13 Korean Psychological Thrillers You Must Watch Before You Die

You know how there’s some supposed study that claims you can burn calories watching scary movies?

Apparently, it’s arguable, but like don’t let that stop you from incorporating that into your workout or whatever.

But you know how like sometimes you want to have that rush from scary movies, but you also want to sleep that night? Like you enjoy being scared just a little bit, but you also want to be able to walk around your house at night and not die?

Yeah that’s totally a problem that lots of well-adjusted people have. And like other well-adjusted people in society, you watch Korean Psychological thrillers instead of horror movies, because you can still get that fear fix and know that the homicidal psycho-maniac isn’t out to get you because you’re not responsible for accidentally sending their life into a tailspin of negative events that completely broke their spirit, making them snap and irrationally blame you for things that may or may not have been in your control. I mean, that’s how we all rationalize away scary things to feel safe and secure in both familiar and unfamiliar places, right?

Yep. We all relate to this, which is why we’re providing a list of 13 of our favorite Korean Psychological thrillers.

Oldboy (2003)

A man who was imprisoned against his will for 15 years finds himself released with no explanation and five days to figure out why. With the help of a young woman, he seeks revenge on the person who tore him away from his family — only to learn of the horrible atrocities he himself had unknowingly committed.

I Saw The Devil (2010)

A young woman is brutally murdered by a serial killer, prompting her secret agent fiancé to track him down. When he discovers the man who took the love of his life away from him, he decides to get his ultimate revenge by repeatedly capturing, torturing, and releasing him in a sadistic, bloody game of cat and mouse.

The Man From Nowhere (2010)

A man with a troubled past lives a quiet life, his only friend being the little girl who lives next door. When her drug-addict mother steals from a powerful crime syndicate, they kidnap the small family, prompting the reticent man to go to great lengths to save the only light in his life from certain death.

Midnight FM (2010)

A radio host decides to quit her job in order to take care of her family, but an obsessive fan doesn’t want her to leave. Kidnapping her family, he makes crazed demands with her family’s life as leverage. With the help of a man who remembers every single one of her broadcasts, it’s a race against time to find the kidnapper and save her loved ones.

A Bittersweet Life (2006)

An unquestioningly loyal enforcer to a cold, calculating crime boss is tasked with carrying out a seemingly simple order: tail the boss’ mistress and kill her if he discovers her having an affair. He finds the woman with a man in her home, but decides to spare her life — at the expense of his own.

Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance (2002)

A deaf man and his girlfriend kidnap a little girl in order to secure ransom money to use for his sick sister’s operation. When things go horribly wrong and the girl accidentally drowns, the father seeks vengeance on the pair that took his daughter’s life.

No Mercy (2010)

A serial killer who has been essentially proven to be guilty of decapitating women blackmails a staff member of the National Institute of Scientific Investigation to help clear his name, threatening to kill the man’s daughter if he isn’t set free.

The Terror Live (2013)

When a top national news anchor gets demoted to radio news gets a call on air from a terrorist, he strikes an exclusivity deal with him in an attempt to gain back his position. The terrorist makes demands through the anchor, and the show’s ratings go up. All seemed to be working well for the anchor, until he discovers the terrorist’s true plans and realizes his life is in grave danger.

Mother (2009)

A mother and her mentally challenged son lived a quiet life in a small South Korean town without incident until the body of a young girl was discovered. Circumstantial evidence and a slipshod investigation wrongfully pegged the son as the murderer, so his mother took the law into her own hands to clear his name.

Antarctic Journal (2005)

A South Korean expedition to the Antarctic Point of Inaccessibility led by Choi Do-hyung discovers a journal left by a British team 80 years prior detailing the same strange experiences they’d been encountering. As the expedition continues, so too does their slow descent into madness, even fatal delusions.

Sympathy for Lady Vengeance (2005)

A woman who was wrongfully imprisoned for the kidnap and murder of a six-year-old boy was released after 13 years. As she seeks revenge against the true culprit, she struggles to rekindle her relationship with the daughter that had been taken away from her.

The Chaser

A detective-turned-pimp finds himself in financial trouble when several of his girls go missing without a trace. While trying to determine where they could have gone, he discovers all of them had met with the same man before their disappearance and springs to action when he realizes one of his girls is out with the man at that exact moment.

Memories of a Murder (2003)

Set in 1986 and based on true events, two detectives struggle with solving the murders of several young women who had been killed in similar ways. When a third detective from the country joins them and another murder occurs, they begin to suspect the work of a serial killer.

Featured Image via YouTube / Bill Gnk

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