Exit: Phenomenon in the Korean Movie Industry

On July 31, a new Korean action movie, Exit was released in South Korea. South Korea is a huge fan of action movies, but people usually prefer Hollywood ones over the Korean ones for a specific reason. Korean action movies tend to follow the same formula: gangs fight one another, people perform illegal acts and fight in between the scenes, or police officers fight criminals. Therefore, audiences find them repetitive. However, Exit presented a new approach which resulted in positive reviews from the audiences. Instead of going for the typical cops’n’robbers concept, it based its story around a fictional natural disaster.

The movie starts off with Youngnam Lee bickering with his family members about how he is jobless. He used to be a skilled rock climber during his college years, but after he graduated from college he remained unemployed. Then, he gets to meet his colleague Eju Jung who was in the same rock climbing club with him. He used to like her in college but got rejected when he asked her out. Eju was a manager in a banquet hall, so he booked his mother’s 70th birthday party in that hall. When the birthday party was almost over, however, a scientist who wanted to revenge on the company that fired him released toxic gas all over Korea. Youngnam Lee and Eju Jang used their rock-climbing skills to survive this disaster until they are the only ones left in the hazardous region 

Since the movie focuses on a fictional natural disaster instead of the usual Korean action movie concept, viewers found it more light and entertaining. The topic is not too serious and disturbing to watch, which allows the younger generation to enjoy the movie as well. A lot of Korean action movies are rated R, but this movie is PG13 making it a family-friendly movie. Even though the topic may seem a bit childish compared to the previous action movies in Korea, Exit successfully conveys a sense of tension and nervousness when it needs to. 

This fresh approach to the Korean action movie industry left a lot of positive reviews from the viewers: 

“This movie is going to be in the spotlight this summer. It has a perfect balance of humor scenes and touching scenes.”

  • Shi-gun Kim, Maeil Economic Daily 

“I thought Exit was going to be the same old natural disaster movie, but it was something I’ve never seen before. It was a new type of comical, touching, action movie.” 

  • So-yeon Kim, Korea Economic Daily

“I didn’t expect a Korean action movie to be this humorous, entertaining, and touching. It definitely exceeded my expectations.”

  • Sunwoo Lee, a student at Seoul International School 

Exit opened a new door to the Korean action movie industry and proved

More Stories
Review: Live-Action Lion King