User Score
8.6

Universal acclaim- based on 72 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 63 out of 72
  2. Negative: 6 out of 72

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User Reviews

  1. GeorgeS.
    Feb 1, 2006
    10
    Awesome Movie! The saving private Ryan of Korea..I never even knew Korea had a war or it's own and that the South had conflicts with the South. I love SOUTH KOREA!
  2. Dee
    Sep 6, 2004
    10
    IT made me cry like no other movie. it moved me to love people more in general, whether its familly or friends or strangers. The big brothers love for the younger is just so heart-warming. The plot thickens as time passes and the whole movie is just awe-inspiring. A MUST SEE..!!!
  3. ErwinW.
    Nov 4, 2004
    10
    Best korean Movie.
  4. JamesH
    Oct 16, 2004
    10
    It's too bad some critics minds are too complex. If you have a half a brain and a heart you will love the movie. Awesome movie!!
  5. AmyR.
    Feb 20, 2006
    10
    Amazing movie! So much more than a war movie! I'm surprised that it didn't receive more critical acclaim from the US. I highly recommend this movie!
  6. JasonC.
    Sep 13, 2004
    10
    Hey i'm not korean, i loved the movie.
  7. SallyL.
    Mar 4, 2005
    7
    It was a pretty good movie, and interesting too. The thing is that, it gets so boring at a lot of times.
  8. BobB.
    Sep 8, 2004
    10
    Speechless, it was that good.
  9. JenniferW.
    Sep 8, 2004
    10
    A great movie. if this had been an american production, it would have received raving reviews. the strong bond between the two brothers is heart rending. i would recommend this movie to everyone, it's a must see film!
  10. JenniferW.
    Sep 8, 2004
    10
    A great movie. if this had been an american production, it would have received raving reviews. the strong bond between the two brothers is heart rending. i would recommend this movie to everyone, it's a must see film!
  11. RolandoB.
    Jan 9, 2005
    10
    One of the best Foreign Film ever!!!
  12. MichaelS.
    May 20, 2006
    10
    This is one of the greatest movie I have ever seen. It is like a Korean Saving Private Ryan!
  13. SharonL.
    Oct 16, 2004
    10
    This movie is about my families past as well as all the other Koreans. I cried watching this movie, and I'm sure others have too.
  14. EricaC
    Dec 16, 2004
    10
    So impressive!!! I love this movie! it is sooooo touching~!
  15. ChadS.
    Oct 4, 2004
    5
    Each year at the Hawaii International Film Festival, there's at least one worthwhile film from South Korea that leads me to believe they're already a major player. Last year, it was "Save the Green Planet". Among my recent favorites are: "Birdcage Inn", "Rainbow Trout", "The Quiet Family", "Chunhyang", "Bungee Jumping of their Own" & "The Foul King". As for the lucky few to get Each year at the Hawaii International Film Festival, there's at least one worthwhile film from South Korea that leads me to believe they're already a major player. Last year, it was "Save the Green Planet". Among my recent favorites are: "Birdcage Inn", "Rainbow Trout", "The Quiet Family", "Chunhyang", "Bungee Jumping of their Own" & "The Foul King". As for the lucky few to get a limited American release, "Oasis" and "Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter, Spring..." are on par with anything coming out of Europe. But "Tae Guk Gi" is not a good film. If Douglas Sirk worked from a script by Michael Bay, this is pretty much what it would look like. There's too many explosions, and too many teardrops, both made doubly overblown by the most mawkish score imaginable. "Tae Guk Gi" is exhausting, but you do get your money's worth. It's not big and dumb in exactly the same way American films get that dubious job done, but what "Tae Guk Gi: The Brotherhood of War" has in common with "Pearl Harbor", for instance, is a lack of subtlety. Expand
  16. steveh
    Sep 18, 2004
    10
    Critics reviews were biased n unfair. this is a GREAT movie and everyone should go out and see it. its beyond great...it left me speechless.
