JUNG_E on Netflix is a new sci-fi thriller from South Korea from the director of Train to Busan and the Hellbound series on Netflix. The story feels like a combination of many familiar stories but is also very much its own. Read our full Jung_E movie review here and find it on Netflix!
JUNG_E is a new Netflix sci-fi thriller from South Korea. The story is Robocop meets I, Robot with a touch of both Terminator and Ex-Machina. Oh yeah, there’s a lot that feels familiar but also so much more to this story.
The fact that this movie is relatively short by South Korean standards just makes it even more impressive. The runtime is just 98 minutes, which isn’t much. Also, it’s from the director of the zombie sensation Train to Busan and the successful Netflix series Hellbound. In September 2022, it was finally announced that we have Hellbound season 2 coming to Netflix!
Continue reading our Jung_E movie review below. Find it on Netflix from January 20, 2023.
Intense action and brutal heartbreak
Even though Jung_E is first and foremost a sci-fi thriller, we all know that the most efficient stories are those that touch our hearts. This is something the new Netflix movie excels at.
When the movie begins, it’s with the information that Earth has been devastated by drastic climate change. This has resulted in most of humankind migrating to shelters in outer space. However, in true human form, it isn’t long before some of these shelters declare war against other shelters.
A civil war taking place both in space (and on Earth where some humans still reside) is in full swing when Jung_E begins. To win the war, someone has come up with the brilliant idea to clone their most efficient elite soldier.
Or rather, build the ultimate A.I. combat warrior (a terminator, if you will) and use the brain data from Captain Yun Jung-yi. Jung-yi is what efficiently becomes the Jung_E program of A.I. combat warriors.
JUNG_E is dedicated to one of its stars
Captain Yun Jung-yi is portrayed by Kim Hyun-joo (Hellbound) who does an excellent job at being both a soldier and a parent. In this story, we’re a few decades after the death of the Captain in battle. However, it was possible to preserve her brain data and so, the JUNG_E project was born.
Now, 35 years later, Jung-yi’s own daughter Yun Seo-hyun (Kang Soo-youn) is the head researcher of the JUNG_E project. Imagine watching what is essentially an android clone of your mother – an android who does not know she isn’t a human being – die and suffer over and over again as they train her.
This. Is. Brutal.
Kang Soo-youn delivers so much heart and pain to the role of Jung-yi’s daughter, who must be professional at all times.
The movie is dedicated to the actor, who sadly passed away on May 7, 2022. Kang Soo-youn was celebrated as the “first world star” from South Korea thanks to her work in the 1980s and 1990s.
Human rights for A.I. androids?
Kronoid is a military A.I. development company, but saving your own “brain data” is something anyone can do. Well, anyone with money, that is. You can have your brain data transferred to an android and essentially continue living. Your rights as an android depend on what kind of “brain data plan” you can afford.
This is another brutal part of JUNG_E which also serves as a strong social commentary about personal data.
Watch JUNG_E on Netflix!
The writer and director of JUNG_E is Yeon Sang-ho and this is a filmmaker we’ve come to love here at Heaven of Horror. Well, to be fair, many genre fans have discovered his amazing work. He wrote and directed Train to Busan which was a huge hit both in South Korea and internationally. The movie even had a sequel – not that it was nearly as good, but you can’t win them all.
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Fortunately, Yeon Sang-ho also created the Netflix series Hellbound which was absolutely brilliant. I can’t wait for season 2 of that crazy series. Also, it seems there is hope for a JUNG_E sequel as well, so I’m hoping JUNG_E 2 could prove that Yeon Sang-ho can handle making a great sequel.
There are many little twists and turns along the way, but most importantly, the movie ends in such a way that a sequel is possible. I, for one, really hope we’ll get a JUNG_E 2 on Netflix.
Even if no sequel comes along, I can highly recommend checking out JUNG_E on Netflix. It’s action, thriller, sci-fi, and a whole lot more. A strong story that focuses on so much more than what we might be able to do in the future. Instead, it’s clearly also asking; Just because we can, does that mean we should? And who gets to decide?!
JUNG_E is out on Netflix globally from January 20, 2023.
Director & Writer: Yeon Sang-ho
Cast: Kang Soo-youn, Kim Hyun-joo, Ryu Kyung-soo
In this gripping sci-fi thriller, humans have escaped Earth, which has been devastated by drastic climate change. And to end the war taking place at the shelters, the brain of the legendary mercenary Yun Jung-yi is cloned by those trying to develop the ultimate A.I. combat warrior.