Top Korean Horror Movies

Hello everyone and welcome back to another post by EonTalk! Today, I’ve prepared one of the most highly requested content by the EonTalk community members: My list of best Korean horror movies. 

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In nearly all of my previous posts/videos, the EonTalk community has always requested a list on Korean horror movies. However, if you’ve seen my movie reviews and other content, you might know that I am not the biggest fan of the horror genre. But if the community asks for it, I gotta deliver. And so, I compiled a “Top 10 List of Korean Horror Movies” that I recommend. 

As with my other content, the movies here aren’t only well-known ones, but also films that I believe are deserving of more recognition. I’ve included both older and newer films on this list to keep a good balance. Thus, I’ll be going back and forth between more older movies and newer ones. Please remember that these are composed of my, personal favorites and are subjective to my totally biased opinions. If you have differing views and opinions, please respectfully leave them in the comments, and if you would like to further discuss, join the EonTalk Telegram group.

Now then, that being said, let’s jump into today’s list on Best Korean horror movies!


Starting off the list, the #10 film is the 2017 film <House of the Disappeared>.

<House of the Disappeared> was directed by Lim Dae-Woong, who also directed <My Teacher>, and was one of three directors of the film <Horror Stories>. <House of the Disappeared> stars Kim Yoon-Jin, Ok Taek-Yeon, and Cho Jae-Yoon, and I had the opportunity to watch this in theaters when it was first released, as I got free tickets, and I went into it completely blind. I hadn’t watched the trailer, didn’t know who was starring in it, and didn’t even know it was a horror film. And so, as you may expect, I was completely surprised. I found myself scared out of my body in the theater. Anyways, let’s just say that this movie freaked me out, and that’s a good thing for a movie of this genre. 

The synopsis is as follows:
Mi-Hee, who was arrested for murdering her husband and son, returns to the house where the incident occurred after 25 years of imprisonment. Priest Choi, the only person that believes Mi-Hee, visits her to ask about what really happened, but she just repeats “They killed my husband and took my kid.” As Priest Choi investigates to get to the bottom of the truth, he’s convinced that there’s something very strange about the house. One day, as Mi-Hee is alone in the house, she realizes that someone else is in the house with her, just like 25 years ago.


The #9 movie goes to the 2009 film, <Possessed>.

Directed by Lee Yong-Ju, <Possessed> starred the actors Nam Sang-Mi, Ryu Seung-Ryong, Kim Bo-Yeon, Shim Eun-Kyung, Moon Hee-Kyung, and Jang Young-Nam. This film’s director also directed one of the best romance melodramas of Korean cinema, <Architecture 101>. I mentioned <Architecture 101> in my Best Korean Romance Movies video, and I must say, the two movies this director directed were completely different in tone. One was a complete romance, emotion-inducing movie, whereas the other, <Possessed>, was a complete horror flick. The director also was on the production team of one of, if not the best Korean crime-thrillers, <Memories of Murder>. 

The synopsis is as follows:
On the news that her sister, So-Jin, disappeared, Hee-jin rushes home. The mother just goes to church, saying that if she continues to pray, So-jin will return. Tae-Hwan, the detective in charge, believes the case is just a missing person incident, and conducts a formal investigation. Then, the suicide note of a girl, Jung-Mi, left for So-Jin is found, and Hee-Jin and Tae-Hwan are dumbfounded when they hear from the apartment guard and neighbor that So-Jin was a possessed child. It turns out that Jung-Mi and the mother went to the same church, and the next day, the apartment guard is found dead. However, the mother keeps silent and continues to just pray. So-jin’s whereabouts become more and more of a mystery, and Hee-jin’s dreams begin to show a vision of the dead.


Next, the #8 film is another more recent movie that does a really good job at freaking the audience out with its tone, acting, and story: <SVAHA: The Sixth Finger>.

This film was directed by Jang Jae-Hyun, who also did <The Priests>, and <12th Assistant Deacon>, and has a great cast lineup of Lee Jung-Jae, Park Jung-Min, Lee Jae-In, Yoo Ji-Tae, Jung Jin-Young, David Lee, and Jin Sun-Kyu. As mentioned, this is a more recently released movie, and amongst the horror films I’ve seen recently, this is one of the creepiest ones. The reason I enjoyed <SVAHA: The Sixth Finger> is the fact that it didn’t have the part that I hate the most about horror films: jump scares. I very much appreciated that the film didn’t have any unnecessary jump scares, and was genuinely scary in its content.

