7.8/10
73,780
186 user 267 critic

I Saw the Devil (2010)

Ang-ma-reul bo-at-da (original title)
Not Rated | | Action, Crime, Drama | 12 August 2010 (South Korea)
Trailer
2:15 | Trailer

Watch Now

With Prime Video

WATCH NOW
ON DISC
A secret agent exacts revenge on a serial killer through a series of captures and releases.

Director:

(as Kim Jee-woon)

Writers:

(adaptation), (screenplay)
Reviews
Popularity
2,535 ( 142)
15 wins & 15 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

The Chaser (2008)
Action | Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

A cash-strapped pimp and former police detective draws upon the skills of his old job to track down his missing stable of prostitutes.

Director: Hong-jin Na
Stars: Yun-seok Kim, Jung-woo Ha, Yeong-hie Seo
Action | Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

A quiet pawnshop keeper with a violent past takes on a drug-and-organ trafficking ring in hope of saving the child who is his only friend.

Director: Jeong-beom Lee
Stars: Bin Won, Sae-ron Kim, Tae-hoon Kim
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

Things go wrong for a high ranking mobster when he doesn't proceed by his boss's orders.

Director: Jee-woon Kim
Stars: Jung-min Hwang, Yu-mi Jeong, Ku Jin
Crime | Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

In 1986, in the province of Gyunggi, in South Korea, a second young and beautiful woman is found dead, raped and tied and gagged with her underwear. Detective Park Doo-Man and Detective Cho... See full summary »

Director: Joon-ho Bong
Stars: Kang-ho Song, Sang-kyung Kim, Roe-ha Kim
Mother (2009)
Crime | Drama | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A mother desperately searches for the killer who framed her son for a girl's horrific murder.

Director: Joon-ho Bong
Stars: Hye-ja Kim, Bin Won, Ku Jin
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

After a thirteen-year imprisonment for the kidnap and murder of a six-year-old boy, Guem-Ja Lee seeks vengeance on the man truly responsible for the boy's death. With the help of fellow ... See full summary »

Director: Chan-wook Park
Stars: Yeong-ae Lee, Min-sik Choi, Shi-hoo Kim
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

A recently laid off factory worker kidnaps his former boss' daughter, hoping to use the ransom money to pay for his sister's kidney transplant.

Director: Chan-wook Park
Stars: Kang-ho Song, Ha-kyun Shin, Doona Bae
Oldeuboi (2003)
Drama | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.4/10 X  

After being kidnapped and imprisoned for fifteen years, Oh Dae-Su is released, only to find that he must find his captor in five days.

Director: Chan-wook Park
Stars: Min-sik Choi, Ji-tae Yu, Hye-jeong Kang
Hwanghae (2010)
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

The story of a cab driver in Yanji City, a region between North Korea, China and Russia. His wife goes to Korea to earn money, but he doesn't hear from her since in 6 months. He plays ... See full summary »

Director: Hong-jin Na
Stars: Jung-woo Ha, Yun-seok Kim, Sung-ha Jo
Sinsegye (2013)
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

Story about a conflict between the police and the mob through the eyes of an undercover cop.

Director: Hoon-jung Park
Stars: Jung-jae Lee, Min-sik Choi, Jung-min Hwang
Drama | Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

A family is haunted by the tragedies of deaths within the family.

Director: Jee-woon Kim
Stars: Kap-su Kim, Jung-ah Yum, Su-jeong Lim
The Host (2006)
Comedy | Drama | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

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.

Director: Joon-ho Bong
Stars: Kang-ho Song, Hie-bong Byeon, Hae-il Park
Edit

Cast

Credited cast:
...
...
...
Se-jung
...
Planning team deputy head
...
Section chief's daughter
...
Section Chief Oh
...
Squad Chief Jang
Seung-ah Yoon ...
The Cannibal's Girlfriend
...
Agent (as Lee Joon-Hyeok)
Moo-Seong Choi ...
Tae-joo
Jin-ho Choi ...
Planning director
San-ha Oh ...
Joo-yeon
Chae-young Yoon ...
Nurse Han Song-i
Seo-yeon Park ...
Woman at pension (as Park Seo-Yeon)
Yeong-Seon Kim ...
Nun 1
Edit

