A police detective determined to catch the unseen boss of Asia's biggest drug cartel joins hands with a revenge-thirsty member of the gang.


Hae-Young Lee (as Hae-young Lee)


Jung Seo-Kyoung
7 wins & 28 nominations. See more awards »





Credited cast:
Cho Jin-woong ... Won Ho (as Jin-woong Jo)
Seung-Won Cha ... Brian
Ryu Jun-Yeol ... Seo Young Rak (as Jun-yeol Ryu)
Sung-ryung Kim ... Oh Yeon Ok (as Sung-ryung Kim)
Park Hae-Joon ... Park Seon Chang
Ju-hyuk Kim ... Jin Ha Rim
Ga-ram Jung ... Dong Woo
Seung-Hyun Kang ... Soyeon
Seo Hyun-woo ... Jung Il
Seo-Yeon Jin Seo-Yeon Jin ... Bo Ryung
Sae-Rok Keum Sae-Rok Keum ... Su Jong
Dong-yeong Kim Dong-yeong Kim ... Dong Young (Deaf Twin) (as Dong-Young Kim)
Yoon Jong-In Yoon Jong-In ... Ha-Rim's subordinate
Moon-cheol Nam Moon-cheol Nam ... Department Head
Ju-Young Lee Ju-Young Lee ... Joo Young (Deaf Twin)


A police detective determined to catch the unseen boss of Asia's biggest drug cartel joins hands with a revenge-thirsty member of the gang.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


To catch a devil, trust a sinner. See more »


Action | Crime | Thriller


Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »

Did You Know?


Upon its release, the film became not only the first South Korean film to reach 1 million moviegoers but also the fastest South Korean movie to reach 3 million moviegoers, both in 2018. See more »


In the final scene, Young-Rak tends to a fire in a fireplace. The aerial shot taken at the end of the brief conversation shows no fire coming out of either chimney. See more »


[last lines]
Won-ho: Have you ever been happy in your life?
See more »

Crazy Credits

Before the closing credits, a line "In the memory of Ju-hyuk Kim." is shown. See more »

Alternate Versions

An extended version of the film has a duration of 131 minutes 32 seconds and is 8 minutes 12 seconds longer than the theatrical cut which had a duration of 123 minutes 20 seconds. Both versions have the similar 15+ rating. See more »


Remake of Drug War (2012) See more »

User Reviews

I believe
18 January 2019 | by klusebaSee all my reviews

Believer is a South Korean remake of Hong Kong action-thriller Drug War. I haven't watched the original film but after having adored Believer so much, I might try to watch it soon. Believer convinces with outstanding acting performances, intense action scenes, solid pace, a twisted story and a huge amount of tension that will keep you on the edge of your seat. The intellectual conclusion even offers some philosophical depth and food for thought.

The story revolves around the mysterious leader of a drug cartel known as Mister Lee, whose identity remains a mystery. Reckless police detective Won-ho has tried to find and arrest Mister Lee for years. His underage mule has been brutally killed and Mister Lee's associate who was willing to cooperate got fatally poisoned. Won-ho's last chance is the survivor of a drug laboratory explosion named Rak who lost his mother in the incident. Won-ho decides to pose as Chinese-Korean drug lord who personally wants to meet Mister Lee and Rak assists him in meeting more and more powerful members of the drug cartel. Things take a turn for the worse when the Chinese-Korean drug lord who Won-ho impersonates decides to intervene and when a high-ranked member of the cartel plans on replacing Mister Lee.

The only slightly negative element I could point out regarding this otherwise excellent movie is the fact that I figured out quite early in the movie who Mister Lee actually was. A surprising twist would have been even better and made an excellent movie perfect. Still, the film remains intense even if you have figured out who Mister Lee is since there are numerous complex conflicts in the story.

The film's conclusion leaves an important question unanswered and invites the viewers to make up their minds. I believe such an ending is respectful towards the viewers as it expects them to challenge themselves and think about the movie's possible outcomes. Those who are used being offered predictable happy endings in Hollywood flicks might though feel overloaded.

In the end, this film deserves a much better reputation than it has and is among the best movies I have seen over the past few years. If you like intense action films, profound dramas and tense thrillers, Believer offers you all these elements at once in a perfectly interwoven way. The intelligent conclusion will make you think and invites to discuss the movie with your friends long after it has ended.

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South Korea



Release Date:

8 June 2018 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Believer See more »

Filming Locations:

South Korea See more »


Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$146,630, 10 June 2018

Gross USA:


Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Yong Film See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


| (extended)

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital



Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

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