Sunday, March 19, 2017

Movie Review: The Last Princess (2016)

The Last Princess: Deokhye, daughter of King Go Jong, was the last princess of Korea at the turn of the 20th century. Under Japanese colonial rule, she is taken to Japan as a hostage. Her father attempted to keep her safe by having her secretly engaged, but due to the king’s sudden death, she was forced to relocate to Japan when she was only thirteen, and was then married off to a Japanese nobleman at the age of nineteen. With the era's harsh conditions, she struggles to maintain the hope of the Korean people. Jang-Han is a fighter for Korean independence whose mission is to bring Princess Deokhye back to South Korea.

Rating: ★★★★★ (5 out of 5)

I swear I have never seen a movie about the royals as heartbreaking as The Last Princess. I can literally hear my heart breaking, and almost all the time, I wanted to bawl my eyes out (if not I watched it with my family, I'd totally finish 10 boxes of tissues). Warning: spoilers ahead because I need to rant

Okay, so The Last Princess is a story about how Korea's royalty ended, how they lost their last princess. It is based from a novel, which was also based from the true story from the country's own history. The movie started when Deokhye, the princess of Korea, was still a young girl. She was cheerful and radiant, bringing smiles to everyone she passes by, and definitely the apple to her father's eyes. Even from a young age, it is obvious that the princess will grow up to become a fine young lady, strong enough to be independent on her own. I love the scene where her father sent out a traitor while he was holding her, and she repeated her father's words bravely. 

In order to protect the princess, her father engaged her to a boy who can keep her safe, Janghan. Shortly after that, the king was pronounced a sudden death due to being poisoned. What made matters worse was that it was the princess herself who found her father dying. Despite that, the princess grew up into a wonderful princess, loved by the people. During the Japanese colonial era, Princess Deokhye had been the one to inspire and motivate the Koreans to keep moving on. When the Japanese noticed this, they sent her to Japan in order to contain the Koreans from rebelling and fighting them.

That was the start of the horrible years for Princess Deokhye. Many years passed and Janghan managed to reunite with the princess, but it took a lot of efforts for him and the other Koreans trapped in Japan to get the princess back to their homeland. The dedication they poured for their country and the princess were sacrifices that no one should ever forget. It was heartbreaking because Princess Deokhye and Janghan were separated even after the struggles, and she was forced to marry a Japanese nobleman.

Even though in the end, when Janghan was finally released, and he went back to bring the princess back to Korea, everything seemed almost too late. Almost. Though most of the Koreans did not even know the existence of the princess any longer, her loyal people still remembered her and the part where she was reunited with her people brought tears to my eyes. The last princess of Korea definitely suffered a lot, and more people should remember her and her sufferings, and also the things that she did for the sake of her people. The traitor never got the punishment he deserved in the movie, and that was the very part that pissed me off even until this very second.

The Last Princess definitely deserves more than five stars, and it should be given more recognition. I recommend this if you're into Korean historical culture, or just a great tear-jerking movie that provides you with real history at the same time. Do leave your thoughts on this movie too!

Till next time ♡ Love, Maira

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