Chungmuro/Film News
A Frozen Flower: Movie recap and review
by | August 27, 2009 | 168 Comments

Just a word of warning – the movie does deal with adult content, so I would like to respectfully ask people to stay away if they cannot be mature about the discussion. Thank you!


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Frozen Flower, a Review

In which Joo Jin-mo plays the king, Jo In-sung plays his loyal guard Hong Lim, and Song Ji-hyo plays the queen.

In short, the story takes place during the Goryeo dynasty, and the king portrayed in the movie formed his own group of elite bodyguards called the Kunryongwe. Hong Lim is the captain of these guards. The queen is a princess of Mongolian Yuan, and the movie revolves around the love triangle that forms around the three of them.

From the time of his introduction as a little boy in training to become one of the Kunryongwe, Hong Lim is shown as loyal and dedicated to a fault. He may not be the best swordsman, but he would always be the one to practice the longest. His devotion soon caught the notice of the king, who cherished him as a close companion.

Of course, this companionship comes with a price, and the first foreshadowing hints of trouble to come when the princess of Yuan arrives and is summarily ignored by the king. Hong Lim seems vaguely disturbed at this, but his king doesn’t care at all.

Fast-forward 10 years, to the present, when a group of the Kunryongwe is in hot pursuit of a runaway member. Han-baek, a junior guard, has decided to elope with a palace maid, which is obviously against the rules.

This carries a death sentence for both the maid and the guard, but Hong Lim is close enough to the king to be able to persuade him otherwise. The king treats Hong Lim with an abundance of affection and allows him the sort of freedom rarely given to even the queen.

Of course this incites jealousy from multiple quarters, one of them being that of the vice-captain. He taunts Hong Lim with using pillow-talk to distract the king from vital affairs, though Hong Lim’s skill with a sword usually puts an end to all the idle talk. He certainly isn’t ostracized and even seems beloved and well-respected by the other guards.

Anyway, the king and the captain of his guard are close. I think we get that by now, but just in case anyone has lingering doubts, there you go.

The queen comes to visit the king occasionally, but he just doesn’t give her the same kind of attention he does for Hong Lim, and everyone knows this as sort of an open secret in the palace. Unfortunately, her relatives are also coming to visit, and the continual lack of a royal heir is bound to come up as an issue. The problem isn’t the queen – the king has an abundance of concubines – it’s just that he’s gay.

However, the lack of an heir leaves the king open to deposition from the Yuan dynasty and treachery from his own nobles. The queen understands this, and in a secluded corner of the royal gardens, frigidly thanks Hong Lim for ‘taking care of something I should have done’. It’s a double-edged dagger kind of remark, because she’s referring to both his rescue of the palace maiden and (presumably) his place in the king’s bed every night. However, the queen reminds Hong Lim that in light of the royal heir problem, his devotion to the king may not be tolerated for much longer. Oh, the resentment, you can cut cubes of it and make stew.

On a rare outing from the palace, the king and queen relax and do their version of ‘kicking back’, but then assassins attack.

The Kunryongwe have been well-trained, and fight back relatively well. It’s just that the king, in defiance of all common-sense and self-preservation, refuses to leave with the queen. He wants to stay and make sure Hong Lim is alright. (Geez.)

Surprisingly, the king is much better at swordsmanship than any of his guards, which means he ends up rescuing Hong Lim a couple of times. As the fighting goes on, though, the two are outnumbered in the pavilion. Of course, narrative demands that the king gets hurt in trying to save Hong Lim. (Seriously, in this aspect he’s really the worst kind of ruler possible – doesn’t do anything to further the line and breaks all the rules for one person.)

The king survives being stabbed in the chest, and the first thing he does after waking up is to ask for Hong Lim and see if he‘s okay. If anyone needs me, I’ll be in my corner, facepalming.

The investigation into the assassination points the finger at Lord Cho, who’s influential enough that even the Kunryongwe don’t dare to accuse without more proof. So for the moment the bodyguard are going with the ‘random Japanese pirates’ story, though Hong Lim commands further undercover investigating.

Meanwhile, back at court the Yuan ambassador is welcomed with open arms if not exactly smiles. In the absence of a royal heir, the Yuan emperor has decided to enthrone a distant cousin, the lord Kyungwon, as crown prince, thereby robbing the king of autonomy in his own country. (It’s all a little too ‘big brother is watching you’ for me.)

In addition, the Yuan dynasty also demands that Goryeo send soldiers and maidens to help in the fight against insurgents ‘enemies of the empire’. (If it’s fighting, what the hell do they need maidens for?) The attitude of the emissary, while not calculated to be humiliating, views the king as just another pawn of the Yuan empire. And to add injury to insult Lord Cho and presumably the new heir is fully prepared to agree with all the demands.

The queen is really angry at this, however, and rather unrealistically lashes out at the assembled lords for their lack of loyalty towards the rightful king. It’s nice that she’s willing to take the blame for not having an heir, and even defending the man who pretty much treats her as just another part of his kingship.

Later at night, the king urges her to go home before he becomes only a puppet king controlled by the Yuan. However, the queen has firmly settled her loyalty on her husband, and refuses to go. (Either she has feelings for him at this point, or I’m blind.)

Then the king mentions ‘another option’.

Fertility rituals and preparations begin, as the king and queen formally set aside a night to try for the heir. Hong Lim is somewhat dismayed at the king’s request while the queen is just plain unhappy at literally being used as a brood mare.

The first attempt between Hong Lim and the queen don’t, ah, yield fruit, but that just means he has to try again. Hong Lim somewhat confusedly asks the king why he even considers doing something like this, and the king only answers that his heir must be a fair child, like Hong Lim.

The second and third nights are more successful, but all parties involved experience mixed feelings about the event. Hong Lim enjoys himself, the queen slightly less so, and the king is jealous of his lover and his wife spending nights together. The fractures in each relationship begin to show and Hong Lim gets totally confused about his attachment to the king. He uses the ongoing investigation as an excuse and runs away.

The king rushes out of the palace in plainclothes to greet Hong Lim’s return, but the latter had just returned from visiting the queen. (That’s terminally silly, but then I don’t write scripts and cautious people make bad stories.)

Meeting the king and being reminded of how loved he is brings out all the guilt again, because why miss a chance to angst?

Hong Lim continually oversteps his bounds by paying too much attention to the queen. By now they are both fatally attracted to each other and have trouble staying away for long periods of time. Hong Lim’s frequent absences and wandering mind irritate the king, who suspects the truth but is willing to believe in Hong Lim’s (weak) denials.

