I (2021) 아이 Korean Movie Review

Hello everyone, and welcome back to another movie review by EonTalk. I’m your host Eon, and today I have the review of the Korean film <I>.

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Directed by Kim Hyun-Tak, who’s making his feature film directorial debut with this movie, <I> featured the cast of Kim Hyang-Gi, Ryu Hyun-Kyung, Yeom Hye-Ran, Tak Ji-Ahn, and Tak Ji-On. I’m not sure why they titled the movie <I>, as it’s just the literal pronunciation of the Korean title “아이,” which translates to “Child.” I think the literal translation would’ve been better, but not sure why they went with “I.”

The film is a very indie-feel movie that revolves around a single mother who has to juggle between her job and raising her baby son, and a college student who’s hired as a babysitter that also has struggles of her own. Before getting into the review, let’s first take a look at the detailed synopsis of the movie.

The synopsis is as follows:
“Ah-Young” has lived a hard life, to say the least. In need of money, she takes on a babysitting job to take care of ‘Hyuk,’ a 6-month-old baby of the single mother, ‘Young-Chae.’ Young-Chae faces difficulties of her own and life’s been just as unforgiving to her, but she wants to and does whatever she can to raise Hyuk right. As Ah-Young gets comfortable with taking care of Hyuk, things seem to go well for everyone. However, Hyuk gets in an accident one day, and Young-Chae puts all the blame on Ah-Young. When circumstances started to look like they were getting better, everything went back to square one.


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The Good

Right from the start, the movie does a good job at showing the rough life of the main characters. It was a hard situation after a hard situation after another hard situation. I’m sure everyone has these days/times and faces those situations where everything you do doesn’t work out. <I> did a really good job at portraying that, which is why I say it’s a very real movie. Even the details of the movie were real, such as it shining a light on the hardships of being a single parent. Also, the conflict/climax was based on real world problems, and thus, as you can probably expect, it gets pretty damn emotional.

Furthermore, the acting by the cast members were great. I absolutely loved the casting – The main casts Kim Hyang-Gi, Ryu Hyun-Kyung, and Yeom Hye-Ran are more familiar faces in Korean productions, and they were really great. The trailer of the film said that the character Hyang-Gi played had to grow up quickly, and I felt that that matched Kim Hyang-Gi perfectly. She has that young image and as if she’s a kid herself, so having an actress like her portray this role, it was like a kid having to take care of a kid, which gave a special emotional delivery that I think only she can deliver.

Ryu Hyun-Kyung also showed a phenomenal performance, and the chemistry between her and Kim Hyang-Gi was superb. The other main lead Yeom Hye-Ran was good as always, and was really good in that hard, tough, gangster-like role. I want to see her in more roles like this, and it’s really good to see her in more productions nowadays. She’s in 3 Korean movies just in the month of February 2021, <New Year Blues>, <Black Light>, and this.

And it wasn’t just the main leads that gave a performance; the supporting cast was amazing as well. It was my first time seeing actor Kim Hyun-Mok, but he was really good. He was in other smaller films such as <Today, Together 2> and <The Boy From Nowhere>, but I’m really looking forward to seeing him in other works.

Even the performance by the baby was great! The kid cried so much and is such a physically big baby, but was so cute. The baby was actually played by two different baby actors, Tak Ji-Ahn and Tak Ji-On. I’m assuming they are twins that played the same character, much like how Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen both played the character of Michelle on the American TV show “Full House.” Anyways, great, great performances by everyone in this.

The Bad

I don’t have much bad things to say about <I>. As you can probably expect from this type of film and from the trailers, the movie is on the slower slide. However, I will say that it’s not too slow that it’s not enjoyable, and I was engaged throughout. It gets a little slow after about an hour and 20 minutes or so, but picks back up. It kind of reminded me of <Young-Ju>, another film starring Kim Hyang-Gi, but it wasn’t as slow as that. I personally liked this more than <Young-Ju>.

To conclude, <I> does heavily have that indie, slow vibe. If you’re not a fan of that type, which I personally am not either, then you may not enjoy this. But as I mentioned before, it’s not too slow that it’s unbearable. Like I said, I’m not a fan of slow burners, but this I enjoyed.

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<I> was a very real movie and I liked how it wasn’t forced. The ending was very powerful and emotional, and the second to last scene was really cute. Definitely something I recommend watching.

Ticket Price Value: $11

(Ticket Price Value is the price I would pay to watch the film again for the first time)

What were your thoughts on the movie? Do you agree or disagree with my review? What would your ‘Ticket Price Value’ be? Leave a comment down below!
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Please keep in mind this review is composed of solely my own opinions, and should be taken with a grain of salt. I am in no way a professional writer, nor have I majored or studied journalism. This is for informative entertainment purpose only, representing my personal views. I do not own the images and/or videos used in the review. No copyright infringement intended.

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