The Host (2006)

Directed by: Joon-ho Bong

Written by: Chul-hyun Baek, Joon-ho Bong & Won-jun Ha


Kang-ho Song .... Park Kang-Du
Hie-bong Byeon .... Park Hie-bong
Hae-il Park .... Park Nam-il
Ah-sung Ko .... Park Hyun-seo
Du-na Bae .... Park Nam-Joo

Release Dates: Cannes Film Festival: May 21, 2006 (France); Melbourne International Film Festival: August 8, 2006 (Australia); Toronto Film Festival: September 8, 2006; Helsinki International Film Festival: September 15, 2006 (Finland); New York Film Festival: September 29, 2006; Arras Film Festival: November 11, 2006 (France); Tallin Black Nights Film Festival: December 3, 2006 (Estonia); Santa Barbara Film Festival: January 26, 2007; Gasparilla Film Festival: March 3, 2007; Limited Theatrical: March 9, 2007 (USA); Brussels International Festival of Fantasy Films: April 6, 2007 (Belgium); Titanic International Filmpresence Festival: April 20, 2007 (Hungary); Amsterdam Fantastic Film Festival: April 20, 2007 (Netherlands); Muestra Internacional de Cine: May 17, 2007 (Mexico); Karlovy Vary Film Festival: June 30, 2007 (Czech Republic)

*Images courtesy at:








In a more poor area in a town of Korea in the banks of Han River people spot a strange looking creature there and try to feed it soda and other stuff they throw in the water.
However, the creature emerges from the water and attacks and eats people there. Then it grabs a little girl named Hyun Seo (Ah-sung Ko) and takes her to it's lair to store for food.
Her family members try to hunt the creature down and find Hyun before it's too late along with a crew of army people but this creature seems to be unstoppable.

An impressive beginning with scientists havingt a discussion on spilling chemicals into the ocean and one of them not agreeing with it as this is a good kick off to a monster flick since this is very much in common before the terror happens in other flicks of this type that I've watched.
Later on a real effective moment when one of the scientists is upset and jumps off a bridge as well as people below fishing and spots something and it seems to bite them which makes the moments truly mysterious as wondering if this is going to be the monster later on once it grows big.
We spot some campy moments with Park Hie-bong and his granddaughter Park Hyun-seo watching sports on TV as this made me laugh a bit and seeming full of life when watching this. Meanwhile Park Kang-Du is with a bunch of other people spotting the monster near a bridge and falling into the water as there'sd nice effects and grabbing your attention as well as this thing running onto the shore and attacking people which looked powerful to watch and entertaining as well as terrorising.
More attention grabbers when the monster leaps into a trailer underneath a bridge attacking the residents inside it as well as good action packed moments with some people trying to draw it's attention by throwing stuff at it.
Then suddenly we watch carefully as there's slow motion moments when the monster is on Park Hyun-seo's tail as you wonder if she will escape from this beast or not. It's a moment you can't miss spotting since it was drawn in carefully.
There's moments when everyone including the family are at an area grieving thinking that she's dead as these situations looked corny and way too over the top. Something that was supposed to have been serious but misses by a longshot.
Nice action packed moments when the family manages to escape from the hospital as there's alot of adrenaline that we see them getting out and trying to escape in their vehicle.
Nice dark moments when Park Hyun-seo is in a dark corner with other people passed out and so fourth as well as trying to find a way to get out. Plus we spot some gross moments on the monster spitting out bones of people or eating someone up. Definetely a nice add to a horror story.
Nice shots on the family going to the sewage area to try and find one of their family members as well as a moment with Park Nam-Joo about to fire her rifle towards the monster and a good brutal moment on this beast knocking her over into a pit. Shows a moment on this woman not being too smart on thinking fast with a situation such as this moment.
Another dynamic moment is when Park Hie-bong is trying to track the monster down with a nice shot on a dark object moving in the water and so fourth and then plans to fire his rifle when he is close to the object and realises he's out of bullets which is yet another unwise choice for planning to snuff this beast out to check if you have bullets as this offers some brief humor. Yet there's good slow motion moments on what happens to this fellow and looking very sad to watch as this one was well done.
Nice effects on Park Hyun-seo trying to jump on the sleeping beast to get to the top and escape with the monsters tail gently grabbing her as this also looked very effective and nice special effects.
Good shots looking down on scientists doing experiments on Park Kang-do's head which looked perfectly twisted but at the same time campy as well.
The action gets going greatly when everyone snuffs the monster with different types of things and it shows off a good vengeful moment on how it affected the loved one's this thing killed. Probably the best moment in this film when we watch all that happens here.
Bottom lin is that this was a very interesting monster horror flick. It's not really scary though which is what this film needed and a little corny and hokey too to top it off. Yet it was a good budgeted indie film from Korea. However the story was slow in many spots and is tiresome at times. Plus it's way too long and needed to be cut down a bit.

It's hard to tell the acting as it is spoken in Korean and overdubbed by terrible voice over actors which is typical.
However, lead actor Kang-ho Song (Park Kang Du) seemed to represent himself well and looked very energetic. He adds a good life like attitude when watching TV or panicking when the monster is attacking. Also shows off a good emotional attitude when something devastating starts to happen. He brings alot of powerful action into his role but at times seems a bit silly too. Shows a nice vengeful attitude near the end of his performance.
Hie-bong Byeon
(Park Hie-bong) was another one who looked good too as the father of the cast who tries to battle the creature. Seemed to represent himself as someone mature and wise as well as having a no nonsense attitude as well. Shows off good adrenaline especially near the end of his role when hunting the monster down which he shines this off nicely. Also has a very likeable type of behavior and acting full of life at times when watching sports as he really seems to get into it during the near beginning of the film.
Hae-il Park
(Park Nam-il) presented himself as someone who seems at first to be sharp with his motives as well as intelligent but then he comes off perfectly annoying with his griping attitude. He for sure has the knack for someone who can get on your nerves big time. Comes off as someone you'd feel like smacking at times.
Child actress Ah-Sung Ko (Park Hyun-seo) looked great in her role too.
She comes across as an innocent one as well as someone who enjoys life and showing a ton of spunk into all that she does here. Plus does a great job with her energy when trying to find a way on escaping from the monster and acting powerful while doing so as well a acting courageous.

Byung-woo Lee composes some nice violin music as well as some interesting pounding sounds when the creature is attacking. Also we hear many different orchestral sounds for the flick especially the uplifting trombone and other sounds when the family manages to escape the hospital as this was done in fair taste. Plus we hear sad violin music for the devastating moments. Also there's the odd accoustic guitar playing too. Plus many drum poundings here and there. However there's classical music for when the beast is slayed which I found didn't fit into the scene at all.