THE MERCILESS (K-Movie 2017)

Jae-ho (Sol Kyung-gu), who aims to become the number one in a crime organization, gets to build-Vup trust with Hyun-su (Im Si-wan), an ambitious newbie in the prison. While they try to take over the organization after the prison release, their ulterior motives start to emerge.

This movie is all about the violent underworld of gangsters, moles, and cops where the plot evolves in friendship and betrayal between a prisoner leader and a new inmate.

The two leads team up to take over a gang when they will be out of the prison. As the story progress to the reality of their goal, unspoken tensions became burning and you will never sure who’s got the upper hand at the end.

With the great charisma of the two leads, I wasn’t able to feel the stomach-churning scenarios, maybe I was used to it when it comes to Korea action movie. The cinematography is stunning and the action sequences impressively were done.  The essence of the plot is collective, but the great deal is, it was well presented and executed.

 

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as Hyun-soo as Byung-gab as Chun In-sook as Byung-Verdict: 8/10

 

KICK THE GAME OF LIFE.

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When my son asked my permission to join the Taekwondo team which I ranted from my previous post. Never as I insisted, but well, that’s not what had happened.

One of our fellow bloggers mentioned that it’s better for him to get hurt in a tournament rather than in a street brawl, I couldn’t agree more. So here he comes, he was included in the school match and you know what? he got the bronze!

I don’t have any expectation from him since it was his first match. I just kept on reminding him to be strong, competitive and be a good sport. When he told me he got only the third place, I assured him that he was good enough. Not all the first timer will achieve something like that. In response, he wants to practice more, and I agreed. 

Of course, I am proud of him and I love his spirit. I love the way he insisted to do what he likes, something that I didn’t do when I was at his age. But then, not everything he wants will be in front of him; not all the games he can win and not all the time, he can lose.

I know both of us have a long way to go.  Parenting is an endless job for me and he still has to learn how to play the game of life. 

Congratulations on your first kick son. The full support is in me now.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

71: Into the Fire (K-Movie 2010)

This movie is a WOW.

The film is based on a true story of a group of 71 undertrained and under-armed, outgunned student-soldiers of South Korea during the Korean War, who were mostly killed on August 11, 1950, during the Battle of P’ohang-dong. For 11 hours, they defended the local P’ohang girls’ middle school, a strategic point for safeguarding the struggling Nakdong River perimeter, from an attack by overwhelming North Korean forces, specifically the feared 766th Unit.

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I like war movies. But into the fire is not just a combat epic, but it makes you feel nationalistic. Aside from the awesome stage battle sequences, marvelous shots, the tragic and comic and classical cinematography style, the story marks the essence of courage, pride, brotherly love, and self-sacrifice.

The film shows us how people struggle to fight, live and die in war.  The 71 students have the different background with each story to tell. As they have exposed from the horrors of war, they fought for a common reason. Indeed, they became a real soldier as they stand on the ground together while trusting on their own knowledge to form a defense system to protect their field.

The pace of storytelling is almost faultless. Character development is exceptional.  Great acting is highlighted. You can feel the sense of willpower and desperation throughout the film, the triumph over sadness, the life offered for a great cause.

A must watch movie that was amazingly heartbreaking and beautiful.

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Verdict: 10/10

 

 

 

 

SHE BANGS

I know you used to see me in my long and straight hair.  The time I started to dye my hair, you commented that black is still better than light brown.

When I cut my hair short, you flattered me.

After I cut my front hair to full bangs, you told me I looked like an alien, seriously? I should have felt offended, but to my relief, I did not.  It seems that I have annoyed you of my new hairstyle, sorry for that, but why do you hate my bangs?

I think it’s not all about my hairstyle. Maybe you hate my guts and the way I anticipated changes. The fact that I am not anxious about the circumstances made you think I am silly and careless. Oh please, it’s just a hair.

