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London Korean Festival Film 2013: Hide and Seek (Sum-bakk-og-jil) Review

By on 29/11/2013

hide_and_seekHide and Seek the Korean box office surprise hit opened this year’s London Korean Film Festival. Made on a shoestring budget and containing no major starts and is the directorial debut of Huh Jung. This film stormed the Korean box during the summer and for good reason



The film tells the story of Sung-soo a family man with his own business, a beautiful wife, children & a luxury apartment and suffers from OCD due to issues in his childhood. Sung-soo’s world is turned upside down when he is asked to clear out his estranged brother’s apartment. The neighbours in the run down apartment complex become scared of him when they realise he is there for his brother, another one of the neighbours is missing. The plot further thickens when Sung-soo notices strange symbols on the doors of the apartments. Soon after returning home he begins to notice the same symbols on the doors of the hourse in his apartment complex in Seoul






Hide & Seek is edge of the seat cinema

This thriller had the whole cinema screaming and on the edge of their seats. The tension and scares in this film are perfectly timed and executed. The film is a horror movie without the typical elements of horror movies. There are no ghosts – Hide & Seek is not your typical slasher horror. The movie is very much grounded in everyday life – home life in fact which is what makes it so scary – it’s a film about home invasion, not so much about the robbery sense but more in the sense of the invasion of your protective barrier & your privacy. It’ll have you checking your doors for symbols and looking under your bed after watching it


In conclusion

Full of double bluffs and red herrings, Hide & Seek is super entertaining. It’s not the perfect film and does fall down a little in the last quarter, but dont let that put you off. If Roman Polanski was to continue his apartment themed movies (Rosemary’s Baby, The Tenant & Repulsion) a film like Hide and Seek would be a fitting modern addition. As directorial debuts go this film was impressive. This film will do great in foreign markets and we’ll be seeing a US remake of Hide and Seek in the near future. I for one cannot wait and see what Huh Jung does next.


The London Korean Film Festival screening

Director Huh Jung was in attendance together with actor Mi-seon Jeon. Huh Jung described how he was inspired to make the film after reading articles about how home invaders would scope out houses in advance and write symbols on the doors to let other thieves know what sort of family was living there.
hide and seek premiere 3hide and seek premiere 2


By Tendai – Cognitive Space