Top Korean Comedies

Hello everyone and welcome back to another blog post by EonTalk! In this post, I’ll be starting a new written series of “Top Korean Movies,” where I post the written version of the video content I made on the EonTalk YouTube channel. I realize not everyone wants to consume their content in video format, and so, I’ll be also posting the written version of the same content on the EonTalk website as well. And to start it off, I have decided to go with my favorite list of Top Korean comedies. 

Also Available in Video Format:

I’ve compiled a list of my favorite 10 Korean comedies that I believe are definitely worth checking out, and will be explaining some basic background info regarding the films, giving a short synopsis/description of the movies, but won’t be giving any in-depth reviews. This list consists of not only my favorite comedies, but also ones that I thought were deserving of more recognition. 

*Please remember that these are composed of MY, PERSONAL favorites. They are subjective to my biased opinions and are based on my personal taste. Just a little note, I tend to enjoy comedies with a mixture of other genres, such as action-comedy, romcom, etc., as opposed to full-out comedies. If you have differing views and opinions, please respectfully leave them in the comments or on the EonTalk Telegram group

#10

Coming in at my #10 favorite Korean comedy is the 2015 film <Twenty> starring Kim Woo-Bin, Jun-Ho from 2pm, Kang Ha-Neul, Jung So-Min, Lee Yoo-Bin, Min Hyo-Rin, and Jung Ju-Yeon. <Twenty> is a movie with lots of sexual comments, so if you do not like the more mature type of comedy, this may not be for you. However, I thoroughly did enjoy this movie and found it humorous. The movie was directed by Lee Byung-Hun, who also directed <Extreme Job> and <What a Man Wants>.

The synopsis is as follows:
The popular guys, ‘Chi-Ho.’ The man of vitality, ‘Dong-Woo.’ And the smart guy, ‘Kyung-Jae.’ This trio just turned  the prime-age of “Twenty,” the age of consent in South Korea. At an age where you feel invincible, where all seems possible, yet so young, a new world of opportunities opens.

#9

Next, the #9 spot goes to a movie with a very different tone: <Miracle in Cell No.7>. This film is not only a great comedy, but is an extremely, EXTREMELY emotional movie. Some say the film tries too hard to force the tears out of its audience, which I do agree with to a certain extent, but there’s no denying that the movie is a great work. <Miracle in Cell No.7> was released in 2013, and stars Ryu Seung-Ryong, Park Shin-Hye, Kal So-Won, Oh Dal-Soo, Park Won-Sang, Kim Jung-Tae, Jung Man-Shik, and Kim Ki-Chun. The movie was directed by Lee Hwan-Kyung, who also directed <Champ>

The synopsis is as follows:
In the prison cell full of merciless criminals, an odd fellow joins the chamber. This newbie is a mentally-challenged man, named Yong-Gu, who was wrongfully indicted, but with no power and noone to help him, he is sent to prison. Yong-Gu has a lovely 6 year old daughter, and the men of the cell no.7 are faced with the mission of sneaking in Yong-Gu’s daughter into the prison cell walls. Through the father and daughter, the once heartless criminals learn the meaning of love and life.

#8

Coming in at the #8 spot is the 2016 film, <A Violent Prosecutor>. <A Violent Prosecutor> is a crime-comedy, and it may actually lean closer to the crime genre, but I still found the movie to be very funny. Kang Dong-Won’s comedic acting was executed very well, and the scene of him dancing to “Bombastic” even made the song go viral in Korea. The film stars the likes of Hwang Jung-Min, Kang Dong-Won, Lee Sung-Min, Park Sung-Woong, Kim Eung-Soo, Shin So-Yool, Park Jong-Hwan, Ju Jin-Mo, and Kim Byung-Ok, and was directed by Lee Il-Hyung

The synopsis is as follows:
The ruthless prosecutor, Byun Jae-Wook, is charged with murder when the suspect he was investigating dies during the investigation. With no way of getting out of the framed case, Jae-Wook receives a 15 year sentence. In prison, he meets a pretty-boy conman, Chi-Won, who has knowledge of Jae-Wook’s framed case. Using his past skills and knowledge as a prosecutor, Jae-Wook somehow proves Chi-Won to be innocent, freeing him into society, and utilizes him to prove his innocence and get out.

