This is one of those “late” reviews as this drama was aired in 2009. However, I only got the chance to watch it now.
- I’m not a fan of Taiwanese drama. I’ve only seen two of them prior to Autumn’s Concerto, and I only was able to finish one of those two. That one being Fated To Love You. (The other one which I wasn’t able to finish was Mars.)
- Having said that, I wasn’t expecting to enjoy this drama especially since I’m at this mode wherein even some popular Korean dramas are unable to sustain my interest. Surprisingly, Autumn’s Concerto exceeded all my expectations. Not only was I able to finish it, I actually enjoyed it.
- The plot and overall feel of Autumn’s Concerto is actually nothing new. It has all the elements of a classic soap opera: star-crossed lovers, rich guy meets poor girl, secrets, cancer, amnesia, a child born out of wedlock, suicide, a domineering parent (usually a rich and powerful mother), a martyr friend who is pursuing the lead female character, a super-pretty and super-successful woman who is engaged with the lead male character, a flirtatious woman pursuing the leading male and attempting to ruin his relationship with the lead female, a gang, a remote village, a change of character after being stuck in that remote village, the usual plot twists and turns under the heading, “good guys always win”, etc etc. But that’s exactly the reason why it works. They mixed all of these elements nicely and came up with a drama which you can’t just let go. It’s been a while since I’ve last seen a non-rom com drama (although this one has its own cutesy moments) where I’m always left with the excitement of popping in the next episode so that I can see what will happen next.
- Some of the acting is a bit so-so (particularly with the female characters), and all of the adults were outshone by a cute little boy. When his ice-cold grandma has softened up when she met him, I completely understood. I mean, who could resist that adorable kid?
- I was told that Van Ness Wu’s acting here was a huge leap from his Meteor Garden days, but since I have never seen Meteor Garden, I’ll just take everybody’s word for it. But basing it on Autumn’s Concerto alone, I think he’s not bad at all. He is believable as the male romantic lead, and he had some moments of vulnerability that he was able to express well. I have no idea how charming he is onscreen (and off) but in this drama, it worked for me.
- I don’t know if it’s part of the above-mentioned charm or what, but Van Ness’ raised eyebrow will probably haunt me for all eternity. It also reminds me vividly of Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson.
- Is it just me or the villagers in Autumn’s Concerto are practically the same villagers from Fated To Love You?
- If there’s one thing I truly love in this drama, it’s how it tackled women’s issues. Specifically, on the issue of sexual oppression. It came to no surprise when I researched for background info on this drama and found out that the writer-director is a woman.
- I have to say, if there’s one thing I like about Taiwanese drama (I’m basing it on the few that I’ve seen), it’s how they are more daring yet more decent with the presentation of sensitive scenes. The kissing scenes alone trumps most of the kiss scenes in Korean dramas (although they are loosening up more nowadays), and don’t get me started on scenes depicting sex and violence. Autumn’s Concerto tackles sensitive issues such as rape, sexual harassment, drugs and prostitution, but these are presented in such a way that you will cringe at the ‘feel’ of the scenes without showing too much skin or gore.
- But if there’s one thing that I don’t like about Autumn’s Concerto, it’s how some of the scenes seem to have droned on and on and on… with super-lengthy dialogues that could’ve been shortened considerably. On some occasions, I had to fast forward it because I’m getting bored and it didn’t affect my understanding of the story at all.
- All in all, I’d recommend it to anyone.
I’ve been asked several times about Dae Mul (Big Thing) because it’s a highly acclaimed drama but I didn’t like it. Well, I actually tried liking it by pressing on until I reach the last two episodes. Still, I wasn’t able to finish it and I just breezed through the finale. Maybe it’s because I’m living the political scene every day of my life and I know that a dramatic speech from a politician solves nothing in the real world that’s why Dae Mul did nothing to me. Also, it hasn’t bothered me before but for some reason, Kwon Sang Woo’s lisp is so evident in this drama. The dialogue in Dae Mul probably has more S’s than he usually has in his other projects?