Lost in Translation?: Young Adult Matters (Eoreundeuleun Molayo) (2020) Review

Friday, February 4, 2022


image showing the poster for Young Adult Matters

Rating: 18+

Runtime: 2 hours 7 minutes

Genre(s): Drama

Released:  October 24th,  2020

Directed by: Hwan Lee

Written by: Hwan Lee

Starring: Lee Yoo-mi, Hani (Ahn Hee-yeon)

You are dropped into the world of Sejin who is a very peculiar character. The way she just generally seems unbothered by most things is both shocking and disturbing. When she does react, it seems…off. Viewers don’t get much information about her background, but it does seem that at some point before the film begins, something traumatic happened to her and has led to an apathetic outlook. Yet, at the same time, she comes off as astonishingly naive and aloof. However, as the film progresses it becomes questionable as to how genuine this naivety actually is. Overall she comes off as a long-lost character from a Sayaka Murata novel. 

After finding out she is pregnant, Sejin leaves home in search of a way to get enough money to pay for an “operation”.  The film follows this journey and the people Sejin meets along the way. The way Young Adult Matters is described and how the story is set up makes it seem like it is going to make some large statement about youth and the struggles they are dealing with. However, all the violence and cruelty just seems pointless, which may be a statement in itself, especially considering these are the moments in the film in which we linger the most. It has moments that feel almost poignant in its delivery, but they are hard to take too seriously when combined with the moments of absolute absurdity. It was almost as if Hwan Lee could not decide how dark of a film he wanted to create.

What the film lacks in its writing, it makes up for with its visuals. The way some of the scenes were framed and the usage of light was absolutely stunning. The acting was also superb, especially by Lee Yoo-mi (Sejin) and Hee-Yeon Ahn (Jooyoung). 

A quick note: While I did not enjoy how this film was written overall, I do think that since the film is in Korean and I do not speak said language, things definitely could have been lost in translation.

Rating: 6.5/10 ★★★★★★☆☆☆☆

Should you watch it?

👍This is good for those who are already fans of Korean films and don't mind a little violence.