There is always an ample room for improvement and of course, we need to get out from our comfort zone to achieve it.  If changing something for yourself leads you to open the door for transformation, then why to hesitate.

Change is constant and “the only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance.”

Yes, let’s dance my friend, she bangs, she bangs, oh baby when she moves, she moves..

 

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TAKE ME OUT OF THE DARK

Just what is it in me?
Sometimes I just don’t know
What keeps me in Your love,
Why you never let me go

And though you’re in me now,
I fall and hurt you still
My Lord, please show me how
To know just how you feel

You have forgiven me
Too many times it seems
I feel I’m not what you might call
A worthy Christian after all

And though I love You so
Temptation finds it’s way to me

Teach me to trust in You
With all my heart
To lean not on my own understanding
I just forget
You won’t give me what I can’t bear

Take me out of the dark, my Lord
I don’t wanna be there.

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You’ve never left my side
You gave Your hand to me to hold
Oh Jesus, I’m no longer in the cold

And yet, I leave You there
When I feel satisfied
I’d like to thank You every day
Not only when I feel that way

I’ve never known a Man
Who’d give His life for sinners like me
And yet, because He loves us so
He’s promised us eternity
And we can have that promise
And be His if we have faith
And just believe.

Take us out of the dark, My Lord
‘Cause we don’t want to be alone
Take me out of the dark, My Lord
We don’t wanna be there, My Lord.

-Gary V-

 

 

 

THE TEACHER’S DIARY (Thai Movie-2014)

Teacher'sDiaryPosterThe Teacher’s Diary was a pleasant surprise. I never thought it would be heartwarming, sweet and funny.

All the characters have connected which makes the plot simple but original and one of a kind.  This movie shows passion and a better understanding of someone’s purpose against comfortability.

The purity of the film is what I really liked. The children made this movie more meaningful and the love between our protagonist is just like a magic; beautiful.

This is a Thai movie, and one of the best.

Verdict: 10/10

 

“Is it possible to love someone you’ve never met before?”

 

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BEAST OF NO NATION

Beasts of No Nation signifies a  ruthless tale of child soldiers in Africa.  When you have seen children fighting with weapons while their lives have broken by the trials of WAR, your heart will cry out for sympathy and anguish.

This film is an emotionally open-eye experience. There are some sensitive scenes that left my mouth open, literally. A solid piece of film which teams up with effective actors and blunts of political and moral issues that every country has experienced.

I hope every one of us understands through this film how really fortunate we are.  I don’t think this is all about being racist, porn violence or morbid, it’s just that somewhere out there, this cruelty happened to our young children, in any kind of “war” that corrupted their innocence and humanity.

Verdict: 8/10

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“If I am sun, I will be finding another place to be shining where people are not using my light to be doing terrible terrible thing.”

Agu

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SHADES OF GRAY

For the last couple of weeks, I have swallowed in astonishment of my own conflict between my reason and emotion. I simply thought I was living in the life where black and white clarity is well defined.  I assumed that I can insist something from my limited perspective of what is really happening around.

I know it is uncomplicated to identify what is wrong and right, I was taught by that since I was born,  but then I realized that we are all living in shades of gray.  It’s not always black and white, right and wrong, good or bad, just like there were two sides to every story and the truth was probably somewhere in between the two.

I don’t want to perplex myself anymore thinking what it really is. It’s just like we are looking at the same thing but means something different. I want to believe that some part of this world fall on shades of gray because, in every situation, there is always something hard to explain, acceptance, though it is not that simple to do, it is one of the ways to pull yourself out from distortion of confusion.

If going back to the roads means I have to believe in circumstances, then I must be, because I want to live my life in black and white and lots of grays.

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FINDING MR. DESTINY (Kmovies 2015)

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A woman named Seo Ji-Woo (Lim Soo-Jung) traveled to India and met her first true love Kim Jong-Ok. Since that time Ji-Woo can’t forget her first love. She then turns to the company of “Finding Your First True Love Company” to help track down Kim Jong-Ok.

