When it comes to thriller movies, no one can beat the South Korean film industry. They are best known for their high-quality action drama. South Korean film industry is a sort of a gift for those who love thrillers because whenever they come up, they come up with a masterpiece. Filmmakers of South Korea are among the best in the world. With their enhanced grittiness, more morally ambiguous characters and a willingness to push boundaries, they leave the American counterparts in the dust. If you are new to Korean cinema and confused that where to start from so, to avoid your confusion here are some best pic out of Korean thriller drama movies for you.

Korean Thriller Drama Movies

1. Oldboy:

This movie was released in the year 2003. One of the most famous action and thriller based movie.
and he is also a co-writer in this movie. the main writer of the movie is Garon Tsuchiya. This is the story of a person named”Oh-Dae-Su”. He is captured in the cell of the prison for 15 years she doesn’t even know the motive of his captor but when he finally released out of the jail he found that he is still in the trap of the conspiracy and violence. He tried to find out the way of taking revenge but he entangled in love with a girl who is a chef called”sushi”. It is interesting to watch how he takes his revenge.

2. I Saw the Devil:

this movie was released in the year 2010. One of the Bollywood movie called ‘EkThaVillain’ Is also based on the same story. I saw the devil is a revenge movie in which the character named Kim soo Hyun (lee), plan to murder the serial killerJang Kyung Chul (Choi). Because of that killer kills his wife brutally. The writer of the movie is Park Hoon-Jung and the director of the movie is Kim Jee Woon.

3. Mother:

This is a story of a mother’s love for the child it is a mystery of a widow who lives with her son. They lived in one of the small towns of SouthKorea.The son of the widow is mentally-disabled. for the living, she used to sell medicinal herbs. But one day the son of the widow fell in the murder case of a girl and the judiciary system, he found out as a prime suspect. Then the mother moves out to collect the evidence of her son’s innocence. It was released in 2009.

4. New World:

The story of the movie is all about the undercover cop named Ja Sung. He plays the role of a cop
and a goon in the movie, but sometimes it is difficult for him to play as both. So, it is quite interesting to watch how he manages all the things together.

5. Bedevilled:

This suspense, thriller drama was released in the year 2010. Directed by Jang Cheol Soo. The story is revolving around a young single girl named Hyewon. She is a self-centered girl who works in a
bank.due to some problems in her work she is asked to take holidays for a few days.to spend the holidays she moves to Mudo island. It was her childhood home. However, within a few days, she realized that some injustice is happening with one of her childhood friends Kim bok name.

6. Thirst:

It’s a horror movie.released in the year 2009. Park Chan Wook is the writer and director of the film. It’s a story of the Christian priest. who loves one of his friend’s wife. He used to do medical experiments and now he is experimenting on the virus, but that experiment is a big fail and as a result, turned into a vampire. The story of the movie is very unique not because it is a horror but it is a love story moreover.

7. The Chaser:

This crime thriller suspense was released in 2008. This is a story of an ex-detective whose girl
disappears without telling him. Then he receives a call from somewhere and he got to know that she is kidnapped by a serial killer.

8. The Man from Nowhere:

Action-based thriller movie. story based on the man who is a pawnshop keeper.his past was having a dark and mysterious side. The man in the story start trafficking of drugs and organs just to
save his one and the only friend.film was released in 2010. It is written and directed by Lee Jeong Beom.

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9.The Wailing:

It was a horror film that showed supernatural power and also adds suspense thrill.released in 2016. The Center of the movie is a policeman, who inspects the sequence of mysterious killing and infection to save her daughter.

10. Hwayi: A Monster Boy:

Action-thriller movie.it was released in 2013. the centre of the story is a 16-year old boy, he was kidnapped when he was an infant. he was brought up by five criminals. Its a story of finding the truth when he got to know about his past life. He wants to know about his true identity.

11. Snowpiercer:

This movie is all about science-fiction, action, and thrill. The story of the movie is that due to failure in experiment changes in the climate occur due to which millions of people vanished but a few of them survive who got on the Snowpiercer. Snowpiercer is a train that travels around the world. This movie was released in 2013 and written and directed by bong Joon ho.

