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The Housemaid


Im Sang-soo

  • Country: South Korea
  • Year: 2010
  • Language: Korean
  • Producer: Jason Chae
  • Executive Producer: Choi Pyung-ho, Seo Bum-seok
  • Screenplay: Im Sang-soo
  • Runtime: 107
  • Programmes:

In this erotic thriller, the housemaid of an upper-class family becomes entangled in a dangerous tryst. A satirical look at class structure, reminiscent of the work of Claude Chabrol, this sexy soap opera is a story of revenge and retribution.

AdaptationDramaGenderChinaUrban Life

screening times

    • Sunday September 12
    • 9:30:00 PM
    • Tuesday September 14
    • 4:30:00 PM
    • Sunday September 19
    • 6:00:00 PM

Note: indicates Premium Screening.

official description

Elegant, sexy and dangerous, The Housemaid is a delicious pleasure to watch. The premise is classic: a cold husband, a fragile wife and a new housemaid. But with one of Korea’s master stylists at the helm and a performance from a best-actress prize winner at Cannes, this polished thriller offers plenty of surprises.

Eun-yi (Jeon Do-youn, Cannes winner for Secret Sunshine) plays an innocent young woman who accepts a job working as a nanny and maid for a very wealthy family. The housewife who hires her (Seo Woo) is young and beautiful, but vulnerable in her pregnancy.Her mother has successfully married her off to a rich, powerful, cultivated man –he plays classical piano as if conducting surgery – but remains aware of how tentative her daughter’s position is. Both women depend on the income and the mercy of the man of the house. But Hoon (Lee Jung-jae) is exacting in his standards.

All the more surprising then, that his eye comes to rest on Eun-yi. A working class woman still a little rough around the edges,she looks overwhelmed by the modernist mansion she now works in, but when Hoon approaches her for a swift seduction, she turns out to be his match. The women of the house, though, prove to be a greater challenge.

It has been fifty years since director Kim Ki-young first told this story in his original thriller of the same name (recently restored by Martin Scorsese’s World Cinema Foundation). The contemporary Korean master Im Sangsoo retains the charge of the first film but reverses the power dynamics in fascinating ways. No longer is this the story of a scheming femme fatale bringing down a wholesome marriage. Instead, Im turns it into a face-off between one family’s ruthless wealth and the cunning of an ordinary woman.

With its glossy surfaces and startling sensuality, The Housemaid is sure to raise pulses as it proceeds from decadence to danger to a jaw-dropping climax.

director bio

Im Sang-soo was born in Seoul. He studied history at Yonsei University before enrolling at the Korean Academy of Film Arts. As a writer and director, his feature films include Girls’ Night Out (98), Tears (01), A Good Lawyer’s Wife (03), The President’s Last Bang (05), which screened at the Festival, The Old Garden (07) and The Housemaid (10).

full credits

Principal Cast: Jeon Do-youn, Lee Jung-jae, Youn Yuh-jung, Seo Woo
Jason Chae
Executive Producer:
Choi Pyung-ho, Seo Bum-seok
Lee Hyung-deok
Lee Eun-soo
Eun Hee-soo
Kim Hong-jip
Production Designer:
Lee Ha-jun
International Sales Agent:
 Mirovision Inc.
Production Company:
Mirovision Inc.
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