7.8/10
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23 user 29 critic

Masquerade (2012)

Gwanghae: Wangyidoen namja (original title)
Not Rated | | Drama | 13 September 2012 (South Korea)
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A look-alike commoner is secretly hired to take the place of a poisoned king to save his country from falling into chaos.

Director:

Chang-min Choo

Writers:

Jo-yun Hwang (screenplay), Chang-min Choo (screenplay adaptation)
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21 wins & 16 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Credited cast:
Byung-Hun Lee ... Ha-seon / King Gwang-hae
Seung-ryong Ryu ... Heo Gyun (as Ryu Seung-Ryong)
Hyo-Joo Han ... Queen (as Hyo-ju Han)
In-kwon Kim ... Do
Gwang Jang Gwang Jang ... Eunuch
Eun-kyung Shim ... Sa-wol
Myung-gon Kim ... Park Choong-seo
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Yong-gu Do Yong-gu Do ... Minister of National Defense
Lee El Lee El ... Ahn Gae-Shi
Soo-ho Ha Soo-ho Ha ... General Jung Jeon
Sung-Yong Han Sung-Yong Han ... Public Officer Who Escorts Ha-Sun
Bae-soo Jeon ... Minister of Justice (as Bae-Su Jeon)
Sung-hee Jo Sung-hee Jo ... Prince Gwanghae's Public Officer 2
Yeong-ho Joo Yeong-ho Joo ... Public Officer 1 Who Escorts King Gwanghae (as Young-Ho Joo)
Gil-dong Kim Gil-dong Kim ... Chief of Security Force Guarding the King
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Storyline

Amid national chaos and fear for his life, tyrannical King Gwanghae orders his trusted councilor Heo Kyun to find a royal body double. He hires Ha-seon, a peasant mimic who bears a perfect resemblance to the King. When King Gwanghae collapses from a mysterious poison, Ha-seon reluctantly becomes a King. He must follow his conscience to save his country from collapse, avoid assassination, and pull off the biggest masquerade in history. K Written by CJ Entertainment

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The King of Façade See more »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

South Korea

Language:

Korean

Release Date:

13 September 2012 (South Korea) See more »

Also Known As:

Masquerade See more »

Filming Locations:

Seoul, South Korea See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$1,839, 7 December 2012, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$922,921

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$94,268,432
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The idea for Masquerade developed from the true story of missing records totalling 15 days from the Annals of the Joseon Dynasty. Knowing that the king was kind, but paranoid, the staff constructed this idea as something that could have happened during that undocumented time. See more »

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User Reviews

 
"Live Like a King"
10 September 2013 | by Yogesh-Odyssey-OperaSee all my reviews

It's a period drama called "Masquerade", also as "Gwanghae – the man who becomes the King". It is a real story of an infamous tyrant king, but he was a good politician who helped restoring his country which had been ravaged by the war with Japan and also secured the country from the Qing Dynasty of China for a while through his practical diplomatic policies. Now he is mostly regarded as a wise king unluckily stuck in the domestic political feuds which turned out to be the main cause of his undoing, and many historians say Joseon would have not suffered two disastrous invasions by the Qing Dynasty if he had not been dethroned by a coup in 1623.

We can witness many resemblances of "Kagemusha"(1980) and "Dave"(1993) in Masquerade. As getting involved in the political feuds at his court, King Gwanghae(Lee Byeong-heon), has been nervous about possible assassination attempts, so he needs a double for protecting him from constant danger. The king's adviser, Heo Gyun(Ryoo Seung-yong), finds a suitable man for the job. He is a clown named Ha-seon(also played by Lee Byeong-heon), and he has been earning a living through his silly antics imitating the king in front of people. Ha-seon got trained and adequately does his job as ordered while the real king is having his own private time outside the court, but he is soon assigned with a far greater task.

The real king suddenly loses his consciousness due to poison, situation becomes worse and Heo Gyun demands Ha-seon to disguise himself as the king for a while to deceive others at the court. Ha-seon is reluctant, but he quickly accepts his plan because he is promised that he will be paid well. The feel is good to see a Jovial type king rather than a stern, under the guidance by Heo Gyun and the king's eunuch. As Heo Gyun instructed before, all he has to do is just sit in the King's chair and act like him. Though the people at the court are a little confused by sudden changes in His Majesty's behaviors, Ha-seon playing really good. Even the Queen and his personal bodyguard believe him, but Ha-seon crossed his line this creates an enmity between the haters in the own courtyard.

Even though he belongs to a lower caste, but he is a smart guy who can read and learn, so he becomes more active than before at the council with his high-ranking officials.As we awaiting eagerly the king regains the consciousness and it makes the situation Orphic and it heads to a terrific climax. Lee Byeong-heon, Ryoo Seung-yong and some part timers really build the film in to a Class.

TWO THUMBS UP!


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