Take a wild carnival-like break with this movie!
Warning: may contain spoilers!
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TAKE A BREAK FROM DRAMAS!
I watch dramas consecutively. But in certain situations or conditions, I turn to a movie to take a break between dramas. I found out that watching movies prevents me from falling into drama withdrawal (cannot move on from a drama) or drama slump (no desire to watch any drama). For me, watching a movie is like taking vitamin C to boost my immune system, so I won't get sick of dramaland.
Below, I compiled 2020/2021 movies I have watched for the first half of the year, categorized by country, then sorted alphabetically. All movies have English subs. This is because the 2020 movies are released later in the year and subbed in 2021. Unless stated otherwise, I put the links to the English subbed trailer for you to get a glimpse of what the movies are about.
Now here's the catch. I only watch movies that are my cup of tea, and the endings are to my liking. They may not be your cup of tea, or you may prefer coffee instead. But once in a while, under certain circumstances, you may want to try them. So I won't write any reviews nor rate the movies, as I believe there is a movie for everyone in every situation/condition regardless of the rating. Besides, the suggestions below are just for fun. So let's start then!
A Writer's Odyssey (2021)
Genres: Action, Suspense, Mystery, Fantasy; Duration: 2 hr. 2 min.; Trailer: iQiyi
Two worlds exist side by side. In the real world, Guan Ning (Lei Jia Yin) is ordered to kill a novelist by the mysterious Tu Ling (Yang Mi) in exchange to find his daughter. In the fantasy world, the young Kong Wen (Dong Zi Jian) plans to revenge his sister by assassinating the immortal lord. While in the real world, the dreading Guan Ning tries to solve the secret of why he has to kill the novelist, in its parallel world Kong Wen undergoes numerous battles to survive. Somehow, the father and the boy's worlds interconnect.
Genres: Romance, Fantasy; Duration: 1 hr. 30 min.; Trailer: iQiyi
4Cs (chic, confident, charming, cold) Liang Qu (EXO's Oh Se Hun) became half-human half-cat by accident. He can only transform back to 100% human after nine years, but he cannot reveal the secret neither fall in love. Only a few insiders like Chao Chao (Song Wei Long) know his secret. Of course, as we guessed, a woman comes into Liang Qu's life! She is none other than Miao Xiao Wan (Janice Wu), previously his high school sweetheart.
Coffee Or Tea? (2020)
Genres: Adventure, Friendship, Business, Drama; Duration: 1 hr. 37 min.; Trailer: Cathay Cineplex SG
In the opening scene, that reminds me of the opening scene of K-drama Boys Over Flowers lol, city slicker Wei Jin Bei (Turbo Liu) meets the enthusiastic Pen Xiu Bing (Peng Yu Chang), who is just about ready to move back to his country home in Yunnan. Jin Bei tags along with Xiu Bing, and they meet the local boy Li Shao Qun (Yin Fang). Together they start an e-commerce business.
Detective Chinatown 3 (2021)
Genres: Thriller, Mystery, Comedy, Crime; Duration: 2 hr. 16 min.; Trailer: Viki
This is the third installment of the popular Detective Chinatown series. Detective duo Qin Feng (Turbo Liu) - in blue - and his uncle Tang Ren (Wang Bao Qiang) - far-right - went to Tokyo per invitation of Japanese detective Noda Hiroshi (Tsumabuki Satoshi). So how they all ended up cosplaying in a parade? Just watch it!
Home Sweet Home (2021)
Genres: Suspense, Family; Duration: 1 hr. 51 min.; Trailer: Jetsen Huashi Media US
First of all, let me warn you: this is not a fun family movie despite of its family genre. It's creepy but entertaining nonetheless. The movie tells the story of a seemingly perfect family that consists of Mr. Wang (Aaron Kwok), Mrs. Wang (Tiffany Hsu), and their daughter Chu Tong (Wendy Zhang) and son Chu Qi (Dollar Rong). Wang family lives harmoniously and has everything until a mysterious man (Duan Yi Hong) comes to live in their home basement.
