Tag Archives: South Korea

Thailand & South Korea join forces for new horror The Medium

Wow! I got some great news for all you Asian horror movie lovers! Thai director Banjong Pisanthanakun and South Korean director turned producer Na Hong-jin have joined forces for a new horror movie The Medium

Banjong Pisanthanakun who is best known for co-directing the supernatural Thai horror film Shutter is back with a fresh new terrifying tale.

Produced and developed by South Korean director Na Hong-jin. If you are a fan of South Korean cinema then Hong-jin is a name you will all be familiar with. He has been responsible for writing & directing great flicks including The Chaser, The Yellow Sea and The Wailing. If you somehow have managed to miss the above-mentioned flicks, I highly recommend checking them out. They helped pave the way for an endless love of Asian cinema.

Nah Hong-jin is the founder of the production company Nothern Cross. The Medium will be the first movie produced under his new production banner.

PLOT

The Medium is described as a horrifying story of a shaman’s inheritance in the Isan region of Thailand. But the goddess that appears to have taken possession of a family member turns out not be as benevolent as it first appears.

Image from new Thai horror The Medium

The Medium is definitely one to watch out for. These two guys are quite the filmmaking team. It can only mean good things, right?.

We have releases like Satans Slaves, May The Devil Take You 1&2, The Queen Of Black Magic. Can The Medium offer us something refreshing in the possession sub-genre? I think it can.

Currently in post-production with FineCut Productions in charge of international distribution. More news to follow when it is announced. As always, thanks for reading.

Article by GG 
Founder/Owner/BigCheese @ Moviehooker
Source: The Hollywood Reporter
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New Asian Films You Should Know About (Japan & South Korea)

We are back again with another brand new list of films for you all. This list will focus on Asian films that I think you should know about. I hope you enjoy it.

For this list we just focus on new upcoming releases from Japan and South Korea. Stay tuned for a new list of movies from different parts of asia including indonesia, India, Cambodia, Thailand and Vietnam. Let’s get to it!

THE FABLE

New Asian Movies You Should Know About 2021 Moviehooker List The Fable

Based on a manga series of the same name, The Fable tells the story of a legendary hitman called Akira, known to everyone else as The Fable.

After years of hard work, killing and commitment, Akira is ordered to take some much-needed time off to relax.

With a part-time job at a design company, Akira’s assassin days seem to be a thing of the past. But his past comes back to haunt him when he finds out that another assassin named Suzuki is targeting someone at the company.

THE CINDERELLA ADDICTION (Melancholy)

Written and directed by Ryohei Watanabe (Shady, Sailor Zombies).

The story of a woman who loses everything she has in one single night and finds herself at the end of the line.

After falling in love again in what seems like a fairytale setting, she commits a horrendous and vicious crime that couldn’t be further from the new life she believes she is leading.

And what a fantastically creepy poster!

BRAVE: GUNJYO SENKI

A group of elite archery students find themselves thrown back in time to the 1500s’ Samurai-era Sengoku Japan.

Not only must they battle ancient samurai warriors but they are about to enter the famous Battle of Okehazama

Also based on a manga series of the same name.

RIDE OR DIE (no poster available)

Ride or Die is a new Japanese murder mystery movie with a crazy psychotic female thinking killing is ok…if you’re doing it for love.

The film focuses or two women, Rei and Nanae. Rei has been in love with Nanae for as long as she can remember.

Things take a crazy turn when Rei kills someone saying she done it in the name of love for Nanae.

Although terrified of Rei, Nanae still risks everything to save Rei from herself and from hurting others.

HOMUNCULUS

New Asian Movies You Should Know About Homunculus Moviehooker Movie List

Based on a hugely successful Manga of the same name and from the creator of ICHI THE KILLER.

Homunculus tells the story of a 34-year-old homeless man Susumu Nakoshi who agrees to undergo an experiment to earn some much-needed cash.

He agrees to have a hole drilled in the centre of his head in a procedure known as trepanation. This experimental and highly dangerous procedure opens up parts of the brain and improves its functions beyond normal human capacity.

After awakening from the operation, he finds that he can now see two different sides to people through each eye. Through one eye, he sees what we see but with his left eye, he sees a much darker, evil and sinister version of that person. He learns that what he is seeing is the dark side of someones dark sub-conscious.

Described as extreme psychological horror. And guess what? it is coming to Netflix this April.

SIGNAL THE MOVIE

Signal (series poster)

South Korean series, Signal is a hugely popular time-bending detective drama about cops on the hunt for a serial killer.

