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The Host (2006)
"Gwoemul" (original title)

R  |   |  Action, Drama, Horror  |  30 March 2007 (USA)
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Ratings: 7.0/10 from 65,014 users   Metascore: 85/100
Reviews: 277 user | 361 critic | 35 from Metacritic.com

A monster emerges from Seoul's Han River and focuses its attention on attacking people. One victim's loving family does what it can to rescue her from its clutches.



(screenplay), (screenplay) (as Jun-won Ha) , 1 more credit »
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20 wins & 15 nominations. See more awards »



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Credited cast:
Hie-bong Byeon ...
Park Hie-bong (as Byun Hee-bong)
Park Nam-il
Park Nam-Joo (as Bae Doo-na)
Park Hyun-seo (as Ko A-sung)
Dal-su Oh ...
The Monster (voice)
Jae-eung Lee ...
Dong-ho Lee ...
Je-mun Yun ...
Homeless Man
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Donald (as David Joseph Anselmo)
Martin Lord Cayce ...
U.S. Senator
Cristen Cho
Additional Voices (voice)
Paul Lazar ...
US Doctor trying to operate Gang-Du
Brian Lee


The film revolves around Park Hee-bong, a man in his late 60s. He runs a small snack bar on the banks of the Han River and lives with his two sons, one daughter, and one granddaughter. The Parks seem to lead a quite ordinary and peaceful life, but maybe they are a bit poorer than the average Seoulite. Hee-bong's elder son Gang-du is an immature and incompetent man in his 40s, whose wife left home long ago. Nam-il is the youngest son, an unemployed grumbler, and daughter Nam-joo is an archery medalist and member of the national team. One day, an unidentified monster suddenly appears from the depths of the Han River and spreads panic and death, and Gang-du's daughter Hyun-seo is carried off by the monster and disappears. All of the family members are in a great agony because they lost someone very dear to them. But when they find out she is still alive, they resolve to save her. Written by Plot Summary

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


It is Lurking Behind You See more »


Action | Drama | Horror | Sci-Fi

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for creature violence and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

30 March 2007 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Host  »

Box Office


KRW 12,215,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$314,488 (USA) (9 March 2007)


$2,201,412 (USA) (6 July 2007)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (DVD)

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


In the news montage that depicts public hysteria, the man following the shot of the Center for Disease Control is former Canadian deputy prime minister John Manley. See more »


US Doctor in Morgue: Mr. Kim,
[running a finger along the counter]
US Doctor in Morgue: I hate dust more than anything.
Young Korean Doctor: Oh, I will clean again.
US Doctor in Morgue: You don't have to clean up now. Why don't you dump this first?
Young Korean Doctor: That's formaline.
US Doctor in Morgue: Formaldehyde, to be precise. To be even more precise, dirty formaldehyde. Every bottle is coated with layers of dust. Pour 'em into the sink.
Young Korean Doctor: Excuse me?
US Doctor in Morgue: Just empty every bottle to the very last drop.
Young Korean Doctor: It's just - They are toxic chemicals, and the regulations state -
See more »

Crazy Credits

Just before the credits ends, you can hear a loud roar of the monster. See more »

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User Reviews

The best monster movie in years!
24 January 2008 | by (Beverley Hills, England) – See all my reviews

I have to admit that I was sceptical of the first reviews I read regarding 'The Host'. I'm not a fan of the majority of the modern day Asian horror output due to dull, yet immensely popular, films such as The Ring, Dark Water and The Grudge. The Host, however, is a film that truly deserves the praise lauded upon it. While the premise is not all that original (mutated monsters from all different countries have been terrorising our screens for decades); the style and execution of it is; and that is what makes the film brilliant. Not only is the direction stunning, the film beautiful and the central monster well designed; the way that Joon-ho Bong goes about telling this story is what really sets the film apart. On the surface, The Host is the story of a mutated squid monster that emerges from the Han River. However, beneath that it's actually the story of the Park family, who find themselves at odds with the Government after the youngest daughter is kidnapped by the monster. They're being held in quarantine, and decide to break out to track down their missing loved one...

On the whole, I'm not a big fan of CGI; but I can't complain too much here. The monster is really well designed and doesn't look like any other screen monster that I've seen. The animation of it is excellent too, and the creature does almost feel like it's alive! As mentioned, the main meat of the film comes in the form of the story of the Park family who have lost their loved one. The characters are all well thought out and clearly defined and director Joon-ho Bong does an excellent job of ensuring that we care about them and about the central story. The monster appears several times throughout the film, though it's neither under or over used and the story of the family is at least as interesting as the monster itself. There's also a deeper point on display, although it doesn't have quite as much meat as was maybe intended. The two messages I could pick out were a warning message against pollution (the monster was created by chemicals being dumped in the river) and another about Government control. The central scene is the one that sees the monster first appear from the river and The Host never really tops that sequence; but regardless of that this is the best monster movie I've seen in years and not even the downer ending could wipe a smile off my face when it finished. Don't miss this one!

64 of 88 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Am I missing something? brodkej
Why is this movie called The Host? rocc18
about the hidden messages ppl could possibly miss in the movie kintaro02
A terribly sad and yet funny movie bluedragon8777
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