The Korean movie “Dream (2023),” directed by Byeong-heon Lee, takes the audience on an emotional and exciting trip, combining the world of sports with the complexities of human relationships in a beautiful way. This exciting sports story is currently available on Netflix and shows how powerful dreams can be and how strong the human spirit can be.

Sports dramas always have an emotional aspect that connects with the audience so much that, once in a while, you feel like you are part of the drama. This genre has inspiration, motivation, and everything you need to win in any situation in your life. One of the reasons why sports dramas have a greater audience than many other genres ‘Dream’ is not the most remarkable or stand-alone work in this genre, but the best part of the film is that it doesn’t try to be one. It is simple, it is direct, and moreover, it is seriously funny. So, without saying much, let’s jump into the plot.

*Spoilers Ahead*

Dream (2023) Plot Summary And Movie Synopsis:

The film centers around the character of Yoon Hong-dae, portrayed with remarkable depth by an exceptional cast led by Park Seo-joon. Yoon Hong-dae is a former soccer player who loses everything due to a match that goes wrong. The whole world sees Hong-dae tackle his own teammate, Sung-chan Park. Nobody understands what is happening on the field. The coach is very angry with Hong-dae’s decision. While returning, a reporter questions Hong-dae regarding his fugitive mother. He gets so upset that he punches the man in the eye. The whole federation finds him guilty, and his PR team is now trying to improve his image. They think of Ho-rak as a name for him to promote his brand.

Later, the PR team finds an opportunity through which Ho-rak will be able to reform his reputation and once again play football for his team. Ho-rak is asked to coach the Homeless Football Team of Korea. The federation has arranged a Homeless World Cup as a fundraiser program, and Ho-rak is about to be their coach. Lee So-min is onboard to shoot the whole process and make a documentary out of it, which will eventually help rebuild Hong-dae’s, aka Ho-rak’s, reputation. Hong-dae has no intention of coaching the homeless team, but since he needs money to give her fugitive mother a good life, he agrees to do so.

How is the homeless team built?

Hong-dae is not interested at all in training the homeless team, as they are not professional football players. Because it is a charity tournament, no one is serious about this. Also, Hong-dae just needs to do some drills in front of the camera and give motivational speeches so the documentary can help him rebuild his brand value. But later, So-min tells him about her struggles, which somehow makes Hong-dae a bit serious about forming the team. He then starts exploring the possibilities within the team. Soon he finds out about the backgrounds of the players on the team.

He learns about Mr. Beom-su, who has always been a homeless guy since the day he was born. He moved around, and when he was 17, he started doing construction work. One day, due to an accident, he is admitted to the hospital. All of his savings are gone, and he starts spending his nights on the road. A woman named Jin-ju then takes care of him. She is a dyslexic woman, but since she has taken care of him, Beom-su now sells magazines to help her with the rent. Another guy named Hwan-dong used to be a very successful businessman. But during an economic transition in the country, he loses all his fortune, including his family. He becomes a drunk man, and now, with this homeless world cup to come, he too has something to prove in front of his family.

Kim In-sun also had a pathetic story of childhood trauma and a friend who was lost and never found again. He still shares the leaflet containing her image so that he can meet her once again. Hyo-bong is separated from his beloved daughter, and he wants to prove to society that he is a father capable of taking care of his daughter. These men from such backgrounds together become the homeless football team, and all they need is a leader who can guide them on the right track.

Dream (2023)
A still from Dream (2023).

Hong-dae, the man who never takes this Homeless World Cup seriously, gradually becomes the central part of the team and keeps pushing them into believing that they can actually score a goal, if not defend one. Even when the sponsor does not want to spend money, he stands beside them. Once Hong-dae gets into trouble for getting into a brawl with some local thugs to stop Jin-ju from getting molested, the PR team does not want to get involved in the matter. But, since Hong-dae has become an integral part of the homeless team, everyone, including So-min, has helped him regain his reputation. Together, they become more than a team—a family, to be precise.

Dream (2023) Movie Ending Explained:

What happens in the World Cup? Does Korea win?

In the first match against Costa Rica, the Korean team of the Homeless concedes 12 goals without scoring any. Everyone except Hong-dae is frustrated over the result. Hong-dae seems to have lost his focus, and he is not eager to win. In the next match, So-min manages two Brazilian players. The regulation allows teams without enough reserve players to allow players from different camps. The Brazilian players play extraordinarily, which helps the Korean team win. But this makes Hong-dae sad to see that no Korean player was able to score goals in that match.

Korea may have won that match, but it is not the victory they are looking for. Hong-dae now understands what to do next, and he speaks freely to the team. He says that whatever they do, win or lose, they will not play other players other than the Korean players. He says that whether they score or not, they are here to make memories. They need to play as a team. Win or lose; this comes after.

In the match against Germany, they are already 4-0 down in the first half. Their main goalkeeper is injured. But, in the second half, the world sees a very different Korean side. They are immensely motivated, and they try shooting more. Their efforts are so honest that the crowd starts admiring them. Soon, the whole stadium starts chanting for the Korean team. The team finally scores a goal. They lose the match 5-1, but they win the hearts of the hundreds of viewers watching the game that day.

Soon after the release of the documentary, Hong-dae starts playing for his club again. Everyone on the Homeless team is now living a better life. Hwan-dong finally gets to meet his family. Hyo-bong is allowed to hang out with his daughter more often than before. Everyone is settled now. So-min also receives acclaim for her direction in the documentary. The film ends with Hong-dae jumping and scoring from a header.

Read More: The 37 Best South Korean Movies of the 21st Century

Dream (2023) Movie Trailer

Dream (2023) Movie Links: IMDb, Wikipedia
Dream (2023) Movie Cast: Park Seo-joon, Ji-eun Lee, Jong-soo Kim
Where to watch Dream

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