The Queen of Asian Drama is Back with more Irreverent Reviews and Snarky Commentary.

Monday, June 07, 2010

Radio Star / 라디오 스타 / Radio Seuta



2006 Korean movie that stars no one spectacular but with a storyline that was amazing in its simplicity and realistic detail.

A mega-popular folk singer from the late '80s and early '90s who became dubbed 'the Korean Elvis' ends up tossing the fame for drugs & alcohol, thus cutting short his career and popularity with such a fickle crowd as groupies or 'fans' of anyone they can only dream about becoming an equal to.

Save his adorable manager, who remains by his side through the good and the bad times and inevitably helps with his come-back of sorts.

Kids in their teens & twenties have no idea who he is, or recognize him as the dude their parents liked back in the day, and his aging fan base dwindle to nothing because of his lifestyle choices that ruined him earlier than they would have liked.

A higher-up at a big radio station offers him a job as a dj, and at first the singer is totally insulted; refusing to discuss the situation with his always-pleasant manager, but inevitably, the two end up in the one-horse town along with a young PD (oh, excuse me - what was I thinking calling a 30ish female YOUNG. Der!) who was transferred from the big station because of her 'differing' personality with the men who tend to dominate the arena.

The aging but still hip rocker at first blows off the assignment, shows up late for work, and he ignores the PD's queue's to talk or play a song. Shiftless and spoiled can't, even find a party store to buy a pack of cigarettes, and then he can't light one up without the aid of his manager, he's that useless without the guy.

All they do is fight, argue, fuss, and carry on like an old, married couple, but the manager never loses his cool or patience with the brat going on fifty.

Things finally start to settle in for everyone though, and then they eat together at a tiny restaurant in town, where the PD gets drunk and proceeds to rip the rock-star a new one in front of his colleagues and the townsfolk by putting him in his place by reminding him about his mistakes, and rubbing it in about his washed up career as a singer.

The kindly manager tries to smooth things over, but while the singer broods in their tiny hotel room, the manager runs about town spreading the word about their new DJ and could you please turn off the plasmas and turn on the radio to give the show a chance?

Meanwhile, there's a grassroots rock band (garage band in the states) who are totally into the '70s and '80s sound, recreating it while sticking to their modern style for a revamp of the oldies.
These guys are hilarious and spend a majority of the movie chasing after the rock star, begging him to listen to their mix-tape or at least play a tune on his show.

Townsfolk start tuning in, and soon people are calling the show for advice on everything from a granny who always cheats at go-stop to a shy boy needing to find the courage to let a girl at the bank know he's in love.

The band boys record the show and post it online so everyone in Korea can hear it, which brings a sudden and huge boost to the ratings, which impresses the big guy back in Seoul, who decides its time to bring the has-been rocker back to the city for his grander debut as a grander DJ.
While this is in the works, rocker and manager get into a big fight, and then something sad occurs at the station in Seoul - leaving the rocker devastated and useless.

It has a happy ending, though!

Highly recommend you give this flick a chance.

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