"The 8th Night": 5 Reasons To Watch Netflix's New Korean Horror Movie
Following the success of Netflix's The Call last year—which earned Jeon Jong-seo a Best Actress win at the 57th Baeksang Arts Awards—Netflix is offering yet another Korean horror movie for us to feast on, and it's not even Halloween yet.
The 8th Night is an occult horror-thriller about a millennia-old spirit who tries to unleash hell on Earth by infiltrating seven weak human humans to assume its full form. It follows the eight-day struggle to stop this from happening. The red and black halves of the dangerous spirit that were sealed in sarira caskets are being rejoined to wreak havoc.
Guardian Park Jin-su (Lee Sung-min), monk Cheong-seok (Nam Da-reum), detectives Kim Ho-tae (Park Hae-joon) and Park Dong-jin (Kim Dong-yeong) and a mysterious girl Ae-ran (KIm Yoo-jung) become embroiled in a battle against the spirit which must not be awakened. Whether you're a horror fan or not, here are five reasons why you'll want to check out the movie.
1/5 It has a well-developed story
According to director Kim Tae-hyun, "The title has a lot of different meanings. On the surface, it hints at the limited amount of time you get, eight nights. If you put the number eight sideways, it’s the infinite sign and signifies infinite hell".
With the title having multiple meanings, the amount of thought put into the film is apparent. Besides, there will be a lot of twists that you might not be expecting, just like the title. Director Kim also revealed that it took him four years for the first draft and the production stage took about two years, amounting to a total of six years to make the film.
The rich worldview and details incorporated into the film are seen from the introduction as well, using Sanskrit with parts of the film shot in Kazakhstan.
See also: 15 Scariest Asian Horror Movies To Watch
2/5 The stars have a family-like chemistry
For a horror movie, this is something you wouldn't expect because characters...get killed off. But The 8th Night is different as the characters band together to stop the spirit from wreaking havoc. Many of the actors have also worked together before so they already have a close relationship. Park Hae-joon said, "I’ve always respected Sung-min and since we’ve worked together a lot, I think we have good chemistry".
Meanwhile, Lee Sung-min shared, "Nam Da-reum acted as my son in the drama Memory, and he calls me dad". Nam Da-reum said of Lee, "On set, he was really like a dad to me and took good care of me".
Park Hae-joon also shared, "When Kim Dong-yeong and I worked together on Believer, his performance was very realistic and I always thought I wanted to work with him again".
Kim Yoo-jung added, "The story and the characters were a bit heavy and dark, but that was not the ambience on set. It was like we were a family".
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3/5 It has interesting characters
While each of the characters are interesting in their own ways, viewers are able to see Jin-su and Cheong-seok the most. Lee Sung-min said of his character, "Jin-su can see beyond reality. In a way, he has another eye. My character has a sort of the third eye and can see things that people cannot see". The actor also shared that he spoke with Buddhist monks in preparation for developing his character.
Nam Da-reum elaborated on his character, saying "Cheong-seok lives in a temple that is very deep in the forest. He’s very curious about the world, cheerful, and child-like".
See also: 5 Things To Know About "Night In Paradise"—Netflix's New Korean Thriller Film
4/5 The characters allowed the cast to have divergent roles
The interesting characters allowed the actors a chance to portray very different personalities from their previous roles. Park Hae-joon, who starred as the husband in The World of the Married, left many in ire. Talking about his The 8th Night character, he said is quite different, "Ho-tae is a very affectionate and friendly guy".
Former child actress Kim Yoo-jung also shared that since the movie was filmed about two years ago, with release delayed due to the pandemic, it was her "first movie since I came of age". Her mysterious character is definitely one to look out for.
Another former child actor and known for playing younger versions of male leads in Korean dramas as well as portraying students, Nam Da-reum said that "This character has a different image from the characters I have portrayed".
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5/5 It's not your typical horror movie
Most horror movies are straightforward. The aim is always to scare. But The 8th Night is more than just a straightforward occult thriller. Lee Sung-min said, "I was very curious and intrigued by this genre. Usually, you’ll see a priest and a devil, then an exorcism and you’re done. This film’s ultimate theme is awakening and coming to understand something. It alludes to your pain and your suffering".
Director Kim also teased, "I think the fear that you feel when you come across something unfamiliar is something you enjoy in this genre. There is more appeal to the film on top of what you can typically expect from this genre".
See also: 10 Horror Films To Watch On Netflix
The 8th Night premieres on July 2, only on Netflix.