From Confession of Murder to The Villainess: Assassins, Westerns and Gangs: The Top 10 Action Films from Korea | The Fan Carpet

From Confession of Murder to The Villainess: Assassins, Westerns and Gangs: The Top 10 Action Films from Korea


15 September 2017

Trained killer Sook-hee is the architect of an unforgettable opening sequence, breathtakingly shot from a first person point-of-view, as she breaks into a warehouse and lays waste to the multitude of thugs contained within. Not only does The Villainess depict breath-taking action sequences and comic-book violence, but a personal look at the emotional cost of her actions.

Over the last 5 years, Korean filmmakers have made a profound impact with many of their films causing a stir in the western world.

To celebrate the release of Byung-gil Jung’s The Villainess in UK cinemas and digitally on 15th September, we have compiled a breakdown must-see Korean action films...

 

 

The Villainess (2017)
Trained killer Sook-hee is the architect of an unforgettable opening sequence, breathtakingly shot from a first person point-of-view, as she breaks into a warehouse and lays waste to the multitude of thugs contained within. Not only does The Villainess depict breath-taking action sequences and comic-book violence, but a personal look at the emotional cost of her actions.

 

 

A Bittersweet Life (2005)
Set in Seoul, this thrilling gangster movie is a story of revenge, action and love, combining the quick paced nature of the genre with elegantly choreographed violence. A Bittersweet Life follows the aftermath of how witnessing a secret can cause an irreversible war involving a whole gang.

 

 

The Good, the Bad and the Weird (2008)
The Good, the Bad and the Weird takes the form of a Western, but set in the wilderness of Manchuria. The film follows three contrasting characters, a thief, a hitman and a bounty hunter, all scavenging for the buried treasure of the Qing dynasty. The sprawling landscape and hyper-violent action pairs for an epic Korean action film.

 

 

Okja (2017)
Addressing the bond between man and animal, Okja follows the young girl Mija in her quest to save her best friend. A tale primarily about the humanity of man, this film incorporates the action genre as Mija has to overcome the obstacles of capitalists, demonstrators and consumers. Although not as violent as some of the others that have made our top 10, Okja balances quality action scenes with well-crafted, impactful narrative.

 

 

City of Violence (2006)
Suspecting a secret about his friend’s death, Tae-su’s investigations lead to an encounter with his former gang involving high-energy violence of knuckles, blades and Korean martial arts. With some surprising comic elements to this suspenseful mystery, it embarks on its own take on a Korean action film, and definitely worth a spot in our top 10.

 

 

Shiri (2002)
An intense political and psychological thriller, Shiri depicts two top secret agents on a mission to catch an arms smuggler. Concentrating primarily on love and terrorism in Korea the narrative has international consequences and an interesting twist.

 

 

Roughcut (2008)
Not just your average gangster movie, this complex narrative depicts Gang-pae, an aspiring actor, and Soo-ta, an actor aspiring to the life of a gang member. As their paths cross this film takes the real world violence of gang culture into the production world, where action is usually a well-choreographed representation of violence.

 

 

Man from Nowhere (2010)
A tale of an unlikely bond. Giving up a life of solitude and retirement, Tae-Shik helps his neighbour to find a kidnapped girl, only to find his methods put him in the hot seat with the law. This revenge filled thriller has tension injected throughout and is a great addition to the action genre coming out of Korea.

 

 

The Berlin File (2013)
The Berlin File is an exhilarating action film, looking at the complications and hierarchy of government, conflicting loyalties and secret agendas. It follows one agent, Myung-soo, balancing love for his country and his wife who becomes implicated along the way.

 

 

Confession of Murder (2013)
From the director of The Villainess comes dark and compelling Confessions of Murder, following a man who confesses to a series of murders that may be out of the statute of limitations. The aftermath of this truth spirals the obsession for justice from the press and the victim’s families. This fantastic thriller exhibits prototype stunts that were great practice sequences for the quality scenes and major fight sequences we witness in The Villainess.

 

 

The Villainess Film Page

THE VILLAINESS is releasing to UK Cinemas and on Digital on 15th September

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