2017 is shaping up to be a special year for Korean Cinema. Featuring films from directors Ryoo Seung-Wan (Veteran), Won Shin-yeon (The Suspect) and  films from Choi Min-Sik (Oldboy, I Saw The Devil), Song Kang-ho (Age of Shadows) , Lee Byung-hun and Ha Jung-Woo.

Be sure to check out our list of top Korean thrillers released in 2017

Here are 10 films we think you should be keeping an eye out for

1Battleship Island (literal title)

Director: Ryoo Seung-wan (Veteran, 2015)

Distributor: CJ Entertainment

Cast: Hwang Jung-min, So Ji-sub, Song Joong-ki


During the Japanese colonial era, roughly 400 Korean people, who were forced onto Battleship Island to mine for coal, attempt to escape.

Lee Kang-ok (played by Hwang Jung-min) is a bandmaster at Kyungsung Hotel. He decides to go to Japan to protect his daughter, but he is drafted into Battleship Island by force, being deceived by talk to send him to Japan. On Battleship Island, he does anything to protect his daughter.

Choi Chil-sung (So Ji-sub) is the top fighter in Kyungsung (old name of “Seoul”). He makes troubles on Battleship Island, but he has a warm heart.

Park Moo-young (Song Joong-ki) belongs to the Korean Independence group. He sneaks onto Battleship Island to rescue a member of the independence group.


2Special Citizen (literal title)

Director: Park In-je

Cast: Choi Min-sik, Kwak Do-won, Shim Eun-kyung


Follows the political life of a Seoul mayor (played by Choi Min-sik). The mayor has already served two terms and runs for a third time.

3Silence (working & literal title)

Director: Jung Ji-woo

Distributor: CJ Entertainment

Cast: Choi Min-sik, Park Shin-hye

Genre: Thriller


The fiancee of a financial magnate is murdered and the daughter of the financial magnate becomes the prime suspect.

4Fifth Column (literal title)

Director: Won Shin-yeon (The Suspect, 2013)

Distributor: Showbox/Mediaplex

Cast: Song Kang-ho, Ryoo Seung-ryong, Jung Woo

Genre: Action thriller


Warrant Officer Kang Jong-duk (played by Song Kang-ho) is an investigator at the Ministry of National Defense. He has 15 days before he is discharged from the military. He begins to investigate a mysterious case and goes up against conspiracy.


5Taxi Driver (working & literal title)

Director: Jang Hoon

Distributor: Showbox/Mediaplex

Cast: Song Kang-ho, Thomas Kretschmann, Yu Hae-jin


A taxi driver (played by Song Kang-ho) helps a German reporter cover the Gwangju Uprising.



Director: Hwang Dong-hyuk (Miss Granny, 2014)

Distributor: CJ Entertainment

Cast: Lee Byung-hun, Kim Yun-seok, Park Hae-il


In 1636, the Qing dynasty attacks Joseon. King Injo (played by Park Hae-il) and his retainers, including Choi Myung-kil (Lee Byung-hun) & Kim Sang-hun (Kim Yun-seok), hide in the mountain fortress city of Namhansanseong. They are isolated from the outside. Meanwhile, Choi Myung-kil insists that they enter into negotiations with the Qing dynasty, but Kim Sang-hun proposes that they keep fighting.


7With God (literal title)

Director: Kim Yong-hwa (Take Off, 2009)

Cast: Ha Jung-woo, Cha Tae-hyun, Ju Ji-hoon, Ma Dong-seok

Genre: Fantasy drama


Following a person’s a death, an angel of death escorts the deceased to the afterworld. There, the deceased person has 7 trials over a period of 49 days. At that time, the angel of death, who are not supposed to get involved in human affairs, unavoidably take part in human affairs.

Gang Rim (played by Ha Jung-woo) is the leader of the angel of deaths. He has an affection for humans. Ja Hong receives (Cha Tae-hyun) his trial in the afterlife.

8Night of 7 Years (literal title)

Director: Choo Chang-min (Masquerade, 2012)

Distributor: CJ Entertainment

Cast: Ryoo Seung-ryong, Jang Dong-gun

Genre: Thriller


Seo-won has gone through a lot as the son of a murderer. He learned that his father was executed. Seven years ago, his drunken father Hyun-soo (played by Ryoo Seung-ryong), working as the leader for a management team at a dam, drives out to Seryeong Village where the dam is located. He hits a girl and throws the girl into the lake. Since then, Hyun-soo goes crazy due to guilt. Young-je (Jang Dong-gun) is the dead girl’s father and takes revenge upon Seo-won.


9VIP (working title)

Director: Park Hoon-jung (The Tiger, 2015 and New World, 2013)

Distributor: Warner Bros.

Cast: Jang Dong-gun, Kim Myung-min, Lee Jong-suk

Genre: Thriller


The son (played by Lee Jong-suk) of a high-ranking North Korean official is suspected of committing serial murders around the world. To stop the killer, South Korea, North Korea and Interpol chase after him.



Director: Lee Sa-rang

Distributor: CJ Entertainment

Cast: Kim Soo-hyun, Lee Sung-min

Genre: Action thriller


Jang Tae-young (Kim Soo-hyun) is a popular trouble shooter in the criminal world. He is cold and ambitious. He dreams of building a casino hotel one day. A reporter then goes to Jang Tae-young.


Check Out These 6 Awesome Korean Thrillers

Additional sources: AsianWiki, NAVER, Cine21



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