Chungmuro/Film Reviews
Movie Review: You’re My Pet
by | February 12, 2012 | 154 Comments

2011 was a good year for the noona romance, with You’re My Pet standing as a highly-anticipated film based on the Japanese manga Kimi wa petto, later adapted into a Japanese drama series of the same name. Most of the anticipation rested on the shoulders of its two A-list stars, Jang Geun-seok and Kim Haneul. Expectations were high, halfway due to the fact that it’s an adaptation of a well-beloved series, and halfway due to that inevitable bit of expectation we get when anything comes out whole from a production limbo.

Since I was a movie buff before I stumbled upon dramas, I was happy to sink my teeth into a movie review – and I’d been cautiously optimistic since hearing about You’re My Pet. Here’s the thing: there isn’t really a whole lot to explore if you look too deep, and if there is a moral question to be raised about whether one person keeping another person as a “pet” is correct, well – it’s a valid question. It’s not one that this movie takes it upon itself to answer, though, because we’d be getting way too dark of a film.

That being said, this is the sort of premise that you have to buy out right in order to enjoy. Getting hung up on the schematics (like I did) is likely to cause unnecessary headaches.


You’re My Pet OST – Hey Girl (Andrew Nelson) [ Download ]

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You’re My Pet doesn’t aspire to be anything more than fluff and has a basic premise – a stoic career woman who’s great at her job but terrible at love decides to adopt and train a human boy to be a pet and companion.

It’s a cohabitation drama, with the twist that the female is the one in charge and is the “master”, while a younger man is considered as a “pet” and treated as such. This doesn’t present as much conflict as you’d think, leaving the plot and its characters floating at surface-level most of the time. There are some cute moments, but overall it ends up feeling like a series of vignettes rather than a cohesive whole, since the story tries to be all-encompassing by including a host of side characters that don’t ever manage to steal the focus, but who manage to take up time I’d rather have spent exploring our leads.

At first, I found the sharp-and-quick editing to be a breath of fresh air. Scenes lasted no longer than a minute or two, and we were soon off to the next technicolor, sunny-day scene. And while quick editing in comedies is a virtual necessity, it’s rare that I come across a film where the editing is too quick, so much so that scenes aren’t allowed to breathe and we aren’t given a chance to get to know who these characters really are. And if we don’t know that, it’s hard to care. In this instance, the directing hand seemed to be working against the story – and then I remembered that this was the first feature film project for director Kim Byung-gon, which might explain it.

Meet our heroine, JI EUN-YI (Kim Haneul), a successful fashion magazine editor who looks like the classic city woman on the outside – snazzy outfits, cool demeanor – but suffers from normal insecurities. She’s the kind of woman who goes into the bathroom to eat ice cream during a bad day, while unfortunately also being the kind of woman who has her coworkers talking about her in that same bathroom. Girl can’t catch a break.

Her mother calls that she wants a divorce, her dad calls that her mom wants a divorce. To Eun-yi, this is rinse, lather, repeat. To boot, she’s always had bad luck with men, so much so that she makes a declaration at the beginning of the film, “I can only approve of someone that is taller than me, smarter than me, and one that earns more.” Her friends know that the chances are slim, so they suggest she just try a pet instead.

Eun-yi lives in a swank apartment befitting her job, and uses her younger brother, JI EUN-SOO (Choi Jong-hoon) as a maid. His unwillingness to continue folding his sister’s underwear becomes the catalyst for our two leads to meet.

Her brother’s friend, KANG IN-HO (Jang Geun-seok), is a ballet dancer who finds himself homeless after a fight with his previous female caretaker. He seems decently carefree, but he’s got a dark past – a ballerina became unable to dance due to him accidentally dropping her once, and it’s enough for him to avoid dancing with women. He’s got enough talent for his boss to keep him around, though he still tries to persuade In-ho to sing a duet with a girl during an upcoming musical.

In-ho is either secretly wealthy or slightly delusional, as he wonders how much it would cost to live in a five-star hotel every month now that he has no home. He likes the idea of being taken care of, and it’s here where Eun-soo comes up with the perfect solution to solve In-ho’s homeless problem along with his own servitude to his sister. He’ll just have In-ho live with her and do all the chores.

In-ho’s happy to take Eun-soo’s proposition even though he claims that he’s incapable of doing housework, and even pays him six months worth of rent to stay in Eun-yi’s house. Naturally, bringing a new roommate into his sister’s home isn’t something Eun-soo thought to tell her, so she suffers a shock when she mistakes In-ho for her brother and pats his bottom, only to come face to face with her new live-in guest.

Eun-soo gets on his knees to beg his noona so that In-ho can stay, and finally wins her over with the declaration that he’ll fix their parents’ marital problems if she takes her friend in. This is one of the many side stories introduced only to have no conclusion or payoff later in the film.

There are a lot of instances where the audience is required to fill in the blanks – when this device is used well, it normally flies under the radar. This is the only movie I’ve seen recently where it seems as though whole chunks of scenes were edited out – not in a way that seems made to move the plot along, but in a way that makes it seem as though they filmed a ten-hour movie and suddenly found that they needed to edit it down to ninety minutes. The side effect is that many possibly-good scenes stay in ‘possibly’ territory because they end up feeling rushed.

For some scenes it works, like one early-on where In-ho defends a woman’s honor and gets chased down by the men who were with her, resulting in him hiding in a box near Eun-yi’s front door like a little puppy waiting to be rescued. This scene would have been better served had it been their first meeting (not to draw too many comparisons, but in the original drama series this was their initial meeting) but coming on the heels of his already open-invitation to her home, it’s a bit out of place.

Eun-yi ends up patching up bruises from In-ho’s invisible fight, and In-ho’s the first one to pick up on the fact that Eun-yi wants a pet but doesn’t have one – and thus suggests himself as a pet replacement. After all, he won’t do annoying things pets do like make noise or poop in auspicious places. Seemingly going along with the idea, she starts naming off all the things he’ll have to do, so that he’ll be a pet with “no human rights”. She’s attempting to make the situation sound so unfavorable that In-ho will leave, but she gets the opposite reaction.

When she finds that In-ho is more than willing to give up basic human rights to become her living human pet, Eun-yi realizes what she’s doing and hastily tries to kick him out. She doesn’t succeed, and though she seems as though she tries to be in control of her life, it seems pretty easy for In-ho to wiggle his way back into her house and into her good graces.

So she decides to roll with it, and declares that In-ho’s name will now be Momo. She’ll feed him and take care of him, and in return he has to always be there for her. She sets her parameters clearly: a pet is just a pet. It is neither a husband or a lover. He isn’t to bother her when she’s working and above all else, he cannot even give her ice cream a passing glance. Eating it would be asking for death.

In-ho takes the premise and runs with it, happily settling into his new life as a pet that absolutely owns his owner. No matter her tough-ish exterior, In-ho is usually able to whine his way into getting whatever he wants – whether it’s food, or for Eun-yi to wash his hair.

Eun-yi’s the kind of girl who does puzzles in her free time, and though the basis of the relationship seems pretty unhealthy, having a roommate in In-ho seems to be doing her well. If he truly was the submissive pet she ideally wanted him to be (although finding out what she wants is difficult as we’re given only a cursory peek at her thoughts), the relationship would be decently doomed. But because he’s constantly seeking her attention, the awkwardness of being strangers soon melts into a workable cohabitation. Sort of.

For instance, he doesn’t bother speaking in honorifics (because pets don’t use honorifics) and has no shame. Since she’s becomes embarrassed even in her own home, In-ho’s carefree personality is a useful dichotomy to Eun-yi’s inner insecurities.

We follow Eun-yi to and from work throughout the movie, and it’s here that we’re introduced to female rival and character-paint-by-numbers specialist LEE YOUNG-EUN (Jung Yoo-mi), but more on her later. The long and short of it is that Eun-yi is having her own having problems at work with the chief editor, and Young-eun only helps to exacerbate the problem.

There are a small wealth of comedic moments and certainly no dearth of skinship – and one of my favorite bits comes when In-ho starts dancing alone in Eun-yi’s apartment. She comes home late, he more or less ropes her into dancing with him, and he dips her romantically at the big finale…

Only we hear a crack! and realize that her back just went out. Ha. I still think that the tiny, two-second scene afterwards where she nurses her back while he undergoes school-grade punishment is my favorite. This is the only moment in the movie where the age difference between them is really laid out, and though I feel like this is a valid conflict that was never really explored past this point, we’re left to assume that the age gap makes no difference to anyone, which is valid enough. Not every noona romance needs to explore the issue of the age gap.

So, to introduce some outside conflict, we get CHA WOO-SUNG (Ryu Tae-joon), Eun-yi’s former first love. All those things she listed as her ideal type earlier? That’s him, in a dreamy nutshell. He’s tall, dark, and handsome, successful at his job – and apparently has eyes for Eun-yi. Knowing that her initial love for him was unrequited adds fuel to the fire, and it’s not long before Eun-yi is trying to convince herself this might be it for her. He might be the one.

We get some weird interludes with her friends – and I say weird not because the subject matter is weird, but because we’re never really introduced to her friends and the scenes are so short that I couldn’t get a firm grasp of the who or why of it all. Either way, they eat cake together and support each other.

Woo-sung and Eun-yi go on a successful first date, and when Woo-sung makes his way into her house with the hope of getting into her pants, In-ho is there to spoil the fun and scare him away by barking like a big, scary dog.

The idea of competition gets In-ho to step up the romantic angle, because he’s apparently come to like her during their time together. Either way, we can enjoy the cute moments they share while they go on cute dates, made even cuter by the lack of the master-pet dynamic while they’re in public.

There are some ripe comedic moments when In-ho starts to act out the moment Eun-yi’s attention wavers at home. He starts leaving various booby traps for her in the house, like filling her shoes with soil and eating all her ice cream, and leaves a polaroid of him performing the prank at every crime scene. Once again, though, I feel like I’m not given enough time to really enjoy the jokes when they’re a blink-and-you-miss-them sort of deal. The pranks and the polaroids are comedy gold – I only wish I could have seen more than a few seconds of them.