I Remember (2020)
Genres: Comedy, Romance, Drama; Duration: 1 hr. 39 min.; Trailer: Asian Film Fans
Fei Li (Lee Hong Chi), an ordinary-looking IT guy, has a crush on the office goddess Zhao Xi Man (Angelababy). Unfortunately, she seems too close to the handsome company boss Dou Peng (Denny Huang). Feeling out of league, Fei Li can only wish for being a one-day boyfriend to Xi Man. Voila, his wish comes true! Some watchers wrote that this movie is similar to the 2016 Thai movie One Day. Since I haven't watched the Thai one, I cannot tell you if I Remember is similar to its predecessor or not.
Special Couple (2021)
Genres: Comedy, Romance; Duration: 1 hr. 46 min.; Trailer: Arif Rahman Lee Fanpage
Gu Da Bai (Aarif Rahman), who studies music in the UK, runs into visa issues and has to be deported back to China. He gets help from his best friend, Jin Tian (Bai Ke Li), who is a UK citizen, by posing as his significant other. Unfortunately, one lie begets another lie, and soon more problems arise. Not only involves Jin Tian's jealous girlfriend Vivian (Cica Zhou), also with Da Bai's new neighbor Hermione (Sandrine Pinna). Joined the cast is British actor Rupert Graves who acted as Watson, an immigration officer.
Genres: Action, Adventure, Historical, Fantasy, Supernatural; Duration: 2 hr. 12 min.; Trailer: Netflix
The storyline of this costume movie is actually uncomplicated: two strangers, Qing Ming (Mark Chao) and Boya (Allen Deng), meet and save their world from a villain, then depart as friends. Although the plot is as simple as that, but this movie is a feast to the eyes, from the two actors above, their bromance, supporting actors, their acting, cinematography, costume, makeup, props, and visual effects (particularly CGI). There will be a sequel for this movie called Long Ye Qu (translated as the Song of Long Ye), focusing on the character Long Ye who is one of the supporting characters in the prequel.
Genres: Action, Adventure, Comedy, Crime; Duration: 1 hr. 54 min.; Trailer: EonTalk
Kang Dong Goo (Lee Je Hoon) is an elite grave robber gifted in unique touch and intuition. He receives an interesting offer from the museum curator Yoon Se Hee (Shin Hae Sun). For the task, he assembles a group of experts in tomb raiding: prominent archaeologist Dr Jones (Jo Woo Jin), legendary ex-con Sabdari or Shovel Leg (Im Won Hee), drone expert Hye Ri (Park Se Wan), and Man Gi (Joo Jin Mo). Together they embark on a hilarious yet dangerous heist adventure.
Mission: Possible (2021)
Genres: Action, Thriller, Comedy; Duration: 1 hr. 45 min.; Trailer: Viki
Yoo Da Hee (Lee Sun Bin) is a rookie Chinese secret agent. Since she is fluent in Korean, she is sent to close a ring of arms smugglers in South Korea. She is supposed to meet a South Korean special operative agent. Instead, she unexpectedly meets up with Woo Soo Han (Kim Young Kwang), a private detective with small-fry cases. The unlikely intelligent cooperation is formed between the two.
Genres: Action, Thriller, Sci-Fi; Duration: 1 hr. 54 min.; Trailer: Eon Talk
In this movie, South Korea was able to beat other countries in creating the first-ever genetically mutated human clone, whom they name Seobok (Park Bo Gum). There are parties who want to kidnap Seobok, of course, since he's holding the secret of eternal life. It seems everyone in the world wants to stay young while our dear earth is getting old. That's when former NIS intelligence Ki Heon (Gong Yoo) is called to be the hero to save the damsel, wrong, the clone.
Space Sweepers (2021)
Genres: Action, Adventure, Drama, Sci-Fi, Fantasy; Duration: 2 hr. 16 min.; Trailer: The Swoon
The space dumpster divers Kim Tae Ho (Song Joong Ki), Captain Jang Hyun Sook (Kim Tae Ri), Tiger Park (Jin Seon Kyu), and robot Eob Dong (voiced by Yoo Hae Jin) from The Victory junk collector ship accidentally found a cute little humanoid robot Dorothy (Park Ye Rin) who is actually a weapon of mass destruction.
The Name (2020)
Genres: Romance, Drama; Duration: 1 hr. 50 min. ; Trailer: Eontalk
Seo Ri Ae (Jeon So Min), who is rich but for some reason cannot fulfill her dream, bought a painting from Mo Cheol Woo (Choi Jung Won), an impoverished painter with genius talent. They agree to work together for a final grand project by borrowing each other's names.
