Story: Min-jun (Eom Jeong-hwa) gets unceremoniously dumped by her third boyfriend. Somehow, she always
ends up with the wrong guy. However, just when her boyfriend leaves her, she drives into the care of businessman
Robin Heiden (Daniel Henney). Unfortunately, shortly thereafter Heiden proves to be her new boss. He is in Korea
to wrap up the takeover of a Japanese company. As his new personal assistant he choses no one else than Min-jun,
As Heiden and Min-jun also begin to talk about personal things, Heiden explains why Min-jun gets always dumped by her boyfriends. She is too kind and lavishes presents on them, so that she doesn't seem to be desirable to men. Min-jun, on this very day, swears that she will be successful in seducing her new boss, just to prove him wrong. Still, Heiden, who is also teaching her some things about the game rules of love relationships, shows that he is not an opponent to take lightly.
Review: The reason why western audiences love to watch Korean rom-coms isn't only because of the beautiful
actresses/actors, but mainly because of a different culture and a wacky-jarring, but universal kind of humor, we
only get to see from Korean flicks. Sadly, most of the time "Seducing Mr. Perfect" is nothing more than a cheeky
Hollywood-copy, along with a fitting polished look and international style. If going one step further, I have to point
out that this kind of movie is just why I have never been interested in the genre before learning about the Korean version
of these kind of movies. Here, we get everything that makes this genre so cheesy: kitschy dialogues, a predictable
love constellation, and worst of all, scenes that you get to see from any Hollywood schmaltz flick. Including an
unneccessary kissing scene at the end. Even the female audience will have to agree with me, that there is something
like going one step too far when it comes to romance. And that's just the step "Seducing Mr. Perfect" takes.
Nonetheless, this is soon forgotten, as it is all about the movie's star: Daniel Henney. The heartthrob of all female viewers, who just so happens to make his debut in this flick, even though he already participated in a few TV-dramas. Being half Korean, half american, he looks like being born into the suit of a top businessman, and as if making his appearance in every other Time-magazine as a photo model. It really eludes me, what women like about him. His face is too angular and distinctive and he barely looks like a Korean. Moreover, I don't unterstand why it is said that he can actually speak Korean, but always insists on talking English in his roles. Admittedly, for the western audience this is a good thing, as we have to read less subtitles, but somehow this very fact makes him look pretty haughty. Besides, in my opinion he radiates the sex appeal of a fridge...
However, before I lose all of my female readers at this point, I have to admit that his character fits surprisingly well into the movie.
Yet, this is mainly thanks to Eom Jeong-hwa ("Princess Aurora", "Marriage Is a Crazy Thing"). Eom manages on numerous occassions to rescue the flick from its bad mediocrity, even though it is impossible for her to save the film completely. Eom is a very charismatic actress and she steals the show from Daniel Henney throughout the whole film, although he was supposed to be the real star of this rom-com. It's just fun to watch Eom play, and she always brings those wacky Korean moments on screen. Without them this flick would have totally looked like a Hollywood rom-com.
Therefore, it's also thanks to her efforts that there is something like a good chemistry between Min-jun and Robin Heiden. As already mentioned, Henney oftentimes seems a bit cold, and especially his facial expressions look very wooden, yet the more the story progresses and the more Eom Jeong-hwa gains momentum, the less apparent this becomes.
Filmmakers probably didn't waste much thought on a story. We get a cheap copy of what we are used to see from any random Hollywood rom-com, and this in a very ripped-off style. It's totally obvious how things will resolve in the end, and there are only a handful of misunderstandings that add to the viewer's entertainment. However, these misunderstandings are resolved way too soon and so we get the feeling that this movie might come to an end more than once. But no, that's not the case, as we have to fight our way through a messy and meaningless script instead, which as no suprises or originality to offer. Nonetheless, when the script writers try to introduce a more darker side of Henney in shape of his past, then this seems even more improper and odd.
At least there are a few nice dialogues, even though this all gets relativized by some awfully cheesy dialogues towards the end.
There might be some good moments to be found in this flick, e.g. when Heiden teases Min-jun whit his coolness, but eventually this all heads for an unforgivable cheesy ending, which just was a bit too much overkill for me. Maybe that's also because the love declarations seemed especially kitschy thanks to Henney using the english language. Anyway, the director absolutely passed over the line that marks what's still bearable and what's not.
The cinematography might look very slick and the pictures are nice to watch, but in the end this rom-com is nothing but uninventive. "Seducing Mr. Perfect" is entertaining only to a small degree and even would have deserved a worse rating, if it weren't for Eom Jeong-hwa who added a lot to the movie's overall quality. Still, there will be many (women) who will watch this flick anyway, just because of Daniel Henney. So, it doesn't seem to really matter how I rate this flick...