In-ho even starts going above and beyond, doing things like bringing her cold medicine at work. His good looks garner the attention of her female coworkers, which causes Eun-yi to spin a lie that he’s her younger cousin.

The differences between the way she acts with Woo-sung and In-ho become clear, both to us and to her, as she notes that she’s become very unnatural in her effort to look beautiful in front of Woo-sung. She doesn’t have to pretend in front of In-ho, who accepts her as she is.

The lack of explanation on how we get from one point to another is the exact opposite issue I experienced with the first episode of Wild Romance, where I felt we were told more than we were being shown. Here, we’re being shown too much without being told much of anything. A balance is harder to find than you’d think.

Eun-yi ends up going on a business trip when she’s supposed to have time off, and Woo-sung is quick to produce… a wedding ring. He wants to marry her. She doesn’t take the proposal seriously because she’s worried about leaving In-ho at home (the way an owner would worry about leaving a dog alone, never mind that In-ho is a grown boy), so she ends up ditching Woo-sung in order to rush home to In-ho.

Woo-sung is not to be deterred, and pays a visit to Eun-yi at her home. She even goes so far as to borrow a dog to pass off as “Momo”, but the dog pees on Woo-sung and that’s the last we see of it. Though she tries to get In-ho to stay out of the house, he’s made up his mind to compete and the two men engage in some friendly, video-game based competition to prove their manliness.

Her friends show up to crash the party, and then we cut to… the washed dishes, because her friends have already left. This is another one of those moments where I directed a “wait, what?” at the screen, unable to process why certain moments exist in this film if they’re not even onscreen long enough to impact the story, or to give insight into the characters.

In-ho takes a few unannounced days off from being a pet to focus on his dance career, and Eun-yi busies herself with work and worrying. She keeps trying to convince herself that she really likes Woo-sung, although it seems more like she doesn’t want to pass on the opportunity. It’s usually when her friend is giving her advice about how dogs act in reaction to their owners that sets Eun-yi in motion – and this time, she decides to find In-ho since she’s been worrying for days whether he’s eaten, or died.

Their relationship dynamic is one that only works with the female being aggressive (and even then, it’s debatable). But the agression-is-okay-when-it’s-female-on-male trope starts to wear thin by the halfway mark, even though Eun-yi’s beatings seem harmless. The first time she runs around beating In-ho? Funny enough. Fourth and fifth time she beats him? Not as funny.

Workplace (and love) rival Young-eun returns to the scene by ousting to Woo-sung that Eun-yi is living with a man. This causes him to stand Eun-yi up on their date, and in her worry she accidentally dials In-ho. He flies to her rescue on a bicycle, and we see a curious side of Eun-yi we haven’t seen in the previous parts of the movie – since she’s suddenly scared and unsure, too busy worrying what Woo-sung will think if he comes to find her gone to think about anything else.

This is where we see that her deep-seated fear comes from the experience of men rejecting her on the basis that she has no patience and tolerance. Instead of taking her home, In-ho takes her out on the town, where they dance in a square to live music being played and have a good time. It’s one of the poignant moments in the film that I connected with, because both characters make the moment seem completely organic.

Eun-yi’s had a good amount of champagne on their fun night out, and is properly sauced by the time she gets back to her apartment. The sexual tension that’s been building between them culminates in a scene where it’s almost assured that they’re going to get busy.

Kim Haneul and Jang Geun-seok work well together in moments like these – and the previously-lukewarm chemistry hits a natural peak here. The situation only gets awkward when Woo-sung arrives, having somehow bypassed her door so he could creep into her house unannounced. Naturally, he’s witnessed the whole foreplay/flirting situation, and that effectively puts the kibosh on their sexy times.

Eun-yi makes the mistake of attempting to explain the whole dog-master thing to Woo-sung, who doesn’t want to hear any of it. I can’t blame the guy, since that scenario sounds messed up any way you slice it. Either way, the two men end up confronting each other and have an all-out sissy fight, trading dirty punches and skittering around each other like scaredy-cats. It’s pretty funny.

Eun-yi manages to drag In-ho away, and he finally confronts her about how she really views him as a person. Eun-yi’s stress level, naturally, is high due to all the recent romancing she’s been receiving, and she becomes angry that the person she depends on to always accept her is asking her soul-searching questions. In the heat of the moment, she sends him away. She can’t take one more person trying to force a sense of guilt on her.

In-ho’s grand romantic gesture (which tries to be tongue-in-cheek, but doesn’t quite manage to get there) includes asking Eun-yi to come see his performance. Apparently he’s surmounted his fear of dancing with women, which leads to an interesting if not slightly-perplexing scene – the big musical number.

Musical numbers in romantic comedies can be fun and delightfully self-aware, so when we leave the literal stage of the number to go to an evergreen park, it’s clear that we’re being eased into a big, climactic moment. But by the time we hit the halfway mark in the musical interlude, I realized that Kim Haneul was curiously absent.

Essentially the musical number became a dream sequence when it was taken off the stage, and so seeing the same performance we would have seen on the stage – with Jang Geun-seok romancing a random musical actress instead of the heroine – left me wondering if Kim Haneul was simply too busy to film that day. And if not, what’s the purpose of seeing Jang Geun-seok do all this singing and dancing by himself? It’s certainly not that he doesn’t have the right to a musical interlude (because everyone has the right to a musical interlude), it’s just apropos of nothing without Kim Haneul present, since it happened at a time in the film that would suggest that it was the finale, or the finale lead-in. (She shows up for a few seconds at the end with single-shots only. Curiouser and curiouser.)

In this case, the musical interlude tricked my mind into believing we were at the end only to find that we weren’t – and when the actual end came, it couldn’t really compare to how outlandishly bombastic the interlude was. If the intended effect was for a quiet, poignant ending this would have worked perfectly – but there was clearly effort put into making the story resolution a grand affair. It just didn’t hit home for me.

The bottom line: A series of moments strung together by a will-they-or-won’t-they plot, without any turns along the way. Despite its lengthy production time, the entirety of the film – and especially the ending – came off feeling rushed. Couldn’t get past the premise enough to just enjoy, but my suspension of disbelief wasn’t the only thing holding this film back from greatness. Or even goodness.


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154 Comments from the Beanut Gallery
  1. gulsan

    I was so excited when I started to watch this, but in the end I was totally dissappointed by the whole movie

    • 1.1 Aidan

      Agreed. This was a FAIL.

      • 1.1.1 dbsklove

        okay, thank god. i thought it was just me.

        • haruko

          It was like they actually tried to put all 14 volumes of the manga in one movie. Without paring down on the side characters/mini plots. So it was super rushed, and awkward. Yeah…I was disappointed too. This is one where I’m gratefull to the jdrama (because that was my intro to dramas!) but….I’ll take the manga. None of the adaptations have lived up to the manga.

          • winnie

            if they had just taken the great moments between sumire and momo it would have been great, but they tried to do that while adding in so much side stuff that nothing makes sense….instead of a movie they should have done a drama, then it would have been so great

          • Rhine

            I’m happy I caught your comment. I was thinking everyone just thought this movie sucked because they didn’t know the story very well like in the manga but you did read it so I’ll take your word for it. They should have just made a drama out of it.

        • Alice

          Same, Thinking it stemmed from my total love of the initial series..

          Other things that were a real bother:
          He was a ballet dancer..
          One doesn’t beat a pet so obviously he was a guy from beginning to end for her. Maybe a culturally equivalent younger guy.
          And the way she done the wrestling move, it shouldn’t hurt at all. It’s true that’s a character original so maybe the second point holds some truth even then.

          What was interesting was that for some reason, sqeuences of events were mostly left to the viewer to fill in but the whole initial cohabitation thing was fully explained as contrary to the original.

          Oh and chaaracter caricatures. So much. But I ranted about that enough in my own reviews so.. =)
          In the same review, I also remember thinking that if this movie had been a story of its own,(not a remake) it wouldn’t be so bad. Bigger stories have been compressed in such a way and done fine.

          Anyway I’m just glad it wasn’t my own shallowness throwing me into a narrow-eyed ditch again. Should just scroll down and go yep yep yep at everything haha.

    • 1.2 zoe

      Oh it is just a horridly gone bad movie! What a waste!

    • 1.3 kakashi


      • 1.3.1 yakuna

        waste of time watching….wasted talents…..original Kimi wa petto was best

        • geegung

          agreed. i was searching for the angst. but there’s none. this one is a waste.

          I thought he’ll surpass or at least be at par with Kimi wa Petto’s Momo or she’ll be able to deliver drama just as good as Sumire-chan. But all I can see is the “cutesy” version.

          Don’t get me wrong, I am JGS fan way back “The Happy Life” (and I love it more when he has less fluffy hair.).

          But this? This is an EPIC FAIL (for me). =(

    • 1.4 Hang

      Totally agree. I was so disappointed that I cast a doubt over JGS’ performance in the upcoming Love Rain. I was a huge fan of his before You’re my Pet :(

    • 1.5 Daffodil

      I was also anticipating the movie. i like the Japanese Version . I like JGS and KH. Both are good actor and actress but I dont know its a fail.. im disappointed. so bland

    • 1.6 maria

      ditto. my level of disappointment in it is such that i actually groaned when i saw that there was even a review of it on DB. ….although it was pretty fantastically cathartic reading my rants up on here. hehehe 😛 great job, headsno2! 😀

    • 1.7 ilog

      Totally agree. This movie was sooooo wrong in so many levels.
      I didn’t get ballet at all from JGS’s dance sequences and I really liked that modern ballet fusion thing in the Jap series (instead what I got was weirdly awkward, tweeny-pop dances whut).
      And there was no underlying plot at all. Just straight-on fluff that was entertaining for a while, the movie was ultimately unsatisfying and disappointing. :((

    • 1.8 jane

      so agree with you. seriously it’s nothing special about this movie.. I’m usually not hard to please, but I can’t even bear watching this. 😐

    • 1.9 bradstalls

      Um, I think you have trouble understanding the meaning of making an “adaption”! This is supposed to another version, instead of being a 2 hour summary of the source material. Personally, I saw this movie before watching Kima Wa Petto and to this day, You’re My Pet is one of my favourite Korean movies!