#7

The #7 best comedy of Korean movies was directed by Kim Joo-Hwan, who also directed <The Divine Fury>; <Midnight Runners> is the #7 best Korean comedy of my list. Starring Park Seo-Jun, Kang Ha-Neul, Sung Dong-Il, Park Ha-Sun, Go Joon, and Lee Ho-Jung, <Midnight Runners> is an action-comedy that I still watch for a good laugh on Netflix to this day. I feel like both Park Seo-Jun and Kang Ha-Neul really showcased their comedic sides with this movie, and it’s their performances that really made the movie a funny one. 

The synopsis is as follows:
The student police full of motivation, Ki-Joon, and his best friend Hee-Yeol, witness a kidnapping case while on their leave. They are the only two witnesses to the case, and, as they learned from their police academy, they report the incident to the authorities. However, the strenuous reporting process and lack of evidence leads the case to no progression, and with the time winding down by the second, the duo decides to take it upon themselves to solve the case.

#6

The #6 best Korean comedy goes to the 2016 film <Luck-Key>. Starring Yoo Hae-Jin, Lee Jun, Cho Yoon-Hee, Lim Ji-Yeon, and Cho Han-Chul, amongst others, the film had a very odd premise, as you’ll be able to see in just a moment with the synopsis. I personally think Yoo Hae-Jin is an amazing actor, as he’s able to execute any role he’s given, whether it be drama, action, or a historical work; however, I think he just shines when it comes to comedy. I feel like he’s made for comedic films, and he proves why with Luck-Key.  Directed by Lee Kye-Byuk, who also directed <Cheer Up Mr. Lee>, <Luck-Key> is a comedy that’s definitely worth watching.

The synopsis is as follows:
The relentless assassin, Hyung-Wook, visits a bathhouse after finishing a hit. There, he slips on a bar of soap and falls on his head, losing his memory. Jae-Sung, who was living a lowly life and was on the verge of committing suicide, decides to have one last bath before ending his life. When he visits the same bathhouse that Hyung-Wook had the accident, he switches his locker key with that of Hyung-Wook’s, and takes all of Hyung-Wook’s luxurious belongings and money. With no memories prior to the bathhouse, Hyung-Wook lives his life as the poor Jae-Sung, and Jae-Sung lives the rich life of Hyung-Wook.

#5

The #5 best comedy is also one of the best romcoms of recent Korean movies. This movie really hits the feels and makes you reminisce about your past first love, and brings back so many memories. The #5 spot goes to <On Your Wedding Day>. This 2018 film stars Park Bo-Young, Kim Young-Kwang, Kang Ki-Young, and Go Gyu-Pil, and was directed by Lee Seok-GeunSidenote, I have a written review of this film, if you would like to read more about it.

The synopsis is as follows:
Turn back the clock to when you first fell in love. Do you remember the emotions you felt? Can you hear your heart beating as if it’ll burst out of your chest? That’s how Woo-Yeon felt when he first met Seung-Hee for the first time in the summer of 2005. After desperately following his first love around, the two finally start dating. But not for long. Woo-Yeon suddenly receives a call from his first love, telling him to be well, and disappears. A year later, with all hope lost, Woo-Yeon sees Seung-Hee on a brochure of a university out of sheer chance. That’s when he sets his mind and determines to study his ass off to get accepted into the same school as his first love. A year of sleepless nights and endless studying later, Woo-Yeon is admitted into the college. However, he finds out that the love of his life has a boyfriend… And that’s just the start of time and fate’s cruel play of trickery.

#4

The #4 best Korean comedy is a film that has the most A-list stars in its cast. The #4 spot goes to the 2012 film <The Thieves>, starring Kim Yoon-Seok, Kim Hye-Soo, Lee Jung-Jae, Jun Ji-Hyun, Simon Yam, Kim Hae-Sook, Oh Dal-Soo, Kim Soo-Hyun,  Angelica Lee, and Derek Tsang. The movie is not only a comedy, but also a crime/action drama. From the incredible humorous acting performances by the amazing actors to the story, and everything in between, <The Thieves> is a definite watch if you love that action-comedy genre. The movie was directed by Choi Dong-Hoon, the great director who also directed <Assassination> and the first Tazza film.

