5 best Korean movies on Netflix you should watch

South Korean films have reached an unprecedented level of popularity in recent years. With stories like Parasite, Squid Gameand Hellbound taking the globe by storm, audiences outside of South Korea have paid more attention to the motion pictures coming out of it.

As a result, Netflix has added some outstanding South Korean films like these five, giving them a much bigger platform for their brilliance to be discovered by streamers.

Okja (2017)

A girl and Okja in "Okja."
Netflix / Netflix

From acclaimed Parasite director Bong Joon-Ho, this Netflix original movie follows a young farm girl who sets out to save her genetically-altered “super pig” from captivity at the hands of a corrupt meat processing company.

Exhilarating, hilarious, and genuinely heartwarming, Okja is an unusual but beautiful tale of a child overcoming a greedy world to rescue her friend that perfectly balances dark realism and childlike optimism.

Miss Granny (2014)

A woman holding a purple umbrella in "Miss Granny."
CJ Entertainment / CJ Entertainment

Directed by Squid Game creator Hwang Dong-hyuk, Miss Granny follows an elderly woman who becomes 20 years old again after visiting a mysterious photo studio, giving her the chance to live the life she always wanted.

Despite its familiar premise, this hilarious film elevates itself with its tender and emotional approach to feelings of regret, fear of death, and abandonment by the younger generation. There may have been a lot of remakes from many different countries, but audiences should definitely see the original for themselves.

#Alive (2020)

A young man on his balcony in "#Alive."
Netflix / Netflix

Train to Busan may no longer be on Netflix, but this South Korean zombie flick is a terrific substitute. #Alive follows a young video gamer who finds himself trapped in his high-rise Seoul apartment when a zombie virus ravages the city. Very much Night of the Living Dead for the millennial age, this gory and claustrophobic film invokes a sense of terror and isolation that hits especially hard in the post-pandemic era. #Alive is thus another example of how the zombie genre continues to find new life in the modern era.

Silenced (2011)

A little girl being filmed on a video camera in "Silenced" (2011).
CJ Entertainment / CJ Entertainment

Also directed by Hwang Dong-hyuk, Silenced follows an art teacher who starts working at a school for deaf-mute children, only to learn the teachers repeatedly sexually assault the students and that the local authorities are covering it all up. Based on a true story, this bleak and harrowing film showcases the very worst of society, and while it may not have been as popular as Squid Gameit still had a massive social effect.

Silenced sparked so much outrage in South Korea that national authorities reopened multiple assault cases, and the country passed a bill named after the movie that abolished the statute of limitations for such crimes. This shows how motion pictures like this can have a powerful and impactful voice in the real world.

Psychokinesis (2018)

A man making objects levitate in "Psychokinesis."
Next Entertainment World / Next Entertainment World

After drinking from a spring infected by a mysterious meteor, a lowly security guard gains telekinetic powers that he uses to protect his daughter’s neighborhood from being demolished by a vile construction company. This unusual “Superman meets Akira” story features the right blend of action, comedy, and human drama to make it a must-see superhero adventure.

Audiences may have gotten tired of the Marvel and DC films, but this superhero film from writer/director Yeon Sang-ho (Train to Busan) hits all the right notes and give them the refreshing thrill ride they need.

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