I Saw the Devil (2010)

8.5 Overall Score
Story: 8/10
Acting: 9/10
Visuals: 9/10

These guys are scary good, really visual

Lots of gore and blood, borders on gratuitous violence

Movie Info

Movie Name:  I Saw the Devil

Studio:  Showbox/Mediaplex

Genre(s):  Mystery/Suspense/Action/Adventure/Horror/Drama

Release Date(s):  August 12, 2010

MPAA Rating:  Not Rated


No…no reason to be suspicious of me at all

A psychopathic killer named Kyung-chul (Choi Min-sik) kills and mutilates a woman stranded on a deserted roadside in the winter.  Kyung-hyun has unleashed something in the murder and now has become the prey of the woman’s officer fiancé Soo-hyun (Lee Byung-hun).  As Kyung-chul continues his murderous impulses, he is dogged by Soo-hyun and tortured for his actions.  When Soo-hyun slips up, Kyung-chul seeks revenge for the torture in an even bloodier display.

Directed by Kim Ji-woon, I Saw the Devil was met with mostly positive reviews.  There was some controversy surrounding its release in that the Korea Media Rating Board wasn’t going to allow it to be released, but cuts were made to get the approval (and the unedited version is available in the U.S. and other countries).


Would you believe me if I said “Turn around!”?

This is maybe one of the bloodiest movies I have ever seen.  It borrows from other bloody films by taking the theme of Bergman’s The Virgin Spring which was remade into Wes Craven’s original bloody shocker The Last House on the Left.  While watching The Last House on the Left, I was disgusted because the violence seemed so gratuitous and only for shock value.  Here the violence is gratuitous but helps to really propel the story.  It is hard to watch, but the look and the style of the film make it almost impossible to look away.


So have you heard the one about about the guy who killed my girl and that I had to mess up?

The film is also aided by the great acting talents of Choi Min-sik and Lee Byung-hun.  Both have had international success in other films.  Choi Min-sik was in also shocking Oldboy as the main character and Lee Byung-hun was “the Bad” in the rather epic The Good, the Bad, and the Weird.  Here they face off against each other and both are quite good.  Choi Min-sik is just scary in his sociopathic nature that is so evil and dark that it has a real scary serial killer feel to it.  Lee Byung-hun is interesting in that he isn’t scary, but tortured but forced into a position of revenge that makes him do some horrific stuff.

I Saw the Devil is a crazy film and not for the squeamish.  It is violent, bloody, and realistic at the same time.  I had to break-up the viewing a bit in that it was making me a bit sick, but it also kept drawing me back in with the style and acting.  If you want to be shocked, check out I Saw the Devil…you’ll definitely remember it.

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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