  17. DaveH.
    Feb 24, 2005
    10
    One of the best movies I've ever seen. I'd rank it ahead of Saving Private Ryan...something that I never thought I'd do with another war-based film. To sum up briefly, it's one of the most intense, powerful, emotional films I've EVER watched. It now ranks up there on my personal all-time favorites like Schindler's List, The Shawshank Redemption and One of the best movies I've ever seen. I'd rank it ahead of Saving Private Ryan...something that I never thought I'd do with another war-based film. To sum up briefly, it's one of the most intense, powerful, emotional films I've EVER watched. It now ranks up there on my personal all-time favorites like Schindler's List, The Shawshank Redemption and Braveheart. AN ABSOLUTELY MUST SEE. Don't listen to the "critics" on this one. I'd give this one a 97/100. You wil not be disappointed. Expand
  18. DavidE.
    Mar 2, 2005
    9
    A very touching movie about war and the strong bond between brothers.
  19. HeesunC.
    Sep 12, 2004
    10
    Many reviews compare the S. Korean film, "Tae Guk Gi", to the American film "Saving Private Ryan," insinuating that ideas had been borrowed. This is totally hypocrytical! Hollywood spends millions of dollars buying South Korean screeen plays every year, and "borrowing" whole movies! However, their reviews do not mention this, and that information is always left out. In contrast, every Many reviews compare the S. Korean film, "Tae Guk Gi", to the American film "Saving Private Ryan," insinuating that ideas had been borrowed. This is totally hypocrytical! Hollywood spends millions of dollars buying South Korean screeen plays every year, and "borrowing" whole movies! However, their reviews do not mention this, and that information is always left out. In contrast, every review I read on "Tae Guk Gi" does not fail to mention the comparison to "Saving Private Ryan". This is totally hilarious since hollywood consistently buys and borrows story lines from Asian film markets. Regardless to the hypocritical reviews, "Tae Guk Gi" is a great film. Honestly, if the film did not make you cry, it couldn't have been an authentic S. Korean movie. Expand
  20. MichaelK.
    Sep 16, 2004
    10
    A MUST SEE!!!
  21. TelyS.
    Sep 4, 2004
    10
    The battle sequences achive a sustained, brutal intensity that makes the inferior Saving Private Ryan look like My Little Pony: The Animated Series. The story about brootherhood is as sincere, heartbreaking, and unpretentious as anything I've seen. This is one of the best anti-war films ever made by anyone.
  22. Lisa
    Sep 5, 2004
    10
    Honestly, many of the critics' views tend to be rather biased and unfair. I agree with the first critic; if this film had been in English and American-produced it would be getting 5 stars from nearly every critic there is. This movie is wonderful, showing the cruelties of war and strength of family bonds. Acting was superb where each of the main characters showed you exactly what Honestly, many of the critics' views tend to be rather biased and unfair. I agree with the first critic; if this film had been in English and American-produced it would be getting 5 stars from nearly every critic there is. This movie is wonderful, showing the cruelties of war and strength of family bonds. Acting was superb where each of the main characters showed you exactly what they were feeling. Expand
  23. PerryM.
    Sep 7, 2004
    10
    Awesome!! compelling movie of the year.
