A loan shark is forced to reconsider his violent lifestyle after the arrival of a mysterious woman claiming to be his long-lost mother.


Kim Ki-duk


Kim Ki-duk
25 wins & 22 nominations. See more awards »





Credited cast:
Min-soo Jo ... Mi-Son
Lee Jung-Jin ... Gang-Do (as Jeong-jin Lee)
Ki-Hong Woo Ki-Hong Woo ... Hoon-chul
Eunjin Kang ... Myeong-ja (Hoon-Chul's wife)
Jae-ryong Cho Jae-ryong Cho ... Tae-seung
Myeong-ja Lee ... Mother of Suicidal Man
Jun-seok Heo Jun-seok Heo ... Suicidal Man
Kwon Yul ... Machinist with the Guitar (as Se-in Kwon)
Mun-su Song ... Borrower Who Climbs the Steps
Beom-jun Kim Beom-jun Kim ... Myeongdong Man
Son Jong-hak ... Boss
Yong-wook Jin ... Shop Owner in Wheelchair (as Jin Yong-Ok)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Joon-seok Heo Joon-seok Heo ... Suicidal Man
Jae-rok Kim ... Monk
Won-jang Lee Won-jang Lee ... Sang-gu


A loan shark is forced to reconsider his violent lifestyle after the arrival of a mysterious woman claiming to be his long-lost mother.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


A woman claiming to be his mother, fallen under unforgivable sin, then she suddenly disappears! The merciless truth gets revealed! God, have mercy on us... See more »


Crime | Drama


Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?


Kim Ki-duk's biggest box office hit in his home country South Korea, where it made 3.9 mill. dollars. See more »


Gang-Do: [grabbing between her legs] I came out of here?
[she nods]
Gang-Do: Here for sure?
[she nods again]
Gang-Do: Really? Then can I go back in?
See more »


Featured in At the Movies: Venice Film Festival 2012 (2012) See more »


Happy Birthday to You
By Patty S. Hill and Mildred J. Hill
Performed by Min-soo Jo
See more »

User Reviews

The director's darkest yet
13 October 2015 | by Leofwine_dracaSee all my reviews

As a massive fan of Korean director Kim Ki-duk - I've never seen a film of his I haven't loved - I was eager to see what delights his new film PIETA had in store for the viewer. In some ways it's similar to a lot of his previous filmography, like BAD GUY, in which the protagonist is also the antagonist, and also similar to other Korean films I've seen like BREATHLESS.

The main character is a ruthless loan shark who makes a living from crippling those who owe him money; he gets the money back from their insurance claims. The glacial Lee Jeong-jin gives an icy turn as a truly horrible creation, but inevitably he thaws a little once you get to know him, and once the plot kicks in. This is a revenge story, but one done in a way that's both subtle and convoluted; it's a film that rewards close attention, else you won't have a clue what's going on.

Jo Min-soo bags the film's most interesting role of the long-lost mother who turns up seeking reconciliation. It's a difficult, unsympathetic part to play, and there are one or two sexual situations which go way beyond the realms of bad taste into some of the most disgusting things I've ever seen. As ever, though PIETA isn't really an explicit film, despite the sheer quantity of violent incidents that happen during the running time, and as a story it gets more and more engrossing as it goes on. The end is particularly profound, and the lush cinematography on a tiny budget makes this a beautiful film to watch, despite the depravity.

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Official Sites:

Official site [Japan]


South Korea



Release Date:

6 September 2012 (South Korea) See more »

Also Known As:

Pieta See more »

Filming Locations:

Seoul, South Korea See more »


Box Office


EUR103,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$6,222, 19 May 2013

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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