Han Gi-Joon (Gong Yoo) started “Finding Your First True Love Company” and he takes on Seo Ji-Woo as the company’s first client. The pair travel all over Korea to find Seo Ji-Woo’s first love and & in the process Han Gi-Joon finds himself falling in love with his first client.

A movie that is about tracking down a long-lost love and found a new love unexpectedly. The plot is nothing extraordinary, but it was Gong Yoo that made it considerable to watch. A little bit of confusion about the first love character since they have both used same face with the main lead.

The plus point in this movie is; the chemistry’s blended well. The cinematography was excellent. Flashbacks location was taken from India, so some scenes are filled with warm hues and bright colors that are fresh for our eyes.

An overall great movie to unwind after long days of work.

Verdict: 7/10

 

SEOUL GARDEN DUBAI

This is not a paid advertisement.

If happens you are in Dubai and you want to go to an authentic Korean restaurant, well,  I recommend this place, Seoul Garden Dubai Restaurant. It was clean, with the decent price, the Korean foods are lovely and the taste was unexpectedly better.

The serving is huge which is good for sharing, the ambiance is quiet and there is a room for privacy.  You may choose to sit on a chair or experience sitting on the floor in partitioned rooms too.

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My stomach needs a hug.

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Kamsahamnida for the good food!

 

I AM NOT FINE

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Image credit to the owner

I’m not fine.

It’s not okay.

I don’t want to talk about it.

I am not ready to share it with you.

Give me some time.

I need space for a while.

I don’t want to see you.

I feel bad.

 

I think it’s okay to say all these words. We should at least stop hiding our feelings for a while to catch our breath and release the tension. Let’s honor our emotions and sometimes let them flow.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bajrangi Bhaijaan ( Indian-Movie-2015)

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A little mute girl from a Pakistan village gets lost on her return back from a trip to India. In Kurukshetra, she meets Pawan – a devout Hanuman Bakth – who is in the midst of a challenge posed by his lover’s father. In trying to discover her parents, he develops an unshakable bond with the kid. He tries to get into Pakistan through a path righteous to his conscience and later, with a smart Pakistani news reporter for a company and makes the search, a story that captures the imagination of the public in both countries.

This movie is totally comedic, sincere and warm. You will feel your heart gently melting like a marshmallow in the pan. This film promotes humanity and friendship where togetherness between the two nation and religion (India and Pakistan) were emphasized. There is really nothing wrong to help someone in need no matter what is your status in life.

Expected for an Indian movie, there is still dancing scenes with their colorful attires, but this time it wasn’t that long. The acting is quite decent, they managed to deliver on most effect. And this little Pakistani girl, every time I saw her face on the screen, I uttered words of admiration, she’s really pretty and she has gorgeous eyes.

For this movie, I give it 9/10.  The storyline is predictable in the middle, but it is a feel-good film to watch.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

SOLD by Patricia McCormick

Sold is the story of Lakshmi, a 13-year-old girl from a poor village in rural Nepal, who is sold into prostitution by her stepfather. Lakshmi thought she was going to a job as a housemate with a dream of sending money to her poor family. Instead, she finds herself trapped in a brothel with a huge debt to pay and there’s no way to escape.

I bought this book when I was in Nepal. My eyes caught with its yellow cover and there’s no way I can leave the country without buying it. Well, there’s no regret, I find the story seems interesting though I ended up with heartbreak.  I was on the journey with Lakshmi, I was the one who betrayed by my stepfather, locked up in a room while waiting for some dirty men and trying to keep my sanity to escape hell. I feel like I witnessed the dreadful first hand.

This book is being written in verse from the perspective of a 13-year-old girl which made the story more imaginable of what she must go through.  It was a quick read, but it does pack with heavy words of child sex-trafficking, sexual and physical abuse. There is some part of the verse slowly pacing down too, but nevertheless, it was well written.