  2. Jennifer

    This movie rated a ‘fair-to-middling’ on my scorecard, but really, that’s just because I’m a rabid Jang Geun Seok fangirl. It wasn’t a *horrible* movie, but I probably wouldn’t have made it all the way through if he wasn’t Momo.

    • 2.1 Alice

      Can’t call myself a fan of anything. Maybe a follower with expectations in the lead girl actress. If that’s a way to justice my views and opinions here, so be it.

      Still, it was what it was. Fluff and maybe even nice on its own. If one likes that sorta thing. As a remake though, utterly terrible.

      The actors took the characters and incorporated their own trademark traits into each. Sumire was a strongly defined character, fluid in her emotionless emotions but if this is the cultural equivalent of stoic workaholic so be it. Never once did he feel like a dog though and that was somehow unforgivable because Momo was a phenomenally lovable character. That may just be the bias speaking but. It became only atypically “kinky fluff”.

      Was so hoping she’d be so stone-cold drunk as to simply accept the circumstances of belying mortification as a drunk person. But no, of course that is supposed to sober ’em up. Gugh.

  3. Mystisith

    OMG ! This thread is going to be a lynching session ( running out of here… ).

    • 3.1 alua

      jaja! I’ll be the head lyncher…

    • 3.2 Cynthia

      Chicken! Hang around – you might find this interesting! :)

      First, thanks, HeadsNo2! I’m happy that you’ve chosen a movie to review but sad that you’re never gonna get back the hours you spent dissecting this awful dreck of a film.

      You’ve done a great balancing act of taking “YMP” apart – your kindness towards this project is apparent. I, on the other hand, can’t be.

      It’s been awhile since I watched YMP – reading your recap brings all the horror I felt while watching this right back again.

      I don’t think that there’s any way to sweep the premise of YMP under the rug. The woman makes a boytoy her PET. In my book that’s just sicko, and trying to glaze it over with humor just doesn’t fly (for me).

      From the writing to the awful editing to the sad acting, this was a mess – and I love me some KHN. Can’t stand JGS, but it could have been anyone in that dehumanizing role – it wouldn’t have made any difference.

      I’m glad you caught the fact that KHN was a no-show for that ludicrous musical scene – she probably handcuffed herself to her trailer and refused to come out. I just hope she spent that time watching herself in ‘Blind’, reaffirming what a great actress she really is, (YMP not withstanding).

      I really wish I could have something positive to say about this movie. I just can’t – it was a waste of time, money and talent.
      It’s a red flag when the promo stills, as lewd/suggestive as they were, were the most interesting draw for YMP.

      But again, thanks for tackling a movie review – it was a good read!

      • 3.2.1 alua

        I know what you mean BUT we are entering manga territory here. The whacky, outlandish (like WAY-out-there) manga territory that makes no sense whatsoever when viewed from any perspective other than itself. A territory that requires total suspension of disbelief rather than questions of political correctness.

        I don’t want to say manga should get away with everything, because I do not think they should – there are mangas that need and should be dissected because what they do really shouldn’t fly (I’ll place the typical empty-head bimbo shoujo heroine at the forefront of this – this is a manga character type I have very serious issues with but that’s a different discussion than this one).

        The human pet however I can live with – within this manga territory. (And the robot boyfriend à la Zettai Kareshi too. :-))

        Of course, where to draw the line between what to dissect critically and what whacky premise to just enjoy? I don’t know, it’s probably a personal line that one has to draw. Which is why for me the manga’s and the dorama’s (and I guess, this film’s) premise isn’t problematic in any way, but for you it might be no matter what.

        • Cynthia

          You make a good point. I think in this case the difference between the manga and movie is vast in premise and execution, but you are right – this is one of the few times that the subject matter is one I can’t wrap my head around. It just sets off what few morality bells I still have left. (I watched the J-drama of ‘My boyfriend is a robot’ – that didn’t bother me – different strokes for different folks. I dropped it because it was boring, not because I was offended by the subject matter).
          I find the basic premise of turning or treating a human into a subservient creature repugnant. Maybe because it smacks of implied slavery? IDK, I do recall having the same reactions while watching an American soap opera years ago where the victim ended up falling in love with her brutal rapist and marrying him. Some things are just wrong – and in YMP, no amount of ‘Mandy’ dance foolishness can give it rationale (for me).

          • Alice

            That’s just the thing. He’s just subservient. A pet requires you do everything else for him, washing his hair, feeding, cleaning after him, etc etc. Almost like caring for a baby. If anyone’s slaving, it’s the “master”. There’s probably a name for it but it ain’t BDSM or foreplay-slavery… The constant “comedic” hitting is also reminiscent more of “annoying little brother” that seems a staple in other korean shows so I don’t even associate it with the relationship label at play here.

            Truly, reality would be a bit different though. Unconditional “love” and care is accompanied by expections of love, adoration and consistently (and usually only) positive attention in kind. All the positives and (usually invisible unless you are 12 and grounded) negatives of having real pets.

            A real person relegated to such pet-like status would have their own depressive situations, problems with roommate, etc etc. Which is what made Momo and subsequently, Sumire the interesting-because-they’re-nigh-impossible characters they were. Characters’ suspension of belief were in place far longer than viewers’ which made for watchable material.

        • haruko

          I found the way the manga handled the pet thing to be more acceptable. Sure, it was out there, but in the manga there was the whole “yeah it’s wacked but it kinda works only because these people are unique, and it’s only working on a temp basis…and yeah, it’s not normal.” Plus, by half way through you see that while “momo” might’ve started playing pet on a lark, he keeps playing the role more for Sumiko’s benefit… and he’s trying to slowly move the relationship into healthy territory. And the 2nd half of the manga focuses on that, and eventually the relationship ends normal. Which made the whole premise more acceptable to me. You don’t really get that in either of the adaptations… sadly.

          • haruko

            *Sumire. lol

      • 3.2.2 Mystisith

        The chicken comes back to bite your calves :)
        The older woman in control ( home, money, feeding… and other physical activities ) of a young handsome guy is the CORE of the story. I’m not an fundamentalist a la ” Respect the drama, it’s a Bible “. But what i liked in the dorama is the fact that they had the guts to explore that strange notion of a couple ( a kind of sweetened BDSM relationship if we have to say the real name ). The story tells about a practical agreement on a life routine subscribed by both parts, which derails once sexual attraction and affection fall on their heads. So, like most of people, i didn’t like the way they portrayed Momo’s character ( womanizer, macho, cruising with his buddies… ) : A guy like that just has to knock at the door of a groupie to have a ceiling above his head. He is supposed to be homeless, without any self confidence. All he has to offer is affection *like a pet*, and dance prowesses.
        My opinion is that they didn’t understand the concept at all for this movie, plus i also feel JGS just stands here as himself. Add ridiculous dance scenes, no chemistry and waf ! waf ! scenes of JGS rolling on the floor ( dying in shame for him )… I’ve never felt so embarrassed watching a movie.

        • AuntieMame

          So, totally agree with you regarding what was in the dorama versus the movie.

          The missing link in the movie is the exploration of the idea of ‘a couple’, which the dorama even has her talking to her shrink about it, right up to in ending voice-over epilogue.

          I couldn’t figure out what this director was trying to say with this movie. And, it got to the point where I didn’t care. I felt embarrassed.

          This movie was a mess. And, HeadsNo2 was very kind and worked very hard to find the good points in this movie. Thank you.

        • canxi

          Agree with you Mystisith! The lack of character motivation irked me to no end. Momo actually has a really interesting back-story that was barely hinted at. You see why he goes into this master-pet relationship, you see why he stays, you see a serious side to him, a manly side to him. And they through that out the window.

          Sumire is this really serious career woman who refuses to be seen as weak and comes off cold and hard. But, what I liked about her character was her vulnerability. She really did care what people thought of her and she was a person who couldn’t show her emotions or be herself but she gradually changes–which didn’t happen. I felt like the changed her character completely. To some of the things she wore (I noticed she had heels with flowers and a mini-skirt on in one scene and thought “who is this?!) to her personality.

          I watched the movie all the way through hoping something would change and what I got was a big mess of one of my favorite things. Smh.

          • alua

            They threw everything out of the window if you ask me…

      • 3.2.3 Nafiza

        I think there are many other themes at work in the original manga and drama that the Kmovie failed to portray/include. I have always found this manga to be interesting both in its premise and its execution of what seems like a decidedly deviance from the norm but really, is majorly tame compared to some other stuff out there. What interests me more is how these relationships (consider the bdsm or rather, S&M genres? tastes?) are “accepted” perhaps not as the norm but as something more palatable when the submissive in question is female. I think the mangaka was very bold in reversing the roles. Anyway, I found it fascinating that it was the “submissive” in question who propagated the entire thing. If he does not find it subjugating or demeaning to dehumanize himself, I wonder at our reactions. Anyway, I could write a whole paper on this (I should have taken that manga class!) but it’s so interesting!

        • Kayleigh

          That’s a really great point and I would urge anyone who hasn’t read the manga yet, not to be disillusioned by the movie adaptation, and give it a try.

          I think the issues raised by the original work are truly fascinating and can speak to all of us in a world where gender roles/stereotypes and inequalities are still rife. I think you should write a paper on it. I for one would love to read it!

