Very Ordinary Couple: Bank workers Dong Hee (Lee Min Ki) and Young (Kim Min Hee) must work together despite being newly broken up. They both act like jerks, but discover that they still have feelings for each other.
My PS Partner: Trying to spice up her relationship, Yoon Jung (Kim Ah Joong) attempts phone sex with her boyfriend, but ends up calling a complete stranger, Hyun Seung (Ji Sung). They become friends, and eventually fall for each other.
Only 만: We had the most unsuccessful movie night ever recently, when we tried to find a Korean romantic comedy to watch.
Junggugeo Kaenada 중국어 캐나다: You call it movie night, but the sun was still out when we started trolling the internet for viewing options, and it was definitely the middle of the night by the time we gave up. However, of the dozen movies we skimmed, we watched Very Ordinary Couple and My PS Partner the longest.
Only: Which is to say we made it halfway through both movies, and then gave up.
Let’s start with Very Ordinary Couple. What did you like about it?
Junggugeo Kaenada: I was interested in Very Ordinary Couple, because of the leads. Lee Min Ki had an off kilter charm in “Dal Ja’s Spring” despite his wooden delivery. So, I am happy to see that his acting had progressed in the time between that drama and Very Ordinary Couple. I also wanted to watch Kim Min Hee in action, who I have never seen in anything, but whose dating history I am very envious of. Initially, the couple had an undeniable spark.
Only: It did start out appealing, and both actors were surprisingly funny in the mock-documentary portion at the beginning. Not hilarious, mind you, but funny. But, it didn’t take long for it to devolve into a completely disjointed battle between two crazy exes, with stalking, workplace conflict, and public displays of aggression.
Junggugeo Kaenada: Next, we decided to give My PS Partner a try, because Ji Sung is cute, and the premise had smut potential. Again, it started with promise, because the acts of self-stimulation by the leads were surprisingly explicit.
Only: And yet, it wasn’t long before I lost track of the progression of the plot and their relationship.
Junggugeo Kaenada: I couldn’t get past the premise that the random guy that Kim Ah Joong’s character accidentally has phone sex with looks like Ji Sung. It brings to mind those phone chat commercials where attractive, scantily clad women are just waiting on the phone. To speak with you!
Only: I guess it was fate at work to bring these two horny lovebirds together. Though, to add a completely random nitpick, I was annoyed that he was depicted as actually masturbating, while she was depicting as acting for her boyfriend. Not that I desperately wanted to see her have at it, but it seemed kind of lame that she was faking it.
Junggugeo Kaenada: I think we can save time by encompassing the issues we had with both movies in one go, because they suffered from the same major problem.
Only: Agreed. Both movies were too over-the-top. The two leads of Very Ordinary Couple acted like psychos in the beginning, and it was so off-putting that we didn’t make it to their inevitable touching reconciliation. My P.S. Partner was just as bad, with Ji Sung going from flipping tables and weeping over his ex to masturbating to a complete stranger over the phone and then falling for her in short order.
Junggugeo Kaenada: Both movies could easily have been the plot of a Kdrama, and that is where the problem lies. Within the span of 16 episodes, there is time to show where the lead couple are lacking without making them completely off putting, and pepper their clashes with hints of romantic potential. With only two hours to tell the same story, it appears that the directors felt the need to ramp everything up, including how terrible the male and female lead could be. At times, the arms race in Very Ordinary Couple and the misunderstanding between the couple in My PS Partner was presented as comedy, but it was all too nasty to be funny.
Only: Right. Leaving us with two distinctly unappealing couples whose romantic potential we could care less about.
Junggugeo Kaenada: We were supremely disheartened by the state of Korean popular cinema by the end. I would be very grateful for any suggestions on what we should watch the next time we decide to have a movie night.