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Chugyeogja
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Reviews & Ratings for
The Chaser More at IMDbPro »Chugyeogja (original title)

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171 out of 200 people found the following review useful:

Based on the true story

10/10
Author: Jake Kong from Republic of Korea
21 June 2008

Few years ago Korean society was shocked by a horrible serial killer mayhem. Dozen of call-girls are disappeared and never returned when they visited unknown customer. The serial killer also murdered innocent old men and women on his loose. After caught of serial killer the revealed fact was beyond one's imagination. He killed girls with hammer, chisel and amputated the victims. Some of them were cannibalized. He mashed victim's liver with food processors and drank it. Now the serial killer is sentenced to death and his existence throw serious questions about execution of death sentenced prisoner to the Korean society. For ten years Korean government never executed prisoners and now UN approved Korea as a No Execution country.

This movie is a product of these social circumstance. Of course any modernized country can have notorious serial killers. But this is most brutal and abominable criminal act as reported to the public.

Another phenomena described in this movie are the inactive police act and ugly politician. Koreans are very disappointed at this and this movie is quite accurately visualized the situation.

Whether or not crime is the best motif for movie and this movie successfully hold the breath of viewers. I am waiting another movie from this director.

Good work.

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133 out of 173 people found the following review useful:

Stunning, gripping, amazing. Wow, what a movie.

10/10
Author: Mister Buggz from Netherlands
28 June 2008

After the two very positive comments I decided to watch this movies. At this point the movie has 59 votes. So I didn't expect much from the movie. I was asking myself the question: "How can a movie from South Korea with only 59 votes deserve a 8,9? " But after watching the movie I can say this is one of the very best movies EVER made. I have been watching movies for quite some time now. And I have seen almost all movies from the IMDb top 250. But this movie deserves to be in the top 20. No question about it, no exaggeration. Just look at my vote statistics and you will see that only gave a few movies a ten.

So what's the story of the movie? A former detective who is now a pimp, thinks 2 of his girls ran away from him. So he tries to find those girls. After some research he learns the truth is a little bit different. From that point on, the movie never loses your grip. Never get's dull. Always keeps you right on the edge of your chair. For the rest, you really gotta see it. I won't spoil any of your viewing pleasure by telling you too much about the story.

The other comment said something about a horror element, and a bit gore. But in my opinion there is no horror. Sure there is some blood, but it doesn't play a big part.

So, why are you still reading my comment. Go and see where you can watch this movie!!

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112 out of 140 people found the following review useful:

One of the best thrillers I have ever seen

10/10
Author: Ata-2 from LA
30 June 2008

If the remake of Infernal Affairs (The Departed) won all those Oscars then a re-make of this movie will surely clean up. Its one of those movies that just doesn't let up. At any given time there are at least three threads to the story, each of which keeps you on the edge of your seat. I actually had to stop it at one point so I could calm down a bit.

The acting by everyone involved is very believable and that makes it quite harrowing at points. I don't want to give away a single thing about the story but what I can say is that its an absolutely brilliant twist on a story that has been done many times before.

If you are going to see just one foreign film this year then let it be this one.

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70 out of 83 people found the following review useful:

I rank this movie in my top three greatest thriller/serial killer movies of all time somewhere between "Seven" and "Silence of the Lambs"

10/10
Author: Logan G from United States
23 March 2010

What a movie. When I rented this movie I didn't know what to expect. It is usually is a hit or miss for Korean movies but this was a grand slam out of the park type of movie. The film is about a former detective turn pimp trying to catch a serial killer who is killing his prostitutes. It's a big cat and mouse game between the two throughout the whole movie. The plot sounds thin but there is so much more than what meets the eye. This is one of the best thriller/serial killer movies I have ever seen and I don't want to say too much about the plot because it is very edge of your seat kind of stuff. The film never drags and it becomes more intriguing the more you watch and you feel like you know the character because the actors portray them so well. This is a very violent and gruesome film that shouldn't be viewed by the squeamish even though there isn't that many bloody scenes for being a serial killer movie. The movie achieves so much more with less, which hardly ever works in films that need violence to be a success. I wish that Hollywood or even European films would have the brass to make a film this unique and daring at the same time. The thing that this film has going for it the most is that it's wonderfully erratic. You can never guess what is going to happen next and that is the reason why Korean movies are so fantastically entertaining. I rank this movie in my top three greatest thriller/serial killer movies of all time somewhere between "Seven" and "Silence of the Lambs". The characters of this film really flesh out the story and let you jump right in. I can't help but stress the point that this film is very unpredictable and the style of the story telling is subtle but very effective. This film is a sure bet and you will not leave disappointed.

