210) Antique (2008) Dir: Min Kyu-Dong Not Yet Released Date Seen: July 11th, 2009 Rating: 3.5/5
Antique, an adaptation of a popular manga about gay pastry chefs that solve crime in their spare time, immediately impressed me with its over-eagerness to please. It's very much a capable summer movie as defined as a very light but amiably hyper source of superficial entertainment that dabbles with a certain aspect of the human condition with more unabashed glee than wisdom.
The film's approach to storytelling and how to live life is simple: excess is best. There is no room in between ecstatic frenzy and the most sparkly, shiny and peppy kind of depression that you can find (I wish that when I felt depressed that I felt as good as these guys do). Any doubts if sweeter is necessarily better are strictly rhetorical, even if the film's characters don't realize that yet (Sun-woo, a "gay of demonic charm" mock-seriously wonders, "Can anyone be unhappy eating cake?").
Antique careens forward recklessly on the speed and the energy of plentiful montages full of double-exposed overlapping shots, chockablock of floating daydream imagery, commercial-worthy food photography and rapid-free dialogue. It's too syrupy to to be of much value in terms of its airy musings on how people need to be responsible for other people to be happy but it doesn't need to be. After all, durable fluff never needs that long of a shelf-life.