My Little Bride (2004)

“I feel like Grandpa ‘jipped’ me.”

words: desmond childs

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You’re back from your studies over seas, huh? Your family has missed you, and their all waiting to see you! There is the matter with Grandpa, who has become very ill. He seems to have one last request to make of you…

“Did any of them notice your lop-sided butt?”

This a movie about an arranged marriage. The husband in his twenties and the wife a fifteen-year old, high school student. If you’re wondering if such strange practices happen in the world, then I’ll send you here first. For those of you who know a marriage of this kind exists, this movie’s gimmick won’t really be all that surprising. The young couple does not do anything that would have us questioning the director (Ho-joon Kim)’s judgement. In other words, no sexual situations involving minors, or anyone for that matter.

The movie manages to convey the feelings of the two people trapped in this predicament, without “stewing” in their circumstance. Sang-min (the 22 year-old) and Bo-uen (the kid) live in two families who have grown so close to one another throughout the generations. So much so that their grandparents made some sort of promise that their grandchildren would get married. It’s unfortunate for the kids themselves, and the parents (for the most part) seemed determined to carry out the wishes of their parents. Which is fine, I guess. The best part of this movie takes place when the two leads are on-screen together. They feel more like first cousins than husband and wife, and the uncomfortable lifestyle their having to live makes for a very entertaining experience.

On another note, the way in which Bo-uen and Sang-min think and reason in this movie is a little refreshing too. The girl is not made to look older than she is, and we get to see her pursue a love interest at her school. Sang-min’s life’s plagued when during an internship at (Bo-uen’s school), a fellow teacher falls for him. It’s all very stressful, but the movie keeps it humorous and engaging. The side characters all get to throw in their two cents about the arranged marriage, and many of their scenes are hilarious. I liked being able to watch this movie and know that it wasn’t going to descend into some dark, depressing cellar. It’s a story about relationships. How they are forever changing, growing and shrinking as life goes on. Sang-Min and Bo-uen were neighbors and childhood friends. They’re close enough to joke, clown, and “play fight”. But soon their relationship begins to change, and form into something more “than just friends”; yet not quite lovers. It’s also good to see two characters who don’t exaggerate their disagreements into screaming matches. And their both kids! Crazy, right?

To sum it up, it’s a movie I’d recommend for well, teenagers. It’s cute, it’s silly, and the message on relationships and friendship shines throughout. The last time I checked, My Little Bride was available to watch on YouTube at a decent quality level.

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