7.8/10
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Masquerade (2012)

Gwang-hae, wang-i doin nam-ja (original title)
Trailer
0:37 | Trailer
A look-alike commoner is secretly hired to take the place of a poisoned king to save his country from falling into chaos.

Director:

Chang-min Choo

Writers:

Jo-yun Hwang (screenplay), Chang-min Choo (screenplay adaptation)
Reviews
21 wins & 16 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Credited cast:
Byung-hun Lee ... Gwang-hae / Ha-seon
Seung-ryong Ryu ... Heo Gyun
Hyo-joo Han ... The Queen
In-kwon Kim ... Captain Do
Gwang Jang ... Eunuch Jo
Eun-kyung Shim ... Sa-wol
Myung-gon Kim ... Park Choong-seo
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Wook Choi ... Confucian Scholar 2
Seung-wook Choo ... Confucian Scholar 1
Yong-gu Do ... Byeong-pan - Minister of National Defense
Soo-ho Ha ... Jeong-jeon General 1
Sung-yong Han Sung-yong Han ... Public Officer Who Escorts Ha-Sun
Yi-jin Han ... Ship Raiding Constable 1
Sung-tae Heo ... Korean Alphabet 1
Bae-soo Jeon ... Hyeong-pan - Minister of Justice
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Storyline

Amid national chaos and fear for his life, tyrannical King Gwanghae orders his trusted councilor Heo Kyun to find a royal body double. He hires Ha-seon, a peasant mimic who bears a perfect resemblance to the King. When King Gwanghae collapses from a mysterious poison, Ha-seon reluctantly becomes a King. He must follow his conscience to save his country from collapse, avoid assassination, and pull off the biggest masquerade in history. K Written by CJ Entertainment

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The King of Façade See more »

Genres:

Drama | History

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Woo-Suk Kang was originally set to direct, but due to trouble in production's development, Kang dropped out of project and Chang-min Choo on board to helm this film instead. See more »

Connections

Remade as The Crowned Clown (2019) See more »

User Reviews

 
Charming take on an old theme
11 April 2014 | by centinel822See all my reviews

As has been pointed out by other reviewers, this story is a new spin on "The Prince and the Pauper." It actually reminded me, however, of the American movie "Dave," in that the protagonist is a naive pawn whose empathy allows him to rise to the occasion, including finding love in the chaos.

Byung-hun Lee is simply an amazing actor. Having seen his "dark" side in movies like "A Bittersweet Life" and "I Saw the Devil," I was very pleased to see he could handle the role of Ha-Seon with such a light touch. It was a joy to see him effortlessly shift from hilarious toilet humor to inspiring leader. I was particularly struck with the scenes where he interacted with commoners, in which I really felt the empathy Ha-Seon felt for them.

This is the first of director Chang-min Choo's movies I've seen, and I was impressed at how he was able to seamlessly balance the light and serious scenes in the movies. To often, one or the other seems forced, but here Choo creates a character who grows and changes, but still remains, at heart, the same, good person he was at the beginning -- the kind of person who, by the end of the story, could be happy and believable as a king or a pauper. I think Choo also gave the movie a more intimate feel by focusing on one-on-one conversations and limiting the normal "cast of thousands" you often see in period pieces about kings.

Overall, the acting was top notch -- particularly from Hyo-ju Han as the Queen and Hyo-ju Han as Minister Do -- and the costumes and set design were beautiful.

Masquerade is an engaging and charming period piece with humor, action, and romance.


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Details

Country:

South Korea

Language:

Korean

Release Date:

13 September 2012 (South Korea) See more »

Also Known As:

Masquerade See more »

Filming Locations:

Seoul, South Korea See more »

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Box Office

Gross USA:

$922,921

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$94,268,432
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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