Windstruck (내 여자 친구를 소개합니다)

Windstruck (내 여자친구를 소개합니다) is a 2004 Korean romantic-comedy-tragedy, the Korean title literally reading “Let me introduce you to my girlfriend”. The movie opens dramatically with Jun Ji-hyun, the protagonist, falling to her death from the top of a Seoul skyscraper. And as she floats down the movie flashes back through her love story. She was a police officer who had fallen in love with Jang Hyuk, a teacher at an all-girls school. Jang promises Jun that if he were to die before her, he would return to her as the wind (hence the movie title). Jung later dies in a police shootout. Stricken with his loss Jun attempts to kill herself several times, finally jumping off a skyscraper. Thankfully, the situation is saved, Jun finds closure and she moves on.

Korean movies and TV series are taking over Asia! My female friends are taking Korean lessons just so that they can understand what they are watching! Friends say Koreans are now making Bollywood-like movies better than Bollywood itself. This movie is a prime example. It has all the cliched Bollywood elements: dances in the rain, great music, fights, action, exploding cars and a happy ending. The only difference being that the cute Jun is the dominatrix, while Jang is reduced to her meek partner.

(The guy Jun meets in the climax is Cha Tae-hyun, the guy from My Sassy Girl, thus making this movie a pseudo-prequel to that earlier movie.)

Windstruck was pretty average. It was too long, with too many contrived police chases and death attempts. Jun is her usual cute self, though all the weeping in the latter half leaves her puffy eyed. Jang is funny, just like he was in the enjoyable comedy Please Teach Me English. The first half is a romantic-comedy and is good fun to watch. The second half turns into a tragedy which left me pretty sad, in a bad way. Girls might bear through the latter half which heaves with the tragedy and emotions of a lost love. Special mention is needed for the awesome music in the movie. The opening cover of Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door (by Youme), the rap song BK Love (by MC Sniper) and the rock ballad Tears (by X-Japan) are my favorites. Windstruck is an romantic drama that might be barely watchable once.

Turning The Mind Into An Ally

My friend who does practises meditation regularly handed me this book from his collection when I asked him for advice. I read through the book while I was attending meditation classes at university in the last few weeks. Turning The Mind Into An Ally is written by Sakyong Mipham, a Tibetan Buddhist lama. The book is aimed at beginners to meditation, so was perfect for me. The prose flows like a graceful and simple brook going from the nature of the mind, to getting started on meditation, to the problems faced during meditation and finally to the different objects that one can place the mind on during meditation. The book is a breezy read, mainly because the author takes care not to get heavy in the details and peppers every other page with analogies from real life. Buddhism (the religion) aspects are present a bit in the beginning and towards the end, but the book for the most part is free of religion. The book ends with some appendices which have practical tips for meditation. I found the book quite useful to go along with my meditation classes. I will have to get back to the book sometime in the future again since I couldn’t really take away a lot of the latter part of the book.