The Kunryongwe uncover that a merchant named Ma Young-il was recently killed after smuggling lots of Japanese weaponry. Being able to trace him back to Cho provides the king with proof to pursue and execute those who are disloyal. One of the co-conspirators include the queen’s older brother, the visiting emissary from Yuan. His special status means that he doesn’t get killed at the same time the treasonous nobles – but he can’t escape death.

Hong Lim is ordered to kill him, but a subordinate later reveals to the king that he was let go for the sake of the queen. (He’s still dead by someone else’s hand, though, as the head in the box attests.)

Things go rapidly downhill from there, as the queen attempts suicide after hearing the news. The king loses faith in Hong Lim while the latter is full of self-doubt at his own betrayal. He does promise the king that he was acting out of mistaken lust. (Yeah, you wish.)

They all try to return to life as it was, but it only makes things worse. The shape of the inevitable is obvious, and the tension is only waiting for the next disaster to break.

The king decides to send Hong Lim away to the border to clear his mind. However, the queen sends for Hong Lim, with the news that she is pregnant. They meet in their usual place, the library, and are caught in the act by the king and a retinue of servants and guards.

Incensed, the king orders that Hong Lim be castrated and imprisons him. He manages an escape, with the help of his friends remaining in the guard. The five of them seek refuge at an old temple.

However, the king has a bargaining chip in the queen, who is now alone to protect both herself and her child.

Naturally, when Hong Lim realizes this, he abandons his friends to ride off to the queen’s rescue. Halfway, he realizes the futility of actually going against the king. Unfortunately for Hong Lim’s former subordinates, when he returns, the king has already caught up with them. They are brutally tortured for news of Hong Lim’s whereabouts.

I think we all agree that the king has stepped off the deep end by now, and kudos to Joo Jin-mo for doing such a good job. He’s so desperate to have Hong Lim back that he won’t hesitate to commit more atrocities.

Defeated and alone, Hong Lim returns to the capital in time to see the heads of four men staked on the wall – he recognizes them, and also the pendant of the queen hanging from the fifth head.

Now solely aiming for revenge, Hong Lim disguises himself as a returning soldier and enters the palace during the celebratory feast. The king leaves while the celebration is still going on, and we find out two things: the queen (as expected) is still alive, and Hong Lim still retains his title as captain.

The king has killed everyone involved in the adultery case, with the exception of the vice captain. Now he tells everyone in the guard of what has happened, as a safeguard for his own life and the future of the Kunryongwe guards.

While the discussion is going on, Hong Lim has entered the king’s chambers and forced a fight. He intends to kill the king, though the latter is mostly yielding to him. The prolonged fight destroys most of the king’s furniture and suite. When Hong Lim cuts through a treasured painting of the two of them hunting, the duel becomes serious.

Multitudes of guards arrive, but are kept back by both the king’s command and the vice captain’s restraining hand.

As always, the king is the better swordsman, and when Hong Lim asks for death, the king stabs him through the shoulder, pinning him to a pillar. The king asks if Hong Lim had ever loved him, and he denies it. Then he walks forward, impaling himself further and stabbing the king in the stomach.

The king dies pretty quickly, but Hong Lim’s shoulder wound isn’t immediately fatal, so it’s up to Seung-ki, the vice captain, to kill him as an assassin. (It’s almost a matter of personal revenge, as Seung-ki seems to have been in love with the king this whole time.) The queen finally pushes her way past the guards in time to see Hong Lim in his death throes on the floor.

He hears her voice, and with the (er, hopefully) last effort of a dying man, lifts himself up so that he dies looking at the body of the king.

The bustle of dealing with the bodies fades into a flashback from happier times, when the two had just met:

Hong Lim: Wow! Everything looks really great from up here.
King: My home is right there.
Hong Lim: It’s beautiful. I’d love to live there.
King: Then how about spending our entire lives there?
Hong Lim: Yes, of course!

And the movie ends on the dream sequence of the two of them hunting in the Northern Plains, exactly as the destroyed painting depicted.

End movie.


– Okay, first of all, I have to say, outstanding job on the scenery and choreography. Gorgeous doesn’t begin to cover it. I also really like the music used here – it doesn’t drown out the story, and the music follows the movie, not the other way around.

– Joo Jin-mo did a great job portraying all the turmoil and angst inherent in a role like his. His character felt so real, in fact, that I was totally on his side during the entire movie – even when he went crazy and killed so many people. I had expected it of Joo Jin-mo, as he’s a charismatic veteran actor with lots of films under his belt, but I had also hoped Jo In-sung would move past just being a pretty face. Oh well, he has plenty of time to develop when he comes back from military service. As for Song Ji-hyo, her performance here is a step up from what she did in Goong – understated, but she gets the message across. In terms of chemistry, however, it’s all on Joo Jin-mo.

– The actor for young Hong Lim deserves a special mention, I think, not just for his creditable performance here but in other dramas as well. For his age, Yeo Jin-goo shows pretty good depth and manages to retain the childlike vitality that underscores Hong Lim’s earlier relationship with the king.

– The costumes are a little too gaudy, but then historical movies always contain an element for dress-up. What I really didn’t like was the fact that the movie felt bloated with prettiness. More editing and tightening would have prevented fatigue during the second half – flashy is nice, but not at the expense of the plot. At the end, I just wanted all of them to die.

– Despite the presence of the queen and all the declarations of love running around, this movie is still very much about Hong Lim and his king. Their tragedy lies in the fact that they both feel too much (as opposed to feeling too little). Their emotions run to extremes all the time: they love too hard, they hate too hard, and they tied themselves together far too tightly for the break up to end well.

– There’s a tired joke I always trot out with friends unfamiliar with epic wuxia movies – namely, that the couple trying to find love against all odds will die (well, everyone dies, but their deaths have that special 30 minute prismacolour surround-sound touch). And while Frozen Flower doesn’t have much in common with the average wuxia movie (except teh sageuk pretteh, I suppose), I think it’s significant that the king and Hong Lim are the ones to die together.

– What’s your take?

168 Comments from the Beanut Gallery
  1. Jacq

    I’m so glad you did a review of this movie. I watched it a while back and loved it. I think the two male leads had amazing chemistry, not to mention super great looking.

  2. cecee

    It is brokeback mountain except asian style. Interesting.

  3. ockoala

    Thank you for the recap and incisive commentary, Sevenses, and for sharing the review on your blog, Javabeans. Makes me want to watch the movie even more.

  4. amy

    Joo Jin-mo was so good in this movie.. but I can’t help but notice our lovely Park Gyu lol

  5. cecee

    does anyone know where I can watch this movie? Everyone raves about it so I want to watch it. Thanks!

