The Divine Move is one of the best Korean action movies I’ve seen this year.”

by Nav Qateel

Tae-suk (Woo-sung Jung) is persuaded by his brother to help him cheat during a game of Go (also know as Baduk). It’s a high-stakes game against ruthless gangsters led by “Executioner,” and they are also cheating.

When the gangsters discover the brother’s are trying to beat them at their own game by cheating them, the pair are brutally tortured. They kill Tae-suk’s brother then frame Tae-suk for his murder. Now serving 7 years in prison, Tae-suk learns martial arts and prepares to take his revenge.

The Divine Move
Directed by
Beom-gu Cho
Woo-sung Jung, Beom-soo Lee, Si-young Lee
Release Date
Nav’s Grade: A

Beom-gu Cho’s hyper-violent The Divine Move is based around the very popular game of Go, although, knowledge of how to play isn’t critical. I have no idea how it’s played yet I found myself fully immersed in the story. We follow Tae-suk on his journey of revenge, first in prison, then as he gathers a team together to help him take down gang-boss Executioner (Beom-soo Lee) and his henchmen. It’s these interesting characters that really helped sell this over-the-top tale of revenge. Like Drinking Jesus, the blind Go master, and his old partner-in-crime, Carpenter, a one-handed tech wizard. The comic-relief was effectively provided by Cheater, with eye-candy aided by the stunning Belly Button (Si-young Lee).

With some great pacing by director Beom-gu, we make our way steadily towards the big showdown between Tae-suk and Executioner. Tae-suk in a white suit, with Executioner in black, clearly representative of the Go game pieces. When this final game commences, the players are using opposing colors to what they are wearing, symbolising the blurring of lines between good and evil. There was a number of times where children were involved in the game, and I fully expected Tae-suk to demonstrate to the audience that gambling was bad when allowed to go unchecked, especially when children were caught in the middle. But morality was never on The Divine Move writer Sung-hyub Yoo’s agenda.

The Divine Move is one of the best Korean action movies I’ve seen this year, Thanks to superbly choreographed bone-crunching fight sequences, anchored by an absorbing central story, this is a film that should be on the top of any genre fan’s list. Things were also left in such a way that I think we can expect a follow-up to this great action movie. Let’s hope it can live up to this one.