Ji-yeon, a penniless bar girl in Macao in debt to some loan sharks is given the opportunity of a new life if she manages to get a super-rich tycoon to marry her. In league with the tycoon’s estranged son, it seems that with her natural charms and honesty she will win the cantankerous and eccentric millionaire over.
But halfway through the film things go wrong and we have a mystery thriller on our hands. Just as Ji-yeon seems to have achieved her goal (and in a weakness in the script, or in the pacing, the final progress to that goal is altogether too sudden) the fairy tale turns into a nightmare in which Ji-yeon finds herself seemingly friendless and accused of a terrible crime. But where would we be in a Korean film without an unexpected genre shift?
Im Soo-jeong (I’m a Cyborg) is perfect as the rags to riches Cinderella figure, showing enough restraint to entice the tycoon in the first half, and an appropriate vulnerability in the second and plenty of resourcefulness throughout. And if the plot seems a little far-fetched this is nevertheless fun escapism. The sets are luscious, the costumes stylish, making for a very watchable if not too demanding movie.
Yoon Jae-goo (윤재구) Perfect Proposal (은밀한 유혹, 2014)