The synopsis is as follows:
In order to let situations cool down after their last heist, Popeye and his group of thieves go to Macau to perform another job. However, the brains of the job turns out to be none other than Popeye’s old partner Macao Park. The two ended on bad terms, as Macao Park ran away with the treasure of the heist. On this new mission, the thieves’ target is an extremely rare diamond, known as ‘The Tear of the Sun.’

#3

The #3 movie of the best Korean comedies is the oldest film on this list. The #3 movie is <200 Pounds Beauty> starring Ju Jin-Mo, Kim Ah-Joong, Sung Dong-Il, Kim Hyun-Sook, Lim Hyun-Shik, Lee Han-Wi, Ji Seo-Yoon, and Park No-Shik. This is one of the earliest films I’ve seen, and I recently rewatched it a few weeks ago, and it’s still so good. It’s definitely aged well, and is a definite must-watch. The film was directed by Kim Yong-Hwa, who also directed the two Along with the God movies, <Take Off>, and <Mr. Go>.

The synopsis is as follows:
Hanna is a lip sync vocalist for Amy, a famous Korean singer. Hanna is always ignored because of her appearance, as she is a 200 pound girl who cannot seem to get anything to go her way. Despite her appearance, she’s been bright and lighthearted; that is, until Amy humiliates her in front of her secret lover, Sang-Jun. Not being able to take any of people’s BS any longer, she makes the decision to get plastic surgery, or more like a total transformation of her whole body. Will her newly found self be able to change her situations?

#2

The #2 movie was the most recently released film on the list, being released in 2019. This is a movie I regret giving such a low Ticket Price Value for in my review, as I very much enjoyed the movie, and I found myself laughing out loud and at the edge of my seat throughout the duration. I don’t know what I was thinking when I gave it such a low value… Anyways, the #2 movie goes to <Exit> starring the likes of Jo Jung-Suk, Yoona from Girls Generation, Go Doo-Shim, Park In-Hwan, Kim Ji-Young, and Kang Ki-Young. This action-comedy does both so well, and really defined Yoona as a great actress, and the movie was directed by Lee Sang-Geun.

The synopsis is as follows:
Yong-Nam is an unemployed male in his late 20s/early 30s, and was pretty well-known in his college days as he was an ace climber at his school’s rock climbing club. However, upon graduation he fails to find a job and lives at his parent’s house as a sad, jobless man. At his mother’s 70th birthday party, he runs into Eui-Ju, a junior of his from the rock climbing club, who’s now an employee at the facility that the birthday party is being held at. The two catch up, discussing how life’s been and all, but out of nowhere an explosion occurs and the whole city starts filling up with toxic gas. Yong-Nam and Eui-Ju use the skills they acquired from their rock-climbing days to escape the disaster of the gas attack.

#1

And finally, the #1 comedy of my choice. I found that the comedy of this movie can be divided, as I very much enjoyed it and was LOLing throughout the whole movie, but some of my friends said it wasn’t that funny. However, maybe because I’ve seen the movie at a pre-screening and attended a cast-interview, and so got to learn about the movie in-depth, but I thought this was a definite must-watch comedy. The movie is: <Intimate Strangers>. <Intimate Strangers> is a remake of the Italian film <Perfect Strangers>, and makes you feel all kinds of emotions! The mood goes back and forth between being comical and emotional, but doesn’t go full-fledged serious. From funny to serious, to funny to emotional, to funny and touching, and so on and so forth, “comedy” is always the overarching element of the movie. You know it’s a great film when a comedy movie can not only provide genuine laughter but other strong, mixed emotions as well. For more detail, be sure to check out my review of the film.

The synopsis is as follows:
During a reunion of long-time friends of married couples, someone proposes playing a game. The rules are as follows: Everyone must place their phones on the table, and must share everything, from calls, texts, emails, messages, all of it, with the group. As the members’ phones start to ring and ding, the mood gradually shifts from a light, playful one to a serious and mysterious one. A game that started off as mere entertainment starts to reveal the deepest secrets of the players.

 

Conclusion

That concludes today’s post on my list of best Korean comedies. I know some movies you may have expected may not have been included in this list, or the order may not meet your satisfaction. However, as mentioned in the beginning, this list was based on my PERSONAL tastes. If you have differing views, please respectfully leave a comment, or join the EonTalk community on Telegram, and I’d love to further discuss! Once again, thank you to everyone that read till the end, and look forward to the next post!

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Disclaimer
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.