Kairos is a fantasy thriller about a man (Shin Sung Rok) who is devastated when his daughter is kidnapped that connects with a woman (Lee Se Young) over the phone who is living one month in the past and is searching for her missing mother.
Shin Sung Rok is Kim Seo Jin. He is a successful business man at a construction company with a wife and daughter. His life is turned upside down though when his daughter is kidnapped, and he will stop at nothing to save her.
Lee Se Young plays Han Ae Ri. She is part time worker at a convenience store who takes care of her ill mother. Her life also takes a terrible turn when her mother disappears. Help comes from an unexpected place when she discovers she is able to connect with a man one month in her future by phone.
Rounding out the main cast is Nam Gyu Ri as Kang Hyun Chae who is Seo Jin’s wife and Ahn Bo Hyun as Seo Do Gyun who works closely with Seo Jin at his company.
We get a time centered suspense drama with a big mystery to solve with Kairos. Anything time related deserves a peek from me. Rather than physical time travel, Kairos takes the route of communicating across time as Seo Jin and Ae Ri are one month apart and speak over the phone. The timelines move forward at the same speed, so there is a limited amount of time to change things in the past.
We get some truly fantastic acting in Kairos. I’m a fan of Shin Sung Rok. Though he’s more known for his villainous roles, he has had several outings of the more humorous variety and as a proper rom-com lead. We get to see him step into more of a hero lead role in Kairos as he rushes to save his family.
Shin Sung Rok was gripping in his performance. The raw emotion he portrayed at the loss of his daughter was painful to see. And that intensity continues all of the way through as he is really put through so much and experiences some incredible character growth.
I also really like Lee Se Young, and she too gave a compelling performance as the struggling woman trying to find her mother. She’s smart and tough while also being kind and relatable. She puts in a lot of effort locate her mother and help Seo Jin. The mother and daughter relationship here was great to see.
I enjoyed seeing Seo Jin and Ae Ri help each other in their times of difficulty. Although they are limited in their ability to connect only over the phone for much of the story, they make the most of their short and intense conversations. Their lives also become increasingly intertwined which furthers the connection.
The pacing of the drama is excellent as it moves swiftly forward with constant plot developments. We get plenty of twists and turns on this journey. There is some bad character decision making here and there, but for the most part, the main characters are smart. They come up with solid plans to try and right their situation and solve the mystery.
Now, me personally, I loved the first half of the drama where I was very engaged and felt the suspense as Seo Jin and Hae Ri frantically tried to save their loved ones amidst a a big mystery concerning everything that was happening.
The second half was still good, but it did lose some steam for me. About halfway through the drama, one particular plot development initiated the change followed by the story becoming more predictable.
We had some big build up to Seo Jin discovering his wife and daughter were still alive that quickly sent him from happy to distraught as he realized they were with Do Gyun. Then Hyun Chae, Do Gyun, and company proceeded to try and kill him. But Hae Ri is able to change things in the past by preventing Da Bin’s kidnapping which changes everything, although not in the best way for her.
The act of her catching up to the beginning of Seo Jin’s timeline and the initial crisis being resolved took away a lot of the mystery and in turn some of the suspense for me. There were still plenty of thrills to be had and layers of mystery to dig into, but it just never rivaled the first half of the drama.
END OF SPOILERS
Despite, the second half losing some steam, Kairos is a very well done time focused suspense drama. It gives us a well-written story that handles the time elements extremely well. Lots of mystery and thrills combined with nice pacing and constant plot developments. The acting was also wonderful. This is a great entry in both the time and suspense genres, and I think fans of either of those will enjoy this one.
My Rating: 7.5/10
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