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[Review] Concrete Utopia

We’re back with a new film review and this time we watched the 2023 film ‘Concrete Utopia’. This absolutely star-studded movie was released in August.

‘Concrete Utopia’ was based off the Webtoon ‘Pleasant Outcast’ by Kim Soongnyung. The movie was directed by Um Tae-hwa and adapted for the screen by Um and Lee Shin-ji.

The story takes place at an apartment building after a gigantic earthquake that absolutely devasted South Korea. It’s the only building that is still erect.

We follow our main characters Yeong-Tak, Min-seong and Myeong-hwa as they try to adapt to this new reality.

Kim Yeong-Tak is a figure shrouded in mystery. He helps save the building after a fire breaks out and is soon dubbed the leader. He decides to kick out all of the outsiders, as a lot of them have taken refuge in the only remaining building, as they are running low on food and supplies. Only the residents are allowed in. Yeong-Tak is played by the excellent Lee Byung-Hun.

Min-seong (Park Seo-Joon) and Myeong-hwa (Park Bo-Young) are a married couple. Min-seong is a public servant and Myeong-hwa a nurse. Min-seong is soon dubbed the head of the Anti-Crime department and is the right hand man of Yeong-Tak.

Myeong-hwa is apalled by the fact that the outsiders have to go. She does her best to remain kind in such a dystopian event, but not everyone can do the same.


‘Concrete Utopia’ is such a good film. It shows you both the awful and the good side of humanity and how soon said humanity and compassion can vanish in a crisis.

On all sides this is well done, and it was a treat to watch.

Check out the trailer below.

A writer with a slight coffee addiction and a tendency to find K-Indie gems in the YouTube rabbit hole.