Year: 2003
UK: Tartan Films
Cast: Ha Ji-won, Choi Woo-je, Kim Yu-mi, Eun Suh-woo, Choi See-woo, Choi Jeong-yun
Director: Ahn Byoung Ki
Country: South Korea
Language: Korean (English subtitles)
UK: 104 mins
UK Certificate: 15 contains strong psychological horror
UK Release Date: 27 August 2004


Ji-won (Ha Ji-Won), a magazine reporter, decides to change her cell phone number after her controversial article is published resulting in a string of menacing phone calls. After changing her number, Ji-won's friend's daughter, Young-ju, innocently answers her phone. Young-ju starts to act strangely after being obviously frightened by the call. When Ji-won investigates the past owners of her new cell phone number an astonishing secret is unraveled.

Director Ahn Byoung-ki's debut feature film, NIGHTMARE (2000), introduced the classical horror film genre to Korea for the first time. Besides his unique filmmaking style, Ahn also has a reputation for discovering new talent as he often casts relatively unknown actors in his films. Also a screenwriter, Ahn is often described as the Korean Hitchcock.

Do you believe only what you see? Fear that will burn into your mind...
The melody of the 'Moonlight Sonata' will not leave your mind!

In everyday life people look around as they feel like someone looking at them. This is a natural response to assure themselves that that feeling is just an illusion. But the movie PHONE shows that kind of invisible fear on the screen. Blood dripping, death or ghosts aren't really what fear is all about. In PHONE, places we hope nothing is there always have some kind of chilly surprise. And those scenes are so natural that nobody would even guess that it's made out of special effects. The only thing that is left is the chill in the viewer's body.

Besides the acting and the perfect reversal in the plot, PHONE has another something to terrify us. Beethoven's 'Moonlight Sonata' slowly changes into a sharp tone as the fear accumulates. PHONE is music director Lee Sang-ho's second work with director Ahn Byung-ki after NIGHTMARE. He brings fear to the audience with the adequate melody line. The music unconsciously raises the viewer's heartbeat, and even after the movie is over the melody does not leave the viewer's mind duplicating the fear.