Storyline

Jang Kyung-chul (Choi Min-sik) is a dangerous psychopath serial killer. He has committed infernal serial murders in diabolic ways that one cannot even imagine and his victims range from young women to even children. The police have chased him for a long time, but were unable to catch him. One day, Joo-yeon, daughter of a retired police chief becomes his prey and is found dead in a horrific state. Her fiancé Soo-hyun (Lee Byung-hun), a top secret agent, decides to track down the murderer himself. He promises himself that he will do everything in his power to take bloody vengeance against the killer, even if it means that he must become a monster himself to get this monstrous and inhumane killer. Written by jck movies

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Evil lives inside. See more »


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

12 August 2010 (South Korea)  »

Also Known As:

I Saw the Devil  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$13,567 (USA) (4 March 2011)

Gross:

$128,392 (USA) (22 April 2011)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The Korea Media Rating Board forced Kim to recut the film for its theatrical release, objecting to its violent content. Otherwise, the film would have gotten a "Restricted" rating, preventing any sort of release in theaters or on home video. See more »

Quotes

Kim Soo-hyeon: I will kill you when you are in the most pain. When you're in the most pain, shivering out of fear, then I will kill you. That's a real revenge. A real complete revenge.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Big Bad Wolves (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

Habanera
(uncredited)
From "Carmen" by Georges Bizet
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

 
Haunting but beautiful.
18 November 2010 | by (Canada) – See all my reviews

Whenever I see a negative review of "I Saw the Devil", the critic always mentions (scornfully) that the movie is ultra violent and portrays women in horrifying circumstances. Yes it is, and yes it does.

But this isn't a Hollywood slasher flick. The kills in this movie are not gratifying and aren't meant to be. The women being killed are not scantily clad models running through forests from men wearing masks. There is nothing pleasant or "cool" about these scenes; they make the viewer uncomfortable, they unsettle, they bring one's mind into very dark places. It gives us a peek into the madness that every man is capable of, and does so realistically and without pulling its punches. This brutal realism makes people uncomfortable, and prompts negative reviews. This is understandable, but unfortunate. I believe that a movie should be judged on more than the amount of blood the viewer is comfortable seeing on-screen. To these people, please, do not watch Korean revenge thrillers if you are uncomfortable with torture or blood.

But enough of that rambling. This movie is excellent. Beautiful cinematography contrasts the stark, dimly lit scenes where the murders, or gritty fight scenes, occur. The camera work is simple but effective; the viewer is often treated to close-ups of both Byung-hun Lee and Mik-sik Choi, and their facial expressions tell us more than dialogue ever could. There is also contrast between Lee and Choi. Lee, clean and stoic, and Choi, filthy and madly expressive. They compliment each other very well, and play off of each others strengths effectively.

The story itself is typical of revenge films, but fantastic in its execution. Lee's character experiences a profound loss at the hands of Choi's character, and in the process of seeking revenge begins to resemble the man he so hates. The line between "victim" and "aggressor" becomes blurred between both characters. This is where the film shines. There is no black and white in "I Saw the Devil"; the viewer is left with shades of grey.

As for the acting, it was all done very well. As I mentioned, Lee and Choi work well together, and all supporting cast members did an excellent job. Choi portrays his character in an incredibly convincing manner, shifting suddenly from calmness to manic anger, but never in a way that feels unnatural or forced. Lee's character is quiet and much less expressive, but he does very well in showing immense amounts of emotion through just his eyes or subtle movements of his body. A memorable performance from them both.

As for flaws, the only thing I can think of is the strange, perhaps unrealistic behaviour of the police. Lee is a member of the NIS, and is very skilled when it comes to remaining hidden, but that shouldn't make him untouchable when directly provoking police officers or driving on the wrong side of the street. Still, though, it's a very trivial complaint that isn't worth a deducted point.

A confident 10/10 from me. If you are comfortable seeing serial murder portrayed realistically, and are able to appreciate more than just gore, please, do yourself a favour and watch this film.


274 of 320 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
US Remake (Why Not) wouters
Ridiculous movie lincabe17
Ridiculously predictable therealnecros
Some things that I found weird... mjz15
They're making Hollywood remake! Tutu67613
Masterpiece. MisterSky
Discuss I Saw the Devil (2010) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?