An overeducated, disenchanted would-be civil servant fixates on another woman she sees as ideal, in South Korean director Han Ka-ram’s critical look at society, employment, and conformity.
There is a fine line between admiration and obsession. Admiration grows from respect, but when it goes a step too far, it can lead to destruction. In Our Body, curiosity turns into admiration, which then risks evolving into something much worse.
Ja-young (Moon Choi) is a 31-year-old woman who loses her ambition after many gruelling years of studying for the public official exam. One lonely evening, she reflects on her life and her failures while stopping in a park near her house, feeling miserable, when suddenly a beautiful, fit runner, Hyun-joo (Ahn Ji-hye), glides smoothly past her. Intrigued by this celestial vision of harmony and grace, Ja-young repeatedly returns to the stairs, hoping to meet the object of her curiosity. When she materializes from the darkness, Ja-young chases after her like Alice after the rabbit. Will Hyun-joo take Ja-young to Wonderland?
A strong debut from the promising Han Ka-ram, Our Body is on one level a critical look at contemporary social issues among young adults in an economy where employment is hard to come by and age becomes a handicap. But it's also a bigger discussion about how society shapes us as individuals. We compromise our identity to belong, and this tendency has become the norm. Perhaps Ja-young is the only one being honest about her feelings.