Oh Dae-su (Choi Min-sik) and Mido (Hye-jeong Kang) of Old Boy are both hypnotized to forget who they are and to fall for each other. Hypnotism removes their free will in controlling their actions. As a result, Dae-Su suffers a fate worse than death, an incestuous relationship with his own daughter because of the vengeance of Woo-jin Lee (Ji-tae Yu) against Dae-Su. Dae-Su almost wants to die because of his sin, which underscore the meaninglessness of life because of the absence of morality. Cheol-su (Woo-sung Jung) loves Su-jin (Ye-jin Son) so much but her mental illness is a great barrier to their happy ending. Hallyu is famous for its tragic endings that underscore realism and humanism in film that made it unique in Hollywood setting (Choi 68). Melodramatic plots feature characters that show the frailty of human life and morality.
Hallyu films underscore that families continue to be the lasting source of happiness and identity in modern life that is full of violence and uncertainties. Old Boy and Moment to Remember may have tragic endings but they underscore the importance of families for the protagonists. Their family relationships are crucial to finding meaning in modern life in general and individual identities in specific.
Old Boy and Moment to Remember show the significance of family relationships to survival and happiness. Oh Dae-su only wants to be reunited with his family, but his past became the greatest hindrance to his ultimate goal in life- to have a happy family. The melodramatic structure of the film underscores the role of family life to individual happiness (Choi 68). Furthermore, Dae su finds his identity through his love for his family. He wants revenge because his imprisonment took his family away from him, when before, his family is the center of his world. Without his family, his tortured soul experiences
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One of the characteristics of Hallyu is melodramatic structure that emphasizes heartbreaking endings that are not typical to Hollywood films with idealistic happy endings. Two films that have characters and plot that end with tragic endings are Old Boy and Moment to Remember…
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