I am guessing you will wanna watch series before you delve into the movie. Both seasons are now available on Netflix.

Like Bong Joon Ho’s Memories of Murder, Signal deals with the same serial killer that inspired Joon’ Ho’s classic.

UNDERDOG

Underdog New Asian Movies You Should Know About

Underdog tells the story of three boxers all from different backgrounds; A struggling boxer, a boxer who grew up in an orphanage and one who is getting a documentary made about him for a comeback fight.

A sports drama infused with some amazing fighting choreography and action.

THE LEGACY OF DR DEATH: BLACK FILE

New Asian Movies You Should Know About Legacy Of Dr Death: Black File

A new Japanese serial killer drama about a doctor who killed his patients. Based on the true story of a doctor who euthanised over 130 patients

Based on the novel The Legacy of Dr. Death by Shichiri Nakayama. Directed by Yoshihiro Fukagawa

That’s it for this list. We hope we have hooked you up with some new future-viewing. As always, thanks for reading.

Article by GG
Founder/Owner/BigCheese @ Moviehooker.  
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New to Netflix South Korean sci-fi thriller The Call (review)

The Call is now available to stream on Netflix

The Call is a new South Korean sci-fi/thriller. When I say ‘sci-fi’, I mean that in the lightest way imaginable. It’s far from sci-fi but it does have some time-bending between the past and present. So, what else can I call it?. Above everything, it is a thriller and quite a dark and unique thriller too.

The Call featured on a recent Moviehooker movie of upcoming Asian films to watch out for and thankfully, we were right, The Call is definitely a film you wanna be checking out.

Every time Seo-Yeon’s house phone rings, Young-Sook is on the other end of the line. The thing is, the call is coming from inside of her house, not only that, the call is also coming from 1999. Seo-Yeon is able to chat with Young-Sook and prevent fate from happening. But by changing the past, a new future must be written, Seo-Yeon quickly realises that the past should have remained unchanged.

A very entertaining film, well written, beautifully shot and directed with two great performances from Oh Jeong-Se & Jong-seo Jun.

The Call looks to be the feature-length directorial debut from Lee Chung-Hyun. This is the second unique South Korean thriller I have seen in the past week with the first being Beasts Clawing At Straws. Chung-hyun has one more directing credit for, Bargain, a short film from 2015. Most definitely another new name to be watching out for.

I also have to point out that the Netflix synopsis spoils what I thought was a crucial reveal in the film. So, if this is all you know about it then don’t read the plot before you press play so you can enjoy it properly without any spoilers.

As always, thanks for reading.

Article by GG
Founder/Owner/BigCheese @ Moviehooker

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Beasts Clawing At Straws Review

Beasts Clawing At Straws is a stylish, dark & clever directorial debut from Kim Yong-hoon

Beasts Clawing at Straws focuses on multiple characters throughout its runtime. But out of all the cast, our main character is a bag of money. The story is told through different segments, each chapter introduces us to a new character and their story.

With so many characters getting the same amount of screen time, you would think Beasts Clawing at Straws would be an absolute mess. This ain’t the case at all, not only does the film make sense, you’re genuinely jaw-dropped at some of the reveals.

This is a unique, bleak and super stylish noir thriller. Beasts Clawing At Straws is also full of odd, dark humour. To be honest, it is very Coen Brothers and I mean that in the best possible way.

If you’re looking for the violence that used to come with gritty South Korean films, then you won’t find that in Beasts Clawing at Straws. It’s not that there isn’t any violence, there is plenty of it. There is still a satisfying kill-count but director/writer Kim Yong-hoon leaves it up to the sound design and FX department to deliver the death scenes, mainly off-screen.

This is an astonishing directorial debut which makes Kim Yong-hoon a name to watch out for. Yong-hoon’s previous work included stunt work on the great South Korean action/thriller/comedy Secretly Greatly. He is also listed for creative content contribution on 2012’s, The Thieves.

If you like, you can check out the trailer below but I would recommend not watching it at all. I have kept this review spoiler-free to try and give you the same viewing experience as myself. All you need to know is that it’s about a bag of money with multiple characters. Go watch it!

Beasts Clawing at Straws is available to stream on December 15th

Distributor – Artsploitation Films
Director – Kim Yong-hoon
Writer – Kim Yong-hoon
Cast – Jeon Do-yeon, Jung Woo-sung, Bae Sung-woo , Yun Yuh-jung, Jung Man-sik, Jin Gyeong, Shin Hyun-been, Kim Jun-han, Jung Ga-ram, Park Ji-hwan, Heo Dong-won, Bae Jin-woong, Jang Eui-don

As always, thanks for reading.

