11:07 - 11th April 2013, by Calum Waddell

Antique Bakery

Based on the popular anime, Antique Bakery follows the adventures of Jin-hyuk - a handsome but single young man who, having been left a family fortune, sets up the titular establishment in order to meet some women. After all, what dashing young lady can resist a bakery lorded over by four handsome young males serving their every calorie? From this, we have the latest K-comedy hit: yes, this is actually a Korean production, oddly enough, although the change of environment from The Land of the Rising Sun does not really matter. What does stand out, however, is the incredible direction from Min Kyu-dong, who captures a comic book essence throughout the movie - using colourful sets, different camera speeds, imaginative scenarios and a frivolously attractive cast. Indeed, the male cast members are consistently objectified and pictured with their tops off, whilst the 'gay' element of the film is stressed almost consistently: yes, apparently, men baking constitutes deep-rooted homosexuality in Korea! That said, director Kyu-dong never takes any of this too seriously, and the laughs are of the good-natured kind - with some bizarre sub plot woven into the campiness and aesthetic esotericism. Whilst a lot of Korean, and indeed Japanese, comedies of late have been a little 'lost in translation', Antique Bakery is - for our money - one of the best to be released here in quite some time. Although its original production date is 2008, it is nice to see Terracotta taking a chance with such a bizarre, but nonetheless appealing, rom-com.

Lots of fun, and some visual finesse too boot, Antique Bakery is worth chomping down on.
SCORE: 3.5/5
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