Earlier this month, ComicBook.com reported on the list of anime movies available for free movies (with ads) on YouTube. They found classics like “Sailor Moon R: The Movie” and some of the Inu Yasha films among others. We decided to take a look at that library and found that several South Korean films are also available.

Fans of 2019 Academy Awards Best Picture “Parasite” should check out Director Bong Joon-ho’s 2006 film “The Host”. In the movie, Park Gang-du (Song Kang-ho, Kim Ki-taek of “Parasite”) works with his father in their snack bar by the iconic Han River. During a delivery, something strange attacked people by the river including Gang-du and his daughter Hyun-seo (Go Ah-sung, Yona of “Snowpiercer”). The monster took the girl amidst the chaos and now Gang-du must do his best to rescue her.

Both YouTube and Shudder have made one of South Korea’s hit films available for Western audiences, giving another chance for them to enjoy Director Bong’s storytelling in the kaiju genre.

“The Pirates” (2014) brought a ragtag group of characters when the Royal Seal of the emperor is lost at sea on its way from China to Joseon Dynasty Korea. Along with the royal guards, pirates led by Captain Yeo-wol (Son Ye-jin, “Crash Landing on You”) and the “Crazy Tiger” (Kim Nam-gil, “The Fiery Priest”) and his bandits brought trouble into the hunt. Greed for the search’s reward ensued chaos as each group looked for the Royal Seal.

The film packed action and comedy in the historical genre, putting together an entertaining one to see.

“Memories of the Sword” (2015) told a tale of revenge in this Goryeo era fictional film. Revolutionist Poong-cheon (Bae Soo-bin, “Brilliant Legacy” was one of the swordsmen that led a revolt against the government only to be betrayed by a fellow member. The betrayer, Deok-gi (Lee Byung-hun, “Red 2”) executed him while another revolutionary swordswoman Seol-rang (Jeon Do-yeon, “The Shameless”) took Poong-cheon’s daughter Hong-ee (Kim Go-eun, “Goblin”). The movie then passed to years where Hong-ee, renamed Seol-hee was a young woman and entered a sword fighting challenge in town. Her skill caught the eye of the ruler, Yoo-baek who is reminded of his old comrade and an old prophecy. He needed to capture her but Seol-hee fled back to her master’s place. Wallso, the blind swordswoman there revealed the dark past that led to this event and the fate Seol-hee must fulfill.

Those that enjoyed Kim Go-eun’s more recent works like “Goblin” and “Sunset In My Hometown” will be in for quite a ride with the acrobatic action of “Memories of the Sword”.

Korean hit movie of 2011 “War of the Arrows” took viewers to a fictional take of Korea after the Qing Invasion. Choi Nam-yi (Park Hae-il, “Waikiki Brothers”) and Choi Ja-in (Moon Chae-won, “The Good Doctor”) became orphans when their father died helping them escape when they were young. Years passed and now Ja-in is about to be married to her godfather’s son Seo-goon (Kim Mu-yeol, “A Muse”). Nam-yi hunted for deer while the wedding went on but then stopped when he heard the Qing army. The man rushed back to warn everyone but found Seo-goon’s father and his guardian dead and no sign of Ja-in. Now he must face the invaders and find his sister.

Viewers that enjoyed “Memories of the Sword” will like both the action and story of “War of the Arrows”. Those that have known Park Hae-il from his debut film “Waikiki Brothers” will be shocked with his growth and performance.

“The Suspect” (2013) featured hit drama “Goblin” star Gong Yoo in a darker role of Ji Dong-Chul, a North Korean defector. He left the country in order to avenge the deaths of his wife and daughter. While he tried to keep himself under the radar, Dong-chul got framed for the murder of his client. The hunter became prey as he tries to unravel the web of espionage.

While fans of Yoo might be shocked with the rough appearance, it is a staple part of the crime thriller story from director Won Shin-yun. 

“The Thieves” (2012) from director Choi Dong-hoon tells the story of a small group of criminals who steals a valuable piece from the Leesung Gallery. After coming close with authorities, they felt unsafe in Korea and left the country. It would be that they would be joined by new talents and old associates to steal the iconic diamond called the Tear of the Sun. While they had many helping, it would be a tough heist as it is in the hands of a crime lord.

Western viewers will find the added comedy a bit reminiscent of Ocean’s Trilogy and it helps with the fact that a handful of the actors worked previously together with Director Choi.

“A Company Man” (2012) was an earlier film of “The Suspect writer, Lim Sang-yoon who wrote and directed this one. Actor So Ji-sub became Ji Hyeong-do who did his best at work like every model employee. While he appeared like a normal office worker, he killed professionally, and very well. Things took a sudden shift when he fell in love with a single mother. Wanting to restart life as a normal person, the hitman left his job. However, he instantly became a target and entered a fight for survival. 

Those that enjoyed “The Suspect” will enjoy “A Company Man” with its vast amount of fight scenes.

“Commitment” (2013) from director Park Hong-soo is a political action thriller featuring Big Bang’s T.O.P (Choi Seung-hyun) as Li Myung-hoon. Myung-hoon lived in a life of comfort until his father failed as a North Korean spy and died. In order to prevent going to a prison camp, Colonel Moon Sang-chul (Jo Sung-ha) offered the young man an infiltration mission. Posing as a South Korean high school student, he must now find a double agent so he can save his sister.

Like “The Suspect”, “Commitment” dealt with espionage but this film was closer to the actual political culture of the times.

“New World” (2013) from Director Park Hoon-jung showed a crime drama of an undercover cop trapped in his mission. Officer Lee Ja-sung infiltrated Goldmoon International, the country’s biggest crime organization years ago and became its sales director. He wished to leave this undercover work due to the stress and paranoia of discovery but his superiors extended his mission. When Goldmoon’s leader suddenly died, the group brought up three candidates, including Jung Chung (Hwang Jung-min, “Waikiki Brothers”), Ja-sung’s crime superior. Things became more and more difficult for the officer as both sides of the law moved closer to each other and suspicions grew about a spy. It was only a matter of time when things would fall apart for Ja-Sung.

While there are a lot of clean cut scenes, “New World” has a lot of grittiness and pulls viewers in, wanting to see how Ja-sung will fare in the end.

“The Mimic” (2017) is a perfect film for those looking for a good scare. A family moves into their new home by Mt. Jang. The mother of the family, Hee-yeon (Yum Jung-ah, “Sky Castle”) hears strange voices and finds a young girl (Shin Rin-ah, “Memoir of a Murderer”) that is strikingly similar to her own daughter Jun-hee (Bang Yu-sul). She then is told of the legend of the Jangsan Tiger, a malicious creature that copies people’s voices to hunt its prey. The family now fears that the lost child she found may be the evil beast. This film is also available on Shudder.

Do remember that while all these movies are available on YouTube for free, ads will be included.

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