        • Alice

          It’s typical female-oriented fluff for the guy to “do things only because it’s that girl”. Possessiveness and adoration might be cut from the same thread.. I agree the tameness of content was made everything so fascinating. x)

          As for “it’s okay when it’s a girl on guy” in drama portrayals of domestic(?) violence — Seriously, it’s like the japanese never cared. Nodame was a particularly acclaimed one which was pretty much this and more. The ditzy female character is always hit or heaped with varying levels of extreme “comedic abuse” and it never seemed to matter to anyone. In fact it’s usually a positive thing when it’s a smart, perfect, handsome guy. Most don’t get any comments if at all on such. Same for the ditzy(?) male lead. It’s quite a demonstration of disparition in accepted and sometimes, popular stereotypes.

          Random unrelated comment: I knew a girl called Nazifa. Funny that there’s a slightly inverse version. Is it simply a different culture?

    • 3.3 sdfghj

      AMEN AMEN. This movie was downright horrible.

      • 3.3.1 Samantha

        Totally agree…such a waste for the two leads…..the Japanese version was way better

  4. Raine

    I seriously didn’t like it, but it really was no fault of the actors. It was all in the writing and the utter butcherization (is that a word?) of the original manga.

    JGS is still adorable!

    • 4.1 alua

      I found him annoying here. He wasn’t the character, he was JGS (breaking out in song in the middle of his dance rehearsal, with everyone crowding around him in admiration?)

      • 4.1.1 Zuanie

        And I thought I was the only who thought so.

  5. Kaekae

    I remember watching this and having 2 thoughts (well other then Jang Geun Seok is cute).
    1 – this would have been great as drama where it could be fleshed out properly (didn’t realize that it had been a drama in Japan)
    2 – Mandy = my Lady in Korean. Here’s the vid of the musical interlude with the random woman.

    • 5.1 alua

      It was a wonderful drama.

      If a Korean drama is to be made of it (which after this disaster of a film seems unlikely), the filmmakers involved in this project should under no circumstances be involved. I mean, what the manga was about (they J-drama did).

  6. jelly-jamboree

    I agree with you completely. I was really excited about this film, but as a fan of the J-drama I guess I was expecting it to be much better than it turned out to be.

    The characters/plot was just messily put together and I found myself not caring. :(

    I guess I’ll just have to watch the J-drama again to get my Momo-fix!

  7. mariam

    Okay this movie SUCKED and i agree with ur review. i am a die hard fan of JGS but this movie was really, really bad. the end was rushed and i kept comparing it to the great japan drama and this one did not even come close to an inch of the drama. why JGS, WHYY?!!!

  8. mariolawpanda

    I don’t even remember if I finished the movie. It lacked any kind of umpf to help me remember it. It has that “easy” feel to it which I think Korean movies (especially romance and rom-coms) typically have. I just wish it had a little more punch to it so I don’t fall asleep to how blah the whole thing was.

  9. Lucille

    I completely agree with you. I love the manga and the J drama and was looking forward to this movie, but it was just so rushed. My favorite part was the picture pranks. If they could have spread those out a little more I would have been in hog heaven.

  10. 10 bjharm

    unless you a fan of Mr Jang you not be missing much if you do not see it, even Kim Haneul couldnt do much for it. It best to try and avoid any hype attached to it, then you can watch as normal Korean comedy/romance film if a rather poor one. It reminds me a bit of another Jang made film but Jang Nara, her Oh Happy Days was made to cash in on her fame at the time, and this seems just the same, though I put Oh Happy Days ahead of this effect by a long way. The whole film was made to my mind to cash in on Jang Geun-seok high-profile right now, but the way he is getting so overexposed can not be good for him in the long run to my mind. I do not rate him highly as a solo singer but he clearly has real talent as an actor but works like this may fill his bank balance but well not make him a better actor, nor get him out from the image of being an Idol actor, again not helped that he is also an Idol singer!

    • 10.1 Ja

      hm, I’m pretty sure jang geun suk was never an idol. he sang a couple of songs for osts and cfs but he was always an actor

      • 10.1.1 gala

        umm… in all technicality now, he’s going for an “idol” status. Idols in korea usually start as a singer/dancing, then acting — mixed in with cfs, tours, etc. that’s basically what JGS has been doing, especially with his career path in Japan. he just started with acting first.

    • 10.2 Minnetter (aka: Min)

      ummm JGS started out acting in sitcoms and then did film a few singing CFs usually for phones he also did two movies where he played in a band, and then played the part of an “idol” in his drama You’re Beautiful… but he’s never been an “Idol”.

  11. 11 Saa

    This movie was mostly fluff, whereas the J-drama version was actually much more insightful and meaningful. Such is the problem between 10-ish hours of dramas vs. 2 hours of movies, I suppose.

    • 11.1 alua

      I wish the 10 hours vs. 2 hours would have been the issue though – I think this could have been made into a better movie, the lesser amount of hours wasn’t the biggest issue here. Honestly, I think the j-dorama did more in 1 hour (in terms of the pet-master relationship, setting up the characters, creating the ‘sexy’ vibe, etc.) than this overly long film did in two hours.

  12. 12 shortermemory

    Kim Ha Neul looks really pretty in this movie but I have to agree that the editing is really bad and confusing. I also hate that they changed their first meeting because I think it’s actually the most interesting part in the original drama.

  13. 13 mini

    great scenes,great acting but *terrible*horrible* editing!I was puzzled and left with a lot of questions.This movie made me think whether jks still has ability to choose right dramas/movies.

  14. 14 TiaC

    Thanks HeadsNo2!

    This movie was unnecessary at best. JGS and KHN were cute in some scenes, but it was as if the writer and director were too afraid of letting these slightly-off center characters seem weird at all and forced them into a standard rom-com. The result? Awkwardness all around. The j-dorama accepted who these characters are and let them have their unique relationship. I agree that it also helped that the j-dorama had the screen time to let the relationship breathe.

    PS – This movie had one of the worst covers of ‘Mandy’ ever. And I say that having seen Angel sing it on his show. Eesh. Poor JGS.

    • 14.1 gala

      weird characters are usually essential in Jdoramas and movies. so, they’re quite good with that. it’s like, the Koreans are good with helming sweet romances; while the Japanese can go for the weird and eccentric.

  15. 15 colleen

    I agree with other posts that the J-drama version was so much better than this fare that did nothing but waste the considerable talents of its two stars.

  16. 16 Serendipity

    I’ve not seen the movie, so I didn’t expect to find your review as engaging as I did. Great job! You didn’t just say “meh”, you explained very coherently and reasonably what it was like and what did or didn’t work for you. Nice!

  17. 17 reglest

    I don’t like this movie…

    Call me too attached with the japanese version, but really..when I saw the japanese series I get that the woman is stoic, who can’t be in relationship because she is STOIC. While the man, is the pet, in real meaning. I mean, he is so innocent, and he obey what his owner (THE STOIC WOMAN) order him. He want his owner feel happy, thus lead the scene he help her in dating with his pure Innocence. While the woman, is felt like a woman trapped with gift pet that actually she doesn’t want to kept, but later fallin in love with the cuteness of the pet. He is a real pet and the woman is the bossy one…That’s the point of reasoning why the title is ‘Kimi wa Petto/You’re My Pet’.

    In this film, I don’t see that thing
    The film had ruined the innocence of the pet into some ‘usual cheesy movie where man move into the house of the woman’. Particularly, I don’t feel the strong will of the woman, nor the innocence of the man. The man is the one who control his owner with his sly act and mind, like some arrogant brat he is. The story shifted into some people who fall in love each other because they are habituated, cheesy.

    I’m sorry for my long comment & bothering you.

    One word to this movie: failed

  18. 18 isnin

    I like the Jdrama version much better, although ….

    There are 2 scenes that have a bit of chemistry sizzle.

    My favorite scenes were of the pranks, pouting and mischief.

    At the end they seemed to explore the possibility of their relationship roles being reversed.

  19. 19 mellowyel

    aw, it wasn’t good? sad face. I suppose I’ll go watch the j-dorama then.

    • 19.1 Minnetter (aka: Min)

      watch the jdrama!!! Macchan was the perfect Momo^^

      I actually haven’t been able to get past the first ten minutes of this movie because I loved the jdrama and despite loving JGS he’s not the Momo in my head…

  20. 20 Nadia

    This was big disappointment for me as a JGS’s fan.
    How did this movie performed at box office? Anyone?

    • 20.1 Mystisith

      A flop in Korea, as expected. But japanese fangirls flooded the movie theaters. If i had paid a ticket for this, honestly i would have felt robbed.

    • 20.2 JoAnne

      We talked about this on OT a few weeks ago, too. It was universally (and soundly) panned. No one liked it. Too bad – could have been fun.

  21. 21 djes

    I watched this movie in cinema, free – thanks to my country’s Korean Culture Center, and it was full of JGS’s fans, with really really bad subtitle.

    The movie itself was mediocre, I was disappointed. Even though I won’t say I love the dorama, but I think it was wayyy better. No chemistry between JGS and KHN, the story was rushed, and I didn’t care with the characters.

    Too bad. I like the actors, but this movie…won’t recommend it to anyone who isn’t JGS’s fangirl.

    • 21.1 alua

      Did you get the machine-translation subs? They were so bad it was hilarious.

      Actually they are one of the reasons why I stuck with the movie all the way through, because they make an interesting example for a conference paper I’m writing on fansubbing! I hadn’t seen machine-translated fansubs before, but I think it was very suggestive of how badly people wanted this film to be subbed very very quickly.

      • 21.1.1 djes

        Haha..well, it wasn’t machine translated, I think.. It was more like first year Korean language student / over excited teenager fangirl with bad grammar and excessive slang translation.
        It was so weird and ruined the mood, and made the bad movie worst.

  22. 22 Korazy Lady

    I ended up fast forwarding through most of this movie, and if anything, it turned me off a little to JGS, who I loved in Your Beautiful. Honestly, I just don’t think his dancing is that good. I even went and watched some of his concerts and felt the same way. I’m not opposed to weird fantasy dance scenes if done right (a.k.a 500 Days of Summer) but this one seemed to be nothing more than a vehicle for JSG to show off more. I love you Sukkie, but some of your actions lately makes it seem like you’re getting a little too full of yourself!