The book sold my heart.

Verdict: 10/10

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TOKYO GHOUL (J-Anime)

“You choose to be hurt rather than hurt others, right? You’re nice and wonderful. But while it seems like you’re choosing both, you’re really forsaking both.”

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Tokyo Ghoul is set in an alternate reality where ghouls, individuals who can only survive by eating human flesh, live among the normal humans in secret, hiding their true nature to evade pursuit from the authorities. Including enhanced speed, senses, and regenerative ability, a regular ghoul is several times stronger than a normal human, has a skin resistant to ordinary piercing weapons and has at least one special predatory organ called a “Kagune”, which it can manifest and use as a weapon during combat.

The story follows Ken Kaneki, a college student who barely survives a deadly encounter with Rize Kamishiro, his date who reveals herself as a ghoul. He is taken to the hospital in critical condition. After recovering, Kaneki discovers that he underwent a surgery that transformed him into a half-ghoul.

And his journey as half-human and half-ghoul begins. A life from the normal to the paranormal.

I enjoy this anime quite a bit. It has an interesting premise and characters focus. Bloody good fights have been split over the course of the series though there are some brutal and nasty scenes along with it.

I like the beautiful kagune of the ghouls. While it sprouts from the back of them and before they started to attack, they look like a fallen angels. Tokyo Ghoul didn’t  disappointment me. I have watched the season 1 and will be watching the next season too.

Verdict: 8/10

 

 

TYPES OF HOUSEMATES I CAME ACROSS.

There are no perfect housemates. For nine years of living here in Dubai, going here and there from different flats and been with different kinds of people, my life has never been that easy.  It certainly tests the level of my patience and defies my endurance to survive.

Having a housemate not related to you was fun and quite annoying, tiring but challenging and the same time it gives you experience, friendship, and learning. Based on my experience, here are the types of housemates I came across.

THE NOISY ONE.  A kind of housemate who doesn’t care if someone is sleeping or having a rest as long as they can do whatever they want like they wouldn’t stop talking or playing music aloud. They love to disturb anyone.

THE DIRTY FREAK.  Oh, a lot of them!  Someone who left the dishes and pots on the sink, and never clean the house even though there is a house cleaning schedule. Always ignoring the piles of garbage and never initiates to clean their surroundings. They are someone who acts like they have a maid.

THE PLANNER.  The mind of the whole household.  This will make your stay fun and exciting. They usually organize your getaway, parties or any other activities inside and outside your household.

THE THEFT.  Someone who has a thick face. They will take your food in the fridge, your shampoo, toothpaste, water and much worse, your money. Never leave your important things unsecured.

THE CHEF. I love to have a chef housemate. They will not only prepare food for themselves, but they love to share it with their housemates.

THE GHOST.  They are the ones you feel never existed in the house. They never complain, they just do their works. They stay at the house, eat, sleep and just leave anytime they want to without saying goodbye to everyone. You’re never sure of the whereabouts of this housemate.

THE GOSSIPER. This is the person I definitely do not want to be a housemate. They will try to know everybody else business. They are truly a pain in the ass.

THE BULLY. Someone who has nothing better to do than to torment their housemates in any chance they can.  Tips, at the moment they’ll try to mess around, never give them the liberty to do it -again.

THE BUYER. This is common to some expat. Since the sale is always on the go here in Dubai, people tend to buy dozens of things but will send them to their home country after 6 months or more. This will consume the space of the shared room and it becomes untidy.

THE PARTY ANIMAL. This is very common in all the flats I have stayed. You’ll often hear this person complaining about their hangover all the time, but still, they never missed out every single day to party.

THE NOCTURNAL. This is me your housemate. Usually, on weekends, I stay all day in my bed. At night I became active. That’s the time I clean my bed, do the laundry, doing this and some sort of things that normal people can do in the daytime.