    • 5.1 romeotesta

      there’s already one in youtube. it is divided into 2 parts

  6. TestingJake

    I thought the movie to be beautiful in terms of visuals and the plot to be very interesting. I really enjoyed the move so much and I agree I was on Joo Jin-mo side the entire time. When he was betrayed by the one he loved so was I , but then again never let another man sleep with your woman no matter his “orientation”.

  7. hmmm...

    saw this movie…did not like it…just wasn’t that good of a movie. I’ll never watch it again for sure.

  8. Snikki

    Ooh, I’ve been wanting to see this. I have friends who like this kind of movies…erm *whispers* I do too actually… 😛

  9. Mimimah

    Surprising me that you recap this. Since i was crazily waiting this movie for zo in sung. It bit disappointed me. I want see his acting , not his look. hmm.. i want something memorable like dirty carnival. He ‘s sacrificied him self in sex scene but it seems useless (for me ). But whatever reason i still love him hehe. It reminds me with Joo jin mo in HAPPY END hehe Hohoww that movie as crazy as frozen flower. Haha Thanks for recaps

  10. 10 Pully

    “that the couple trying to find love against all odds will die”

    LOL, freaking true. I just finished “Portrait of a beauty”, and pretty the same thing happened. Steaming sex + dead in the end.

    Movies, this type, are pretty to look at. But I forget the second after it ended. Maybe it’s just me.

  11. 11 Sevenses

    @6: Cecee, Email me at[at]

    To misquote: If you watch a movie because it was full of beautiful frames, then it was a crap movie.

    (To poster above, yes, there was no need for all that sex. In addition, some of the implications regarding homosexuality are kind of offensive.)

  12. 12 Masaya

    OMG, so that was Im Joo Hwan running away with the girl at the beginning?

  13. 13 Jane

    From this summary, the story sounds like a mix of Alexander, Mists of Avalon, and the King and the Clown.

  14. 14 Sorrowmask

    Oh. I can’t say it is a great movie or the movie I like very much.. But I love Joo Jin Mo’s acting and character here. I agreed with you. I sided with the King’s pathetic love rather Hong Lim and the Queen. I think it is because of JJM’s acting. It is very persuasive and real, made my heart feel sorry for him even the King is merciless killing those peole involved in.
    Jo In Sung is just okay in this movie, I don’t think he really stepped up.
    For the Queen, the actress is alrigh, she certainly improved since Goong. But her role was shadowed by the King and Hong Lim.

  15. 15 Mona

    You should do more of these reviews, I can’t keep myself from laughing when I read some of your comments about certain scences. Lovely!

  16. 16 all4movies

    Nice recap Sevenses. I’ve been wondering about this movie even though the subject matter doesn’t appeal to me. Now I’ve got a better idea of what it’s all about.

  17. 17 onie80

    THE BEST EVER MADE if not sine i have stated to be interested in korean drama and movie!
    THE BEST !!
    so beautiful

  18. 18 Meix2

    I for one absolutely love this movie… So tragic that it lingers in your mind for quite some time afterwards. I absolutely agree with the doomed lovers thing cause having been re-aquainted with korean ‘historic’ ‘movies through Frozen Flower, I went back and watched Portrait of a Beauty and Untold Scandal….

    I have read somewhere that the frequent sex scenes were imperative to the pacing of the film as it builds up audience tension in awaiting for the inevitable discovery of The Betrayal. Sex in film is a good thing- both between Hong Lim and the King as well as Hong Lim and the Queen- but sometimes there’s just too much. So much that you start to roll your eyes (Again?) and then press the ff button just to find out what happens next – never a good sign for a film.

    I think that a major interest in this film is how flawed the main characters are, as well as how seemingly every choice they make regarding their relationships turns out to be the wrong one and propels their interaction onto the next phase, especially near the end. I would say HL character is weak to temptation (especially as there is a definite question about his sexual orientation… was he gay? If he was then why would the King think that HL could serve the queen if he, the king can’t. Was he bisexual? Was he groomed/ coerced by the King from his childhood days?). The King obviously loved HL very much, and was willing to forgive him right to the end and I for one was hoping for this outcome/ pairing… However, castrating your beloved, killing his friends and lover… not the best way to make him come back to you, man.

    One of my major problem with this film is the issue of love between the Queen and HL. When did that happen? Great sex does not equal love and the love confessions just came out of nowhere. It also ended with HL saying that he have never loved the King- not even once, which I take as a lie (only because it makes for a better story…) plus the fact that at this point HL was mightily pissed off with him. HL kills him. Then he gets killed. Queen comes in. HL makes a deliberate effort to turn and face the king as he lies dying. A single drop of tear as he takes his last breath…… (AHHHHHH I’m so confused about what this means?!!) Would someone enlighten me??

    • 18.1 Ron

      “HL makes a deliberate effort to turn and face the king as he lies dying. A single drop of tear as he takes his last breath…… (AHHHHHH I’m so confused about what this means?!!) Would someone enlighten me??”

      Check out wikipedia, it really helped me understand. 🙂

      Most of your reasonings were spot on. HL was extremely pissed to the point that he said he didn’t love the King. At that moment he probably hated the King so much that he wanted him to die with a broken heart.

      When HL realizes that the King hadn’t really killed the Queen, but instead had lied and done everything just to lure HL back to him…you’ve got to wonder – what was it all for? Think from the POV of HL, fucking confusion, yeah.

      From great love stems great hatred. His last question was probably “Why?”

    • 18.2 blackberries

      You are seeing the movie with too modern eyes 🙂 … must watch it keeping the historic customs in mind.
      It’s the Asian Middle Ages, after all – just to put it in perspective.

      People around the king were taught to attend to his wishes, and not to waver in doing it – that could cost you the position you tediously (or painfully) climbed to (often the life itself could’ve been on the line) … a word had multiple meanings and the pressure was immense… the king himself was brought up as a superior being, and there are few people who don’t succumb (from a humanist point of view) to this sort of instilled self-importance

      Women were supposed to obey their male family members – and their wish was paramount: be it the father or, later, the husband. Besides, she had really no value outside a family, and if she was rejected by her partner it was a social and personal disaster (even if young, she was already “expired” )

      In regards to this , I don’t see the characters as “flawed”, but each fighting to survive within the social pressures of the day, while keeping their dreams too.

