A secret agent vows revenge on his fiance’s killer in I Saw the Devil.
After Kim Soo-hyeon’s fiance is brutally murdered by a serial killer, he takes some time off from his position as a government agent. Instead of mourning her loss in a traditional manner, he channels his energy into tracking down the suspect with the goal of making him suffer–a lot.
If you had the skills and the means, how far would you go to punish the man who murdered someone you loved? How much of your own soul would you be willing to sacrifice? That is only one aspect of I Saw the Devil. There are several things about this film that raise the bar for the serial killer genre. The cat and mouse game between Kim and the killer is exceptionally entertaining and disturbing at the same time.
There is not a lot of dialogue, making the subtitles an easy read. The actors carry the plot with their actions, rather than words. Remember, subtitles are a horror fan’s friend.
There are some action sequences but this is still a horror film. The gore is mostly implied. There are still a few intense scenes, though. The film is also extremely violent, depicting some despicable acts. Again, a lot of the gore is implied but there are a few nasty surprises.
If I Saw the Devil has any faults, horror fans insisting on realism may have trouble suspending disbelief during a few action sequences but it’s a minor criticism. It is certainly no more ridiculous than you would see in big-budget action films.
I Saw the Devil is tragic and intense; it’s one of the best in the genre.
Appropriate gore 9
Production Value 9
Final Cut Score. 46 (92%)