The Happy Life

즐거운 인생

Img 6996
Film info

Director: Lee Joon-ik
Cast: Jung Jinyoung, Kim Yoon-suk, Kim Sang-ho, Jang Keun-suk
Film genre: Comedy, Drama
Cert U, 112 mins, 2007

Three middle-aged men, all struggling in life, gather together at the funeral of their old classmate. As university students they had all been members of the same rock group, a not-entirely-successful endeavour called 'Active Volcano'. After losing themselves in memories for a time, the jobless Ki-young (Jung Jin-young) suddenly blurts out, "Let's re-form the band!". To his friends, and especially to Ki-young's wife and teenage daughter it sounds like an absurd, crazy idea. But sometimes crazy ideas have a way of picking up steam.

Master storyteller Lee Joon-ik takes what seems like a dubious concept and turns it into an unexpectedly engaging and inspiring film about friendship. Helped along by an outstanding ensemble cast, the film is at its best in quieter moments, which impart a realistic edge. Ultimately, the film's title is both ironic and heartfelt at the same time.