      The king, an ambitious man, had his authority severely reduced by the dependence to the Yuan empire… a sort of political castration, which echoed in his inability to control his noblemen. To add wound to the insult, all his value was reduced to his duty of producing a heir. (imagine, say, all ur family around u asking when u’r going to have a kid, but when? tell us! u have to do it now! or we’re just not interested in u!…sort of thing)

      The queen knew she would be a shamed woman if returning home, so she held tight in there , although being submitted to having sex with the man she hated most (for taking her husband from her) was immensely humiliating for her.

      Hong Lim is the frozen flower.

      He was a very interesting character to follow, yet with all the sex scenes the attention was whisked away from what was more important (it sold the movie though 😀 )
      As a young boy, being taken away from his family, he needed an authoritative yet warm and friendly figure, and he found it in the young prince – as such he sought to impress him (sword fight and devotion)… but as he grew that relationship had to change (court rules, king’ own mix of affection and selfishness – fueled by his insecurity and hurt pride )… and he turned into a very submissive young man, which had to fulfill his king wishes . He had a strong affection for king, but not love.
      The queen was a virgin, so, in a way they both started from ground zero – which gave them equal chances to discover and explore each other , and as such HL felt much freer, livelier in this relationship… hence the confusion, the fear (she was the queen after all), the inability to fulfill anymore his duty to the king.

      … but when somebody inflicts such a gruesome mutilation , it’s really impossible to have any affection left for that person…

      The last tear was for those pure, wonderful times, lived without fear, selfishness, possession or destructive ambition

      • 18.2.1 blackberries

        🙂 hum… out of characters-limit-fear I didn’t sketched better the queen attitude towards her husband:

        When writing that she hated HL because he took away her husband, it wasn’t because of some unrequited love… but mostly because her life at the court became extremely unhappy (also as an imposed foreigner), and stressful with all the gossip, people’s (and her family) unfulfilled expectations for the heir, and waning authority… it probably felt like breathing in an air vacuum… and the specter of even more troublesome times was rising as a Crown prince was being proposed – and she diverted all the frustration and resentment towards Hong Lim.

        …As a matter of fact she is the last one to get fully involved in the relationship with HL – in the beginning she even uses his feelings (wearing the necklace to allure him) & deliberately forces him to meet in hiding out of revenge… later, when he bursts into her room, she realizes he is totally in love with her, ready to risk his own life – and this reaction made her give in, and let her heart open. The tea & rice cake scene from afterwards speaks volumes about their shared, but dangerous, love.

        Later when the king proposes a different mating partner, she is so scared, desperate and disgusted at the idea of “staining” her body&heart , that she demands from HL to run away, even though knowing that was a capital crime … in the end she slashes her wrists, and the king backs up, for the moment.

        I think the queen is deliberately played in low-key – as a beautiful (but not outstanding) woman , without particular artistic skills or bright personality, to let the stage open to the two male leads, and step up a bewildering feeling in the viewers regarding HL’s preference for such an woman, and not for the handsome, charismatic king… 🙂 I guess the trick worked

      • 18.2.2 milletzky

        I discovered the film last year and I thought it was one hell of a literature. The approach was modern but the story is quite different from those Korean movies and movies I’d watched.

        Today I came across news about Jo In Sung and suddenly I remembered “The Frozen Flower”. And now I found this site and read your comments. I think that your opinion and your assessments of the movie were almost the same as my thoughts. I find that your understanding of the story is quite laudable.

  19. 19 asianromance

    “namely, that the couple trying to find love against all odds will die” — so true. I knew both guys were going to die the moment you said the two guys were close. The ending dream sequence was so sad =*(

  20. 20 GT

    thanks for the recap…this indeed is a good movie, scene, music, costumes…etc. I enjoyed the movie & 2 thumbs up for Joo Jin-Mo & Jo In-Sung.

  21. 21 peachys2sleep

    I would have really liked to see the sword dance without all the sex scenes woven in.

  22. 22 Sevenses

    @19: My personal theory is that Hong Lim + the king = true lovers. All the symbolism with the painting, and especially the post-death ending sequence point that way. (It is kinda creepy that the king met Hong Lim when the latter wasn’t even a teenager and decided, ‘That’s it, he’s the one.’)

    It’s always irritating when two people have sex and voila! Instant love. But we must suspend disbelief, even if the queen and Hong Lim pretty much disliked each other up til that point.

    While we’re on the subject of flaws, if you look at the king, objectively, he’s a pretty sucky monarch. He won’t provide an heir, which leaves not just himself but the entire country at risk. His problem is that he values personal pleasures over other obligations. It’s hypocritical to force his boyfriend to sleep with the queen because it’s unpleasant – it’s not any less pleasant for Hong Lim, but he’ll do it because it’s his duty. And the queen, poor thing, has a bad habit of latching on to the nearest unrelated male and feel (real/fake) love for him.

    As for the gay/or not question, who knows? (Maybe he’s bi. That’d explain a lot.)

    • 22.1 blackberries

      The young prince is NOT sexually interested in the young boy.

      There was a special bond created between them, like when you favor somebody out of a group, not because you’re sexually interested in him/her, but because you can both relate better than with others…

      The kid was probably like one of those puppies, lost from their pack, that trail after you and jump&roll … and the king treated him like that, later developing a sense of possessive affection, and treating him as something between a lover and a pet – he would do anything for Hong Lim as long as he behaves as he wished … I wasn’t convinced at all that HL was in love with the king – in the love scene between them, HL is so overwhelmed that it really looks like a chore , than pleasure (nice bodies btw 🙂

      see also my comments above for the other issues

    • 22.2 shann

      The Queen has been married to the King for 10 years. Hong Lim would have to be there too whenever the King visits the Queen. They are hardly strangers. There may be animosity on the Queen’s part towards Hong Lim but I doubt he even disliked the Queen remotely. In fact, the way he glanced at her when she’s singing made me think he may even like her secretly hence why he resisted so much when the King made that offer.

      The last scene could be projected as the King finally living his dreams. But nothing suggests to me Hong Lim returns the same love towards him. Affection and care? definitely.

  23. 23 epyc

    For those who have also seen The King and the Clown and Farewell My Concubine, how would you compare Frozen Flowers to them (if comparable, that is)?

  24. 24 soysauce

    I saw this a month back or so, and it left me pretty confused. I wasn’t sure too sure to take Hong Lim’s words when he said he has never loved the king. But then again, I wonder if lust can blossom into love.
    As for the sex scenes, they were extremely graphic, and a little unnecessary.
    I also find it kinda “odd” that the King wasn’t even wiling to elope with his wife. I mean, sure he doesn’t love her, but a couple tries can solve the problem. Why drag Hong Lim into this? And the King is in assumption that Hong Lim loves him, so if he can’t proceed with this task, what makes him think Hong Lim can do it for him?
    However, as a whole movie, it was enjoyable. The sceneries were brilliant as well as the colorful wardrobes.

