Junks and Toothpaste

just some random pieces of everyday

The Beauty Inside (뷰티인사이드)

So. As you may know, I quit the job at the end of the year, and now I have time to write, which I've always wanted and liked to. The first article is on a Korean movie I watched a week ago - The Beauty Inside.




It's a story of a guy whose face, sex, ethnicity, etc. - basically everything other than his mind - change every day. One day he falls in love with a girl, but because of this weird phenomenon, they face many difficulties.


It wasn't right after watching the movie that I decided to write about it; it was a few days later, at night in my bed, just when I was about to fall asleep. Out of nowhere I started to think about identity, and The Beauty Inside came up to my mind.


On that day, I was chatting with my mom and she asked me the meaning of identity. And I said, 'It's how you recognize yourself, or what you think you are.' And I think it changes according to the situation, for probably everyone has different sides of their own. At workplace, when hanging out with friends, alone at home. The image of yourself is established in a certain community and relationship with someone.


In that sense, this movie was really interesting. A usual story would be like, a guy suffers from mental illness because he doesn't know who he really is. The matter of identity would be on his side. But in this story, it's rather on the girl - she is the one that struggles with her own identity, even though any part of her doesn't change.


For the guy, the fact that he changes every day is his identity. He accepts that, and he knows who he is. And the only people around him, his mother and his best friend, also accept it. Basically he has no other community to belong to, and his identity is established here.


But for the girl, the guy is someone else day after day, even though she knows it is him. She is in a relationship with one guy, but the guy is different every day. There is no way of knowing it is really the guy she knows. She becomes unsure of him, then of the relationship, and unltimately, of herself. Because not knowing who you are with means that you haven't built a relationship with him; You don't know how to act, why he knows you, and who he thinks you are. It undermines your own identity.


What saves the couple is the furniture the guy creates. A piece of furniture is a component of space. Once it is placed, it remains there for a certain period of time, and you spend time with it there, making your own place of comfort. It is somewhat like a relationship. The space represents a community you belong to, and the chair or table means a person in the community. You meet someone, know him or her gradually, and in time you share memories with the person.


In the movie, the scene of the guy making a chair is often described. He also creates a chair just for the girl, which means it belongs to her but no one else. And when she sits down on it at home, she belongs to the chair, too - it is the space only for her. This sense of belonging represents the relationship of the couple. The guy's identity is projected to the chair, and by giving it to her, he joins her life. It also becomes the tool for the girl to recognize him in spite of his appearance - and that's why she could find him in the end. 




I wasn't going to write this long, and as I haven't really reread or revised this, maybe the whole content is kind of crappy. Just wanted to let someone know this was worth watching, especially if you like to talk about identity and stuff!


Buy The Beauty Inside at Amazon