The Fangirl Verdict

Completely biased reviews and fangirling

Flash Review: Wonderful Nightmare [Movie]

11 Comments

Words that spring to my mind as the credits roll for this movie: uplifting, bittersweet, poignant, and even a little funny.

This is, again, one of those movies that I wouldn’t have watched, but for the in-flight entertainment system. Not that there weren’t other solid movies available in-flight. I actually started on Sado, but bailed hastily when Show got very dark, heavy and bloody very quickly. [MINOR SPOILER] I just couldn’t watch the violent head-banging. So Much Blood. Owww. [END SPOILER] Maybe another time, when I feel like I’m made of steelier stuff, I’ll give it another go.

For now, though, I’m actually rather pleased with myself for wimping out of Sado (thank you, Wimpy Me), coz I would’ve been rather sorry to have missed this little heart-warmer.

THE PREMISE

The premise of this movie is a little fantastical, but not unfamiliar to k-ent’s recent penchant for swopped lives (I haven’t checked it out yet, but Come Back, Ahjusshi comes to mind).

Uhm Jung Hwa plays Lee Yeon Woo, a career-minded, aloof single lawyer, who accidentally dies before her time, thanks to a heavenly mix-up. She agrees to an otherworldly exchange: live out someone else’s final month (that poor soul got fast-tracked to the afterlife by mistake too), and afterwards, get her old life back.

The set-up isn’t surprising, nor is her trajectory, nor the themes around which the movie is built. In fact, if you’ve seen other movies with similar premises, you could even say that this movie’s pretty predictable.

Still, I found it a pleasant, engaging watch overall, and was a little sorry to see it end.

STUFF I LIKED

1. Uhm Jung Hwa as Lee Yeon Woo

I must say, Uhm Jung Hwa is a great pick to play Yeon Woo. She’s equally convincing playing all the different facets of her role.

There’s Ruthless Yeon Woo, who’s all business and has no time for “frivolous” things like men and feelings and family; Confused Yeon Woo, who wonders what she’s gotten herself into; Happy Yeon Woo, who learns how to care for the family that she suddenly finds herself part of; and Uhm Jung Hwa absolutely nails every flickering emotion.

I thoroughly enjoyed watching Yeon Woo find herself – and life, and love – over the course of our story.

2. Song Seung Hun as Sung Hwan

I really liked Song Seung Hun in this role, you guys. I mean, he actually comes across as very likable and natural, and I totally believed him in the role. Since I’d last seen him in Obsessed, where I’d found him rather stiff (though very earnest), this comes as a Very Happy Surprise indeed.

I don’t know if Oppa suddenly found his acting groove, or if this is the type of role that suits his abilities best; he’s great in this, and I’d love to see him like this more often.

He looks relaxed onscreen, even, as he plays Yeon Woo’s confused husband, and good-natured, loving father to his two kids. As I watched him on my screen, I couldn’t help but want to be his neighbor or something, so that I’d be able to see him tease his kids and horse around with them, as he and his family lived their lives next door.

3. Yeon Woo’s growing Mom Instincts

This is truly the most heartwarming arc in the entire movie, as Yeon Woo, previously cold, disdainful and even a little terrified of kids, comes to care for her children, and eventually, even love them desperately.

I really liked how Show handled the development of Yeon Woo’s relationship with her kids, in that it’s built through the everyday moments that feel real and mundane, yet still add up to something meaningful. On top of that, the significant milestones in their relationship feel raw and tender, and it feels like Yeon Woo weathers crucial, life-defining moments with her children; moments that will prove to be critical and formative in her kids’ lives. None of it feels manufactured or treacly, and the resulting fierce bond between them is very believable.

[SPOILER ALERT]

When Yeon Woo did her desperate best to give her best goodbye and best advice and best love to her children in the short few minutes she had before she had to leave, I really felt her despair and helplessness. My heart leaped with hope when she told Heavenly Ahjusshi (Kim Sang Ho) without hesitation, that she’d trade her old life to stay as these kids’ mom, and I felt almost as crushed as Yeon Woo did, when she was told that it just wasn’t possible.

[END SPOILER]

Such poignant, heartwarming goodness, teased out within a relatively short time. I have to give major props to Uhm Jung Hwa, as well as Seo Shin Ae and Jung Ji Hoon, who play her kids. Palpable emotions all-around, so much so that I wanted them to be hers, and her, theirs, forever.

CLOSING THOUGHTS [SPOILERS]

The ending is pretty bittersweet, any way I slice it.

I knew that Yeon Woo wouldn’t be able to not leave, given the whole keeping-the-universe-in-balance sort of premise we start with, and as I grew to enjoy Yeon Woo and her new family more and more, my dread at her unavoidable departure grew as well. I really wanted her to be able to just stay on, and live her new life, and be the good mom and loving wife and all-around caring person that she’d finally learned to be.

But, since her departure was a given, I felt that Show gave us the best ending possible. Yeon Woo gets a chance to right the wrongs in her original life, and choose a new way of life that’s more fulfilling. She gets to heal her relationship – or at least her own angst – with both of her deceased parents. And, she also gets to meet her Momentary Family again and see that her son is not sick anymore. And, the open ending even gives room for her to potentially build a new relationship with the family that she’d grown to love, in the one month that she’d been a part of them.