    • 24.1 blackberries

      Welcome to the Korean roller-coaster : one moment a suave song, the next slashed throats… love scenes, then history lessons, love scenes again , mutilation next and so on … aihoooo 😀

  25. 25 Blakey

    I liked your review and point of view on the movie, and I agree te best performance in the entire movie was from the King.

    But I must admit, I couldn’t help but hate the King, and I know it was all part of the plot, but really. What would he expect from making his lover and the queen sleep together? Of course he’d get jealous, and I just wanted his character to die in the end. I got way to frustrated with all the angst that I couldn’t just look at the beauty that the movie wanted to emit.

    Overall for me, great idea and plot, but could’ve been a bit better.

  26. 26 Missemergency

    I just watched this movie only days ago, and while I enjoyed it, I was not a fan of the relationship between Hong Lim and the Queen nor the King’s needy tendencies. The biggest gaping flaw for me was that the queen and Hong Lim only ever have sex, I think they speak a total of ten sentences to each other. How can either of them say that they are in love?

    I also agree in that there could have been a lot less sex and a lot more emphasis on the relationship between the king and Hong Lim. It felt as though the filmakers were still very uncomfortable with the whole gay plot.

    However I must agree, this movie was gorgeous to look at and the music was especially nice.

    • 26.1 TS

      Because it was like a young romance for them both. Neither had been with the opposite sex before. And sex leads to oxytocin which leads to attachment.

      The king was stupid and selfish here.

      • 26.1.1 Ron

        Hahahaha. This was a movie about selfish, intense and impulsive people… anyway, I think it’s a bit too much to go into detail here about the oxytocin and all. No need to drag in science to analyze a plot hole lol.

        The movie followed a simple storyline, and the focus wasn’t really much on the love between the Queen and HL. Probably that’s why the whole thing just felt cobbled together.

    • 26.2 lean

      The Queen is more like a supporting character, hence why.

  27. 27 mochiballs

    @ Sevenses…i think the king’s love for hong lim was real but i don’t think hong lim’s love for the king is real at all. he might have genuine affection & respect for the king having grown up and spent most of his life by the king’s side…not to mention being doted on by the king…but it came across very obvious to me that he just didn’t know any better until he got intimate with the queen…and realized that he really bats for the other team. although i do agree that sex doesn’t necessarily equate to love, however, the intimacy can bring out all sorts of feelings! 😛 so i didn’t get the sense that the queen and hong lim’s supposed love was random at all. there were times when i felt that maybe the queen didn’t really love hong lim but rather just wanted his male companionship b/c she was obviously lonely…and horny! lol joo jin mo definitely did an awesome job in this movie…he played the lover scorned so well!

  28. 28 budsdiana

    WOW, finally a discussion about FROZEN FLOWER.

    I so agree a lot with @28 mochiballs
    King’s love for HL = true
    HL love for King = total devotion he grew up in his household, romantic love I don’t think so.
    Queen’s love for HL = yes possible, remember male and female reaction to “sex” are quite different. Male can do it without emotions, female usually attaches a certain amount of emotions to the act of sex. The frequent sex, I am sure stirred a lot of emotions to the queen.

    JJM was awesome, for me the best part was when he discovered the Q + HL doing it in the library, his facial/eyes reaction was SUPER. When I was watching this part and the build-up of the scene where the K was looking tentatvely at each aisle, i was literally shouting at the screen, “NO! NO! PLEASE DON’T LET THE KING DISCVOVER THEM, HE WILL BE DEVASTATED FOR SURE, POOR HIM.

    Then the next scene was the castration part, whew!! my heart was really pumping so fast. I so love the action of the the vice-captain, when the King ordered TO DO IT NOW!! His initial hesitation, confusion but finally he has to do it, the sputter of blood drops (tacky).

    I just wish the scene (backtrack) of the bodyguards performance with the sword dance(?) in the scene where there was a festivity, was loooonger. There was so much eyecandies and I sooo love it. Instead the scene was alternated with the Q + HL doing their tryst in the library (bummer!). I saw the scenes in youtube when they were rehearsing this scene and most of the actors (bodyguards) were shirtless or wearing sleeveless shirts, hmmmm yummy.

    Again, JJM was sooooo GREAT.

  29. 29 budsdiana

    I forgot, thanks a lot SEVENSES for the review. I forgot to mention that I watched this initially without sub, so I barely understood the real gist. Then I watched it again when I happen to see later that eng sub was now avaialble. But the episodes that had sex in it was deleted. Now, reading your review I now understood the correct storyline.

    @19 Meix2
    “Then he gets killed. Queen comes in. HL makes a deliberate effort to turn and face the king as he lies dying. A single drop of tear as he takes his last breath…… (AHHHHHH I’m so confused about what this means?!!) Would someone enlighten me??”

    My take is that, when all this fighting was happening HL believes the Queen was dead, so when he saw the pregnant Q walks in, he had to look at the King in his dying seconds. Probably HL was thinking “how could you let me think she was dead….” or probably “thank you for not killing the queen and the future heir (or my baby)….” I like this scene as well..

    • 29.1 blackberries

      I wonder how come so many people believed that head was the queen’s ??

      just because there is a hanging necklace doesn’t put an identification tag …

      Hong Lim didn’t attack the king to revenge the queen’s “killing”, but because he realized she is not safe anymore, the king he thought he knew is capable of doing lots of harm ..and he was fearful for his child as well

      (and she was not safe anymore as – although from a powerful empire , and squashing her like a fly could have been a trigger for war – she was still vulnerable to slow poisoning & other sneaky tricks….)

  30. 30 jaguar

    I like jim mo very much. He’s so charming and handsome. And he can act very well.

  31. 31 thankyou

    Thankyou for the review. I enjoyed reading it. I haven’t seen the movie yet, but will now.
    “Their tragedy lies in the fact that they both feel too much (as opposed to feeling too little). Their emotions run to extremes all the time: they love too hard, they hate too hard, and they tied themselves together far too tightly for the break up to end well.”
    Story of my life!

    ” It’s hypocritical to force his boyfriend to sleep with the queen because it’s unpleasant – it’s not any less pleasant for Hong Lim, but he’ll do it because it’s his duty.”

    I haven’t seen the movie so what I am about to say may be
    completely wrong. I wonder if the reason king forced Hong
    to sleep with the queen was because he rather be cheated on
    than cheat. I use the term cheating here loosely considering
    all parties involved had prior knowledge. The king rather go
    through the angst of having his lover be with someone else
    instead of watching hong in misery. “I rather be cheated on than
    cheat” kinda logic. It is selfish nonetheless.