    It did propel me to watch the Japanese drama (because I had to see what all the hype was about in doing a remake.) I enjoyed sooo much more as both characters were more compelling and their relationship more complex. This movie, unfortunately, was a huge letdown.

    • 22.1 Korazy Lady

      That would be watched some concerts online, haha!

  23. 23 ajewell

    I was really excited about this, having seen the wonderful J-drama… but I still haven’t managed to make it through the entire movie yet. I stopped a little over half an hour into it, too disappointed to continue. It really was a humongous flop, and the editing was choppy and confusing just like you said, which pulled me out of the story multiple times. It’s too bad, because I really do feel like the plot has potential, it’s just a shame it didn’t have a more competent writer and director at the helm…

  24. 24 alua

    This film was a big, big mess. My biggest issue with it is that the filmmakers just didn’t get the original story – there were a number of things that made Kimi wa Petto (the original manga, and then the dorama) as fun and unique as it was, but that the Korean movie totally missed.

    The pet-master relationship to start with – introducing JGS’s character as a human, rather than as the injured, helpless creature found in a box was the biggest sign of that. They didn’t get the symbolism of that, instead it’s even JGS who suggest becoming a pet – which gave him some element of control. And KHN never became much of his master, he never much of his pet.

    The sexy vibe of the original (manga + dorama) also totally got lost. Chemistry? I never felt there was any chemistry here.

    I also didn’t think JGS made a very compelling dancer.

    I could rant on*… It’s sad, because originally I had hopes for this movie. :-(

    (*I did rant plenty already about this film on my blog so I won’t repeat myself here.)

    • 24.1 canxi

      LOL JGS couldn’t really dance at all. They tried to cover it up at the end with that k-pop song + dance number, and I was sitting there like “wtf is this?”

  25. 25 Sumee

    I actually started with a lot of excitement..but in the end I felt disappointed …moreover I kinda found it slow & need I say jarring ..I thought the chemistry is gng to be smashing & felt wondering on the chem.dept. as well…wastage of time…not at all enjoyable !

  26. 26 tikaa

    I feel like i’m watching JGS prince of asia reality show *sarcasm

  27. 27 Ila

    I thought i’m alone when i found YMP huge letdown. I’m a die heart JGS fan but watching this makes me feels so dissapointed..and i’m not sure of others but i feel JGS becomes too ‘girly’ in this movie..

  28. 28 Aya

    trainwreck all around
    Kim Haneul was wasted and needs to fire her people
    JGS needs to stop

  29. 29 moidiom

    I would be one of those people who can’t buy into a premise like this. The only thing you would be finding in a scenario like this is a corpse. Same goes for finding a person in a trunk of a car. I don’t get why these scenarios would be used for light-hearted dramas and movies. They’re more disturbing to me than anything.

  30. 30 Millie

    Thanks for the review. Sorry that you picked this one though. It had its cute moments, but overall too awkward and disjointed.
    I have found myself to have mixed feelings on adaptations of novels/mangas/etc. In this instance, I think they tried too hard to keep some elements of the story and the odd inserts just didn’t seem all there/weren’t fleshed out. My general feeling is if they can’t give close to 100% of the story, then they need to really rework it because I hate half-(butt)ed attempts.

  31. 31 Esther

    Yaaay movie review! I’ll definitely have to agree with your opinion about the editing though; to me, this movie felt sort of incomplete. It started out feeling full of promise, but when it ended, it didnt feel as if anything had been properly resolved.

    P.S. Thanks for the movie reviews you’ve been putting out more often!(: I really enjoy reading them. 😀

  32. 32 Ace

    Reasons I didn’t watch this:
    1. Wasn’t fond of the dorama even if it was Matsumoto Jun
    2. Read bad reviews online
    3. Chilling Romance was more my type of movie at that time (plus LMK + SYJ = <3 )
    4. Was sick of JGS' hair. 😉 I don't think I'll be watching Love Rain for almost the same reason (plus Yoona :( ) Just cut it off already like it was in DoReMi or BV.

    Thank you for the review.

  33. 33 Venus

    This movie blows big time. I’m sorry but JGS is wasting is talent on this kinda of stuff, the boy needs some help in picking his projects. The movie was truly a train wreck from beginning to end.

    • 33.1 agave

      I agree that JGS needs help picking his projects and I hope he had that help for his next project, Love Rain, which should be coming out soon.

      Although I had been looking forward to YMP since I first heard about it, it was so dull, boring and sad that I couldn’t finish it. It also doesn’t help that I didn’t like JGS’s last TV drama, Marry Me, Mary. I only managed to watch a few episodes before I gave up and stopped watching.

  34. 34 cv

    I thought it wasn’t bad at all! I didn’t think too much into it. I just watched cause JGS was in it and I liked the original movie. ^^

    • 34.1 reglest

      Original movie? There is no movie version of Kimi wa Petto in Japanese (if that is what you mean).

      Are you sure we’re even talking the sama thing?

      • 34.1.1 cv

        We’ll I’m talking about the Japanese version of you’re my pet.

  35. 35 m

    thanks for the movie review! i’m glad i wasn’t the only one who was disappointed with this.

    i really did enjoy the j-drama & was excited for this movie since i do like KHN & JGS, but this was a let down. there were some scenes which were great, but i totally agree with the weird editing. a lot of the times, i was like “huh? that’s it” for certain bits.

    on the whole, not totally awful (imo), just kind of meh.

  36. 36 Sam

    thank you for ‘positive’ review (sacrasm). i also was disappointed and sped past the dance sequence. ha ha..i didn’t even know there EVEN was one. i can’t understand how jgs is the king of hallywu in Japan? 2-3 decent dramas, and lot of cheese…. and that makes him a tom cruise????

    • 36.1 rita

      Finally someone wrote it black on white.
      Can I hug you? 😉

  37. 37 DarknessEyes

    Oh, it wasn’t good? Sad. Well, i had doubts for it from the starting, but with JGS casted, I thought it would be good. Oh well. Good thing I read this before trying to watch it and didn’t waste my time with it. Thanks for the recap! :)

  38. 38 An

    The movie looked fresh and engaging at first (i.e. the cute taxi animation at the bottom of the screen to enhance the taxi metaphor). But then, you realize that it’s all surface, no heart. Seriously, if you like the Kimi wa Pet premise, watch the original jdrama because that’s where you get to watch a real story unfold.

  39. 39 Noelle

    I heard it was bad but this really was lacking. I’m guessing its because the director was wet behind the ears. Makes me wonder what an experienced director would of done and if the movie would of been better.

    • 39.1 skelly

      I think that a better director could have helped – really it felt like a series of somewhat-connected music videos strung together rather than a movie – but a director might not have been able to fix the other flaws, such as:
      – ignoring the original premise of the story
      – inability to focus on the main conflict
      – JGS’ horrible mugging to the camera, acting like a greasy ladies man, inability to dance, etc. etc.
      – lack of any chemistry between the leads
      – a music video dream sequence pop number…really?

      Even the jdorama, which was pretty decent, didn’t really emphasize the main element of the manga; that ultimately Sumire is the more weak and damaged human being, and that Momo is wise enough to figure this out and strong enough to be what she needs, even though it has to be a “pet” in order to get around all of her inhibitions and defensive walls. She helps him heal physically, then he helps her heal emotionally. He is really very strong and forthright, and this doesn’t come out at all in the Korean version (in fact he’s pretty sneaky and not terribly moral) and only marginally in the jdorama.

  40. 40 Kim Yoonmi

    I watched it as fluff an enjoyed it as such ,probably because I’d already thought of 10 ways it could have been worse.

    • 40.1 Ennayra

      I treated it as fluff too, and I wasn’t disappointed. Had a good time actually. I needed a pick-me-up. There may have been some fast-forwarding involved, lol.

  41. 41 Arhazivory

    Wow. Guess it sucked. I feel like rewatching the drama. The characters were so perfect and MatsuJun was the epitome of ‘pet’.

  42. 42 Ashley

    I started this movie, but I didn’t get very far before I gave up on it. I already wasn’t sure if the premise was okay with me before jumping in, but it’s really the editing that did me in. All this stuff was being thrown at me that I’m trying to take in (which apparently I didn’t have to do), and I had to read subtitles because I don’t speak Korean. So I just gave up. Doesn’t look like I missed much.

    • 42.1 LimaCake

      I felt the same. I couldn’t finish it. It felt like they were throwing all this stuff at me that didn’t make sense when they edited them together. It was so strange.

  43. 43 Joanie

    this was definitely an awkward movie…..I had trouble understanding what happened in the movie because it was edited so strangely

  44. 44 canxi

    Oh man. I was so disappointed. See, I’ve read the manga and watched the drama and am a big fan of both so I thought “Omg! A movie! Yay!” And then I watched it and I was sooooo bored and disgruntled. Many many complaints. First of all they made Sumire (Kim Haneul’s character for those who don’t know the japanese names) into someone so AVERAGE. They didn’t flesh out the fact that she was a cold, hard-working, perfectionist on the outside and a soft, girly, romantic on the inside. She just seemed like some confused career woman–why was her boss always looking down on her? 2.)What was up with her clothes? She would never wear a mini-skirt or anything they made her wear in that movie ever.3.)Why did she have a whole group of friends? She has one friend for a reason. 4.) Where did that love triangle go? Other guy barely had screen-time and I nearly forgot he existed.5.)Why did they change that meet-cute? I mean, that’s the least of my complaints, but it was just so odd.6.) Everything seemed so shallow ): –I think that was the worst part, I can’t blame anything on this being 2 hours, cuz those 2 hours could have been great, but it just wasn’t. All the heart and most importantly the message was gone.

    • 44.1 alua

      Oh the clothes… as weird as weird could be! Especially the super-short shorts that she wore… to work? (but maybe that’s an acceptable thing in Korea???)

      The group of friends thing didn’t amount to anything. It was like a subplot for the sake of making the movie different from the dorama. Same with the divorcing-parents. Totally unnecessary.