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43 out of 53 people found the following review useful:

The Hillside Hammer Basher

9/10
Author: ElijahCSkuggs from Happy Land, who lives in a Gumdrop House on Lolly Pop Lane
8 January 2009

The Chaser revolves around an ex-detective turned pimp who's under serious stress when he finds out his girls are being sold by a mysterious client. He goes on the chase to find this guy and put an end to his missing girls...and missing money. What begins to unfold is something him, the police or anyone for that matter, were unprepared to take on.

Time and time again the film-makers from South Korea succeed and The Chaser is no different. With believable writing, fantastic acting (especially the lead who reminded me of Min Sik Choi) and an air of originality, Chaser easily became one of my favorite flicks of 2008. With side-stories aplenty, an evil villain and some brutal violence this is something any fan of darker film should enjoy.

If you enjoy serious drama, investigation films, serial killers, great acting, you'll definitely enjoy this picture. I just wished they had a different title for the film. I like my title better. :)

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32 out of 38 people found the following review useful:

Korean thriller on the chase to stop a violent serial killer

8/10
Author: Joe from United Kingdom
20 September 2008

Korean cinema does it again. "The Chaser" is another great movie from the Korean film stable. The plot stems around an amoral ex-cop turned pimp who after losing some of his "working girls" decides to track down and find the client behind this. He ends up finding himself involved in more than he bargained for, with the client being a serial killer, and its then a chase to find his last girl sent to him whilst the police also try to pin him down but are hampered by legal red tape and politics.

As you'd expect from a Korean film from the cop thriller genre it can be very violent, and there's no denying that for this film, however thankfully it doesn't overshadow the rest of the movie. The chase is on, and the roller coaster of emotions following the pimp and the cops trying to stop the serial killer is nothing less than gripping, watching them go from one success to despair in short spaces of time. The tension is high and will tug on you right to the end.

Importantly there is a lot of humour. The main character (Joong-ho Eom) is incredibly dry-witted, and is a release valve for the tension in the film. As he carries the film, the acting is important, and both he and the serial killer are exceptionally good. Can't argue with either or even the general ensemble.

There is possibly an American re-make in the offing. Fair enough I guess as that's become the norm now, but I hope it doesn't dilute the central story or the action. This film is a great gem, and follows on from some of the other greats in the genre such as "Memories of a Murder" which is a classic. It will unsettle but for an intelligent thriller, it really is up there with the best in the past few years.

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38 out of 50 people found the following review useful:

Listen to Mister Buggz

10/10
Author: kosmasp
30 September 2008

That's another user or commentator, here on IMDb. And his last sentence is "Go and watch the movie". I fully stand behind this, because this was one of the best movies I've watched this year (at the Fright Fest in London).

There's only a little thing that you should bare in mind: If you actually don't like Korean (or Asian movies for that matter), than this won't be for you. Especially if you like your movies to be according to a somewhat linear structure. While with other movies of this nature, you might foresee things happening, I was baffled (in a good way) with the directions this movie took. Very brave choices and a great script. The actors of course are phenomenal too. It all fits together in one whole perfect piece. If you like your thrillers to be ... well thrilling, than this is the one to watch!

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39 out of 54 people found the following review useful:

Latest & Greatest Korean Film

10/10
Author: cz215 from Alpha Centauri
13 June 2008

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

First of all, let me start by saying that this movie clearly is one of the best movies that I have ever seen, providing a totally different approach to a horror/ Thriller / Crime genre. What's amazing about this movie is that it lets you know who is the killer right from the start. It shows what its cards are, but it still controls the game completely from the beginning to end, without ever giving out any dully moment.

Having loved some of the recent Korean movies such as 'Memories of Murder' 'Old Boy' 'The Host' etc, I had a high expectation of this movie after a strong recommendation from my Korean friend, who advised me not to take my pregnant wife to the movie due to gory violence.

It is indeed gory, but at least the scenes stop before the actual execution of bloody things, such as hammering a huge nail into a victim's head, etc. I guess it's less violent that the Saw series.

Fantastic direction (from a rookie director), fantastic acting & a fantastic thriller. What a winner.