The synopsis is as follows:
In a rural area far from the city, a pair of twin sisters are born. Geum-Hwa was born with a disabled leg, and her older sister, whom does not have a name, was forseen to die without living too long. However, both have lived up until now, 16 years later. Meanwhile, Pastor Park, a member of the Institute of Religious Affairs, starts looking into a cult he’s discovered. And when a young girl’s body is discovered following a tunnel accident, Pastor Park begins finding correlations between the two. Unfortunately, the suspect of the tunnel accident commits suicide before the investigation officially begins, but Pastor Park manages to find the last person that talked with the suspect. As his investigation grows deeper and deeper, he finds more and more connections between the twins, the cult, and the tunnel incident.


Moving along, the #7 movie is the oldest film on this list, <Phone>.

<Phone> was directed by Ahn Byung-Ki, who’s responsible for another horror movie titled <Apartment>, and stars the young Ha Ji-Won, as well as Kim Yoo-Mi, Choi Woo-Je, Choi Ji-Yeon, and Eun Seo-Woo. I remember seeing scenes of this movie when I was a little kid, and I had nightmares for DAYS. Maybe because I saw it at a younger age, but this movie may be one of the main reasons why I don’t like this genre… Maybe it won’t be as scary if I watch now, at an older age, and since a lot of time has passed since its release, but I’m not planning to rewatch anytime soon. Nevertheless, a scary movie indeed.

The synopsis is as follows:
Ji-won, a journalist, receives threatening phone calls from an unidentified person following revelations she made. Feeling anxious, she tries to change her cell phone number, but the only the only number available is the number 011-9998-6644, and so, without any other choice, she changes her number to that. However, the phone calls continues. One day, she meets her friend Ho-Jung, and when she receives another call, Ho-Jung’s 5 year old daughter answers the phone. Following the call, the daughter starts to act strangely, and Ho-Jung’s family starts to encounter more disturbing events. Meanwhile, Ji-won is chased by the person who threatened her, but she escapes the danger when she receives another call. Ji-won gradually thinks there is some strange relations to the phone, and starts to dig into the mysterious events. What Ji-won learns is that two of the previous owners of the number were killed in a mysterious way, and one was a high schooler who went missing. And Ji-won begins to investigate the missing high school girl.


The #6 movie is the 2018 film, <Gonjiam: Haunted Asylum>.

This film was directed by Jung Beom-Shik, who also directed another horror film titled <Escape>, and was one of the other three directors of <Horror Stories> alongside the earlier mentioned Lim Dae-Woong. The movie stars the likes of Wi Ha-Jun, Park Ji-Hyun, Oh Ah-Yeon, Moon Ye-Won, Park Sung-Hoon, and Yoo Je-Yoon, and <Gonjiam: Haunted Asylum> is one of the hottest Korean horror movies of recent times. I remember this movie being everywhere when it was first released, and everyone who anyone that likes horror movies talking about it. If you would like to be genuinely scared, <Gonjiam: Haunted Asylum> is the movie for you.

The synopsis is as follows:
In 1979, after the mass suicide of 42 patients and the disappearance of the hospital director of the Gonjiam Psychiatric Hospital, a group of seven went on a horror experience trip to the hospital. Gonjiam was a place surrounded by eerie rumors, and the members filmed their trip inside. The group of 7 soon realize that the hospital was not a place to be messed with, as they encountered unimaginably terrifying things during their trip inside.



Coming in at #5 of my list of Korean horror films is another older film released back in 2007, <Epitaph>.

This movie had double directors of Jung Beom-Shik and Jung Shik. Jung Beom-Shik was just mentioned earlier for directing the #6 movie, <Gonjiam: Haunted Asylum>, and Jung Shik was one of two directors of <The Tooth and the Nail>, and was also an assistant director of one of the best Korean movies of all time, <Old Boy>. This film starred the likes of Jin Goo, Lee Dong-Gyu, Kim Tae-Woo, Kim Bo-Kyung, and Go Ju-Yeon.

The synopsis is as follows:
In-young and Dong-won, an elite doctor couple who were studying abroad, suddenly returned home and took positions at the “Ansaeng Hospital.” There, they start their new life with Jeong-nam, a man who had an arranged marriage with the daughter of the director of the hospital, and Soo-In, a doctor who suffers from a leg injury. Amidst a series of killings that have tainted the area with gruesome rumors, the body of a girl who committed suicide, and the only surviving girl of a car accident are brought to the hospital. And this is just the start, as the people of the hospital encounters numerous horrific events.


Moving onto the #4 spot, the #4 movie goes to the most recently released film of this list, <Metamorphosis>.

This extremely freaky movie was directed by Kim Hong-Sun, who’s responsible for other movies such as <The Chase>, <The Con Artists>, and one of the best Korean thrillers, <Traffickers>. The film starred Bae-Sung-Woo, Sung-Dong-Il, Jung Young-Nam, Kim Hye-Jun, Cho Yi-Hyun, and Kim Kang-Hoon, and this was another movie I had free tickets to, and so, saw in theaters without knowing much about it. I’ve got a video movie review of <Metamorphosis> if you would like more details regarding the film.