      I suppose the disappearance of the love triangle was a time-issue BUT they should have attempted it. Jumping from meeting again to marriage proposal DOES NOT MAKE SENSE.

      The meet-cute is my biggest complaint, simply because it means that the filmmakers didn’t get the premise of manga. Sumire finds a stray dog. KHN’s character just has her brother’s friend stay over one night and come back the next day.

      But yeah, shallow is good word to sum it all up. I also don’t think it’s the two hours.

  45. 45 LimaCake

    This movie was just terrible. Oh, how I wanted it to be awesome.

  46. 46 K.

    This movie was horrible. There were two big problems to me. One was that you plainly just can’t squeeze a drama/manga like Kimi wa Petto into a short movie. There needs to be chemistry and they need to lay a strong foundation between their characters and build it up to become the relationship that Momo and Sumire have. It’s complex because their relationship is so out of the ordinary. This movie didn’t make me feel that they could be one without the other. And second, they’re just not supposed to get together in the end! I always thought that was the best thing about Kimi wa Petto. That Momo and Sumire’s relationship ends up somewhat undefined. That they’ve made their own definition for relationship, not one of passion, but affection and comfortability. I love that they kept it open-ended about the future, but still gave the audience the satisfaction of being together. But of course, leave it to its Korean counterpart to make it all about romance. All in all, I think if the movie had been a drama and the characters had time to develop, it might’ve been better, but as it is, just a disappointing watch.

  47. 47 oftheshore

    Now, I might be wrong about this, because I read the manga a few years ago, but Momo was much more *desperate* to find a place to live in manga, which was probably the main reason he agreed to become Sumire’s replacement pet…Someone, help me out here…

    • 47.1 Arhazivory

      Yes he was.

    • 47.2 haruko

      That’s true. My take was that the “pet” thing STARTED because he was desperate enough that her attempt to scare him away didn’t work…and once he could’ve moved out, he was already in love with her (or at least interested), and stayed to support her and slowly try and get the relationship more “normal.” If he moved out, that’d would’ve been it.

      • 47.2.1 oftheshore

        Thank you! And I think the main idea behind Sumire’s condition (Momo staying as her pet) was that he wouldn’t actually accept it, so they effectively get themselves into this master-pet relationship neither could get out of without admitting their feelings (which makes it so much more complex than what the movie tried to portray). Oh well.

  48. 48 Honey

    where can I watch this? Is it now being sold in yesasia or where can i buy the dvd for this?

    • 48.1 Mystisith

      Don’t buy it ! Spare your money for something worthy. Really.
      You can see it at dramacrazy or mysoju or kimchidrama, for free. And enjoy the enraged comments left by the viewers.

      • 48.1.1 Cynthia


  49. 49 Honey

    judging from comments, it seems like once a manga becomes a movie/drama in korea the plot and charaterization change to the point that its only the title the remains the same? or sometimes the title changes too?

    sorry, but i think taiwan does a better job in adapting a manga to drama or movie. – this is just my personal observation.

  50. 50 Ani

    Wow. That bad huh? Heh…. Heh heh… Heh heh heh… *starts laughing her head off*… I’m seriously loving the comments here. This movie is getting ripped apart, and I can just imagine just how bad it must have been in the Korean Media. I feel bad for everyone involved with this movie, but at the same time it’s just too damn funny. XD

  51. 51 peachisgrey


    bad movie.
    that’s that.

    bad acting, bad drama, baad plot, and superbad casting

  52. 52 Jo

    I actually really enjoyed this movie. Granted, there were some pretty major flaws, but it was cute, the chemistry was great…it’s the perfect backdrop for taking chemistry notes. ><

    • 52.1 Ennayra

      I have to say, I’m with Jo on this one. I was probably influenced by my extreme love for the J-dorama. I mean, Kimi wa Petto is one of my top favorites on that list. And I also confess to being fascinated by how girly JGS is – his deep voice seems out of place, which makes me more fascinated, lol.

      It wasn’t “the horror” for me. That’s what I mean to say.

  53. 53 mantou

    Cute leads but the movie was insanely boring.

  54. 54 A-M

    Your review makes me sad the movie wasn’t better. That is actually an improvement over wha I thought of it when I watched it. I pretty much just stuck with it because of JGS… but even his charming cuteness just couldn’t rescue this film for me. It was so weird. None of the characters had any real depth to them, consequently their relationships were really shallow to me.

    I know part of my dislike for it is just the storyline in general, they never sold me on the idea of her keeping him as a pet–it never made sense to me.

    I hope is next project is better, he has such talent. Between this and ‘Marry me Mary’… (which I honestly love the begining of…)

  55. 55 AnnaSoWhat

    This is so bad….after so many months of anticipation, it was a waste.

    The manga was way better.

  56. 56 bd

    Frankly, I don’t get the appeal of Jang Geun-seok and why he’s an A-lister, but then again, I’m not a pre-teen Asian girl (but there are more compelling young actors like Song Joong Ki, Yoo Seung Ho, etc.).

    • 56.1 bd

      And oh, JGS is absolutely nuts if he thinks he has a shot at becoming a star outside of Asia.

  57. 57 sisa

    I’ve been waiting for this for like, 2 years. I so love the manga and the j-drama. This was a disappointment. It was rushed and I don’t think Kim Haneul did justice to Sumire’s character. It could be so much better.

  58. 58 sam

    I might watch this movie of only for JGS, but reading all the comments here, boy…

    I have just watched You’re Beautiful and in turn watched the plot fail that was Marry Me Mary. While these shows made me into a JGS fan (despite the disastrous MM), I am becoming very frustrated.

    First, why does he accept projects like these? Given the right materials to showcase his talents, I think he could be great.

    Second, for heaven’s sake why does he dress up like that? I get the metrosexual thing going, but most of the time i think he’s a little over the top. The makeup, the clothes. And I could not help falling off my chair laughing when dramabeans blogged about the different looks he sported during awards show. I specially went rolling on the floor with the Severus Snape look, I nearly died from lack of oxygen. Funny, entertaining and will never be boring I guess but boy, he’s got this incredible looks. It’s like he wants people to forget how he really looks naturally and just do it for entertainment purposes and give the media something to be nasty about. Plus, the boy can sure use a little muscle, a little fat. He looks frail most of the time. Or is it the required look for K celebrity guys in their 20’s? Lee Seunggi looks damn fine to me.

    Third, shouldn’t the premise of this movie have been a clue that it is doomed? Ah, such a waste. I hope JGS would really do great with his next drama. When he’s in character he could be so intense enough to burn the screen plus, he totally owns it and runs away with it.

    JGS, you deserve better.

    Quick question. What’s really the reason why JGS is more popular in Japan than Korea? I have a theory but well, I’m new to this whole K entertainment thing so I don’t really know.


    • 58.1 alua

      I think he is a bit high up in the clouds, which is why he does projects like these. I read a review somewhere that said the film was like an advert for the JGS corporation… which I thought was true! But poor JGS probably thinks that’s a good thing…

      The premise of the movie wasn’t an indicator that it would be doomed – both the manga and the dorama had the same premise, and they are both awesome and much loved. Granted, they handled whacky premise with much more skill.

      Not sure why JGS is more popular in Japan?

      • 58.1.1 Cynthia

        Maybe JGS is beloved in Japan for the same reason that they love all things ‘Hello Kitty’ – they idolize sweet, colorful and non-threatening males, and JGS fits that to a ‘T’. Look at how they adore Bae Yong Joon – he’s not colorful, but he is sweet-natured and ambiguously sexual. From what I’ve seen, the Japanese view of sexual mores is skewed towards more diversity and acceptance of gender roles (hence YMP). JGS seems to fit right into that niche.

        • Mystisith

          ” They idolize sweet, colorful and non-threatening males “.
          Just look at the predominance of ” Hosts ” looking actors in the japanese doramas ( and mangas ) targeting teenagers. Even older women seem to like them. If a guy appears more muscular/masculine in a dorama, you can be sure he’s a villain of any kind, or a stupid brainless bodybuilder.
          I for myself prefer a bit of testosterone in my coffee, even if i find their faces fascinating ( Final Fantasy syndrome = they seem totally out of this world, as synthetic creatures ).

          • Cynthia

            Yeah, it’s really odd – the adore the Flower Boy aspect but also seem to appreciate the Korean ‘beast’ groups (2PM, MBLAQ, B2st, etc.) and love all the girl groups non-discriminately. But the adoration level of JGS is so uber-crazy, it’s weird – particularly since he’s not 1/4 as popular in Korea, and he admits it.

            Then again, it’s the same with BYJ. When he appears in Japan, it’s pandemonium. One ‘Winter Sonata’ was all it took.

            Which leads me to this: Now I’m really curious how ‘Love Rain’ is going to affect JGS’s level of popularity in Korea. I know that regardless of his performance in LR, the Japanese fans will be ready to petition the Pope for his canonization (so then, not only will they have Yonsamma & Yonsamma Jr. (KHJ), they’ll have JGS as ‘The Living Saint’! [snerk]) It’s pretty much guaranteed considering that Yoon is the PD.

            As JB said in a post of LR, “Yoon Suk-ho has a reputation for being a star-maker, but to be more accurate, his actors went from pretty famous to crazy famous, not like zero to sixty. But hey, credit where credit is due — the likes of Bae Yong-joon, Choi Ji-woo, Song Seung-heon, Song Hye-kyo and Won Bin are just a few among his Hallyu A-listers. Jang Geun-seok holds his own, at home and abroad, so it’s kind of the Hallyu Super Combo, the pairing between these two. This is also potentially the thing that’ll give Jang the kind of ratings-hit, every-mom-and-grandma kind of fame to propel him to the next stage of his career.”

            Scary, no?

