Father and son grapple over chasing dreams
“Love+Sling” is an upcoming sports drama that highlights the importance of pursuing one’s dream despite what their loved ones say.
Starring Yoo Hae-jin, Kim Min-jae and Lee Sung-kyoung, the comedy revolves around a former member of the national wrestling team named Gwi-bo (Yoo), who dreams of raising a gold medalist. His son, Seong-ung (Kim), is a promising wrestler. A single father, Gwi-bo financially supports his son by teaching wrestling and aerobics at a gym he runs. His desire for his son to clinch a gold medal is clear in many scenes, as Gwi-bo follows Seong-ung to every match and shouts out instructions while he wrestles his opponent.
Playing a wrestler required at least three hours of hard-core practice before every shoot, according to Kim. “I went to the gym to practice even when I wasn’t on set.”
Although Seong-ung generally puts up with his father’s excessive attention, he explodes when he discovers that his longtime sweetheart Ga-yeong (Lee) declares that she is in love with his father.
“I talked a lot with the director [about the love triangle],” said Lee. “As the second daughter in a family, I understood my character to have received lots of energy from Gwi-bo and Seong-ung.”
Although it wasn’t the first time Yoo has played a father, it was the first time for the actor to have such a grown-up son on screen. “But there wasn’t any pressure,” said Yoo. “Naturally, I’m getting older. When I look around, some of my friends have children in their early 20s. But I have thought a lot about depicting the conflict between a father and son.”
The crucial point of the film was to deliver the story of a parent and a child in a comedic yet heartwarming way, according to director Kim. “To achieve that, I included a variety of characters, including [Seong-ung’s] grandmother and friend.”
For those who may feel uncomfortable about Ga-yeong’s crush on a much older man, the director added, “Please regard the love story as a catalyst [to make the story funnier].”
Rated 15 and above, the flick arrives in theaters on May 9.
BY JIN MIN-JI [firstname.lastname@example.org]