    • 31.1 romeotesta

      my take is that maybe the king is so gay he won’t touch a woman. and hong lim, being a loyal subject, followed the order

      • 31.1.1 mimi

        lol yeah, I think the King is so gay too, he probably considers himself the “female” in a relationship, while HL is the “male” and only HL – though involved in a homo relationship- can still make love with women. On the other hand, HL was juz a child recruited and lured by the King, he definitely had not had experience with women before and somehow forced into the relationship with the King. Cant say its love.

  32. 32 langdon813

    Every movie that deals with male homosexuality is always compared to Brokeback Mountain and I’m not going to be any different. BBM is one of the best movies I’ve ever seen in my life. I can’t watch it without having a complete emotional breakdown; in fact I’ve only ever watched it completely twice. But it really hits me where I live and I always irrationally hope for a different outcome. In my mind, Ennis and Jack are living on Brokeback Mountain with gray hair and beer bellies, happy together forever.

    It’s the same for me with A Frozen Flower. I wanted so badly for the king to get his happy ending, but barring that, at least SOME admission of love from Hong-lim before they died. What a credit to Joo Jin-mo’s acting abilities that so many people feel this way!

    I completely understand why Hong-lim is confused by the events that unfold. The king has practically raised him from early childhood, given him every advantage and opportunity; and lavished him with attention and great affection. Hong-lim in return is fiercely protective of the king, respects him tremendously, and wants only to please him. They could have lived out the rest of their days blissfully happy together…if only the king had not made this one fateful command.

    But he did…and now Hong-lim has had sex with a woman for the first time. The king is gay; Hong-lim is not. That, to me, is the bottom line. Hong-lim has spent his formative years in the company of men, was introduced to sex by a man. Up to that point he’d never known anything else. But after the fact, he clearly prefers sex with the queen to sex with the king. The queen, a virgin who has long desired her uninterested husband from afar, is also awakened to the joys of sex. Is it love? Probably not, but it’s really hard to tell your raging hormones that when it’s all new and exciting. “Wait, you mean THIS is what I’ve been missing? More please!”

    It’s not the king’s fault; he was born that way and his love for Hong-lim is very pure and very natural to him. It’s not Hong-lim’s fault; he might never have left the king’s side had he not been forced to, but once he did, he realized that he was meant to be with a woman. It’s not the queen’s fault; she loved her husband but he was unable to return her desire, so she transferred those feelings to a man who could.

    It’s a tragedy of Shakespearean proportions, if you ask me. The pity is that the movie wasn’t quite strong enough to flesh out (no pun intended) the emotions of all the parties involved. With the possible exception of the king, which is why so many of us who watched the film feel that he is the most tragic character of them all. Because he is; he is the one character who never hides nor wavers on his true feelings. Who doesn’t become irrational at the thought of losing the love of their life? The act of castration is horrifying and barbaric, but it was done in the heat of the moment after witnessing not just a physical betrayal but an emotional one. Remember, the king wants to believe that Hong-lim loves him, not the queen. And if lust is the reason Hong-lim can’t stay away from the queen (which Hong-lim stated was the case, truthfully or not) then why not make it impossible for it to ever happen again?

    I tend to agree that Hong-lim was the weakest character, not because of his actions but because the emotions behind his actions weren’t expressed enough. He had to know that what he was doing would destroy the king, but a few sad, pouty faces here and there didn’t really cut it for me. We should have seen Hong-lim struggle as much with his love for the king as with his lust for the queen. Because then the scene in which he rises up one last time to gaze at the king as they die would have had a lot more impact, rather than leaving us to wonder if he did or didn’t love the king after all.

    • 32.1 AnotherFan

      Just found out about this movie and reading DB reviews and comments now. And I want to compliment you on such an insightful and beautifully written review of your own.

    • 32.2 blackberries

      It’s amazing how people can still use affection/ love as a justification for mutilation.

      the king never fully loved Hong Lim if he was capable of such a horrendous act.
      He cared for him alright, but he considered him his possession, his work of art, and could use his body as he wished.

      I don’t see HL as weak – he is following his heart (watch the movie again, and don’t pay too much attention to the sex scenes) and being true to his feelings, not lying to keep his position and rights (one of the reasons the king refuses the offer the vice-chief is making, because the king knew he was more sneaky, and not fair, like HL)

      … actually it takes lots of courage to do what HL did.

  33. 33 Nom_Kitteh

    JB, I won’t read your review until after I have watched the movie for fear of spoilers, but wanted to give you a high five for the including Rufus Wainwright in your song for the day. Hallelujah indeed.

  34. 34 gyengao

    I was so excited to see your review, Sevenses! Thank you. This is maybe only the second or third review I’ve seen of the flick, in spite of how long it stayed in the theater, and I’ve been wondering a lot what other people thought of it.

    Personally, I was sooooo disappointed with this film. First and foremost, I couldn’t believe what an uproar it caused even before it was released because of the love scene between Hong Lim and the king, a scene which turned out to be **NOTHING AT ALL** compared to the 1001 heterosexual sex scenes that followed. I won’t lie–I had been looking forward to the film specifically for its slashy nature, and it was a terrible letdown for me when it ended up, IMO, focusing so much more on the relationship that developed between Hong Lim and the queen.

    Furthermore, it seems to me that the overabundance of sex scenes between Hong Lim and the queen (which I normally wouldn’t mind at all) was supposed to be a way of showing the desire that grew from what had originally only been duty, but I’d be a lot more accepting of that if I’d found any of the sex scenes sexy. I never felt any chemistry between the two of them at all, and the expression on the queen’s face every single time left me wondering whether she was enjoying it or in pain.

    And finally, I had no sympathy for the king whatsoever–I think that’s really what ruined the film for me. Such a selfish and immature character, the king was the cause of all of his own problems, and I was neither surprised nor moved by his demise.

    What a shame! I was bummed that I disliked the movie so much, but at least other people enjoyed it.

  35. 35 nycgrl

    I was so excited to see this film due to the topic but was so disappointed in Jo In sung’s performance. I had to laugh in some scenes because he was so bad. This movie would have been a lot better with another actor. I think his performance brought an element of cartoonishness to the story rather than any genuine tragedy.