          • Kaekae

            So does that mean Jung Il Woo is big in Japan and the Vet (can’t remember his name right now) from My GF is a Gumiho?
            Do you think it is artificiality or the androgyny that is the bigger draw?
            BTW: how are these plastic flower boys (or as I call them pretty boys) going to look in a couple decades – I hope not like Joan Rivers) I do really like JGS, but I see some picts/vids of him and I think “Wow. Doesn’t he have a stylist?” Jung IlWoo is one of my fav. actors; but I wonder what the before was.
            Of course, I’m not the target audience for Flower Boys – I grew up (and still do – to some extent) thinking that MacGyver was the almost Perfect Man.

    • 58.2 Min

      JKS has always been into Japanese culture. As he is expose to Japanese stuff, he wanted to act in You’re my Pet a couple of years ago as he likes the idea of the original drama/manga.

      he likes plot that are a little different ( A guy being a pet ) and another ( Falling in love with a friend’s mother ) etc. He finds the idea fresh and he thinks that this is the type of movie that you can only act when you are younger. I heard he was the one who help to get the Japanese investment because he really wanted to act in this movie. I know he waited many years for this project to start filming because not many people ( korea ) wanted to invest in this project.

      Sad that this movie is not very nice, a more experience director could have done a better job. I am sure he still likes the idea of this movie, but i am not sure if he likes the final product especially after the editing.

      Sometimes he just choose a project based on him liking the character or envy the character way of life.JKS does not always choose the best project but at least he tries to select projects that are different from his previous characters.

      As for him being popular in Japan, my views:
      1) You’re Beautiful. His acting.
      2) Not masculine but metrosexual.
      3) “Do S” and frank character
      4) His way of treating his fans
      5) His smile, voice

      I think the fact that he can speak Japanese is also an added bonus.

      Korea is not into JKS because
      1) He is not masculine
      2) He is too frank for an actor ( modesty )
      3) He does not have hit drama so not many people seen his works
      4) He is a child actor and they had a hard time seeing his change to an adult actor.

      I really hope Love Rain will be a success so that we can see more fans in Korea. I am sure no matter how successful he is in Japan, he still would like the recognition from Koreans.

  59. 59 Francesca

    This movie was a big flop in Korea. Tsk…what a waste of talent (Kim Haneul)

  60. 60 ed

    I watched half of this movie on Korean air flight from Sydney to Seoul. I had to switch to something else half way thru the movie. It was lack of substance and very disappointing.

  61. 61 MsB

    I REALLY, REALLY TRIED to watch this. I was SO disappointed, especially after I really liked Baby and I! I still have it in my watch list but I have to be really, really bored with dramas to watch this again. Agree, its a movie based on a manga but I’ve enough good movies based on manga to believe this was a totally disappointment! And that’s coming from a fan of JGS!

  62. 62 n_xyooj

    after watching this movie it make me want to have a human pet…lol…will i want jang geun-seok as my pet…

  63. 63 Carinne

    ^ , ^ It’s a relief to read some bad film reviews other than great films all the time. Flop films are… seldom welcome.

    Did the production break even money at least? I read somewhere JGS requested a salary reduction, was it for this movie?

  64. 64 solangelvp

    I don’t know if I was the only one but I actually liked the movie. I will not say that is the best movie ever but it was really cute.

    I have come to find that when you present a remake of a manga in Korea, Japan, Taiwan or anywhere fans usually get mad for 2 things:

    1. Because it is just like the original version (anime, drama or movie)


    2. Because it is not exactly the same.

    Changing the way they met was certainly a risky move but first it wasn’t as awkward as finding a random strange in front of your door, since he was now someone close to her brother. Seriously who will take an unknown person inside her home, it is impossible.

    I also liked that they changed the fact that he was not tall enough to say that he hurt someone and that is why he wasn’t dancing.

    It is true that a lot of scenes were missing or that the plot seemed rushed but it was more realistic. At the beginning we see him being kicked from the place he used to live at, and he was discussing with his friends what to do. As I saw it wasn’t like he didn’t have money to pay for a place since he gave 6 months of rent to his friend, but more like he needed someone to take care of him. When he saw that his new “owner” was nice enough to take care of his wounds even after kicking him out he saw he was at a place where someone will care about him even just like a dog so he agreed on being there as a pet as long as someone will be with him, taking care of him.

    I liked that the plot moved fast in just a couple of scenes we could see that even though he was the pet, Momo was able to get everything he wanted just like that. Also Kim Haneul’s character showed that she had a lof of conflicts on her life like her boyfriends leaving her, her parents divorcing, which indicates that she might be scared of that as well, friends that she only met to have some coffee and a material brother who was sick of her, showing that at the end she was all alone. Also naming Jang Geun Seok as the pet she loved showed that she needed someone to care about her as well.

    When she finally meets her old crush again she thought that she could get what she thought was the happy ending without realizing that her affections for “Momo” were increasing by the day. That is mostly shown when she doesn’t care about the proposal and just thinks if Momo is well.

    Also when she calls Momo instead of her fiance that shows that she knows the number of her pet by heart instead of the number of the man that will spend the rest of her life with her. The drunk scene also display the 2 sides of her character the one of wanting to be always perfect in front of the other guy and the one of not caring about anything when she is with Momo and how much she trusts him to even get so drunk. Also that scene shows that while she has to pretend and have a mask the whole time with Mr. Perfect she needs to get drunk to let her mind stay away and let her heart be the one in control.

    The fight between the guys also showed that no matter how mature Mr. Perfect was he was also a kid when it came to feelings.

    Jang Geun Seuk’s character also seemed carefree but when it came to his owner he was able to get closer and run to find her.

    Before I forget being close to her that way, as pet and owner relationship, also allowed him to be more irresponsible and do not over think about his actions and be afraid of hurting her.

    If you see on the dance scene where he invites her to dance with him he actually makes her get hurt and it is punished for it like a kid. But if you see clearly and remember about his problem he was comfortable enough to dance with a girl and keep going even after she was hurt. The shows that more than just taking care of him and feeding him she also fixed that problem in his heart and little by little the noona love changed into real love because at the beginning he was into her thinking about adding a noona to his list of conquers.

    The musical at the end was nice because it wasn’t about the main couple but it was based on his capability of being on a stage with a girl after all his problems. Also the change from the actual stage to a real scene was about being so great that it actually made you think you were watching a real thing happening instead of a musical.

    Then when the couple finally met by the end showed that actually she was really worried about losing him but he was sure that she was the one since he wasn’t anxious to meet her because he knew what they had was deeper than just a thing from the moment. The last scenes also showed the couple being together after so many things that were not based on the outside world but on their own fears of losing something or hurting someone.

  65. 65 WM

    Thank you HeadsNo2 and all the posters! I’ll be looking for the manga and/or series rather than the movie. Such a shame, too, as it seems there was such potential. :/

  66. 66 ais

    I completely enjoyed this movie. I think JGS and KHN have great chemistry, but I gotta agree with u that some plots and scenes seem rushed.

  67. 67 Eva

    I actually thought that I just missed a part, it felt so strange and awkward. I couldn’t understand some parts of the story at all! It was so choppily edited, really weird. My excitement for Love Rain is definitely less now, even though JGS wasn’t so bad in this, but I mean after Mary and now this? :(

  68. 68 vbs

    i want to forget it, no chemistry and she wasnt even present in the movie…she looked bored and like she wanted to be some were else

  69. 69 Mindy

    The movie was not good. It has a weak plot and i think Kim Haneul is not doing her best in this movie.

    JKS was great as a comedy actor in You’re beautiful but i feel You’re my Pet is not his best too. The fact that he cannot really dance also diminish the charm of this character.

    I am not a fan of the Jap drama or manga but i have to say they are still better than the korea version.

    The plot lacks depth and the worst is the editing skills. Everything happen so fast and i cannot feel any chemistry at all.

    I heard the director is a newcomer and i really wish this could be shot by an experience director. I am sure with a better director, plot and direction, the leads would be able to do a much better job.

    Anyway, i still love JKS’s acting. Just not in this movie. I hope that Love Rain will be better.

  70. 70 Pinki

    Disappointing. Didn’t even finish it. I can’t believe I was so excited to watch this, maybe the high expectation contributed to it being IMO worse than it actually is.

  71. 71 Keke

    It amazes me that they made this a film, and not a drama. A drama would have been so much better! I loved the manga and the j-drama and it’s always nice to see other adaptations- but I totally agree, this was far far too crammed to make any sense, especially if you had no knowledge of this fandom!
    Shame, but there were some cracking scenes :)

  72. 72 DB5K

    The movie was alright~~
    It could have been worse, in my opinion.

    And @Headsno2, since you’re an Asian movie buff, you should have known/expected the quickly edited pace of You’re My Pet. It’s like the trend in “trendy” Korean movies. I believe it was originally derived from Japanese films. Taiwanese films have also started imitating that style.

    *Random, random, random scenes interjected into the plot. Especially those that never get explained, but are just added for that touch of whimsy.
    *The quick cuts into the next scenes.
    *That “vignette” style you mentioned
    *Side stories that get hinted at but never resolved.
    *ambiguous endings
    *surreal, dreamlike sequences

    These are all typical characteristics of trendy Korean movies. You’ll only get a headache trying to comprehend trendy Korean movies.

  73. 73 vietnamfan

    I love all of Jang Geun Suk’s dramas including You are beautiful and those before that. But WHAT HAPPENED TO HIM AFTER THAT. FAILURE WITH MOON GEUN YOUNG AND KIM HA NEUL. What a waste of talent.
    What happened to his manly appearance before. He worked too much for himself with full of fan meetings and earned money. But he didn’t donate his precious time for dramas. I stopped being a fan of his from now on until I saw new improvement in Love Rain.

  74. 74 vietnamfan

    I know Jang is the only actor that can really put his heart to this role but sth is not right here. Is it because Korean don’t like his feminine side?
    I just can’t understand. Geun Suk is a talent! But why?

    Even in Mary Me Mary, he’s a star! But what happened?