  24. ToriH.
    Sep 8, 2004
    10
    I do not agree with many of the critics reviews... This film was absolutely wonderful and definitely the best anti-war movie I have seen. Critics need to look beyond the hollywood appeal of this film. Yes, the film does not get into the politics of the war or the american, china, and russian involvement, rather it focuses on humanity of what war does to a nation. And if the critics know I do not agree with many of the critics reviews... This film was absolutely wonderful and definitely the best anti-war movie I have seen. Critics need to look beyond the hollywood appeal of this film. Yes, the film does not get into the politics of the war or the american, china, and russian involvement, rather it focuses on humanity of what war does to a nation. And if the critics know anything about the korean war and history, they will see this movie was wonderfully done. Although fictional, I think most s. koreans will relate to this film. The brotherhood theme is very well played and their separation for over 50 years is a reminder of the families in korea who are currently still separated today. The acting was excellent, especially Jang Dong-gun's performance. Although some scenes were rather graphic, the film never loses its intensity. I agree with the first critic, had this film been made in the US, it would've been 5 stars by all critics. I also believe some of the themes of the movie may not be clearly understood or translated due to the cultural differences. This movie is a definite must see! Expand
  25. ChrisL
    Sep 9, 2004
    9
    Despite several flaws, this movie is well worth watching. This movie will inevitably be compared to Saving Private Ryan (and its not just the blood and guts) and the comparison does not do the movie justice. Many of the more dramatic scenes seem a little overacted (imagine a movie where everyone acts like Al Pacino, I mean the half script is shouted and everyone seems pretty pissed or Despite several flaws, this movie is well worth watching. This movie will inevitably be compared to Saving Private Ryan (and its not just the blood and guts) and the comparison does not do the movie justice. Many of the more dramatic scenes seem a little overacted (imagine a movie where everyone acts like Al Pacino, I mean the half script is shouted and everyone seems pretty pissed or excited all the time) and the beginning of the movie can be a bit corny and takes too long "setting the scene" before it gets on with the story BUT if you can believe that people are generally pissed and excited during a war and that people can be almost deliriously happy while living in abject poverty, then the movie is otherwise pretty good at telling a story of two brothers whose lives and characters are dramatically changed by a war that sweeps through their country and back again. With all that said, there are moments of brilliant acting in the movie when there was not a dry eye in the house and moments of impeccable timing and delivery that will make you laugh out loud well past the point when your laughter has become rude to those around you. Although the movie is inundated with the blood and gore associated with modern war movies, the war is just the palette on which a heartwrenching and dramatic story is told. Reading some of the criticisms, I can't help but think that their reviews would have been better if the movie was in English (or some romance language) or if the movie took a political position on which side was the "good" side. If your criteria for a movie (like mine) is that you walk out of the theatre having gotten your money's worth (and there are precious few movies I can say that about) I highly recommend this movie. Expand
  26. EJD.
    Feb 22, 2005
    6
    Okay, I'm torn. What is a movie supposed to do? If the entire purpose is to evoke an emotion and create a pattern of thoughts, then this movie covered it's bases. Beyond the plot line,(which if it were a book I wouldn't have been nearly as "touched") the graphic and near constant display of terrible war images definately evoked an emotion. The Korean war itself is a virtual Okay, I'm torn. What is a movie supposed to do? If the entire purpose is to evoke an emotion and create a pattern of thoughts, then this movie covered it's bases. Beyond the plot line,(which if it were a book I wouldn't have been nearly as "touched") the graphic and near constant display of terrible war images definately evoked an emotion. The Korean war itself is a virtual unknown for many Americans... myself included. Especially from the perspective of anyone else other than an American. That being said, I wont compare "Tae Guk Gi" to an American movie about wars, rather I will appreciate that I was able to learn a perspective (even if it has been called two-dimensional by other critics) from Kang Je-gyu (the author/director). Expand
  27. EricR.
    Jul 16, 2005
    10
    Simply Phenomenal Never have I witnessed such a divine blend of attributes sum into a two and a half hour masterpiece. It is no by no means a mindless war movie, but rather a multidimensional insight into the dreads of real war. The moral, cultural, and personal implications of Civil War were masterfully composed in this form of cinematic art.
  28. [Anonymous]
    Apr 26, 2006
    10
    This is the best movie ever and for those who didn't give it atleast over 8 u suck omg how can u be so stupid, u obviously didn't watch the movie or your mentally challenged.
  29. BillyB.
    Apr 26, 2006
    10
    This is a very good movie. Betta than any of those stupid American war movies that make Americans look like their doing the right thing even though they are killing. This movie portrays the South Koreans as people and as such make them look bad and sometimes good and they don't always look like heroes in the movie. The drama in this movie also makes it so exiting and it is definitely This is a very good movie. Betta than any of those stupid American war movies that make Americans look like their doing the right thing even though they are killing. This movie portrays the South Koreans as people and as such make them look bad and sometimes good and they don't always look like heroes in the movie. The drama in this movie also makes it so exiting and it is definitely worth watching! Expand
  30. DaleK.
    Aug 7, 2006
    10
    This movie is one of my favorites because I wonder if my brother and I were Jin-tae and Jin-seok. People think that it is all about blood and gore, but it's actually about brotherhood. The violence is there because it is to portray the kinds of things that happened to people in the war.
