7.6/10
30,061
82 user 80 critic

A Bittersweet Life (2005)

Dalkomhan insaeng (original title)
Things go wrong for a high ranking mobster when he doesn't proceed by his boss's orders.

Director:

Jee-woon Kim (as Kim Jee-woon)

Writers:

Dong-Cheol Kim (character created by: A Bittersweet Life), Jee-woon Kim (as Kim Jee-woon)
Reviews
7 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »

Photos

Learn more

More Like This 

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

A disgraced ex-policeman who runs a small ring of prostitutes finds himself in a race against time when one of his women goes missing.

Director: Hong-jin Na
Stars: Yoon-Seok Kim, Jung-woo Ha, Yeong-hie Seo
Action | Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 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: Won Bin, Sae-ron Kim, Tae-hoon Kim
Action | Drama | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

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

Director: Jee-woon Kim
Stars: Byung-Hun Lee, Min-sik Choi, Joon-Hyuk Lee
Sinsegye (2013)
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

An undercover cop finds it difficult to play both a cop and a goon.

Director: Hoon-jung Park
Stars: Jung-jae Lee, Min-sik Choi, Jung-min Hwang
Hwanghae (2010)
Action | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

The attempt to carry out a hit on a professor goes terribly awry, triggering a series of violent events which force a taxi driver to run for his life.

Director: Hong-jin Na
Stars: Jung-woo Ha, Yoon-Seok Kim, Sung-ha Jo
Action | 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' friend's 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
Action | Adventure | Western
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

The story of two outlaws and a bounty hunter in 1940s Manchuria and their rivalry to possess a treasure map while being pursued by the Japanese army and Chinese bandits.

Director: Jee-woon Kim
Stars: Kang-ho Song, Byung-Hun Lee, Woo-sung Jung
Mother (2009)
Action | Crime | Drama
    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, Won Bin, Goo Jin
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

A small time thug collecting debts for the local triad is torn between his criminal aspirations and his devotion to family.

Director: Ha Yoo
Stars: In-sung Jo, Ho-jin Chun, Min Namkoong
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

In a small Korean province in 1986, three detectives struggle with the case of multiple young women being found raped and murdered by an unknown culprit.

Director: Joon-ho Bong
Stars: Kang-ho Song, Sang-kyung Kim, Roe-ha Kim
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

After being wrongfully imprisoned for thirteen years and having her child taken away from her, a woman seeks revenge through increasingly cruel and brutal means.

Director: Chan-wook Park
Stars: Yeong-ae Lee, Min-sik Choi, Shi-hoo Kim
Action | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

In the DMZ separating North and South Korea, two North Korean soldiers have been killed, supposedly by one South Korean soldier. But the 11 bullets found in the bodies, together with the 5 ... See full summary »

Director: Chan-wook Park
Stars: Yeong-ae Lee, Byung-Hun Lee, Kang-ho Song
Edit

Cast

Credited cast:
Byung-Hun Lee ... Sun-woo
Min-a Shin ... Hee-soo
Yeong-cheol Kim ... Mr. Kang (as Kim Young-Chul)
Jung-min Hwang ... President Baek (as Jeong-min Hwang)
Roe-ha Kim ... Mun-suk
Hae-gon Kim Hae-gon Kim ... Weapon smuggler
Eric Moon Eric Moon ... Gun Dealer's Brother (as Eric)
Dal-su Oh ... Myung-gu
Gi-yeong Lee Gi-yeong Lee ... Mu-sung
Goo Jin ... Min-gi
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Yu-mi Jung ... Mi-Ae
Tae-hee Kim Tae-hee Kim
Mu-yeong Lee Mu-yeong Lee
Kwang-rok Oh Kwang-rok Oh
Domashchenko Vadym Domashchenko Vadym ... Russian weapon smuggler
Edit

Storyline

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

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

When doing right goes very, very wrong.

Genres:

Action | Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Details

Country:

South Korea

Language:

Korean | Russian

Release Date:

1 April 2005 (South Korea) See more »

Also Known As:

A Bittersweet Life See more »

Filming Locations:

South Korea

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

|

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital EX

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The Korean title "Dalkomhan Insaeng" and the name of the bar "La Dolce Vita" translate to "The Sweet Life". As an ironic touch the International English title is called "A Bittersweet Life". See more »

Goofs

Toward the end of the film, when Kim Sun-woo is walking down the corridor searching for his former boss, a guard sitting and reading a newspaper gets up to stop him. Kim Sun-woo shoots him but his gun is not pointed at the guard. Rather, it is clearly pointed at the wall where fake blood appears after the shot like a paint gun. See more »

Quotes

Sun-woo: Send them away. I have no reason to talk with him.
Mun-suk: C'mon Sun-woo, President Baek is my guest, show some courtesy.
Sun-woo: No, i don't care about courtesy.
Mun-suk: Don't do this to me, you may do this at your own club. Show me some respect.
Sun-woo: To you? You're kidding.
See more »

Connections

Remade as Awarapan (2007) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
Leone inspired ...
3 July 2007 | by kosmaspSee all my reviews

... but not only. At the beginning there is a clear homage to a french movie (an almost exactly reconstructed camera move/set-up)! But this movie is more than just the sum of it's parts! And the clue is in the beginning ...

A Korean friend of mine told me (Randy N.) that the story reminded him very much of a tale, the "Tale of "Jo-Shin" (Dream of Jo-shin)" or again in his words "This tale is one of the most famous Korean tale(And there are many similar tale in Asian culture...)."

So if you listen to the monologue at the beginning and at the end, you will get the movie and what it means. Because this is more than just an action flick. But don't worry, there's plenty of action here to enjoy also. Maybe even too much action for some to stomach! Not for the faint of heart, believe me, or for those who can't stand the sight of blood! It's very philosophical and it has action in it. Highly recommended!


12 of 15 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 82 user reviews »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Popular Horror and Thriller Titles With Prime Video

Explore popular horror and thriller movies available to stream with Prime Video.

Start your free trial



Recently Viewed