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Joined: 25 Aug 2013
Age: 64
Gender: Male
Posts: 25,918
Location: Long Island, New York

23 May 2021, 8:15 am

Move To Heaven review: Boy with Asperger's decodes messages from the dead

Move To Heaven is an original Netflix Korean drama that follows the story of Han Geu-ru (Tang Jun-sang), a 20-year-old with Asperger syndrome, who works as a trauma cleaner. The job scope of a trauma cleaner, simply put, is to clean up the belongings of the deceased — the final stage before the deceased “move to heaven”. But Geu-ru is taught by his father (Ji Jin-hee) to decipher the stories of the deceased based on the items left behind, just like solving a puzzle.

Due to his Asperger syndrome, Geu-ru has significant communication difficulties, often leading others to find him rather straightforward and “stupid”. Quite the contrary though, Geu-ru is far from stupid, as he has great logical skills and superb memory, which help him uncover truths and connect with the dead’s untold feelings.

One day, Geu-ru's father passes away suddenly from cardiac arrest, resulting in a major change to his familiar surroundings. With the help of his neighbour Yoon Na-mu (Hong Seung-hee), Geu-ru has to learn how to live and work with his estranged uncle Cho Sang-gu (Lee Je-hoon), who is now his legal guardian.

On the surface, the plot of Move To Heaven may seem rather morbid. But as Geu-ru dives deeper into the deceased’s life, each death is more than meets the eye. While cleaning up the house of the deceased, Geu-ru will put what he thinks is memorable or important into a yellow box, which he will then pass to the family or friends of the deceased. More often than not, in the yellow box lies a heart-wrenching tale to tell.

Although it is only natural to assume that a trauma cleaner is usually needed to clean up the homes of lonely elderly who lived and died alone, Move To Heaven expands the variety of the deaths to include people who died due to an accident, murder victims, and even those that lived with their parents. The services that Geu-ru’s team provides not just clean up the place, but also do things that the deceased’s family would rather not do, in case they dirty their hands, or feel sad looking at their belongings.

Beyond the plot, Tang’s portrayal of Geu-ru is something worth watching as well. Due to his peculiar antics, it is not difficult to find some scenes rather amusing. When Geu-ru is feeling overwhelmed, he would repeatedly bump his head against the wall or door, usually to the shock of a helpless Sang-gu. Sang-gu is then misunderstood by Na-mu as trying to hurt Geu-ru, even if Sang-gu is trying to stop Geu-ru.

Another thing to look out for is the character of Sang-gu. In the day, he works as a trauma cleaner, but he becomes an underground mixed martial arts fighter at night.

So Autistics have Theory of Mind Superpowers for dead people. Better tell that to Simon Baron Cohen :lol:

Professionally Identified and joined WP August 26, 2013
DSM 5: Autism Spectrum Disorder, DSM IV: Aspergers Moderate Severity.

“My autism is not a superpower. It also isn’t some kind of god-forsaken, endless fountain of suffering inflicted on my family. It’s just part of who I am as a person”. - Sara Luterman