The Time That I Loved You, 7,000 Days is a heart-warming story about friendship, love, and all the ups and downs that go along with them.
Choi Won and Oh Ha-Na have been neighbors and best friends ever since high school. They’ve leaned on each other during times of difficulty, cried along side each other through heartache, celebrated together in times of triumph, and laughed together during times of joy. They are as close as two friends can be – the kind that can talk to each other about everything, and knows what the other person is thinking before a single word is spoken. But is it really just friendship? It’s obvious to everyone around them that their feelings go deeper than just being best buddies but, for some reason, that’s the one thing they can’t sense about the other person. So, they’ve just gone on with their lives. Ha-Na has had boyfriends. She was even almost engaged, once. Likewise, Choi Won had a girlfriend but, of course, it didn’t last.
At 34 years old, Choi Won and Ha-Na have great careers. Won is a senior flight attendant who is looked up to by his peers, and the passengers love him. Ha-Na is a marketing director for a shoe company. Doesn’t sound too glamorous but she is middle management and that means she’s an intelligent and valued employee. Won seems to be content with his love life, or lack thereof. He’s realized since high school he was in love with Ha-Na (but told himself she’s off limits – we learn more about that later) so finding a girl isn’t important to him. He’s content just to be by Ha-Na’s side. Ha-Na, however, is a bit antsy about her love life. Even though she, too, has loved Won since her high school days she believes he doesn’t love her so reality tells her to look elsewhere. She realizes time is slipping past and she’s still not married. And it doesn’t help that Won keeps teasing her about getting old.
Yoon Kyun-Sang is Cha Seo-Hoo, a famous pianist who has been in love with Ha-Na for several years. He’s the guy she was almost engaged to. They met while she was in Paris and a relationship grew, but something happened that brought it to an abrupt halt. It’s all in the past for Ha-Na until Seo-Hoo shows up again, wanting another chance at winning her heart.
Choo Soo-Hyun plays the character Lee Seo-Eun, a decent, bold, upfront, what-you-see-is-what-you-get kind of girl. She’s the new flight attendant who can see what a gem Won is and would like to give being his girlfriend an honest try. She, actually, teaches Won a valuable, life changing lesson.
Oh Ha-Na is played by the very versatile actress, Ha Ji-Won. She’s probably most famous for her role as Gil Ra-Im in the Kdrama Secret Garden and since that’s the first thing I saw her in I kept looking for bits of Ra-Im to shine through her Ha-Na character but it didn’t happen. She’s good enough that, even though I looked, all I could see was Ha-Na.
Lee Jin-Wook plays the handsome and charming Choi Woo. He’s on my favorite actors list so I was really excited to see him in something new. Since I don’t start a Kdrama until all of the episodes are available for viewing, I anxiously awaited the posting of the final episode and started watching The Time That I Loved You, 7,000 Days fairly soon after it was complete. Give this talented actor a go (watch I Need Romance 2 and Nine: Nine Times Time Travel) and you’ll see why I like him so much.
Some of the story is told in flashbacks. It goes back and forth between the present and the past – high school, college days, a brief mention of Won’s army time, just a couple years earlier – we get to see their relationship from the very beginning to the present. I would like to have seen the characters look different throughout the years. Other than adding and taking away glasses they both pretty much look the same in high school as they do in the present. Couldn’t they have had Won dye his hair or Ha-Na cut hers? The director missed the mark on that one.
The timing is a bit strange in this drama. At the beginning of the show we find out that a girl Ha-Na works with is pregnant. By the time the show is almost over she still hasn’t had the baby. So the whole story takes place in about nine months but it seems like it was much longer. The story was good but too drawn out. It could have been just as entertaining with only 12 episodes instead of 16. They did a fine job winding it all to a close, though. A solid, unrushed, satisfying, complete ending. That’s not always the case with Kdramas.
Just three quick mentions – two a complaint, the other an applause. First, the way Ha Ji-Won/Ha-Na walked made me crazy. Every now and then she did this model sort of walk, crossing one foot in front of the other. Do people walk like that when they’re not on a fashion runway? Second, both Lee Jin-Wook and Ha Ji-Won were constantly pulling the hair off their face, you know how a person grabs the sides of their hair and slides it to the top of their head, although it always immediately slides back? They both do it so often, it’s irritating. And third, Lee Jin-Wook does an adorable little thing with his ears… they move when he makes different facial expressions. You have to actually see it for that to make sense but trust me, it’s darling.
The Time That I Loved You, 7,000 Days was based on the 2011 Taiwanese drama called In Time With You, which I haven’t seen so I really can’t compare the two. From what I read, they sound almost identical, right down to the female lead working for a shoe company. I’m thinking the Korean remake has an advantage over the original, though, based on the simple fact that Ha Ji-Won and Lee Jin-Wook play the main characters.
The soundtrack is really good. First of all, Kyuhyun, from the Kpop group Super Junior, sings the title song. And you just don’t get much better than Kyuhyun’s unique, rich voice! All the other songs are good too, the more up-tempo ones as well as the ballads. And the instrumental stuff is wonderful. A friend happened to walk by as I was watching the show and commented on the awesome instrumental music that was playing. It definitely gets high marks in the music area.
Nothing big scenery wise. But the last episode has a scene where they took an ordinary street and did something special to it. It was awesome! That’s all I can tell you because I don’t want to give anything away. But it was my favorite scene of the whole show!
If you’re looking for a feel-good romantic Kdrama, The Time That I Loved You, 7,000 Days is one I think you’ll be happy with. It’s longer than it really needs to be but it’s one you invest in, emotionally. Oh, and in case you’re wondering, 7,000 days works out to be a little over 19 years.
Lee Jin-Wook and Ha Ji-Won
Chemistry/relationship between Ha-Na and Won
Satisfying, solid ending
Off feeling concerning the timing of the story
Ha-Na and Won not looking different enough over the years
Lee Jin-Wook and Ha Ji-Won brushing the hair out of their eyes