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30-Day Challenge

30-Day Challenge: Day #24 – Practically practice Korean by reviewing Korean movies (in Korean)


The above movie preview is from 은밀하게 위대하게 (“Secretly, Greatly”) and was the top movie in Korea from June 6, 2013 to June 15, 2013.

What is quite possibly the cheapest and most exciting form of out-of-your-house entertainment on the planet? Movies.

According to this movie infographic (linked to here), in 2009:

  1. Cinemas had: 1,474,700,000 viewers
  2. Amusement parks had: 347,000,000 visitors
  3. Sporting events had: 141,000,000 attenders

Additionally, it cost (in 2009) a family of four:

  1. $28.72 to see a movie
  2. $94 for a baseball game
  3. $284 for a football game

Besides that, TV and movies are the hobby that occupies the largest majority of people’s time. According to this article, (in 2012) Americans spent around 40 hours per week on TV (34 hours for live shows and 6 hours for taped shows). The same article indicates that these “average” Americans only “troll the Internet” for between 5-7 hours per week. (Of course, I’m sure that number is much different in Korea – the land of free wi-fi and LTE smartphones.)

Still, if you want to learn the language, what better way to do so than by doing what comes naturally? Entertain yourself. With movies. In Korean. I’ve already previously written a few posts about learning Korean using TV:

  1. Watch TV and take notes
  2. Mimic the TV
  3. Remake a TV ad
  4. How to use TV and movies well
  5. Improve your listening with TV

But today’s Challenge will be a little different. Instead of merely watching something, how about watching it and reviewing it (in Korean)? This will help your Korean in many ways. You’ll get listening practice and speaking practice, as well as vocab and grammar practice. But more than that, you’ll also put your Korean to use practically in a fun way that you wouldn’t normally use.

The practice here will also come in handy when you get together with Korean friends and the topic turns toward movies. Learn a few basic phrases and vocabulary words, and you’ll be able to follow along and keep up with the conversation.

How to effectively review a movie in Korean:

1. Know what happens.

To make a good review, you’ll have to pay attention, use subtitles, have a friend help out, or re-watch some parts you struggle with.

2. Retell the story.

You’ll need to use time-order sequencing and cause-and-effect grammatical structures.

3. Describe your feelings.

You’ll need to know plenty of adjectives and emotion-related words.

4. Give it a rating.

This can honestly be anything you like (check out some of Conan O’Brien’s crazy video game ratings), but the important thing is that you justify your rating. You should know some “because of” and “due to” phrases.

5. Make a recommendation.

Finally, let other people know if they should or shouldn’t see the movie themselves. Some useful phrases to use here would be things like “if you want…” or “if you’re in the mood for…” Be sure to let them know what to expect if they decide to pick it up.


#23: Pick a Korean movie to watch. Make sure you understand it. Then, review it using the 5 guidelines listed above.

Hashtags today are:

#k2k3023 #moviecritic


Here are some additional Korean movie previews that you might find of interest. Many of these are (or were) quite popular:

도둑들 (“The Thieves”)

Looks similar to Ocean’s 11.

광해 (“The Masquerade”)

Similar to the Prince and the Pauper, but in the Joseon Dynasty.

활 (“War of the Arrows”)

과속스캔들 (“Scandal Makers”)

A comedy that includes some Christmas stuff.

올드보이 (“Old Boy”)

A classic. Now being remade in Hollywood by Spike Lee and starring Josh Brolin.

The above are some of my favorite Korean movies. What are yours?

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