The Merciless 2017


Directed by Byun Sung-hyun Thrill

An undercover cop and a notorious gangster become blood brothers in Byun Sung-hyun’s big-budget noir-tinged crime thriller, a sleek South Korean cousin to Scorsese’s The Departed.

Jul 25

Event Cinemas Queen Street

Jul 27

Hollywood Avondale

Jul 30

The Civic Theatre

Aug 03

Event Cinemas Queen Street

South Korea In Korean with English subtitles
120 minutes CinemaScope / DCP
violence & offensive language



Michelle Kwon
Simon Lee


Byun Sung-hyun
Kim Min-soo


Cho Hyoung-rae


Kim Sang-bum
Kim Jae-bum

Production designer

Han Ah-rum

Costume designer

Cho Hee-ran


Kim Hong-jip
Lee Jin-hee


Sul Kyung-gu (Han Jae-ho)
Yim Si-wan (Jo Hyun-su)
Kim Hie-won (Ko Byung-gab)
Jeon Hye-jin (Chief Cheon)


Cannes (Midnight Screenings) 2017

“The Merciless is a superior slice of hardboiled pulp fiction in the blossoming ‘Korean Noir’ style… Set in the coastal city of Busan, The Merciless begins with a wry exchange between a pair of squeamish junior mobsters drawing parallels between eating seafood and committing cold-blooded murder. This darkly comic vignette seems to promise a more arch, knowing, Tarantino-esque take on the gangster genre. But the plot soon settles into a more familiar mix…

Feeling at times like a Korean-language cousin of Martin Scorsese’s The Departed, which was itself a remake of an Asian crime thriller, The Merciless revolves around a generation-spanning bromance between youthful wannabe gangster Jo Hyun-su (K-pop star Yim Si-wan) and genial but notoriously amoral gangland veteran Han Jae-ho (Sul Kyung-gu). This odd couple first forge a brotherly bond in prison after backing each other up in a string of brutal confrontations with bad-ass rivals and crooked guards…

Restlessly jumping back and forth in time, The Merciless comes together like a jigsaw, each piece revealing more detail of a grand canvas full of risky shared secrets, fragile loyalties and Faustian bargains.” — Stephen Dalton, Hollywood Reporter