October 22, 2016

Kundo: Age of the Rampant: Our Friends and Family on Screen

I'm not above having imaginary relationships with movie stars. I may not put posters on my bedroom walls or gossip about my celluloid boyfriend but there are definitely performers I've enjoyed meeting and looked forward to seeing again; actor whom I wanted to be a bigger part of my life; actors who I miss after I haven't seen them for awhile and greet with pleasure when they reappear. Ma Dong-seok fells into this category: He's in my inner circle, I mean I frankly adore him, although that wasn't always the case.

Over the years, our paths had crossed numerous times: He played the gang boss in Rough Play, a section chief in New World, and an ineffectual detective in Azooma. So sure I kind of knew him but honestly, we didn't really get that close until just very recently. His role as a lovable lug with a pregnant girlfriend in Train to Busan and now his turn as a rebel-thief in Kundo: Age of the Rampant has really brought us much closer than I'd ever expected. People are funny that way. Mind you, he's not the lead in Kundo, Yun Jong-bin's crowd-pleasing, action-packed historical drama about revolutionaries fighting a corrupt government in 19th-century Joseon.

That honor (or responsibility) falls to Ha Jung-woo who plays a politically enlightened butcher with a debt to settle and two cleavers to do it with. And Ha's great. He really is. So are co-stars Yun Ji-hye (as an archer with a low tolerance for bullshit) and Kang Dong-won (as the bastard son who takes his grudges a little too far). But I only had eyes for Ma. I guess that's just the kind of friend I am.

It's so nice to make new friends but you know what? Now I need to find out if Ma is in a film with my other buddy Song Kang-ho. It would be so great if there was a way for the three of us to hang out together for a night. Life is short. Way too short. So spend it with the people you love, right?

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