Boy Goes to Heaven

Boy Goes to Heaven (Korean소년, 천국에 가다; RRSonyeon, cheonguke gada), also known as A Boy Who Went to Heaven, is a 2005 South Korean film directed by Yoon Tae-yong, starring Yum Jung-ah and Park Hae-il.

Boy Goes to Heaven
Boy Goes To Heaven film poster.jpg
Theatrical poster
Hangul소년, 천국 가다
Hanja少年, 天國에 가다
Revised RomanizationSonyeon, cheonguke gada
McCune–ReischauerSonyŏn ch‘ŏn’guke gada
Directed byYoon Tae-yong
Written byPark Seong-kyeong
Park Chan-wook
Lee Moo-yeong
Choi Dong-hoon
Yoon Tae-yong
Produced byCha Seung-jae
Kim Mi-hee
Kim Yeong-dae
Kim Sun-ho
StarringYum Jung-ah
Park Hae-il
CinematographyLee Jun-gyu
Edited byKim Sang-bum
Kim Jae-bum
Music byDalpalan
Jang Young-gyu
Sidus FNH
Christmas Entertainment
Distributed byShowbox
Release date
  • November 11, 2005 (2005-11-11)
Running time
114 minutes
CountrySouth Korea
Box officeUS$949,293[1]


Ne-mo is a thirteen-year-old boy growing up in 1980s South Korea, and is the only child of a single mother who runs a watch repair shop in their small town. Having never met his father, Ne-mo resolves to marry a single mother when he is older. Following the suicide of his mother, Ne-mo becomes acquainted with Bu-ja, who opens a comic shop in his town. Bu-ja is also a single mother with a young son of her own, and Ne-mo instantly falls in love with her. Despite their age difference he proposes to her in a movie theater, but a fire breaks out and Ne-mo is killed saving Bu-ja's son.

Waking up in Heaven, Ne-mo finds himself in the middle of an argument between two angels, who can't agree whether his life was supposed to end at the age of thirteen or ninety-three. As a compromise they return him to Earth several days after he died, except he is now thirty-three years old and will age one year every day until he reaches ninety-three. Now an adult and with just sixty days left to live, Ne-mo poses as his own father and resumes his pursuit of Bu-ja.



Boy Goes to Heaven opened in South Korea on 11 November 2005, and was ranked fourth at the box office on its opening weekend with 109,186 admissions.[2] The film went on to accumulate a total of 242,053 admissions nationwide.[3]

Critical responseEdit

In a review for The Korea Herald, Yang Sung-jin praised the performance of child actor Kim Kwan-woo as "impressive and believable" and found Park Hae-il "true to form" as one of South Korea's leading actors, but criticized Yum Jung-ah for her "hackneyed" and over-emphasised sexuality. Yang also regarded the relationship between the two main characters as inappropriate, noting that Bu-ja promises to marry Ne-mo when he is still a child and later has sex with him falsely believing that he is an adult, saying that while the character "is not a pedophile... she clearly—and at least initially—doesn't have motives as pure-hearted as Nae-mo's."[4] Love HK described Boy Goes to Heaven as a "cute, fairly entertaining, but wholly inconsequential fantasy melodrama", and was critical of the director for a lack of attention to detail, in particular a reference to the age gap between the characters despite the film's 1980s setting.[5]


  1. ^ "A Boy Who Went to Heaven". Box Office Mojo. Retrieved 27 May 2014.
  2. ^ "Korean Box Office Week-end 2005.11.11 ~ 2005.11.13". Hancinema. Retrieved 21 May 2009.
  3. ^ "Box-Office Results (2005)". Retrieved 21 May 2009.
  4. ^ Yang, Sung-jin (4 November 2005). "'Boy, Goes to Heaven' conjures up body-transference fantasy tale". Hancinema (originally published by The Korea Herald). Retrieved 22 May 2009.
  5. ^ "A Boy Who Went to Heaven". Love HK Retrieved 22 May 2009.

External linksEdit