A woman is hired as a handmaiden to a Japanese heiress, but secretly she is involved in a plot to defraud her.

Director:

Chan-wook Park

Writers:

Sarah Waters (inspired by the novel "Fingersmith" by), Seo-kyeong Jeong (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Popularity
629 ( 15)
Top Rated Movies #214 | Won 1 BAFTA Film Award. Another 66 wins & 106 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Kim Tae-ri ... Sook-Hee (as Tae Ri Kim)
Yong-nyeo Lee ... Bok-soon
Min-chae Yoo Min-chae Yoo ... Ggeut-dan
Dong-hwi Lee ... Goo-gai
Kim Hae-sook ... Miss Sasaki (as Hae-suk Kim)
Kim Min-hee ... Lady Hideko
Jung-woo Ha ... Count Fujiwara
Kyu-jung Lee Kyu-jung Lee ... Maid 1
Si-eun Kim Si-eun Kim ... Maid 2
Si-yeon Ha Si-yeon Ha ... Maid 3
Rina Takagi Rina Takagi ... Hideko's Mother
Cho Jin-woong ... Uncle Kouzuki (as Jin-woong Jo)
Geun-hee Won Geun-hee Won ... Butler
Jong-Dae Kim Jong-Dae Kim ... Mansion Driver
Han-sun Jang Han-sun Jang ... Kouzuki Porter
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Storyline

1930s Korea, in the period of Japanese occupation, a new girl (Sookee) is hired as a handmaiden to a Japanese heiress (Hideko) who lives a secluded life on a large countryside estate with her domineering Uncle (Kouzuki). But the maid has a secret. She is a pickpocket recruited by a swindler posing as a Japanese Count to help him seduce the Lady to elope with him, rob her of her fortune, and lock her up in a madhouse. The plan seems to proceed according to plan until Sookee and Hideko discover some unexpected emotions. Written by CJ Entertainment

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Never did they expect to get into a controversial relationship...


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

For the theatrical release of the film, the subtitles were color coded to differentiate the Asian languages spoken throughout the film. White subtitles were used for Korean while yellow subtitles were used for Japanese. See more »

Goofs

The Count uses a propane gas lighter. That was impossible in 1930. See more »

Quotes

Sook-Hee: Where I come from, it's illegal to be naive.
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Crazy Credits

During the credits, the moon on the wall in the background shifts from full to new. See more »

Alternate Versions

Extended version runs approx. 21 minutes longer. See more »


Soundtracks

Four Small Silver Balls
Vocals by Kim Min-hee (as Kim Min-hee) & Kim Tae-ri
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User Reviews

 
Blue is the Warmest Color + Oldboy = The Handmaiden
10 August 2016 | by BrendanMichaelsSee all my reviews

Not the craziest film content wise, that award goes to The Neon Demon, but definitely the craziest film storytelling wise. Park Chan-Wook's The Handmaiden is almost as good as the film that put him on the map, Oldboy, and brings such ferocity and energy that it will be one of the most unforgettable films of 2016.

Think of The Handmaiden as The Duke of Burgundy F'd Up Edition. This film is pretty twisted in the most unexpected ways from the cinematography that is very reminiscent of Possession in that it always keeps moving, eroticism that is reminiscent of Blue is the Warmest Color, performances as spellbinding as Carol, and the insanity of Park Chan- Wook as expected.

The cinematography is some of the most entrancing of the year. Shots that look like they came out of The Master. It's shots like these that make me wonder how was this even possible? It looks so damn cool!

The performances are perfect in sucking you into this world of erotica, selfishness, and trickery. Both female leads were fantastic. Min-hee Kim and Kim Tae-ri are amazing with sharing their sexual tension with the audience watching. It's films like these that are the most memorable. Making you feel how ther characters are feeling. Jung-woo Ha and Jin- woong Jo were great as these sexually and financially repressed men who do the most screwed up things to feel the pleasure they so desire. Nothing wrong with the cast at all.

Of course Park Chank-Wook hits it out of the part with directing. How else would this immaculate vision be done without him niche for detail. He always knows exactly what to do to get an emotion out of his audience and I applaud him for that.

The only negative is that during the middle briefly the pacing slows down a lot and it became really unbearable because I wanted to know exactly what was going to happen next. Thankfully it doesn't last that long and it's really minor that probably won't affect others viewings.

If you have any interest in The Handmaiden or you've just heard about it for the first time I strongly suggest checking this out as soon as it comes out. I'll definitely re watch it when it releases in theaters. Easily one of the best films of the year and one I hope to re watch soon.


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Details

Country:

South Korea

Language:

Korean | Japanese

Release Date:

1 June 2016 (South Korea) See more »

Also Known As:

The Handmaiden See more »

Filming Locations:

Nagoya, Aichi, Japan See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

KRW10,000,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$92,129, 23 October 2016

Gross USA:

$2,006,788

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$37,767,206
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (extended)

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

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