The Night of the Undead (2020)
Genres: Action, Thriller, Horror, Comedy, Sci-Fi; Duration: 1 hr. 50 min.; Trailer: Eon Talk
Sweet and naive So Hee (Lee Jung Hyun) marries a perfect man of her dream Man Gil (Kim Sung Oh). When she is suspicious of her husband loyalty, she hires detective Dr Jang aka Broccoli (Yang Dong Geun). From his investigation, she finds out that her husband wants to kill her. With the help of her besties, cold butcher Se Ra (Seo Young Hee) and sassy struggling actress Yang Seon (Lee Mi Do), So Hee decides to get rid of her husband first.
Genres: Friendship, Music, Comedy, Romance, Youth; Duration: 1 hr. 30 min.; Trailer: Panap Media
Serinuma Kae (Tomita Miu), a BL manga fan, is severely depressed when her beloved character dies. For a long time, she refused to eat, which leads to significant weight loss. The updated Kae (Yamaguchi Nonoka) becomes very popular at school, and she immediately has four handsome admirers at once. From left to right: Igarashi Yusuke (Kamio Fuju), Nanashima Nosomu (Ito Asahi), Shinomiya Hayato (Okuno So), and Mutsumi Asuma (Yoshino Hokuto)
Love Me, Love Me Not (2020)
Genres: Friendship, Romance, School, Youth; Duration: 2 hr. 4 min.;
Trailer: Furifura-movie, jp (on Youtube: CC Japanese sub, then auto-translate to English)
|In this movie, pick off a petal of a flower to guess who loves who and whether their object of affection returns that affection! The English title is based on a French game effeuiller la marguerite (Wikipedia). Four high school classmates with different personalities and views on love are entangled in this coming-of-age romance. From left to right: Inui Kazuomi (Akaso Eiji), Yamamoto Akari (Hamabe Minami), Ichihara Yuna (Fukumoto Riko), Yamamoto Rio (Kitamura Takumi).|
Your Eyes Tell (2020)
Genres: Friendship, Romance, Life, Drama, Melodrama; Duration: 2 hr. 3 min.; Trailer: GagaIntl
Kashiwagi Akari (Yoshitaka Yuriko) lost her eyesight and family in an accident. While trying to enjoy the small things in her life, Akari struggles to live happily. She mistakes Shinozaki Rui (Yokohama Ryusei) for someone else and begins to talk to him. Rui was once a promising kickboxer under the name of Antonio, but something happened in his past to cause him to disassociate himself from everyone.
Do You Love Me as I Love You (2020)
Genres: Friendship, Romance, Drama; Duration: 1 hr. 49 min.; Trailer: GV Pictures
Tian Xiao Xiang (Chen Yu) is a girl who loves tarot fortune-telling. However, in her heart, she has another love, which is her childhood friend Li Zhu Hao (Tsao Yu Ning). When she was about to confess, Li Zhu Hao first confessed to the campus belle, Song Yi Jing (Patricia Lin), who happened to be Xiao Xiang's bestie.
The Con-Heartist (2020)
Genres: Comedy, Romance; Duration: 2 hr. 10 min.; Trailer: GDH
Ina Jitimain (Baifern Pimchanok Luevisadpaibul) was exploited by her ex-boyfriend Petch (Bank Thiti Mahayotaruk) and left her with a huge debt. She, in turn, takes revenge on him by hiring a professional con-man Tower Suppapaisa (Nadech Kugimiya).
MORE RECOMMENDATIONS, PLEASE!
That's it, everyone! I sincerely thank the reviewers of these movies. Without their reviews on MDL, I wouldn't have seen the movies! I don't monitor every movie out there like I do with dramas. So keep writing reviews; we all appreciate it!
Feel free to drop new English subbed movie recommendations in the comment below. Although my favorite genres are romance, comedy, and action, but under certain circumstances, we all may want to try other genres. As long as it's entertaining, I just want to keep myself healthy in dramaland.
Until next year for another compilation of movies I will be watching in the second half of 2021!
THANKS FOR READING!
Thank you to the editors who edited this article! I do not own any of the images used. Credits go to the respective owners. Images are from the official stills and posters, drama screenshots, OSTs, and Google search. GIFs are self-made, taken from the drama scenes.