Tag Archives: movies

Just Friends – 2009 South Korean short film

6 Jan

The film stars Yeon Woo-jin and Lee Je-hoon, who together play a couple that must deal with the issue of coming out. It premiered at the 14th Pusan International Film Festival on October 10, 2009. Two months later on December 17, Just Friends? was theatrically released in South Korea.  

Bed scene of the sweet casts

The film begins with a trot performance by various characters during the opening credits. Seok-i (Lee Je-hoon) anxiously awaits the arrival of his boyfriend Min-soo (Yeon Woo-jin), who has taken leave from the military. Shortly after they reunite, they are met by Min-soo’s mother (Lee Seon-joo), who is unaware of their relationship. Seok-i decides to stay with Min-soo and his mother at an inn when he realizes there is no way for him to get back home.

The next day, after Min-soo’s mother leaves for church, the couple become physically intimate back in their room. Their session is cut short, however, when Min-soo’s mother returns unexpectedly early and becomes devastated by the revelation. Seok-i returns home that night. Then there is a short confession song by Min-soo for his mother, telling her that he is gay and that he will continue to love Seok-i.

Sweet moments between the two casts

Sometime after the event, Seok-i is shown working at a restaurant when he is encountered by Min-soo, who is on leave again. As the two run outside, a voice-over of Min-soo’s telephone conversation with his mother plays—Min-soo tells her that he will return home together with Seok-i. Meanwhile, as the voice-over ends, the couple kisses in public.

The ending credits features the trot theme again by four performers in drag. Afterward, there is a brief clip of Min-soo and Seok-i at the same visiting center in the beginning of the film. As Seok-i gets ready to begin his military service, his mother is heard calling him—the two lovers look at each other in dismay as they realize another cycle of coming out.

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