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32 out of 43 people found the following review useful:

An Audience View - A great thriller from the Korea film industry

9/10
Author: jj_okocha_87 from Singapore
19 November 2008

This is most probably the best Asian movies that i have ever seen. I did not expect much when i went to watch the movie but boy was i wrong. I was fully satisfied with this film because it had everything. The movie had suspense, action and abit of humour put into it The hero in this movie did not look like the hero that everyone is used to, he is rude,total disregard of other people's feeling and most of all he is selfish and only thinks about money and himself.But as we go along through this movie, we discover that he does have a conscience and goes out one of the girls he sent to the maniacal and psychotic killer in the movie.

The cast in the movie gave a solid and believable performance especially ha jung woo as the villain in this movie.He showed no remorse or feel any guilt in killing those people.Overall this movie is great and if you like to watch any Asian movie, than this should be the one for you

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28 out of 38 people found the following review useful:

Suspenseful, thrilling and funny, S Korea is at it again

9/10
Author: sitenoise from http://sitenoise-atthemovies.blogspot.com/
3 August 2008

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This film is so Korean. The way it is shot and the way the story is told doesn't conform to the way many Americans think genre clues should be presented and adhered to. At it's heart, The Chaser is a crime drama about a serial killer and the guy who's chasing him, but it evolves from many different angles. It's a comedy of errors in the way the police and politicians are portrayed; a melodrama with its inclusion of the precocious little girl who belongs to the woman serving as the film's primary "chase" and investigative point; a psychological thriller in the way the serial killer messes with the minds of the police; a mildly gory film in the way the bad guy uses a hammer and chisel; a bit of a tragedy in the way it ends. The only thing missing from this film is romance. Thank god they didn't make one of the missing girls a love interest of the pimp—he's only after the money they owe him. That's where the brilliance of the chase begins.

There's a fight scene early on where our protagonist, an ex-detective gone bad turned pimp, is beating the crap out of some guy he thinks has kidnapped and sold some of his girls. A long uphill foot chase precedes the brawl so both combatants are extremely winded when the fighting begins—punches don't land and there's a girly incompetence to the whole thing, which is to say, it's realistic. After finally landing a few punches that subdue his opponent momentarily, the pimp gets up and starts kicking him in disgust. He's very angry, still a bit winded and out of control. One of his kicks only grazes its target causing him to lose his balance and fall on his butt, and because of momentum he begins to roll and his feet fly up in the air. It seems funny, but it's not. You have to sneak in your chuckle as he gets up and continues kicking the guy. When he's finally pummeled his adversary into unconsciousness, he uses his foot to roll him onto his side so he can get to the wallet in his back pocket and ID him. He attempts to sit on him, not to keep him down, but because he's bone tired from all the fighting. He doesn't land squarely and ends up rolling on his butt again. It seems funny but it's not.

After the fight scene both men are brought to the police station for questioning. Because the pimp is an ex-detective with a reputation, the cops initially sympathize with the other guy, thinking the pimp over-reacted—not to mention the causal fender-bender that brought the two men together in the first place. The pimp doesn't know that the other guy just took a hammer and chisel to the head of the girl he is trying to get back, he thinks she's just freshly been sold, making his sense of urgency misplaced, where it remains throughout most of the film. It's kind of awkward for the police to find much urgency in one pimp accusing another of stealing one of his girls. The bad guy insists he didn't sell the girl and then mumbles under his breathe "I killed her", and confesses in great detail how he killed her and several other girls. The pimp screams at the cops, "Can't you see he's just pretending to be crazy now?"

And so it goes. We know there's been killing going on and we know who's been doing it from very early on in the film but it manages to remain suspenseful throughout. The Chaser is a gripping thriller from the beginning until a few minutes from the end. The two main characters are portrayed with impeccable nuance. It's Yun-seok Kim's performance as the bewildered pimp that takes this film to great heights. There are so many things that don't go the way he wants them to, like people hanging up on him when he's talking to them on the phone, a little girl who startles him and asks too many smart questions, the cops can't do anything right; and every time, his subdued response of confused disbelief made me laugh. He brings a Kang-ho Song-ish melancholy humor to the film, (I can't think of an American actor to compare him to), while Jung-woo Ha as the impotent serial killer is so normal and unmoved it's creepy.

There are a handful of groan out loud plot moves in The Chaser, but so what. There are also more than a handful of plot moves this film doesn't do, moves that most people will be guessing it will do, that it more than makes up for it. This is a film I know I'll watch again just for the performance of it. The plot won't matter. It's that good.

More reviews at sitenoise-atthemovies.blogspot.com

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