Monday, March 14, 2011

Rent a girlfriend back home for new year

Rating: ***

Genre: Romance, Comedy
Episodes: 25
Cast: Joe Easy, Yuan Zi Fei, Xue Jia Ning, Du Chun, Diana Peng

"Chu Xiao Xiao, is an independent, liberal thinking, wealthy, college student raised by a single mother. When her family goes bankrupt and her mother goes missing, Xiao Xiao is forced to find a job to pay off creditors. Sun Yi Wei is the serious and stubborn son of a prestigious ancestral family. He graduated from Qinghua University before studying abroad and returning to work at a prominent Beijing IT company. However, Yi Wei is now over 30 years old and his family is starting to pressure him to get married by sending him off to matchmaking sessions. When Xiao Xiao and Yi Wei first meet she beats him up over a misunderstanding. Needless to say, it was hate at first sight. To stop his family's meddling, Yi Wei tells them he already has a girlfriend. Thrilled, they demand he bring her home for Chinese New Year. So, Yi Wei needs to find a girlfriend, and fast. His best friend suggests he put out a personal ad online to rent a girlfriend. To his surprise, it is Xiao Xiao who responds to the ad. The pair make a contract and Xiao Xiao becomes Yi Wei's fake girlfriend for two weeks of New Year celebrations. But can the couple who can't stop bickering really convince his family they are in love? Or will playing house finally heal Yi Wei's broken heart? This adorable and touching romance is told with a unique blend of modern China and ancient tradition."

 For every drama I actually finish watching, I want to say that the drama was good.  However, this drama kind of left me hanging.  The reason I watch romantic comedies are not for the romance, but for the comedy.  I want to say that I loved it, but there were so many things that I just couldn't stand about it, so I'm going to have to give it three stars.

As for why I gave it three stars, I think I should start out by saying that the storyline wasn't all that original to begin with.  Normally I wouldn't be too picky about a cliche drama if the drama was well written and well produced, but I didn't like how the story was shown.  The first 7-10 episodes of this drama were very humorous and enjoyable.  However, when I got halfway through the drama, I got kind of bored. It was like this great beginning where everything was going great, and then halfway through the drama just flatlined.

It's not that the story doesn't have merit, I think that the characters were very well rounded and the dialogue was good.  However, I didn't feel that the two main characters had much of a relationship at all.  There were like two loving glances, two hugs, and two kisses in the whole drama.  There was very little to show that the word "romance" is supposed to be one of the genres.  Instead of actual emotion being showed, they just had a lot of cliche scenes like sprained ankles, drunken girls, and white knight rescues.  I won't even begin to discuss the ending, as I would spoil it to no end for the viewers who wish to see how bad it really is.  Truthfully, I kind of want to put it as a two.  If it weren't for the first few episodes of me laughing my butt off, I probably would have given it that rating.

I also have to say that the way they showed this drama is really weird.  The beginnings and endings of each episode are very foreign to me.  I know you're probably saying to yourself "Well, actually TO, it is foreign to you.  It's a Chinese drama and you're American, what do you expect?", but that's not what I mean.  I've watched enough dramas to know that it is standard to end an episode in a cliffhanger or at the end of a scene in order to make the viewer want to watch the next episode.  However, this drama always stops the episode in places you would never expect.  It's almost as if they filmed the entire series, split it into twenty-four equal pieces, and then slapped the opening/ending titles onto it.

I think I might be a bit over critical when it comes to Chinese romantic comedies as there are very few I actually adore, but I cannot help it.  In this drama, I don't see anything worth re-watching.  Do your self a favor and stop watching this drama half way.  Don't blame me if you don't take my advice and end up falling asleep at your computer.
How I rate dramas

1 comment:

sandrulka said...

totally agree with the review:) I still saw the show til the end just fast forwarded at some points...