Friday, September 10, 2021

Move to Heaven---WOW!

Some of you must be wondering how a supposedly sane person of the English speaking persuasion could get so wrapped up in Korean mini-series.  Maybe you are right, but it is such an enjoyable delusion.  This series, "Move to Heaven" had an unusually high rating from IMDB (8.7), but I do realize that can be misleading.  Netflix has a number of Korean series worth watching. 

Nothing is original in this world, but the Koreans sure have a way of twisting ideas that seems original.  Another one with an autistic character.  Autism comes in various shades, but generally they take things literally, do not like to be touched, some of them are extremely clever and all them seem to have prodigious memories.  With "It's Okay To Not Be Okay" an autistic is one of the main characters that others like.  In "Move to Heaven" Geu-Ru  (Asperger's Syndrome) picks up minute details and is very obsessive.  Check out:

Trauma cleaning is what Geu-Ru and his father do for a living.  Basically it requires a cleanup of the mess left behind after a death which can include bodily fluids and also a housekeeping mess.  Taught by his father he learns you can tell a lot about a person by what they leave behind.  The two collect some meaningful artifacts and pass on to suitable relations.  Trauma cleaning has perhaps been covered in other films, but this one seems more real.  The deaths selected for an episode are dramatic in different ways. Each episode is unique

Misunderstandings are the basis for many a story  We meet his father in the first episode and can see he has taught his son reverence for the dead and how to pick up details that affect the living who didn't know or understand the details.  Plot reveal:  the father dies on the first episode, (although his lessons are brought out in future episodes).   What seems strange coming from such a kindly man is he had named an unknown half brother as a guardian and we soon learn the guardian has just been released from prison and presents an arrogant and somewhat violent demeanor.  Finding out his true situation is very interesting. So much that Ge-ru who quick deciphers all sorts of very trivial details to learn the most important details that would be appreciated by the the apparently disinterested acquaintances is apparently blind to the true character of his uncle.  A friendly female neighbor gets involved, but also misunderstands the uncle.

We gradually learn the back story.  It contains unexpected disasters, broken promises, an unfortunate life path on one side and at bottom, a big misunderstanding.  The details which are well presented make for a riveting story.

The story is set in Seoul, but at one point we learn that the story really begins in Busan.

Almost none of the names are familiar to me, but I feel confident I will see more of those who put together such a great series.

Kim Sung Ho, the director. has done ten films before this one.  One of them "How To Steal A Dog" was an enjoyable one based on an American children's book which Sung Ho helped to adapt.

Yoon Ji-Ryun, wrote the script and this is his only listed credit to date.

Tang Joon-sang played Geu-Ru, the autistic young adult.  He had a supporting role in all the episodes of "Crash Landing on You," my favorite Korean series.  Check: 

Lee Jahoon played the uncle, Cho Sang Guwho had spent time in jail and was a fighter.  He has won numerous awards.

Hong Seung Hee plays the attractive neighbor who is protective of Geu-Ru.  This was only her second film, however she went on to. "Navillera" (2021)--

The series does well despite no real romance with maybe only a hint.  

The high ranking is deserved and most of you will find it very absorbing.   

Here is another view of autism from an unusual angle (a standup comic):

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