Coming from different backgrounds and upbringing, we are always bound to meet all kinds of personality when we live together under one roof, for very reasons we must need to prepare ourselves. Don’t worry, you might get used to it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

AJMAN, UAE

Ajman is the smallest of the seven emirates of the United Arab Emirates. It’s located on the Arabian Gulf coast of the northern part of the UAE. Approximately 95% of the population of the Emirate resides in the city of Ajman, possibly because it’s away from the hustle and bustle of the larger Emirates like Dubai and Abu Dhabi.

Ajman’s quite scenery
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It was 39 °C with 53% humidity.
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Ajman is near to the ports of neighboring Emirates. This was taken from the Fish Market.

We booked Ewan Tower Hotel Apartment which was more affordable. What I liked in this 3-star hotel is the huge space in the living room, good enough if you are in a big group and for a party held. I think the room is sound proof too, at least no one was complaining when we are loud. It was a very comfortable place to stay.

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And of course, everything will be memorable if you spend the day with good friends.

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Since the temperature of that day was super hot, we decided to stay only at the hotel. But in case, if you want to visit Ajman, here are the fun things to do and best places to go.

  1. Ajman Museum
  2. Ajman Dhow Building Yard
  3. Beaches
  4. Mowaihat archaeological site
  5. Hajar Mountain towns of Manama and Masfut
  6. Sheikh Zayed Mosque Ajman
  7. The forts and Castle
  8. Corniche
  9. Ajman City Centre

LATER, WHEN I COOL DOWN.

We all experienced anger. If some words tossed out with annoyance, it would flare up the temper. It is impossible also to clear the issue when we are in the midst of an emotional tornado.

I’ve been there, I regret few of what I have said.  I have learned my lesson, let me strike the iron when it is cold.

 

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Whiskey on my Breath

Image credit to star paws
I woke up with a pounding head
With a bottle laying in the bed
There was a little, a little bit left

So I picked it up and I killed the rest.

Oh I know I’m going to heaven

But I can’t go with me like this

I need to pull myself together

Before then.

No and I ain’t afraid of dying

But what scares me to death

Is meeting Jesus

With whiskey on my breath.

I lost her and all my friends

Broke all but one of my Lord’s 10

But Jesus died for all my sins

That’s how I know I’m getting in.

-Love and Theft-

WEDNESDAY 3:30 PM (K-webdrama)

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This drama was overloaded with cuteness from the plot down to our main cast.  If you are looking for a romance to fill in, this definitely will do a good job for you. 

When our protagonist dumped by her boyfriend exactly 3:30 PM, her long time childhood friend was in the rescue to lift up her spirit and made a project called Wednesday 3:30 pm.

This drama will make you smile through out the whole episode. It features a beautiful morality about love and friendship.  The chemistry is superb, full of charisma and the scenery was astounding.  And I liked the concept of their Wednesday project, it’s out of ordinary.

If you want to watch something cute, uncomplicated and quick, this mini drama is for you.

Verdict: 10/10

 

 

Eid al-Adha Celebration

It’s holiday!

We will leave the busy and hustle street in Dubai right now in celebration with our Muslim’s festival, the Eid al-Adha.  We are heading to one of the seven Emirates States of the UAE, Ajman.  I might share something about it after my returns.

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What is Eid al-Adha? 

“It is called the “Sacrifice Feast” where it honors the willingness of Ibrahim (Abraham) to sacrifice his son, Ishmael, as an act of obedience to God’s command. Before he sacrificed his son God intervened by sending his angel Jibra’il (Gabriel), who then put a sheep in his son’s place. In commemoration of this, an animal is sacrificed and divided into three parts: the family retains one-third of the share; another third is given to relatives, friends, and neighbors; and the remaining third is given to the poor and needy”

I haven’t celebrated this festivity with a Muslim friend so I cannot share anything about it. But I would like to greet our fellow friends to have a wonderful celebration and may all our prayers be answered with Allah.

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