In the intensely Korean comedy-drama Dancing Queen, Uhm Jung-hwa plays Jeong-hwa, a housewife that chooses to rekindle her dormant pop star aspirations by entering an American Idol-style contest just as her husband, Jeong-min (Hwang Jung-min), becomes an accidental mayoral candidate. The film benefits from extreme currency, hence its domestic box office success, but the enduring appeal of all things K-Pop in the region could result in moderate success in Asia and for targeted festivals and distributors overseas.
Director Lee Seok-hoon juggles comedy with heady issues ranging from sex and age discrimination, and tackles Korea’s subtle regionalism and hierarchical nature along with new policies encouraging people to have babies. Dancing Queen is polished entertainment with a subtle message, anchored by an engaging (if physically awkward) performance by Uhm as Bruni to Hwang’s Sarkozy and a suitably pulsating empowerment anthem.
Producer JK Youn, Lee Seok-hoon
Director Lee Seok-hoon
Cast Hwang Jung-min, Uhm Jung-hwa, Ra-Mi-ran, Lee Han-wi, Jeong Seong-hwa, Lee Dae-yeon
Screenwriter Lee Seok-hoon
Executive producer Katharine Kim, Jay Gil
Director of Photography Choi Jin-woong
Production Designer Gang Seung-yong
Music Hwang Sang-jun
Costume designer Kim Eun-suk
Editor Lee Jin
No rating, 120 minutes