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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

Writers:

Garon Tsuchiya (story), Nobuaki Minegishi (comic) | 4 more credits »
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754 ( 34)
Top Rated Movies #68 | 38 wins & 18 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Min-sik Choi ... Dae-su Oh
Ji-tae Yu ... Woo-jin Lee
Hye-jeong Kang ... Mi-do
Dae-han Ji Dae-han Ji ... No Joo-hwan
Dal-su Oh ... Park Cheol-woong
Byeong-ok Kim ... Mr. Han
Seung-shin Lee ... Yoo Hyung-ja (as Seung-Shin Lee)
Jin-seo Yoon ... Lee Soo-ah
Dae-yeon Lee Dae-yeon Lee ... Beggar
Kwang-rok Oh Kwang-rok Oh ... Suicidal Man
Tae-kyung Oh Tae-kyung Oh ... Young Dae-su
Yeon-Seok Yoo Yeon-Seok Yoo ... Young Woo-Jin (as Ahn Yeon-Seok)
Il-han Oo Il-han Oo ... Young Joo-hwan
Su-hyeon Kim Su-hyeon Kim ... Chief Secretary
Seung-jin Lee Seung-jin Lee
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Storyline

Abducted on a rainy night in 1988, the obnoxious drunk, Oh Dae-Su, much to his surprise, wakes up locked in a windowless and dilapidated hotel room, for an unknown reason. There, his invisible and pitiless captors will feed him, clothe him and sedate him to avoid committing suicide, and as his only companion and a window to the world is the TV in his stark cell, the only thing that helps Oh Dae-Su keep going is his daily journal. But then, unexpectedly, after fifteen long years in captivity, the perplexed prisoner is deliberately released, encouraged to track down his tormentor to finally get his retribution. Nevertheless, who would hate Oh Dae-Su so much he would deny him of a quick and clean death? Written by Nick Riganas

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Imprisoned for 15 years... ...5 days to seek revenge See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong violence including scenes of torture, sexuality and pervasive language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

South Korea

Language:

Korean

Release Date:

21 November 2003 (South Korea) See more »

Also Known As:

Oldboy See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$3,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$68,957, 25 March 2005, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$707,481

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$14,980,005
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The line on the painting of Dae Su's cell reads "Laugh and the world laughs with you. Weep and you weep alone." These are the first lines of Ella Wheeler Wilcox's famous poem, "Solitude". See more »

Goofs

Oh Dae-Su states that the maxim, "Free yourself, like a gazelle from the hand of the hunter, like a bird from the snare of the fowler," is from Proverbs 6:4; these numbers are emphasized shortly afterwards. The saying is actually from Proverbs 6:5. See more »

Quotes

Dae-su Oh: Erasing my memory and telling me to find the truth was cowardly. I won. So die like you promised.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Ebert Presents: At the Movies: Episode #1.21 (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Winter
from "The Four Seasons"
Written by Antonio Vivaldi
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Amazing Movie
29 August 2007 | by gdmvySee all my reviews

Yes this is a twisted movie with plots that unravel slowly and sometimes there are scenes that are slow. But over all it's incredible. Some of the symbolism behind the scenes are stunning. You have to go deep to appreciate it. There is a lot of gore and violence that can turn you off, but I was simply amazed by the depth and width of some of the scenes.

Without giving anything away, once the main character is released he meets a man with a dog. It's seems to be an irrelevant scene, but put yourself in a cage for 15 years and think about how you would act? What happens to that man? Isn't he also in a cage? Aren't we all? What is the symbolism of that man? How about the dog? Revenge to the main character in this movie is his life. Why? And you don't question it because you know what happened to him. He doesn't question it either.

To me this was one of the greatest depictions of Oedipus or other Greek characters I've seen this decade in a movie. Nothing is new. If you liked "Requiem for a Dream" or "Blue Velvet." Consider this one.


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