The synopsis is as follows:
As a demon that can change into human enters a family’s home, extremely strange things start to take place. Everyone starts to accuse and distrust each other, and things get more and more out of hand. The family turns to an exorcist for help, but things don’t go as planned.


Next, the #3 spot is the 2004 film, <R-Point>.

<R-Point> is a classic when it comes to Korean horror movies, and is almost always included in people’s list of top K-horror films. The movie was directed by Gong Soo-Chang, who also did <GP506> and <Coma>, and stars the likes of Kam Woo-Sung, Son Byung-Ho, Park Won-Sang, Oh Tae-Kyung, and Lee Sun-Kyun. <R-Point> isn’t the typical horror movie, as I feel like it has a very mysterious vibe that adds to the scary meter, and makes you think. And it’s this thinking part that makes it that much more scary. I won’t go too into it, as I don’t wanna spoil anything.

The synopsis is as follows:
In 1972, as the end of the Vietnam War nears, Lt. Choi Tae-in suffers from nightmares as he’s the lone survivor of the Battle of Honbau. His request to return is withdrawn, and the CID commander gives him a secret mission. On the night of February 2, 1972, the radio of the communications unit of the division’s headquarters receives mysterious messages. The calls were from the 18 soldiers that were on the ‘Romeo Point’ mission from 6 months ago, who all died during the operation. The mission of Lt. Choi is to secure evidence that confirms the death of the 18 soldiers.


And now, just two movies left. The #2 movie is a relatively newer film compared to some of the older movies on this list, <The Wailing>.

<The Wailing> was directed by Na Hong-Jin, who also directed <The Yellow Sea>, as well as another amazing Korean thriller, <The Chaser>. The film starred the actors Kwak Do-Won, Hwang Jung-Min, Kunimura Jun, Chun Woo-Hee, and Kim Hwan-Hee, and this is one of the most globally recognized K-movie. I’d say this is right up there alongside <Train to Busan>, in terms of recognition, and I believe <The Wailing> is the only horror movie that I voluntarily watched a second time. From the story to the acting, and just the atmosphere it provides, I highly enjoyed the film. 

The synopsis is as follows:
Upon the arrival of a strange man, a town starts to suffer from a series of mysterious events. The police closes the case claiming that it’s the addiction to the mushrooms that the villagers have for the reason of the events, but rumors and suspicions spread that the cause of all the incidents was due to the strange man. Jong-Goo, a cop, meets with a woman that claims she witnessed the incident, and starts to believe all the rumors. As his own daughter starts to show symptoms of the same nature as the affected villagers, Jong-Goo starts to go after the truth.


And finally, the #1 movie of my list of best Korean horror movies. The #1 movie goes to the 2003 masterpiece directed by Kim Ji-Woon, <A Tale of Two Sisters>.

If you’re a fan of the horror genre and Korean movies, you could’ve probably guessed that <A Tale of Two Sisters> will take the #1 spot. Kim Ji-Woon, the director, is one of the most well-known directors, bringing some of the most well-known movies. His other works include the likes of <The Age of Shadows>, <I Saw the Devil>, <The Good, The Bad, The Weird>, and <A Bittersweet Life> (all must-watch films). <A Tale of Two Sisters> stars great, great actors Lim Soo-Jung, Yum Jung-Ah, Kim Gab-Soo, and Moon Geun-Young. 

The synopsis is as follows:
A Japanese-style wooden house stands alone in a rural area. The house, which is beautiful in the daytime, begins to emit a deafening gloom when darkness falls. In this house with unusual energy, two sisters, Su-mi and Su-yeon, move in with their father and new stepmother. The day Su-yeon and Su-mi came to the house from Seoul, the stepmother welcomed the sisters in a friendly manner, but the sisters aren’t as welcoming in their greeting. As Su-Mi tries to take care of her father and her younger sister on behalf of their dead, biological mother, the stepmother gets into frequent fights with the sisters, and the father just sits by without intervening. As the relationship continues to go downhill, strange things start to occur in the house.



That concludes today’s list of best Korean horror movies. Some movies you believe that are worthy of being on the list may not have been included, but please remember that this list was based on my personal tastes. If you have differing views, I’d love to hear them in the comments down below, or on the EonTalk Telegram group. Also, if you enjoyed this post and have requests for future content, let me know in the comments! Lastly, join the EonTalk Patreon if you would like to show your support in what I do!

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Please keep in mind this review is composed of solely my own opinions, and should be taken with a grain of salt. I am in no way a professional writer, nor have I majored or studied journalism. This is for informative entertainment purpose only, representing my personal views. I do not own the images and/or videos used in the review. No copyright infringement intended.

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