  31. ManningJ.
    Nov 11, 2004
    10
    A MUST-SEE MOVIE!
  32. SomebodyYouDontNeedtoKnow
    Oct 19, 2004
    10
    Best movie ever. Gotta see it again. Better make a DvD out of it.
  33. JasonH.
    Dec 24, 2004
    10
    This is the best foreign language movie I have seen this year! It is so well-done in every aspects and soooooo touching! Simply awesome!!
  34. HenryC
    Sep 21, 2004
    9
    Wow ! I can't understand this meaning! ....Shamelessly contrived and manipulative, "Tae Guk Gi" packs a visceral wallop. ... contrived and manipulative.. packs a visceral wallop. .. that is also virture of director i think if the film doesn't make you so uneasy .
  35. JamesK.
    Jan 13, 2005
    3
    I have always been fascinated by the Korean War's many idiosyncracies, from it's many players down to the millions of lives forever impacted. Unfortunately the Korean War's chance to burst out of its obscurity is ruined by this horrible movie. Think Pearl Harbor, only with more cheesy melodrama and one very shaky camera. The characters in the movie were 2d and the I have always been fascinated by the Korean War's many idiosyncracies, from it's many players down to the millions of lives forever impacted. Unfortunately the Korean War's chance to burst out of its obscurity is ruined by this horrible movie. Think Pearl Harbor, only with more cheesy melodrama and one very shaky camera. The characters in the movie were 2d and the movie's pacing is a mess. I'm not asking for documentary-like accuracy, just something that could be taken seriously as I am a native Korean and therefore take great interest in this subject matter. A pity, that the money spuandered for this sorry excuse of a movie wasn't used in better ways. Oh yea, you have to pretty dumb not to notice the reviews that preced mine are all written by the same elementary-minded person. Expand
  36. SomeKoreanChoi
    Nov 15, 2004
    10
    Holy! this is the best movie ever! It's violent a bit but it's still good I feel so sad whenever I see this movie.
  37. Oct 7, 2012
    10
    I'm of Korean background, so I might be biased, but I think it's not only Koreans who would say that this has to be possibly one of the best war films made to date. The realist antagonising of both the North and South is enough to satisfy any impartial historian, the battle scenes are on par with famous Western staples like Saving Private Ryan (if not even better), and the story of theI'm of Korean background, so I might be biased, but I think it's not only Koreans who would say that this has to be possibly one of the best war films made to date. The realist antagonising of both the North and South is enough to satisfy any impartial historian, the battle scenes are on par with famous Western staples like Saving Private Ryan (if not even better), and the story of the brotherhood woven into the plot is heart-wrenching - I couldn't see a dry eye in the cinema when I watched this movie as a kid. Now, having reached a more mature age, I now shed tears every time I watch this. It does more than just focus on the gore and tactics and indiscriminate killing that so many modern war films focus on, and it portrays a link to the family stronger than what I think was in Private Ryan ("Your brothers are dead" isn't exactly the most touching way to put something like that). But it's not unrealistic about it either (a.k.a. not as unrealistic as all the dramas that the Koreans make nowadays), and it would make even the most warmongering person want to call it quits with North Korea and just look for any peaceful solution to bring this war and any other war to an end. Collapse
  38. Apr 15, 2013
    9
    I hate movies that make me read, but this was a great movie! Made me like South Korean people even more. I watched this at a strange time with all the threats from North Korea. This movie makes you care about the characters, and hope they get back to their peaceful living.
Metascore
64

Generally favorable reviews - based on 19 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 13 out of 19
  2. Negative: 1 out of 19
  1. Belongs to that brand of sweeping, conflict-era drama epitomized by "Saving Private Ryan," "Gone with the Wind" and TV miniseries "North and South."
  2. Reviewed by: Derek Elley
    50
    Kang remains a superb technician, but somewhere the movie forgot to pack any genuine emotion along with its ordnance and K rations.
  3. 50
    After a sentimental opening sequence, he (Kang) scarcely lets the film pause to breathe, which dulls its effectiveness.