Jin
DVD, VCD, VHS
Young-joon and So-yeo are a young couple with their marriage relatively stable. On a day their mutual friend opens a wine bar, they come across Min-jae and Yu-na, a couple quite the opposite of themselves. After a trade of talks, Young-joon becomes a client of fashion consultant Yu-na, while hotelier Min-jae agrees to help So-yeo book a hotel for her Hong Kong business trip. So-yeo meets Min-jae by chance in Hong Kong, while Young-joon trades suggestive remarks with Yu-na who visits him on a consulting session. That night, the four of them find in the other partner what had been missing in their respective marriages…
Engaging, heart-felt, yet bittersweet.
The latest film by director Jeong Yun-Su (“Yesterday”, “My Girl And I”) takes a look at the relationships of husband and wife and how those relationships, (and ultimately feelings) can change over time. Ironically, everything changes when they meet another married couple at an opening of a mutual friends bar. The films underlying thought really strikes at the heart of the question of “Are you married to someone that you really love?” or even “Why did you marry that person?” In Korean society this is certainly a never ending controversey especially considering the competition, and social pressures to marry the “right” person. More often than not, marriage is seen as a tool for status and wealth…however even given the right “social” matchup, ultimately your true feelings will become known, and this is what the film is attempting to discuss. With one of the highest divorce rates in the world, Korea certainly wrestles with this and it shows with the moderate sucess of this film when it was released with just under a million ticket sales.
The movie brings together an all-star cast with Uhm Jung-Hwa, (“Seducing Mr. Robin”, “For Horowitz”, “Princess Aurora”) reuniting with Park Yong-woo (“For Horowitz”, “The Art of Seduction”, “Lover’s Concerto”, “Ditto”, “Musa”, “Shiri”), as well as the ever dreamy Lee Dong-gun (“My Boyfriend is Type B”, “Smile Again”, “Lovers in Paris”), and the beautiful Han Chae-young (“Fireworks”, “Only You”). With a cast this amazing, you can bet the acting is superb and it is. With little other than the interactions between the characters, the story might seem a bit plain but with the acting caliber here you are constantly engrossed in the movie. To be sure a movie like this certainly calls for some steamy love scenes, but i was glad that movie used the scenes sparingly and kept it relatively tasteful. The idea of “swapping” partners has been used in movies before such as in “Club Butterfly” but they emphasized the sexual motivations over that of the emotional and hence fell short of this movie. That this movie concentrates on what it means to marry, to love, and ultimately to be true to ones self is what catapults itself above all others, and makes this a movie you won’t want to miss.