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Searching for the Elephant (2009)

Pen-teu-ha-woo-seu ko-kki-ri (original title)
The film depicts the hollow lives of affluent thirty-something young urban professionals in Seoul. The protagonists are three childhood friends, each struggling with a compulsion: ... See full summary »


Seung-koo Jhung (as S.K. Jhung)


Seung-koo Jhung (as S.K. Jhung)
1 nomination. See more awards »


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Credited cast:
Dong-Hyuk Cho Dong-Hyuk Cho ... Min Suk
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Jong-min Baek Jong-min Baek
Myeong-hee Go Myeong-hee Go ... Bartender
Ji-hyeong Han Ji-hyeong Han ... Nurse Lee
Ji-hee In Ji-hee In ... Girl in large room 1
Hyuk Jang
Su-hyeon Jo Su-hyeon Jo ... Yoo-jin
Dong-Kyun Kang Dong-Kyun Kang ... Security guard
Gi-ho Kim Gi-ho Kim ... Photographer
Eun-soo Lee Eun-soo Lee ... Young Hyeon-woo
Sang-woo Lee
Won-seok No Won-seok No ... Room executive officer
Cho-rong Park Cho-rong Park ... Passing woman
Hee-jeong Park Hee-jeong Park ... Girl in large room 2
Jin-woo Park Jin-woo Park ... Department chief (as Jin-wu Park)


The film depicts the hollow lives of affluent thirty-something young urban professionals in Seoul. The protagonists are three childhood friends, each struggling with a compulsion: schizophrenia, sex addiction, and infidelity. The revelation of their secrets exacerbates their sense of deprivation, and the three friends are inevitably led to a shocking finale when they learn that growing pains are not just distant memories of their youth. Written by Warsaw Film Festival

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis






South Korea



Release Date:

5 November 2009 (South Korea) See more »

Also Known As:

Penteuhawooseu kokkiri See more »


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Did You Know?


It was the last onscreen appearance by Ja-yun Jang, who committed suicide before the film's release. See more »

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User Reviews

Alternative Asian cinema that f***s with your mind! Awesome!!!
23 March 2014 | by cinephilereviewSee all my reviews

Although I have seen many famous (well-known in North America) Asian films, I was never a big fan of Korean cinema until I saw Searching for the Elephant. This amazing independent film simply shocked me, washing away all the wrong stereotypes I previously had about Korean movies. This is a very realistic story of three young men and the women surrounding them. (No, there is no melodramatic bullshit or hard core revenge stories like many popular Korean films.) This movie is about people like you and me. Yet this multi-layered hybrid-genre gem has much more to offer. Rich in ingenious photography and audacious (almost schizophrenic) cuts, this movie examines that inexplicable emptiness that we all have felt at one time or another in our lives. The sharp, witty dialogues are full of black humor and aphorism, while the pace of storytelling sometimes overwhelms with speed, with numerous sequences that are very clever in execution. (I had to rewind it several times to pick up on certain scenes). The outrageous climax is original and quite thought-provoking. This film reminded me of early Wang Kar-Wai films as well as Last Year at Marienbad by Alain Resnais. I am definitely going to watch this again.

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