12.  A Tale of Two Sisters:

It was a 2013 movie. itis generally a psychological horror drama. It’s a Story of two sisters. They both get back to home from a mental asylum after a long time. because it is a story of a dark past so both sisters try to find out the way with their stepmother to get rid of the ghost. This is a ghost of their late real mother.

13.  Memories of Murder:

This film is a mix of action, drama, thrill, mystery.it’s a story of two cops having different views towards the cases which they have to solve.thistimetheybothare struggling on a case in which a series of women being raped and murdered by a serial killer. It was released in 2003. And liked by the audience.

14.  Montage:

It’s a combo of suspense, crime, thriller, and solid acting. The Center of the movie is a mother who lost her daughter 15 years ago in a kidnapping case. Almost identical crime occurs this time again and she does not want to let it go so she investigates the case. She finds that her daughter was kidnapped by grandfather.

15. A Hard Day:

It is action and adventure drama in which a crook detective accidentally killed a man. To a cover-up that murder he put the dead body in his mother’s coffin on the day of her funeral. But unfortunately, the detective is stalked by someone and that unknown person claim that he is an eyewitness of everything.

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16. The Suspect :

This action, thriller was released in 2013. its a story of a man named Ji Dong-Chul (Gong Yoo). He was a part of a special force. But the scenario has changed when he was sent on a mission by the government. behind him, his wife and daughter were handovers to China as a slave. When Dong-Chul gets to know all about his missing family then he begins to hunt about hidden secrets. But unfortunately, he becomes the prime suspect in the murder of the CEO. It is interesting to watch how he overcome all the problems and finally discover the truth. The story and the acting by the cast are extremely solid.

17.  A Bittersweet Life:

This movie is full of action, drama, thriller, and crime. It was released in 2005. in the film, a contract killer is assigned by his boss to investigate the lover of his wife. But in a violent encounter, he kills the lover,  from there the troubles begin and things have gone wrong in his life. For the first time a gangster movie from a director who is best known for his horror movie. The writer and director of this stylish movie are Kim Ji-Woon.

17. No Mercy:

This is a suspense thriller, crime drama. It was released in 2010. The story of the movie is that the police find the body of a woman who is badly chopped but all the chopped pieces are together except the right arm. So to decode what message killer wants to give,  police called a pathologist who finds out about the killer but later the killer threatened him that he will kill his daughter if he doesn’t rescue him. The script of the movie is quite exciting.

19.  The Yellow Sea:


The Center of this action, a thriller movie is a taxi driver who is asked to hit a professor in exchange for money.  But the hit goes wrong because the taxi driver is in stress, he thinks that his wife is In the extramarital affair and because of that hit, police chase him and violent events also happen. he runs to save his life. This movie contains crime, betray, suspense, struggle, hunts, pain, fight, and many more emotions together, which is the best part of the movie. This was released in 2010.

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20. Cold Eyes:



This crime action was released in 2013. the story revolves around a woman named Ha Yoon-Ju. She is a new member of the Korean police team who keeps an eye on the special high profile cases. She is having a clear memory and keen observation power. she is ordered to work under  Hwang Sang-jun. He is a leader of the unit and especially known for his animal-like sense. They both form a really good bond and now they plan to catch a bank-robbing organization.


21.  Sunflower:

This movie is full of action and family drama. It was released in 2006. Its a story of a gangster named Tae-Sik. Tae-Sik was a gangster but he is not a gangster anymore. After release from prison,  he wants to spend the rest of his life with his stepmother and family peacefully. They have a restaurant. And they both work in the restaurant. But the struggle begins from there when a politician wants to make the mall at the place of their restaurant.

22. Friend:


Director and writer of this action, the crime drama is  Kyung-take Kwak. It was released in the year 2001. The story of the movie is all about four friends. All four were grown together. complete their schooling together. After completing studies they all four get separated and choose different paths in their life. Two of them become a part of the criminal world. They both have now become rivals of each other. One of them is in prison and another is on drugs. This movie contains powerful moments and great actors.


23. Sympathy for Mr Vengeance:


This movie was released in the year 2002. The centre of the story is a man who needs a kidney for his sister kidney’s transplant. But he can’t donate his kidney. Because it is not a match for his sister’s body. So, to get a price for the kidney he decides to kidnap his former boss’s friend’s daughter. However, with him, a big tragedy happens, due to which series of violent act occurs in his life. In the movie, everything is explained in a well-mannered way which is the strongest part of the movie.