  75. 75 arielifeoma

    I hate to agree with the review but it is so warranted. I actually think you were being rather gentle when you could have shredded it. I am a total JGS fangirl but I got a little knot in my tummy when thinking of this film. After watching “Blind” I finally got how Kim Haneul might be able to pull off Sumire but Sukkie as Momo? No go. His hair was way better and he is slightly better looking than MatsuJun but I highly doubted that he would be able to pull off the role as he almost always gives off this aura, no matter what, of knowing just how awesome/hot he is…I mean, I totally supported him not being Rui/Ji Hoo in kdrama Boys Before Flower in favor of leading man Tae Kyung in You’re Beautiful because Sukkie is too awesome to play second fiddle of any kind. Similarly, Sukkie as a pet, as someone dominated? Yea…right…

    Plus, he was too darn tall and height was a big deal in the Jdrama and manga (with Sumire being too tall and intimidating). This shew forth even in one of the scenes where she is supposed to be saying “how tall are you?” and outlining the lack of his qualities to fulfill the three “highs” THUS his relegation to pet status but, due to the fact the JGS is visibly taller than Kim Haneul, they had to reword that to “what are you?” and him ANSWERING “pet.”

    Also, Momo is a little complex and this film failed to show that IMHO. Momo isn’t just a pet because Sumire is stoic and a bit socially inept. Momo is a pet b/c he is struggling with having to grow up, become a man and take on responsibility and decide his path in life. The 10 epi long Jdrama BARELY managed to depict this so, of course, the movie couldn’t. I love Sukkie but MatsuJun did this so better. Of course, one could argue that MatsuJun simply had more time (and better directing/editing) to showcase this but I still think that Sukkie didn’t have the right feeling.

    I would have been so delighted if this movie surpassed my expectations but it didn’t. However, Sukkie DID keep his lustrous locks for the longest time because of it and for THAT, I am thankful.

  76. 76 M

    I really like Kimi wa petto from the Jap drama.

    So I came into this movie thinking I would enjoy it too.

    The first 20 minutes lead me to one word: stop.

    +_+” The acting is awkward. The story is slow paced and boring.

  77. 77 dfl123

    Random question: In the scene where JGS danced in the living room, there was painting of girl on a field(he pointed to it). Does anyone know the artist or name of this painting??

    Really like it! Would appreciate if someone could shed some light. Thanks!!

  78. 78 mattan

    im procrastinating studying. I was surfing youtube and found ‘speed scandal’ which was freakin brilliant. moving on, i started watching you’re my pet.


  79. 79 iWASthinking

    i have seen kimi wa petto and i truly, truly believe that the korean adaptation failed because they managed to miss– or chosen to ignore– the underlying presence of the fetish factor in the japanese series. they chose the rom-com route and played it til the very end, and inevitably made the movie bland. because the truth is, the premise IS simple. it was that little dash of spice and naughtiness in the whole me-master-you-dog senario that made the japanese series work.

    plus the song and dance number just made me think they ran out of ideas on how to end the movie.

  80. 80 maruja

    la peli es entretenida. sobre todo cualquier pelicula con la cara tan bonita que tienes una buena razon para no dejarla de ver . claro con el cabello asi de largo ,porque cuando se le ve con el pelo corto no pasa nada no se quien le permitio cortrse el cabello tan chiquito no le queda nada bien es mas no se le reconoce porfavor decirle no corte de cabelllo gracias

  81. 81 Stephanie

    While I’m a die-hard JGS fan (which means I loved this movie regardless), this movie wasn’t that great. I think this was originally a manga and drama because it needs that time for everything to unfold properly and make sense. This movie to me felt like they had filmed a 16 episode drama and then cut it down to make just a movie, instead. I loved some of it, while other parts confused me and ruined the mood of it. I’m glad I watched it though(: (and OMFG HIS HAIR I JUST KJNDNGWIBI2B)

  82. 82 Z

    So I know I am late on this review train but I finally decided to watch this (after avoiding it like the plague because there was so much hype surrounding it). I didn’t want to go in with my hopes up because of all the promotion.

    I agree the scenes were very choppy so you never really got to delve deeper into any of the characters. No one was fleshed out enough for your to really care. They also just dropped characters in places out of the blue without any back story. I mean they could have at least dropped a freeze frame with a caption when she first started talking to her friends in order to introduce them. Something like “freeze frame on friend #1″ with the caption’ Eun Chan best friend from High School’ ya know… It was a total hodgepodge…

    And I love JGS,, however, I kept thinking that Onew (from SHINee) would have been a good choice for In-Ho/Momo.

  83. 83 TS

    She thought a pet would be easy? Obviously never had a dog or cat. They’ve got personalities, people.

  84. 84 TS

    This woman’s lucky to get a ballet dancer: any guy who tried to mooch off me would probably be a failed drummer in a garage band.

  85. 85 Kiki

    After seeing this lukewarm review and all the negative comments, I feel compelled to write how much and why I like this movie. I understand if someone doesn’t like romantic comedies, but if they do, I am really surprised how can they not see how good it is? Watching it I was surprised it was not a big international hit in US and Europe. Romantic comedies have a rather strict formula, because they are all really a variation on “Pride and Prejudice”, yet for some reason most romantic comedies are horrible, often by not sticking to the few simple rules. 1. It’s supposed to be about people, who on the surface are not a good match turn out to be a perfect match. It’s a fantasy, because we all dream about founding perfect love and have such a hard time with it. 2. The main characters have to be likable. The rival has to be likable too, or we are offending the protagonists taste and intelligence. 3. there has to be an emotionally acceptable situation (it might be unrealistic, but can not be unpleasant) where they meet each other often or are somehow stuck with each other until they have a chance to get to know each other and find out they are a perfect match.4. The romantic tension has to stem from the characters failings, (like pride and prejudice) misunderstanding of each other, misunderstanding of their own feelings, lack of ability to communicate. 5. We want some secondary characters, but only to learn about our protagonists, we don’t want to waste time on subplots, we want the two main characters on the screen as much as possible. 6. We want a clear happy ending – they found bliss with each other and they will be together forever.
    Most romantic comedies are dreadful because they do too much in some areas not enough in others. “My pet ” is either perfect, or perhaps the director and I are soul mates. I love how likable the characters are, how vulnerable and lonely, and how all this is done so quickly by using the right actors, who convey tons in one look and dialogue (sequences with parents, siblings and friends) and not by endless exposition speeches. This allows the action to proceed right to the set up of the master-pet game, which is at the heart of this comedy. In-ho, is a classical dancer who had to give up due to some psychological issues after injuring his primaballerina , he is still very young. He was living at home until recently, but disagreed with his parents about some career issues and they tlod him to move out. He is not homeless or desperate, but every choice he makes is compromised. He can move back with his parents loosing his freedom to decide about his life. He can sleep in the studio, but that means his body is going to be tired (no proper bed, shower). He makes some money from his dancing projects but not enough to rent an apartment. The option to rent a room from his friend, especially after he meets the beautiful sister/owner Eun-yi is obviously attractive. Why does the she agree? It’s done cleverly. She is lonely. She gave up on men and decided to get a pet, but didn’t get a chance to buy one yet, when her brother shows up with his dancer friend. She agrees to one night sleepover but next night the In-ho is waiting for her in a blue box in front of her door. Meanwhile the brother disappeared with 6 months rent in advance from In-ho, rent to which he obviously had no right. He probably moved back to mooch off of his parents under the pretext of “fixing their relationship”. I find that funny. I find all these people just a little bit flawed and very likable. There is a lot of room for subtle comedy of manners and the movie immediately goes to that territory. Once In-ho decided to stay, he tries to convince her to take him in. He sees a picture of a dog sporting a golden mane and spontaneously offers to play the part of the pet. Wanting to get rid of him she says fine, but you will really have to live like a pet, no human rights, at my back and call. He accepts, startling her. You don’t find that funny? I think it’s hilarious. She is mad at him for accepting a ridiculous deal, so she tries to push him out..albeit he is making too much noise and she suddenly thinks about the neighbors. Before she knows it- they made a deal. The game is set up. He is of course happy with the room and board arrangement. He gets days “off” as she works late almost all the time. He demands being taken out for walks (wait, isn’t this just a clever way to go on dates with her without calling them dates? I find this delightful). At night he tries to push intimacy on her under the cover of being her pet and it’s very funny to see her wash his hair. The master-pet game allows this very reserved girl to be physically close with someone first time in her life. I’m not sure what he gets out of this, but it seems that he enjoys the attention and affection and that he is taking every opportunity to make love to her. Eun-yi on the other hand is allowed by the contract to finally treat someone the way she wants and becomes a bit sadistic (naming him after her dead dog Momo, waking him up when she comes home late from work, so he enjoys the treats she brought him). Normally, this would be repulsive, but we are speaking about a girl, who always did what others wanted her to, the type who always stays late at work, when other wiggle out of the responsibility. So its hilarious to see her acting out with him (because of their deal she feels she can) the way she was never able to act to her parents, boyfriends , coworkers. It’s very funny and at the same time it’s sweet that he takes it. Partly because he has a comfortable deal. Partly because he likes her. Again, how can anyone who likes romantic comedies not like it?
    Funny how different people like different things. I heard raves about many romantic comedies which I found just awful, in contrast this delightful movie is so disliked. Same about actors. I got into the Korean stuff by coincident and stayed because of two stars only: JGS and Lee Min Ho. I have tried watching dramas without them, and honestly, without their star appeal I couldn’t care less. No matter how many times someone recommends some actor as “so much better” I end up turning it off. I am wondering what is gong on that JGS has such an anti-fan base. Living in the US and knowing him only from movies and dramas, I can’t understand how can someone inspire such strong emotions. Is he in interviews a lot and obnoxious in them? I saw the infamous Indian Summer video, yeah, he looks like a blond…not even a girl, more like a middle aged woman, (drugs and alcohol?)but why the hatred? For what I can see the man had a 20 year career in the profession, is a really good musician and a charismatic actor with wide range. I think he can do whatever he wants, his bad music videos should not influence how he is perceived as an actor.

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