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10 Best Korean Movies That You Shouldn't Sleep On

Yup, there's a lot more than just "Parasite" and "Train to Busan."
10 Best Korean Movies That You Shouldn't Sleep On
IMAGE Train to Busan/Next World Entertainment, Parasite/CJ Entertainment, Burning/CGV Arthouse
Yup, there's a lot more than just "Parasite" and "Train to Busan."

We’ve all heard of the internationally groundbreaking film that was Parasite last year. But while the film undoubtedly brought recognition to the South Korean film industry on a global stage, there’s no denying that beyond Bong Joon Ho’s masterpiece are more equally gripping and compelling works just sitting in South Korea’s movie vault. 

If you’re looking to explore more of them, below, we list down 10 of the best Korean movies available for streaming right now.

1. Parasite (2019)

Watch on: Viu

Bong Joon Ho's breakout hit Parasite was the talk of the town last year as it bagged numerous international accolades. This included four wins at the 92nd Academy Awards for Best Picture, Best Director, Best Original Screenplay, and Best International Feature Film. In case you haven't looked into it yet, Viu’s synopsis of Parasite reads: “An unstoppable string of mishaps awaits when greed and class discrimination threaten the newly formed symbiotic relationship between the wealthy Park family and the destitute Kim clan.”

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Starring: Choi Woo Shik, Park So Dam, Song Kang Ho

2. Train to Busan (2016)

Watch on: Viu, Netfix

Who could forget about the heart racing zombie thriller that went viral just three years ago? A worldwide box office giant, Train to Busan trails a father-daughter tandem as they board a train to meet the latter's mother. Their innocent journey quickly spirals into a full-blown nightmare when they're trapped inside the vehicle amidst a zombie outbreak in South Korea.

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Starring: Gong Yoo, Ma Dong Seok, Kim Su An

3. Along with the Gods: The Two Worlds (2017)

Watch on: Viu, Netfix

After a firefighter dies a heroic death, he meets three guides in the afterlife who join him in navigating seven trials that will eventually decide his fate. A sequel for the film was released last 2018 titled Along with the Gods: The Last 49 Days.

Starring: Ha Jung Woo, Cha Tae Hyun, Ju Ji Hoon

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4. Burning (2018)

Watch on: Viu

The story starts with Lee Jong Su, an aspiring young novelist who bumps into his old childhood friend, Shin Hae Mi. Upon their meeting, she asks him to look after her cat while she goes away on vacation to Africa. Days later, the two meet up again at Hae Mi’s return where she introduces him to Ben, a friend she made during her trip. Envious of him and his relationship with Hae Mi, Jong Su grows suspicious of Ben especially after the latter tells him about his strange hobby.

Starring: Yoo Ah In, Steven Yeun, Jeon Jong Seo

5. Svaha: The Sixth Finger (2019)

Watch on: Netfix

If you're up for a chilling mystery thriller, Svaha: The Sixth Finger might just be up your alley. The film follows a police detective and a pastor as they investigate a suspicious religious cult that may have a murderer in their ranks. 

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Starring: Lee Jung Jae, Park Jung Min, Lee Jae In

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6. The Spy Gone North (2018)

Watch on: Viu

Set in the 1990s, a South Korean secret agent infiltrates the North to investigate on the country’s reported army of nuclear weapons. He’s thrown for a loop, however, when he instead uncovers a scheme plotted by the ruling class members of South Korea and North Korea. 

Starring: Hwang Jung Min, Lee Sung Min, Cho Jin Woong

7. Kim Ji-young: Born 1982 (2019)

Watch on: Viu

PR agency worker Kim Ji-young has lived a mundane life up until her 30s. Everything changes one day when a string of people from her past seemingly possess her body, including her late mother and grandmother.

Starring: Gong Yoo, Jung Yu Mi

8. The Host (2006)

Watch on: Netfix

A monster horror movie and a social satire all at once, The Host is known for being one of the highest grossing South Korean films of all time back in 2006. The film is premised on a monster that emerges from the Han River. While terrorizing the city, it ends up kidnapping a young girl, reeling her family into a desperate race to save her life. If that hasn't piqued your interest yet, it also happens to be directed by Parasite mastermind Bong Joon Ho.

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Starring: Song Kang Ho, Bae Doona, Byun Hee Bong

9. Exit (2019)

Watch on: Viu

A young rock climber attempts to save the day when a mysterious lethal gas spreads over Seoul during his mother’s 70th birthday. The disaster action comedy was a box office success after it earned $69.5 million worldwide.

Jo Jong Suk, Im Yoon Ah

10. King and the Clown (2005)

Watch on: Viu

Set in Korea’s Chosun Dynasty, two clowns are arrested for publicly staging a play that satirizes their King. The two are brought to the palace and threatened with execution, and the only way they can seek pardon is if they’re able to make the king laugh.

Starring: Kam Woo Sung, Lee Joon Gi

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