    Also I do not shrink in face of man on man love having seen enough gay porn thanks to my status as a “faghag” (not my words) but the scenes were so awkward it felt literally like two straight actors bravely plowing forward. I felt almost like they had those scenes for the sake of showing audience that korean cinema had arrived to the world where broke back mountain was a mass success and that they had real artists who weren’t afraid to show some gay love. If it can’t be done well it would have been better for the director to allude to the intimacy. Sometimes a picture isn’t worth a 1000 words.

    I actually felt the most compelling part of the story besides Joo Jin Mo’s acting was the love story of Hong Lim and the Queen. It was an awakening in both of them. Not only did Hong Lim realize he wasn’t batting on the same team which must have been a shock to him after 20+ years but his chief rival to his surprise is his love, soul companion, object of his lust and his baby mama. How quaint and refreshing is that?

  36. 36 starletbang

    I’m glad you did a recap because I was never sure that I fully understood this movie.
    i can’t say i liked this movie but i do agree that the background scenery and the costume was really beautiful.

  37. 37 maxon888

    thanks for recapping this movie, as always you rock….Jo Jin Mo did a great job in this movie, lots of eye candy and the scenery was gorgeous……….I waivered between Jo Jin Mo and Zo In Sung’s characters, gripping… thanks once again

  38. 38 hqlover

    I love Jo in Sung and watching this movie at first got me really uncomfortable…OMIGOSH…I have never saw a Korean movie that is so full of sex scenes…My family thought I was watching a Porno or something…When I finally got over my uncomfortable stage, then I was able to enjoy the storyline…I thought Jo in sung did a great job in this movie …but now when I see him, I can’t help but imagine him naked all the time ….

  39. 39 orangemania

    I didn’t really enjoy the movie. I didn’t see any love from the Queen for Jo In Sung at all. I think that was a major flaw and didn’t really make the movie work. I was a little disappointed after watching it because i expected ti to be better from the trailer.

  40. 40 Meix2

    I have to say, never having been a fan of Jo In Sung or Joo Jin Mo, (okay… maybe during the ‘Memories of Bali’ stage with Jo In Sung), this film has certainly make me take notice of these two actors. So I went back and watched some of their other work (I’m just coming out of my Cha Seung Won (Cityhall) addiction!) While Jo In Sung has done some decent films – Dirty Carnival etc. Jo Jin Min has left me considerably less impressed with his past work, which make me wonder why the heck I like him so much in this film (to be fair, ‘Musa’ was ok and I have yet to see ‘Real fiction’).

    I suppose choosing Hong lim to impregnate the queen was a monumentally bad decision (duh), if the only reason being a matter of trust and wanting the child to look like HL. Maybe he wanted to raise HL child together as a couple, but surely this must cause problems if the child does indeed, as the King wants, to resemble HL. Surely, it would be much easier to find someone else to impregnate the queen and then silence them with death after the fact? Or maybe he chose HL because he knew that the Queen despised him and so there was little chance of any affection growing.

    Generally, the more I read about and discuss the movie, the more questions arises? Why this, why that, why, why, why…. Don’t get me wrong, I still love the movie but only wish that there was a bit more explaining to the audience and not just glossing over important character/ relational issues. This is one movie that needed a directors commentary to explain what was what and bring on the ‘Oh, I seeeeee’ moment. Opening discussion about a film is always a good thing, but having a film that NEEDS discussing just shouts pretension and laziness in directing/ editing. This is a good film, but it could have so easily been a great film.

    • 40.1 blackberries

      “I suppose choosing Hong lim to impregnate the queen was a monumentally bad decision ”

      🙂 well, it’s the 14th century… I guess people were still oblivious to the effect of certain decisions

      It’s always difficult for a director to dissect his own work 🙂 it’s like pulling out all the magic that he created … and anyway, that is what a film/ creative work must do – bring questions & debates forward

  41. 41 Meix2

    Oh and in answer to the question as why the King never slept with the Queen himself and needed Hong Lim, I always got the impression that it wasn’t that he couldn’t do it because he found it distasteful (okay that too) but rather he couldn’t because he was ‘unable to take a woman’ – meaning he found it so disgusting that he could not get aroused. Which raises the question… what made him think that HL can? So some part of him realised that HL was not gay like him?

    Okay, I’ll stop asking questions now.

    • 41.1 Joanne

      I felt it was a test for Hong Lim….the first time HL and the queen tried, they failed. And when HL was asking for forgiveness from the king for failing, the king had a slight and very subtle please smile on his lips.

      That’s why when HL did start enjoying it, the king started going bonkers with jealousy and denial.

    • 41.2 blackberries

      I don’t think it was to test him – after all 10 yrs have past since being together, and all that time he could’ve tested Hong Lim.

      It was the pressure to produce a heir … and the queen offered to remain by his side, and not to return to her home-country – so the king (after the humiliating episode with the Yuan envoy) decided to use his most trusted man to solve the issue.

      Plus , as anyone knows, “you get laid, you’ll have a baby” – so the king expected (probably knowing what could HL do) that everything will be finished after one…two sessions… it’s just it’s not always as smooth as that

    • 41.3 lean

      Hong Lim was maybe around 12 when he was taken to the palace, he’s 22 now and who knows at what age he started a relationship with the King. The King had to know his own sexual orientation already at that time as he’s much older (he’s uninterested to the Queen’s arrival) but Hong Lim’s is a bit unclear maybe even to the King. I think he probably think Hong Lim swings both sides. Part of him is hoping HL can’t do it.

  42. 42 MEIKO**** ^-^

    Thanks Sevenses! Am very much surprised someone did a recap on this!!!

    I have been waiting for this movie…. it’s not available anywhere…and the DVD is in region3…*sigh*

    can i email you too?! ill do it anyways!

    I have been reading so many good reviews on this movie….

    Am just browsing over your recap…just enough to get the gist…dont want too much spoilers… ^-^

  43. 43 Soobi

    …so it’s up to Seung-ki, the vice captain, to kill him as an assassin. (It’s almost a matter of personal revenge, as Seung-ki seems to have been in love with the king this whole time.)

    I didn’t get the impression that Seungki would have been in love with the King but more like he was in love with the position Honglim had and Seungki wanted to be more important and was ready for sacrifices. I might be wrong though idk… I would have wanted to see more of this character in the movie.

    • 43.1 Joanne

      Well, Seungki definitely wanted to replace Hong Lim in the king’s heart….hence SK pointedly asking to let him serve the king that night. But then, orchestrating the downfall of them both does not really make sense that Seungki is acting out of ‘a man scorned’.

      It would’ve been more interesting if Hong Lim was the one Seungki was infatuated with since Seungki is obviously obsessed with being HL.

      But alas, too many sex scenes to allow that sort of plot line to develop more.