24. Voice of a Murderer:


This movie was released in 2007. The story of the movie is the son of a famous news anchor has kidnapped without any evidence. Later, he gets a call from a kidnapper. It was an extortion call,  who demand money. So the family of news anchor reports all this thing to police.  And police assign this case to the experienced officer.  Although the police work hard on the case despite this the extortion call is continuous.


25. Rough Cut:


This action drama was released in 2008. Its a story of two-person who wants to pursue different profession but they are in a different profession. One of them wants to be a gangster but he is an actor. And the other one wants to be an actor but he is a gangster. One day they both meet in a saloon and discussed themself. From there, their life paths start crossing. The scene and the story of the film are unique, which is the best part of the film.


26. Lady Vengeance:

Its a story of a lady who was imprisoned form the last  13 years. She was accused of child murder. But when she returns,  she wants to take revenge with the help of friends.  To that person who was actually behind all this crime. This movie was released in 2005 and written by Nick Riganas. The story of the movie is extremely good. And the irony of the movie makes it more interesting.

27. Moss:

It was released in 2010. This is the story of a son.  who gets a call from a mysterious man. That mysterious man said that his father has died in the village. So he should come to the village from there the haunting and thriller journey of the son begins in the past of his father’s life. The haunting and threatening environment of the film is the center of interest for the audience.

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28. Train to Busan:

The story of the movie revolves around the train. In which many families suffer because the passengers of the train slowly become zombies due to the outbreak of a virus. They are man eaten. Many families are still humans. They struggle to survive on the train.


29. Confession of Murder:

This is the story of a man who writes an autobiography. In which he writes about all the murder that he did in his life. But because of this book, many people try to find the author of the movie. One of them is a detective and another lady is the mother of the victim. There is also another murderer who starts killing people day by day. This movie was released in 2012.


30. Tae Guk Gi: The Brotherhood of War:

Its a story of two brothers. They both are sharing an incredible relationship. They both are part of the Korean army. Once, they both are forced to fight.  So, the elder one decides that only he will go in the war. He decides so, just to save his younger brother from death. It was released in 2004. It counts under one of the best Korean thriller drama war movies ever.


31. Private Eye:

This a story of a medicine boy. Who discovers a cadaver. He is afraid after getting the body.  Because he thought that now police accused him. The dead body is the son of a well-known politician. So, he decides that he hires a detective to know about the real killer before the police accuse him. It was released in 2009.


32. The City of Violence:

This is the story of a detective.  Who goes to the funeral. It is the funeral of his friend. There he found one of his other friends. Both of them found something fishy behind the murder. So they decide to investigate. This movie was released in the year 2006.


33.  Blind:

This is the story of a girl who losses her eyesight and brother in a car accident. But at that time no one helps her. A few years later when she travels through a car, that car driver hits someone. Then she reports the accident to the police. And the officer who handles her case gets to know about the strength of her other 4 sense organ. This movie was released in 2011.


34. Silenced:

It’s a story of a man who wants to earn for her daughter’s surgery by working with the school. It’s a school of physically and mentally handicapped children. Where he found an ugly truth. All the students are sexually abused by their faculty staff. So he decides to fight for children justice. And he asked for NGOs and police for help. Where he finds that everyone knows about this.  But everyone just tries to cover up everything. This great story was released in 2011.


35. The Housemaid:

It’s a story of young women who work as a nanny. She is in an affair with the man of the house. She forms a destructive love triangle. The consequences of this love triangle are too dark. The cast and acting are the best part of the movie. This Korean thriller drama released in 2010.

36. Dark Figure of Crime:

This is the story of a detective and a murderer. In this suspense thriller they both clash and conflict with each other psychologically. Killer confesses all his murders that he had done previously. direction and acting they both are the powerhouse of the movie.

37. Parasite

korean thriller drama movies

This is the latest addition in the Korean thriller drama movies. It was released in 2019 and is directed by Bong Joon-ho. It is a story of a poor family who tries to make ends meet and come across a very rich family. All goes well but does it? Things turn their life upside down when an untoward incident happens which changes the life of both families forever. This movie won the Academy Award for best picture.
So these were some of the best Korean thriller drama movies that you must watch. Do tell us your favourite Korean thriller drama in the comment section below.
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