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Joint Security Area Photos

Movie Info

Two North Korean soldiers are killed in the border area between North and South Korea, prompting an investigation by a neutral body. Sgt. Lee Soo-hyeok (Lee Byung-Hun) is the shooter, but lead investigator Maj. Sophie E. Jean (Lee Yeong-ae), a Swiss-Korean woman, receives differing accounts from the two sides. Lee claims he fired in self-defense after getting wounded, while a North Korean survivor says it was a premeditated attack -- leaving Jean with her work cut out for her.

Cast & Crew

Lee Yeong-ae
Maj. Sophie E. Jean
Song Kang-ho
Sgt. Oh Kyeong-pil
Tae-woo Kim
Nam Sung-shik
Shin Ha-kyun
Jeong Woo-jin

Critic Reviews for Joint Security Area

All Critics (24) | Top Critics (4) | Fresh (21) | Rotten (3)

  • a DMZ-set Rashomon, as vying narratives conceal a truth that nobody wants either to tell or to hear.

    January 18, 2021 | Full Review…
  • I can't be as enthusiastic.

    June 15, 2005 | Rating: 2/4
  • Park Chan-Wook's Joint Security Area is a fairly straightforward whodunit with a pointedly political theme and an unapologetically humanist message.

    June 15, 2005 | Rating: 3.5/5 | Full Review…
  • Park's film reveals its double agency by swinging between emotion-charged flashbacks of weepie male bonding and the investigative longueurs of the icy, half-Korean, half-Swedish female officer in charge of mopping up the brotherly bloodbath.

    June 14, 2005 | Full Review…
  • Joint Security Area gets less attention than Park's other more bombastic films, but its quiet contemplative core cements it as one of his most emotional works.

    March 25, 2021 | Full Review…
  • Though JSA is before the Vengeance trilogy or The Handmaiden (2016), it bears all the hallmarks of a Park picture: mystery, deception, and a glimpse at the complex nature of relationships.

    February 25, 2021 | Rating: 4/5 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Joint Security Area

  • Oct 02, 2020
    At face value, the film's broader themes seem a little simplistic (i.e. "can't we all just get along?") but ultimately they are complicated by each character's ideologies and allegiances. Even if we can get past nationalism and political affiliations to become friendly with others, those differences do not suddenly vanish.
    Alec B Super Reviewer
  • Jun 15, 2012
    A heartbreaking, poignant anti-war film that works best if you don't look into the plot too much, as to avoid the sometimes awkward plotting.
    Kevin C Super Reviewer
  • Mar 21, 2012
    Complex drama with an engaging structure. The humanist message is what makes it worth it.
    Hugo S Super Reviewer
  • Aug 30, 2011
    Kind of hard to believe that this is Park Chan-Wook. While an engaging film, it is a bit overly sentimental in parts. I understand that subject matter dealing with the reunification of a country torn in two would be replete with emotion, but some scenes felt like they were created for a TV movie on Korea's own Lifetime network. None the less, it is still an engaging who done it and an interesting glimpse into the psyche of a nation divided.
    Reid V Super Reviewer

JSA: Joint Security Area (Gongdong gyeongbi guyeok JSA) Quotes

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