      • 43.1.1 lean

        He came across like a power-hungry that is willing to do anything for power. I seriously don’t see him liking the King or Hong Lim at all.

  44. 44 budsdiana

    @44 Soob

    Same here, i did not get the vibes that “he is in love with the King” when was it manifested or implied in the movie? Was there I dialogue I missed (probably it got lost in the translation). He is more in love/jealous with HL’s position. Probably he felt he was better/expertise (swordmanship, etc) than HL and yet HL was the captain bec. of we know what.

  45. 45 Anonymous

    Personally I don’t think Hong Lim has ever loved the King, I don’t think he’s gay either. He was raised with men, and his first sexual encounter was with a man, and with the king no less. Although it was wrong that he was emotionally cheating on the king, he was also a victim; a victim of circumstance. From the get-go we are given the impression that Hong Lim is an extremely loyal man, and I think this loyalty was what made him into the king’s lover in the first place. The scene at the end where he made an effort to turn his head was because he was sad that this was how they had ended, even when he preferred the queen, he still valued, loved (even if it’s not romantic) and had fierce loyalty towards the king. Remember that scene in the library before they got caught? the queen was saying that the king would not love their child, but Hong Lim had argued and believed in the king’s goodness.

    • 45.1 Joanne

      Agree with all you’ve said, I do think Hong Lim did love the king…but not in the “in love” sort of way he discovered with the Queen.

      I think part of the reason why he refused to say he loved the king at the end was because (1) he mistakenly believe his king was bad and had killed the queen with his child and (2) knew that the king was asking about “in love” type of love.

      Perhaps the film didn’t emphasize this aspect of HL enough or in the right way, but he is indeed fiercely and blindly loyal (and when those loyalties clash as they did with the Queen, he becomes wretchedly lost). So when the Queen begged to elope, Hong Lim chose to sacrifice himself and answered that he was afraid and would remain the “the king’s subject”.

      • 45.1.1 Tash

        I think, Hong Lim is the victim here.. The King confused him eversince he was a kid and enter the palace. He devout himself for the king.

        Even when he falls in love with the queen and he knows the queen feels the same, he sacrificed to continue “the King’s Subject” as to be the queen’s lover is far more forbidden at least to him.

        When the queen as to elope and he repkied he is afraid is not that he is afraid of him getting killed. More likely he are more worried about the queen getting harm that is why he choose to say and sacrificed himself as he was made to believed to sacrificed for the King.

    • 45.2 agave

      I also don’t think Hong Lim was “in love” with the king and I don’t think he was gay. In fact, I suspect the king realized that HL wasn’t gay. I think part of the reason why he commanded that HL sleep with the queen was to test him.

      After all, if the king couldn’t have sex with a woman, why would he think his lover could? That never made sense to me unless the king wanted to find out how attracted HL was to women.

      There are two scenes that make me wonder about the king’s motivations for having HL sleep with the queen. The first was when he asked HL if he ever thought about running away like the guard had at the beginning of the movie. The other scene was when the king seemed pleased when HL told him that he wasn’t able to have sex with the queen that first night.

      I also agree that HL was a victim and that his loyalty to the king made him believe that he would never harm the queen or their child. I think he knew the king well enough to know that if he and the queen ran away together, the king would never give up trying to find them. So, he thought it was best that she stay with the king.

      When he told the king that he loved the queen, I believed him. However, I think HL was too insecure in his abilities to take care of the queen and their child, so he thought she would be better off if she stayed with the king.

      That scene where HL admitted he loved her was so sad because he just seemed to be exhausted. Although he said he would go back to being the way he was before he fell in love with the queen, I think he realized this wasn’t possible, so he just wanted to end it by having the king kill him.

      Perhaps, because of his loyalty to the king, he couldn’t kill himself, so he wanted the king to make the decision. Unfortunately, he didn’t realize that the king would have him castrated instead. I don’t think he realized until that point, just how obsessed the king was with him.

      • 45.2.1 Tash

        I think the King ask HL to do it
        1. because he only have trust for HL as he knows that HL will never say know to his orders.
        2. Because HL is the other man that the queen quite close to other than himself (close means meets “officially”) and knows their so called”secret”
        3. He wants to have an heir that looks like his lover as he knows well he cant bear an heir himself.

        but he really never expect that the 2 will fall for each other as the fact that they should be rival to each other to have a place at the king’s heart. Suddenly the king’s becomes the “unwanted in picture figure”. I do pity him at first but when he turns violent and castrate HL is just cant be tolerate.

        Yup you were right why HL wants to be with the king and becomes “his subject” is merely to keep the queen save. At this time he didnt know the queen already pregnant. And he found out from the queen personal maid and he realised the queen tried to commit suicide he felt guilty of being afraid earlier.

        if they weren’t caught i think they already ran away. When he got castrated than only he knows that the king was rather obsessed about him. i think HL already dead once he was castrated, but when the king kill off his friends and make he thinks the queen too, that is when he is soo enraged and no regrets to kill the king. He even state his objective to the king.

    • 45.3 romeotesta

      king’s love = true love

      hong lim’s love to king = filial love

      hong lim & queen’s love for each other = erotic love

      i guess that’s my assessment of the levels of their love

      • 45.3.1 wenn

        The King loves Hong Lim to the point he’s willing to give up his kingdom
        but he doesn’t love him enough to allow him comes to terms with his own sexuality and let him be happy.
        I won’t call it true love, more like possessive love which turned to be toxic.

        Even if the Queen didn’t enter into the picture, their relationship isn’t healthy. One is overly dominant and authoritative over the other and at the same time love the other person a lot more. It suffocating and can kill any love they may have had.

  46. 46 Anonymous

    Soob, i think he was in love with the king, he offered himself and was quite jealous of Hong Lim.

    • 46.1 blackberries

      I have a different opinion – think of the final sequence , and Seung-ki’s reaction to what was happening to the king.

  47. 47 alexandra

    I have some interest in astrology and I found out that all the 3 leads are leos! And the HL and the queen are born in the same year with very close birthdates. Amazing!

    As to the suppose love between HL and the queen, I think it is just typical of a male director who think that sex generates love! I think all the romance is really lacking.

    As for the last scene where both guys are hunting, I think the director just wants a happy ending. Confusing plot? Confused director I think.

  48. 48 budsdiana

    @47 anonymous

    Oh, so there is a dialogue that Seung-ki offered himself? Missed that one, however, I think that does not mean he is in love, I think he just did it to be in the same standing career-wise as HL, IMO.

  49. 49 SIITTIE2009


  50. 50 budsdiana


    Just finished reading your parody, wow LOL.

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