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Male Love: Instinct and Innocence

Posted November. 24, 2005 08:29,   


Simply put, the movie “Kwang-shik’s Brother, Kwang-tae” (directed by Kim Hyun-suk), which premiered on November 23, focuses on how men regard love.

The two main characters, innocent Kwang-shik (Kim Joo-hyuk) and playboy Kwang-tae (Bong Tae-kyu) are brothers. The movie shows how these two very different love, and exposes men’s innermost feelings which women often have misunderstandings of.

The movie shows that man is an animal that is both extremely innocent and wild, and that has both sincere and evil intentions.

Kwang-shik and Kwang-tae are as different as day and night, but they have one thing in common. Both have never said “I love you” in their entire lives: one because he is too innocent, and the other because he is such a player. This movie is convincing because it exposes the fact that men sometimes turn into Kwang-shiks and sometimes into Kwang-taes.

The movie neatly portrays a love story that is more realistic than today’s absurd romantic comedies, thanks to the slight twists from the obvious formula and to savory lines and original episodes.

I, Kwang-shik: “My love from seven years ago has returned”

I am a 34-year-old photographer who runs a photo studio in Jamsil. It must have been seven years ago, when a bag of “Saewookkang” chips was only 400 won. I met a girl at a college club. I had returned to school from military service, she was a freshman. Yoon-kyung (Lee Yo-won) was idolized by the male students, but I never poured my heart out to her. Well, I tried a few times, but strangely, I would freeze every time I stood before her.

When girls say “thank you,” I know what they mean. It is a circumlocution to express a vague state of mind. A similar expression would be: “You are a good man.” This means I am not boyfriend material.

In college, my nickname was “peacekeeper in the world of love.” As a result I have several “little sisters.” Yoon-kyung has appeared in front of me again. But it’s strange. She seems to have feelings for me, but why did she give chocolates on Valentine’s Day to another man? I want to end my unrequited love of seven years and finally confess my love to her….

I, Kwang-tae: “Men must break up before the 12th encounter”-

The magic number that a man should remember is “12.” Which means, in order to be cool, you have to break up with a girl before you sleep with her 12 times. This is when the man starts to get fed up with the relationship and the girl starts to get obsessed. Kyung-jae (Kim Ah-joong), the girl I just met, has a great body and a hot personality, but still I must break up with her at number 12. By the way, the average couple in OECD nations sleeps together after their third date; the rate of progress in Korea is too slow.

Why don’t women know that men think differently of women from the bellybutton up and from the bellybutton down? Before sleeping with their girls, they leave their inner feelings in the pocket of their jackets as men leave their valuables in the public bath. Isn’t it the same with women? When asked “How many men have you met before me,” they always answer, “Three.” Because saying “You are the first” will be an obvious lie, women assume that three would be a reasonable answer.

But I am worried that I keep loosing my mind from so much drinking these days. Come to think of it, I think a girl named Yoon-kyung asked me to give some chocolates to my brother, but I gave them to some other guy. What should I do? Oh, never mind. Fate can play games with relationships: if she is not his destiny, then she’s not. If they are meant to be, then they will meet somehow.

Mi-Seok Koh mskoh119@donga.com