“The 8th Night” (제8일의 밤) is an occult thriller about a millenia-old spirit who tries to infiltrate seven stepping stones to unleash hell on earth and the eight-day struggle to stop this from happening. Red and black halves of the dangerous spirit that were sealed in sarira caskets seek to be rejoined and wreak havoc.
Guardian Park Jin-su (Lee Sung-min), monk Cheong-seok (Nam Da-reum), detectives Kim Ho-tae (Park Hae-joon) and Park Dong-jin (Kim Dong-yeong), and mysterious girl Ae-ran (Kim You-jung) become embroiled in the battle against the spirit which must not awaken. Check out some reasons why you’ll love the movie below!
1. Well-Developed Story
Director Kim Tae-hyung explained, “The title has a lot of different meanings. On the surface, it hints at the limited amount of time you get, eight nights. If you put the number eight sideways, it’s the infinite sign and signifies infinite hell.”
With the title itself having multiple meanings, the amount of thought put into the film is apparent. The director revealed that it took four years for the first draft and the production stage took about two years, so the film took a total of six years. The rich worldview and details incorporated into the film are apparent from the introduction as well, which utilises Sanskrit and feels like a dark fairy tale.
2. Family-Like Chemistry
Many of the actors have worked together before and have close relationships. Park Hae-joon said, “I’ve always respected Sung-min and since we’ve worked together a lot, I think we have good chemistry.”
Lee Sung-min also shared, “Nam Da-reum acted as my son in the drama ‘Memory’, and he calls me dad.” Nam Da-reum explained, “On set, he was really like a dad to me and took good care of me.”
Furthermore, Park Hae-joon said, “When Kim Dong-yeong and I worked together on ‘Believer’, his performance was very realistic and I always thought I wanted to work with him again.” Kim You-jung added, “The story and the characters were a bit heavy and dark, but that was not the ambiance on set. It was like we were a family.”
3. Interesting Characters
Each of the characters are interesting, but we’ll get to see Jin-su and Cheong-seok most often. Lee Sung-min shared, “My character Jin-su can see beyond reality. In a way, he has another eye. My character has a sort of third eye and can see things that people cannot see.” The actor also talked about speaking with Buddhist monks in preparation for developing his character.
Meanwhile, Nam Da-reum elaborated on his character, saying, “Cheong-seok lives in a temple that is very deep in the forest. He’s very curious about the world, cheerful, and child-like.”
4. Divergent Roles
The interesting characters lend the actors a chance to portray very different characters compared to their previous roles. Park Hae-joon, whose “The World of the Married” character received a lot of ire, talked about how his “The 8th Night” character is quite different saying, “Ho-tae is a very affectionate and friendly guy.”
Kim You-jung also shared that since the movie was filmed about two years ago, “The 8th Night” is her “first movie since I came of age.” Her mysterious character is one to look out for.
Nam Da-reum, who is known for portraying a student, said, “This character has a different image from the characters I have portrayed.”
5. Not Your Typical Horror Thriller
If you thought this movie is a straightforward occult thriller, you’ll be delighted to see that there’s more to it. Lee Sung-min said, “I was very curious and intrigued by this genre. Usually you’ll see a priest and a devil, then an exorcism and you’re done. This film’s ultimate theme is awakening and coming to understand something. It alludes to your pain and your suffering.”
Director Kim Tae-hyung further teased, “I think the fear that you feel when you come across something unfamiliar is something you enjoy in this genre. There is more appeal to the film on top of what you can typically expect from this genre.”
See the thrilling movie yourself when “The 8th Night” premieres on 2nd July, only on Netflix!