21 May 2022

K Movie Review: Little Forest (2018) 4.8 || 4.5

After loving Kim Tae Ri in Twenty-Five Twenty-One (and in 1987: When the Day Comes and Mr. Sunshine), Oppa's on a mission to watch all of her shows and movies. Fortunately, they are not that many yet, so I think we can eventually catch up. Oppa's been bugging me to watch a Kim Tae Ri film. And now that our university's basketball season is over, we finally found the time to watch this film.


Little Forest tells the story of Hye Won (Kim Tae Ri), a country girl who moved to Seoul to study and work. Fed up with her difficult life in the city, Hye Won goes back to her hometown and is reunited with her friends Jae Ha (Ryu Jun Yeol of Reply 1988, A Taxi Driver, and The Producers) and Eun Sook (Jin Ki Joo of Moon Lovers: Scarlet Heart Ryeo). The movie takes us through Hye Won's quest in finding her purpose in life and where and who she's meant to be. 


The actors are all perfect for their roles. Ryu Jun Yeol and Kim Tae Ri are two of the vey best Korean actors for us and we expect nothing but the best when it comes to them. Kim Tae Ri was perfect as the exhausted yet still trying her very best to be positive Hye Won. Ryu Jun Yeol was also the best actor to play the role of the physically exhausted yet very happy and contented farmer Jae Ha. Even Jin Ki Joo was great as the bored and can't wait to leave the countryside bank employee Eun Sook. Finding the perfect actors helps a lot in a movie/drama and I'm happy to say that this film had no problems in this aspect. 

The story was simple and very relatable. We all get tired of life and doing the same things over and over again. We all need to detox and take a break once in a while. Unfortunately, that's not a luxury all of us can afford. But this film reminds us that disconnecting from your busy life does not mean spending a lot of money or going to a far and different place. Happiness can be found in simply going back to where you came from and reconnecting with your roots. Contentment can be achieved in planting the stuff you need to thrive and cooking simple dishes with ingredients you planted yourself. And you can have peace by simply being with your friends, people you trust and who will never judge you for quitting, giving up, or taking a break. 

Yes, I found it perplexing initially why Hye Won's mom (Moon So Ri of Juror 8) left. But as Hye Won read her mom's letter later on, I completely understood why mom did it. Just like Hye Won in the present time, mom was exhausted too. Mom tried to be happy with her simple life, cooking for and raising Hye Won. But when Hye Won was about to embark on her own journey in Seoul, mom probably felt it was her turn to find herself and do something for herself. This resonated so much with me. Moms are often tied down with motherly responsibilities. They plan their lives around their spouses' and children's lives, with their own dreams taking the back seat most of the time. And I am mighty proud of women like Hye Won's mom who don't hesitate to set aside time and space for themselves when the time is right. I'm sure there will be people judging them as irresponsible. But I disagree. It's also a responsible thing to prioritize self-care and self-love. Because ultimately, you can't give what you don't have. 

Although there were moments when I dozed off while watching this film, I still enjoyed and learned a lot from it. Yes, it was slow. But that's how life really is - it can be slow, boring, and repetitive. It's up to us to find our own little forests that will help us look at life from a better and brighter perspective. 

Oppa says...4.8.

Noona says...4.5.