A daytime-drinker barges in
The film begins with a drunken girl barging into her ex’s luxury apartment. Her goal is clear, although she does not disclose it from the beginning. She wants to seduce and to get back together with him. However, he has a girlfriend and resists. She insists, mainly by staying despite his protests to leave.
Jeong Ga-young directs, pens and stars in this black-and-white film, that is set as a stage play, since it is shot almost entirely in a single apartment, and the two of them are the only ones appearing on screen. Actually, his sister makes an appearance, but it is very brief.
The film is presented in four chapters, each one indicated by letters on screen and some tense music that starts as abruptly as it stops. This “trick” also occurs when Jeong introduces the protagonists.
The two of them talk about a number of topics, as the film is almost exclusively focused on dialogue. The topics include their relationship, past and future, their affairs with others, their plans for the future and some gossip. The discussion, however, ends up being about sex, most of the times.
A one-woman show
Jeong Ga-young is impressive in the role of the girl, particularly because she had to memorize all those lines, and occasionally to spurt them out with incredible speed. She also succeeds in presenting her character’s different emotions and statuses. She starts being quite drunk, then becomes tender and cute, and occasionally gets frustrated, all the while retaining her determination. Despite the fact that the two of them share the same time on screen, her role is quite bigger.
Kim-Choi Yong-joon is also quite good as the undecided and timid man, who wants to respond to her, but hesitates. The various scenes he lies and she discovers it are hilarious. One of the final scenes, where he sings, highlights his prowess in that department, too.
Evidently, the film is minimal and low budget. However, the technical department does not lack at all, since the cinematography presents a series of beautiful frames, while the many long takes are quite well shot. The editing uses some unusual techniques, as the scenes change quite abruptly and in confusing manner, at times. I think the purpose of this technique was to shock, and it actually succeeded.
“Miss Ex” is a difficult film to watch, since it is quite artistic and features excessive dialogue, but is also quite beautiful and meaningful.
“Our Love Story” screened during the London Korean Film Festival