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Bi-mil-eun eobs-da (2016)

THE TRUTH BENEATH follows a mysterious 15-day scandal of a politician and his wife as their daughter goes missing just before the national elections.

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Cast

Credited cast:
...
Yeon-hong
...
Jong-chan
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Yu-hwa Choi ...
Son So-ra
Cheol-woo Han ...
Dr. Jo
...
No Jae-soon
Gin-goo Kim ...
Grandmother Witness
Min-jae Kim ...
Secretary General
So-hee Kim ...
Choi Mi-ok
Sang-hee Lee ...
Mi-ok's stepmother
Gene Woo Park ...
Chauffeur Choi
Ji-Hoon Shin ...
Kim Min-jin
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Storyline

After an extremely close national assembly race, Jong-chan wins the nomination of his party. He and his wife Yeon-hong are fully committed to the campaign and when their teenager daughter Min-jin goes missing, Jong-chan convinces Yeon-hong not to notify the authorities fearing negative publicity. With the election imminent, Yeon-hong decides to look for her daughter, but instead uncovers a twisted series of conspiracy, secrets, and lies surrounding Min-jin's disappearance. Written by CJ Entertainment

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Release Date:

23 June 2016 (South Korea)  »

Also Known As:

Bimileun eobsda  »

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Early working title was "Haengboki Gadeukhan Jib" ("Home Sweet Home"). See more »

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Dark and disturbing Korean thriller which manages to shock and tell a good story
4 November 2016 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

The Truth Beneath Directed by Lee Kyoung Mi Lee got her start in films working with Park Chan-wook and from watching this film it seems she has taken his lead when it comes to violent revenge. When a Politician's daughter goes missing the scandal threatens to upset his ambitions for an important election. We soon learn that relationships between mother and daughter are not so great when Min-jin lies about who she is doing her homework with.

Rather than begin an investigation, Jong-chan is more concerned with winning the election. It's left to her mother Yeon-cheong to look for her daughter. Things take a tragic turn when her daughter's body is discovered dumped in woodlands. How much more can I tell you without spoiling it? Getting to the truth of the events takes the mother on a nightmarish journey where she must distinguish the truth from lies. After the first twenty minutes, in which the political candidates were introduced by way of flashing subtitles on the screen, I was totally absorbed by this film.

In flash-backs, we see how the relationship between Min-jin and Mi-OK. What was interesting was the way the girls' relationship was affected by the corrupt adult world. For example, Min-OK's noticeably poorer father works as a driver for Min-jin's father, and we were given a sense of how much poorer her family was when we saw she was living in a one room building, stepping over her sleeping family when she needed to leave in the middle of the night.

I didn't count a shot lasting longer than twenty seconds; truly a feverishly edited film. Indeed, it was so intense that I watched rooted to my seat, sometimes hardly believing what I was watching.

It showed as well that for all its recent modern developments, there are still many traces of the Chung-hee dictatorship in present-day Korea. Witness the schoolgirls who stay behind to clean the classrooms every day, and the name badges that every pupil must wear. Then, there is the cruelty and violence of relationships, where love can be used as a weapon. It's a thoroughly unsentimental film with many scenes of terrible violence. It's not a film that casts a good light on Korean society, but I'm glad I watched it nevertheless.


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