OK, i'm a freak for high school music/dance themed drama. Most of you who have been following my reviews, or know how giddy i am when a similar movie/drama is airing, will know :)
So, this one's about the struggle, the relationship and the friendship of 6 teenagers in Kirin High School. Each of them deals with a demon of their own - be it jealousy, dreams that seem to have fallen apart, girl/boy trouble (oh yeah, of course), friendships that are broken, priorities, helping each other out, scandals, harrasments, gossips, and most importantly, growing up.
I don't see a lot of movies/dramas that have inch and EVERY lovable character, with plot so tight and pace so zippy, but still make room for creativity. The writing is nearly flawless, with beautiful cinematography, though I do have complaints about watching certain performances (they're often cut short, often focused on only one personnel rather than the whole group, zooming in and out and giving me a headache). The soundtrack is fun to listen to, with a couple of beautiful songs (Kim Soo Hyun's Dreaming - I still listen to it from time to time, and have no idea he's a talented singer as well as an accomplished young actor). The acting's okay, most of them hold their own, despite complaints and some flat moments, and I'm glad the writing and directing don't deviate much from the whole team, and the title Dream High is perfect, as it is about dreaming and fulfilling your dream.
What I love most about this drama is that I like every character, from the side characters and the second leads. The teachers are adorable and funny, each side character is cute and has their own important subplot. There is always a lesson to be learned, a potential for growth. Even the less important characters change throughout the movie, to the better. The cold teacher becomes someone warm hearted and sympathetic to her students, the weird teacher that doesn't want to have anything to do with well, anything other than himself, becomes focused and helpful throughout the whole ordeal. There are so many hilarious moments, touching moments, I lose count on how many times I laugh and cry while watching it.
My favorite characters are Pil Sook and Sam Dong, though it's hard picking favorites. I think it's mostly what Oh Hyuk said about them. Pil Sook is a character that looks so clumsy and weak, but she is actually a very strong person. And Sam Dong is also someone who's lost his way, but paves it back and becomes stronger because of his difficulties.
There are a lot of beautiful quotes from this drama, that mostly come from Jin Gook, the most mature character of the bunch.
I will quote several dialogue (taking them from DramaBeans' translation based on their recaps). If you, like me, would like to follow their fun drama recaps, please go to www.dramabeans.com
Jin-gook: There are two kinds of happiness in the world. One is a happiness that you realize after the fact. The other is a happiness that you feel in the moment. The happiness in the moment is so rare that they say you can live your whole life on the light that shines from remembering it. I think we’ll go on remembering this moment, today, like that kind of happiness…that we can remember for the rest of our lives, the moment when we shined.
And here's a section that I copied from episode 15 recap:
Hye-mi weighs her decision as she wanders the streets, playing eeny-meeny-miny-moe at each crosswalk, and frustrated that Fate isn’t helping her decide. Jin-gook finds her lost in thought, and she asks him what she’s supposed to do, since neither of them is one hundred percent.
Jin-gook tells her that if one choice were a hundred, it wouldn’t be a choice, but an answer. It’s because they’re fifty-fifty that it’s a choice, and she should weigh it carefully. He adds that once she chooses, not to look back, and turn that fifty into a hundred, to prove to herself that she made the right choice.The last episode is great, full of fan service with satisfying ending that concludes every character's story, but I kinda wish there are more scenes for Hye Mi-Sam Dong. Do they get to be together after everything? It reminds me a little of the ending for my own book Refrain, not with skipping 2 years to tell the ending, but the one about sacrificing something in order for the one you love to be able to reach their dream.
Overall, a fun, meaningful drama to watch. Definitely will watch it again when i have the chance.