It’s a little sad, in that even if she does get to build a new relationship with them and become a part of them again, she’ll never be truly able to regain the place that she’d had in their hearts, for a while. She’ll never be her kids’ birth mom again; she’ll never be the mother of Sung Hwan’s children; they’ll never share the memories they used to. But, it really is the best ending that Show could’ve given us, and for that, I’m content.

THE FINAL VERDICT:

An uplifting and engaging watch, few surprises in the plot notwithstanding.

FINAL GRADE: B

TRAILER:

Author: kfangurl

Proud to be a k-fangirl since 2007. Main diet of kdramas with movies and kpop on the side.

11 thoughts on “Flash Review: Wonderful Nightmare [Movie]

  1. I don’t see it in dramafever or netflix; where can I watch it?

    Like

    • Hi there Andy! I’m so glad you’re keen to check this one out, it deserves more love than it gets. 🙂 Since you can’t find it on DF or netflix, you could try watching it here. I’ve checked small snippets, and the subs seem fine. And the video is in HD as well. 🙂

      Like

      • Unfortunately MyAsianTV is not available in my country; or so it says. Thank you anyway for trying…you are always great!

        On Fri, Mar 4, 2016 at 12:16 AM, The Fangirl Verdict wrote:

        > kfangurl commented: “Hi there Andy! I’m so glad you’re keen to check this > one out, it deserves more love than it gets. 🙂 Since you can’t find it on > DF or netflix, you could try watching it here. I’ve checked small snippets, > and the subs seem fine. And the video is in HD as w” >

        Like

        • Oh! I’m sorry to hear the link doesn’t work for you, Andy! Here‘s another place you could try. It’s a little more unwieldy coz the video is broken into different parts, but the subs look fine from what I can tell. Crossing my fingers that this one works for you! 🙂

          Like

          • This one worked, thank you. I have also bookmarked the site, looks like a great one to have. Kudos to you dear Kfan!

            On Tue, Mar 8, 2016 at 6:44 PM, The Fangirl Verdict wrote:

            > kfangurl commented: “Oh! I’m sorry to hear the link doesn’t work for you, > Andy! Here’s another place you could try. It’s a little more unwieldy coz > the video is broken into different parts, but the subs look fine from what > I can tell. Crossing my fingers that this one works f” > Respond to this comment by replying above this line > > New comment on *The Fangirl Verdict * > > > > *kfangurl* commented > > on Flash Review: Wonderful Nightmare [Movie] > . > > > in response to *Andy Mejias*: > > Unfortunately MyAsianTV is not available in my country; or so it says. > Thank you anyway for trying…you are always great! On Fri, Mar 4, 2016

            Liked by 1 person

          • Do you think it is worth becoming a member of that drama247.org? Let me know what you think and thank you for the movie, so far I really like it.

            Andy

            On Tue, Mar 8, 2016 at 6:44 PM, The Fangirl Verdict wrote:

            > kfangurl commented: “Oh! I’m sorry to hear the link doesn’t work for you, > Andy! Here’s another place you could try. It’s a little more unwieldy coz > the video is broken into different parts, but the subs look fine from what > I can tell. Crossing my fingers that this one works f” > Respond to this comment by replying above this line > > New comment on *The Fangirl Verdict * > > > > *kfangurl* commented > > on Flash Review: Wonderful Nightmare [Movie] > . > > > in response to *Andy Mejias*: > > Unfortunately MyAsianTV is not available in my country; or so it says. > Thank you anyway for trying…you are always great! On Fri, Mar 4, 2016

            Like

          • I don’t know if you got my last email; what do you think about me joining drama247.org as a vip member; do you think it is worth it? I am almost done watching the movie you suggested and other than the annoyance of commercials and fragmentation, it looks pretty good.

            Thank you for your time,

            Andy

            Like

            • Hi there, Andy! Sorry it’s taken me awhile to reply; your first comment happened to get categorized as spam by the system, and I didn’t see it until yesterday after a long day of traveling.

              There are a good number of drama streaming sites out there, and in terms of what Drama247 has to offer, I feel that what makes them different from most other sites is that they have a good number of older shows, as well as a lot of movies, which can sometimes be hard to find on other streaming sites. Most streaming sites prefer to focus on uploading more recent shows. I personally don’t have a VIP subscription with them, but if you see yourself wanting to watch a good number of older shows &/or movies, then the VIP subscription might be worth considering, since it would make your watch experience slightly more ad-free. On the other hand, there ARE lots of other sites available, so if you’re only going to be checking in on older shows &/or exploring movies once in a while, the VIP subscription might not be worth it.

              Perhaps before you make a decision, you could take some time to explore and try out other sites? 🙂 Here’s another site that you can explore.

              I hope this helps! 🙂

              Like

  2. I love this kind of movie and will give it a go. I am watching Come Back, Mister and like it a lot so far. It’s hard to do melo with comedy, but the cast is pulling it off so far. Thanks for the review. I hear about the dramas but not so much the movies.

    Like

    • Aw, I’m glad this review helped, Kat!! 😀 I don’t keep up with the movies as much, but I like to tell you guys about the ones I do watch. I feel like this one’s flown under the radar for a lot of people.. I hope you enjoy the watch; I’d love this movie to get a little more love than it seems to be getting! 🙂

      Like

Leave a comment:

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s