Words by GG
Founder/Owner/BigCheese @ Moviehooker
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Secret Zoo Film Review: A lighthearted comedy that definitely hit the mark

Son Jae-Gon keeps making contributions to the comedy genre (The Man Who Saw Too Much, My Scary Girl, Villain and Widow), now with a trendy but beautiful message in it; in this Globalized World, there is still people with principles who believe we can coexist with Mother Nature.

Even when it has some cliches, you can find some originality in it.

It’s based on the webtoon “I Don’t Bully You” by Hun.

The film begins with Tae-soo, who works in a temp position in a very well-known law firm; he is a bottom feeder there, of course he wants to impress his boss and the opportunity comes as the new Dongsan Park Zoo Director; he has to revitalize the failed zoo in 3 months so that the firm can make more money by selling it to another client, the problem is… there are no animals and he has no budget.

He comes up with the idea of making animal costumes for the staff to wear and fool people, until they make enough money to get their animals back.

They are not doing well until a happy accident happens, a marketing strategy in real life that helps them go viral and start having hundreds of visitors; at times it feels like they are sponsored by certain brand of carbonated drinks, still is funny how people enjoy the show, even when sometimes they are rude.

It seems it would be easy but we need a villain, in this case the Law Firm, which will become greedy and reveal their true plans.

I think by now, we all know what will happen, but is still a really fun ride to see and laugh with the characters; I would see it’s 98% family friendly because it has a few “adult jokes” but nothing outrageous.

I enjoyed the performances, cast is fantastic in their characters, very charming; the animal costumes are incredible well made, they look realistic… I think the polar bear looks more realistic than “Black Nose”, the “real” polar bear (CGI) in the movie.

If you are looking for a fun movie to enjoy, I highly recommend Secret Zoo.

Cast includes: Ahn Jae-Hong, Kang So-ra, Park Yeong-gyu, Kim Sung-oh and Jeon Yeo-been

You can watch it in Korean with subtitles in English and English SDH or dubbed in English.

Secret Zoo it’s already available on VOD and DVD.

Watch the trailer here:

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The Top Ten South Korean TV Shows On Netflix

We are back with another list of awesome content on Netflix. Below, in no particular order are the Top Ten Best South Korean TV Shows On Netflix

If you haven’t already, you should be checking out the amazing South Korean content on Netflix. If you’re a fan of SK films then get ready to be submerged in hours of highly-addictive crime, drama, comedy and horror. These are Moviehooker’s Top Ten Best South Korean TV Shows on Netflix. We hope you enjoy

KINGDOM

Ok, chances are, you’ve already checked out Kingdom. But without a shadow of a doubt, it is one of the best things on Netflix

The series focuses on a rare flower that has resurrection powers which bring the dead back to life. Kingdom has a huge budget, full of jaw-dropping set pieces, gore and action. Series two was released last year with a third season coming in 2021

There is also a one-off episode titled Kingdom: Ashin Of The North that will also be released before we get season 3. The one-off special is based on the short Burning Hell and will tell the origin story of the resurrection flower.

TUNNEL

A detective is somehow thrown 30-years into the future. While searching for clues in 1986, detective Park Gwang-ho finds himself in modern-day South Korea in 2016.

This show has a bit of everything. A highly-addictive series that ticks all the boxes making this one of the best crime shows there is.

SIGNAL

Another K-drama that deals with the past and present. Two detectives, one from the past and one in present-day both work to bring down a serial killer.

The crimes portrayed in Signal are based on the real-life murders that inspired many South Korean films including Bong Joon-ho’s phenomenal Memories of Murder.

THE GOOD DETECTIVE

The Good Detective focuses on two cops; Oh Ji Hyuk, a fresh graduate from the Korean National Police University and detective Gang Do Chang who is known for his hard work, dedication to the force and conviction records.

When a man is wrongly convicted of the murder of a young woman and sentenced to death Detective Oh Ji Hyuk finds new evidence proving his innocence.

But with this newfound evidence, Detective Gang Do Chang who was the arresting officer must admit that he was wrong. This ignites a search for the truth to free the wrongly convicted man from death row. Detective Gang Do Chang isn’t ready to admit his errors and tries to cover his tracks.

This a brand new Netflix series that just arrived less than a week ago.

STRANGER

Stranger is more of a political drama dealing with corruption from the highest levels of power. The series focuses on prosecutor Hwang Shi Mok as he tries to bring down those responsible for a murder where a man died in a frenzied knife attack.

