In Theaters 04.05.2024 or Watch at Home 08.30.2024

Green Fish

Directed by Lee Chang-Dong
Film Movement Classics
111 Minutes
South Korea
Drama, Classics, Asian, Crime
Not Rated

Released from his mandatory military service, Makdong (Han Suk-gyu) returns to a hometown he no longer recognizes. After rescuing a beautiful young woman from harassment on a train, his life takes an unexpected turn when she unwittingly lures him into the criminal underworld. Finding himself in a dangerous love triangle with the local crime boss, Makdong must face the dire consequences of his choices.

Winner of the Best Film and Best New Director awards from the Korean Film Critics Association, Lee Chang-dong's GREEN FISH is a “wrenching, tonally nuanced first film” (Senses of Cinema) that combines “strong narrative drive, powerful visuals and a mind-blowing central performance” (Eastern Kicks). Presented in a new 4K restoration.

Director & Cast

  • Director: Lee Chang-Dong
  • Starring: Han Suk-kyu
  • Starring: Shim Hye-jin
  • Starring: Moon Sung-Keun
  • Starring: Yu-Kyeong Cha
  • Starring: Song Kang-ho




  • "On the surface, it’s a noir whose closest analogue is Neil Jordan’s "Mona Lisa," in which a man working on the outskirts of organized crime falls in love with the boss’s girlfriend, but beneath the surface lurks a patient, meditative and uncompromising look at loneliness and the extent we’ll go to avoid it."
    Walter Chaw,
  • "The film, an impressive debut, more fully brings into light Lee’s career-long preoccupations––how a character is impacted by anger and isolation, the dichotomy between rural and urban landscapes, and their particular socio-political context."
    Shawn Glinis, The Film Stage
  • "Every scene takes risks, mostly emotional but sometimes physical, culminating in a climactic family picnic that quickly devolves into a mortifying, drunken, spite-filled debacle...."
    Michael Atkinson, The Village Voice
  • "Lee Chang-dong’s wrenching, tonally nuanced first film, Chorok mulkogi (Green Fish, 1997), packs a quiet wallop. "
    John Fidler, Senses of Cinema
  • "A strong narrative drive, powerful visuals and a mind-blowing central performance make Green Fish a superb watch...."
    Martin Sandison, Eastern Kicks
  • "Chang-dong extracts a sterling performance from Suk-Kyu...."
    Amber Wilkinson, Eye For Film
  • "Green Fish marks an important benchmark in Korean cinema, as it operates as both a catalyst to a deep side of the Korean New Wave slate of cinema and as the firecracker underneath Lee Chang-dong's feet to craft a vast body of politically resonant pictures."
    Thomas Spurlin, DVDTalk

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