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Goofy, sexy, enjoyable… Watch Korean movie Nothing Serious simply for its female lead who owns her sexuality, and her life.
I am a K-drama addict, and my particular favourites are romance dramas; this often surprises people because, “You don’t seem like the kind who watches romance…”
Well, what can I say but that a little escapism never hurt anyone, and K-dramas are Escape with a capital E, filled with beautiful people, convoluted-yet-predictable-plots and a ton of soju and delicious food to (vicariously) wash it down with.
So, I’ve been watching them for a couple of years now, and while the romances are enjoyable, they are also surprisingly prudish. For instance, fan favourite drama Descendants Of The Sun has Song Joong-Ki proclaiming that he doesn’t want to stay the night at his girlfriend’s house because “he’s old-fashioned that way.” In the superhit Crash Landing On You, everyone’s favourite pair BinJin sleep in separate bedrooms even though it’s clear that they may never get to see each other again.
Of course, other romances like One Spring Night and Something In The Rain are far more mature in the way they treat relationships, and also acknowledge that few people have only one partner their entire life, but these too are all about eventually ‘finding the one’.
Against this backdrop of sweet but somewhat naïve K-drama romances, I came across Nothing Serious, a new Korean movie released on Amazon Prime, and what a goofy, sexy, enjoyable watch it is!
Nothing Serious brings together Woo-Ri, a magazine writer who has been tasked with writing a sex column (played by Son Kuk-Ku), and Ja-Young, a baker and aspiring podcaster who loves sex. Now if you are not familiar with the movie (and with Korean actors), you might assume that Ja-Young (played by Jun Jeong-So) is the man in this pairing, but you would be completely wrong – and that’s one of the things I loved about this movie.
Nothing Serious brings us a heroine whom we are first introduced to while she is having an intense erotic dream, and she breaks the fourth wall to tell us that wet dreams are not for horny teenage boys alone. Ja-Young makes no bones about the fact that she enjoys sex, needs it regularly, and doesn’t feel as though she needs to do the work of being in a relationship just so that she can get the sex.
What’s more, the movie does not present her as someone who is ‘defective’ in any way and needs to be ‘fixed’, or imply that her ‘deviant’ outlook has been caused by past trauma in her life, as many series and movies with ‘free-spirited’ women tend to do. Her appetite for sex is presented as entirely normal and just part of who she is – someone who refuses to censor herself and speaks her mind, whether it is to her father or Woo-Ri, the new man she meets.
Nothing Serious follows Woo-Ri and Ja-Young as they navigate their way through this relationship – something that is initially just about the sex (both are clear that they are not in the place for a more committed relationship), but gradually evolves into a genuine friendship.
Without giving away too much of the plot, let me just say that complications ensue and are also resolved, but at no point in the movie do the makers try to make Ja-Young give up who she is or imply that the ‘love of a good man’ will resolve all her problems.
Woo-Ri is no saviour and Ja-Young is no damsel in distress who needs one. Even when she is shamed by an ex-boyfriend for her lifestyle, she refuses to think less of herself or to take it lying down.
Her confidence and intact sense of self are tremendously empowering, and in a world that constantly tell women that they need to be better, we certainly need more characters on screen like Ja-Young.
Founder & Chief Editor of Women's Web, Aparna believes in the power of ideas and conversations to create change. She has been writing since she was ten. In another life, she used to be read more...
Women's Web is an open platform that publishes a diversity of views, individual posts do not necessarily represent the platform's views and opinions at all times.
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