Our main protagonist is highly intelligent and almost void of any emotion after having an operation as a kid because he was using too much of his brain. The only problem is, he also carries the traits of a psychopath.

Season 2 just landed a couple of months ago.

GO TO THE NEXT PAGE FOR MORE EXCITING CONTENT

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Kingdom: Ashin Of The North takes us to the origin of infection

Kingdom: Ashin of the North coming in 2021

Kingdom was one of the first Netflix Original‘s to get a season 2 confirmed even before the first episode of season one aired. Netflix knew they had a winner on their hands, and hey, who doesn’t like a good, refreshing zombie series?

In Kingdom, the series dealt with a king that was kept behind closed doors. Rumours spread fast that their king was sick, suffering from a degenerative disease. The truth was, he was a victim to a new plague-like virus caused by a rare flower.

This virus turns anyone it comes in contact with to a zombie…actually, the great thing about Kingdom is that they ain’t really zombies. They carry many of the same traits, decomposition, the craving and need to feed on human flesh. But they also hate sunlight and stay hidden away during daylight hours and come out to feed at night. So, to me, they’re called ZomPires.

It makes perfect sense for Netflix to release more. Kingdom: Ashin Of The North is more of an origin story and goes back to when this venomous and evil flower was first discovered. The only downside to Kingdom: Ashin Of The North is that its a one-off episode. I am not sure of the run-time as of yet but I can bet it’s going to be feature-length, and hey! I am more than ok with that. Also, it is going to be good to give us something while we wait for the third season.

Here is the short teaser trailer. I hope you enjoy it.

For those of you that are unaware, Kingdom is based off a webcomic called The Kingdom Of The Gods. The new episode is based on a short story set in the same universe called, Burning Hell.

More to follow as new is announced. As always, thanks for reading.

Words by GG
Founder/Owner/BigCheese @ Moviehooker

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New South Korean + Japanese Movies Coming 2020/21

A mix of genre films all from Japan and South Korea

It has been a while since I have put a list of South Korean & Japanese movies together for you. Below you will find a list of films coming your way in 2020/21. I hope you enjoy.

Voice Of Silence (South Korea)

Two men work for criminal organisations as crime-scene cleaners. They both receive a job which involves them in the kidnapping of an 11-year-old child.

From what I can see, it looks dark with some elements of comedy. I am not too sure about the comedy side of things but when done right, South Korea can mix them both while still delivering an engaging and fast-paced thriller (check out A Taxi Driver if you haven’t…that’s a perfect example).

Voice Of Silence co-stars Ah-In Yoo who starred in South Korea’s best zombie movie of 2020 #ALIVE

Hope (Japan)

Soon after a young kid goes missing, the parents get the authorities involved in fear that someone may have kidnapped him. Not long after his disappearance, a murder is reported. The person that was murdered was in the same class as the missing child. Evidence then points out that the missing kid may have something to do with the murder of his classmate.

Based on a Japanese novel, Nozomi released in 2016

Tokyo Revengers

The film focuses on a girl getting murdered by a criminal gang. This news deeply affects Takemichi who was once in love with the slain girl. After an accident, Takemichi is then thrown 10-years into the past. He tries to prevent this murder from ever happening. But with changing fate, the consequences are unknown. Someone else will die in her place and Takeimichi soon realises that things should have stayed the way they were.

Tokyo Revengers is based on a Manga of the same name.

Call (S Korea)

The story of two women whose lives are connected and thrown out of control when they receive a mysterious phone call.

When Seo Yeon moves back home she finds an old phone in the house. When she connects the phone, someone else is on the other end of the line. Seo Yeon realizes that the caller is calling from the same house, only they are 20-years apart.

Bolt (Japan)

At first glance, Bolt looks like a typical nuclear disaster movie. One that we have all seen before in movies like South Korean masterpiece Pandora.

While we do have a similar story about a nuclear meltdown, Bolt is explored through three different segments; Bolt, Life & Good Year. Each segment dealing with a different character caught in the middle of the meltdown.

The End Of The Tiny World (Japan)

Kida, Makoto & Yocchi have been friends since childhood. They have a strong bond as all three of them have grown up as orphans. Their lives change forever after they are involved in an event by a criminal gang. Years later, they are all major players in the criminal world but this has been their plan all along, they want revenge for what happened to them all those years ago

The Voice Of Sin (Japan)

The Voice of Sin deals with a journalist investigating an old crime that took place decades ago. A group of people were extorting cash from a number of companies. Their method for extortion was using violence which was enforced by a Japanese criminal gang. When two people find strange cassettes of the crimes their lives are drastically changed forever.

