Watch I'm a Cyborg, But That's OK
- 1 hr 47 min
"I'm a Cyborg, But That's OK" is a South Korean romantic comedy-drama film from 2006, directed by Park Chan-wook. It stars Lim Soo-jung (as Cha Young-goon), Rain (as Park Il-sun), and Kim Byeong-Ok (as Head Nurse), among others. The story is set in a mental institution where Cha Young-goon, a young woman who believes she is a cyborg, is committed. She stops eating and instead plugs herself into a power outlet, which causes her to be increasingly weak. Her delusion comes from her belief that she is half-human, half-machine, and that she needs electricity to survive.
While struggling to cope with her new reality, she meets her fellow patient, Park Il-sun, who believes he has the power to steal souls. Park is smitten with Cha and goes out of his way to help her, bringing her spare batteries and helping her charge up. They begin to bond and form a connection.
The rest of the movie focuses on their strange and endearing relationship, as well as the other patients they encounter, each of whom is struggling with their own mental issues. There's the kleptomaniac who steals anything not nailed down, the mute patient who communicates only through charades, and the woman who thinks she can command the weather.
As Cha and Park's relationship deepens, the institute becomes a place of escape and freedom for them, where they can embrace their peculiarities and oddness without fear of ridicule. The movie explores ideas around what it means to be human and the nature of both mental illness and creativity. While it's a light-hearted movie overall, it doesn't shy away from the darker realities that many people who are struggling with mental health issues face.
The film is visually stunning, filled with bold and saturated colors that give the institution a somewhat surreal, otherworldly quality. There are moments of whimsy and fantasy that provide a nice contrast to the otherwise quite bleak setting. The soundtrack is also excellent, featuring a mix of Korean and Western pop music, as well as some classical pieces.
The performers all give excellent performances, but it's Lim Soo-jung and Rain who steal the show. Lim is particularly great as Cha Young-goon, capturing both the vulnerability and strength of her character with nuance and grace. Rain is charming as ever, playing the lovestruck Park Il-sun with simplicity and honesty.
Overall, "I'm a Cyborg, But That's OK" is a unique and memorable film that blends romance, comedy, and drama in a fresh and compelling way. It's a film that will make you laugh, cry, and feel a little bit better about the world around you.