Watch these Asian Films If You Loved ’20th Century Girl’

Asian films about first love are tear-jerking with their pure and heartfelt storytelling. Not only does it revolve around romance, but it also focuses on friendship, nostalgia, and coming-of-age.

The South Korean Netflix film, 20th Century Girl gained popularity with its story about first love and friendship. The film is about Na Bora (played by Kim Yoojung), a high school student who follows her best friend’s crush, Baek Hyunjin (Park Jungwoo) every day in school. Throughout the course of the story, Bora starts to have a love story of her own as she befriends Poong Woonho (played by Byun Wooseok) who happens to be Hyunjin’s best friend.

ALSO READ: 20th Century Girl: A Bittersweet Story About Friendship and Love

If you are looking for tear-jerking, nostalgic films with similar stories like 20th Century Girl, here are some that you can add to your watchlist:


The story is told in two timelines: the 1990s and the present. An architecture student named Seungmin meets Seoyeon in his architecture class. The two became partners in a project and in the process, Seungmin catches feelings for Seoyeon which he thinks are unrequited. Many years have passed and Seoyeon meets Seungmin again, asking him to design her a house. The film switches from past to present to see how Seoyeon and Seungmin’s relationship progressed and then faded.

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The film became a hit in South Korea for its story about remembering your first love and first heartbreak. This was Suzy’s first film as an actress and that year, she earned the nickname, “The Nation’s First Love.”


Kaoru is a girl with “Xeroderma Pigmentosum,” a condition where she can’t be exposed to sunlight. Because of this, she sleeps during the day and stays up at night to write songs and make music. Every day, she sees her crush, Koji, pass by her window. One night, she finally had the chance to spend time with Koji. But will this happy moment last?

The film’s story had several adaptations including a Japanese TV series, musicals, and an American remake. In South Korea, Taeyeon of Girls’ Generation starred as Kaoru in the 2010 musical. Recently, Kwon Eunbi and Y of Golden Child were cast as the leads of the “Midnight Sun” 2022 musical.

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Lin Truly crosses paths with Hsu Taiyu, a bad boy on her campus. They make an agreement to help each other approach their crushes. However, the more time they spent together, and got to know more about each other, they ended up helping each other become a better version of themselves.


High school student, Nam has a crush on her senior, Shone. To get his attention, Nam goes into a transformation, joins the acting club, and studies harder in school. Will Shone notice her efforts and reciprocate her feelings?

This movie is nostalgic especially when you’re one of those people who go to the restroom just to catch a glimpse of their crush in their classroom. The Chinese TV series, A Little Thing Called First Love, was based on this movie.

If you’re looking for films to reminisce about your youth and first crush, you won’t go wrong with watching these recommendations!

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