The Voice of Sin is based on an award-winning novel “Tsumi no Koe” by Takeshi Shiota which was released in 2016. The novel is based on a real extortion case that took part in the 80s.

The Werewolf Game: Death Game Operator (Japan)

This one could be my favourite from the list. And I had no idea, this seems like a franchise with the first film released in 2013. I have started reading a little about the movies. Ok, so some ain’t as good as the books it is based on…but hey what’s new?

In a way, the premise reminds of the fantastic Tzameti. I really don’t wanna go into too much here, for both our benefits. The film deals with some sort of game of death. People are kidnapped and forced to participate in a game with the rich & powerful betting on their lives.

The Werewolf Game: Death Game Operator is based on a novel called Jinro Gemu: Death Game.

That’s it for this list. Make sure to check back soon for more exciting content. As always, thanks for reading. Happy Halloween and stay safe wherever you may be!

Words by GG
Founder/Owner/BigCheese @ Moviehooker
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ALIVE: Need Another South Korean Zombie Movie Before Peninsula Releases?

Alive (살아있다) is a new South Korean zombie flick that (hopefully) will be releasing soon.

What I got from the trailer for Alive was a similar vibe to French zombie film The Night Eats The World. Starring Yoo Ah-in who starred alongside Steven Yeun in the critically acclaimed thriller Burning, Alive looks pretty damn impressive…if you’re into films with a minimal cast.

Two Neighbors who live in separate apartment complexes must join forces to battle an infection that has turned everyone in the city into the undead. The trailer looks like a lot of fun.

Alive has a release date for June. It was supposedly dropping into cinemas on June 24th. I don’t have to go into detail here, as we all know that all upcoming cinema releases are uncertain due to the COVID outbreak. So, here’s hoping we get to see Alive sooner rather than later.

The script is based off a script called Alone by Matt Naylor. The screenplay was then adapted by both Naylor and director, Cho Il-hyung to suit the Korean audience. This looks to be Matt Naylor’s feature-film writing debut. His other work has been in short films and documentaries.

South Korea is known for taking a simple zombie premise and transforming it into something epic. Movies like Train To Busan, Seoul Station and The Odd Family: Zombie On Sale are great examples of this.

We now also know that James Wan is going to produce the American remake of Train To Busan. Way too early to be passing any sort of judgement. I think Wan has some great movies. I just ain’t a fan of them all. I personally think he will get the right people on board to do the original justice.

As always, thanks for reading.

Enjoy The Trailer For ALIVE

Alive Trailer from EonTalk
Words by Gary Gamble
Founder.Owner.BigCheese @ MovieHooker

You can check out other zombie film news and reviews from the links below

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Strangers From Hell: Netflix Review

I am still in shock at how good this South Korean series Strangers From Hell was…I mean JUST WOW! It is so good to be able to write about something that is so weird, so dark, and at times…so brutal!

Strangers From Hell is based on a Webtoon of the same name by Kim Yong Ki

It tells the story of, Yoon Jong-woo (Si-wan Im). A man in his 20s’ and aspiring writer that moves to Seoul to start on his crime novel. He has been set up with a new job as an intern in a theatre arts promo company by his good friend, so things are off to a good start.

After searching tirelessly for an apartment, he finds that everything is out of his budget. Then he comes across an ad for affordable accommodation. It’s a place called the Eden Residence which is run by this sweet, nice old lady. The room is a shithole, there ain’t any other way to describe it. It is cramped, there’s mould, no window and the walls are thinner than paper. As well as a horrible room, Yoon Jong-woo also has to share a bathroom, shower and the kitchen.

It ain’t long before he meets the other residents in Eden and Yoon Jong-woo immediately notices that something is most definitely not right.

I am not gonna go into the characters because I went into this show, blind, not knowing a single thing about the story

That and, of course, it was from South Korea. I don’t say this lightly but for us, fans of SK flicks like I Saw The Devil, The Chaser…all those vicious pieces of cinematic gold, Strangers From Hell has bits of everything. It might seem a little unrealistic at times but when it all comes together, we’re treated to one the strongest psychological thrillers a fan could hope for.

Strangers From Hell consists of 10-episodes. Each episode lasts roughly an hour. And, man what a finale. Trust me, stop what you’re doing and start your binge!

This Netflix series defo gets full marks – no joke – a solid 10/10

GG – Moviehooker

Words by Gary Gamble
Founder/Owner/BigCheese @ Moviehooker

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