Want more recommendations for your family?
Sign up for our weekly newsletter for entertainment inspiration
A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Characters must work together to stop a demon.
Positive Role Models
The two lead characters are flawed heroes, the older being sullen and silent, the younger being goofy and silent for most of the movie.
Violence & Scariness
Horror movie violence. Character thrown into a tree and impaled to death. Bloody crime scenes. Characters shot and killed. Character struck by an axe into their back. Demonic imagery throughout, as possessed characters have demon eyes and move their necks in jarring sideways motions as seen in other horror movies. An older woman has cutting scars on her wrists.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Violence & Scariness in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Sex, Romance & Nudity
A monk stares at the rear end of an attractive woman in line.
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Sex, Romance & Nudity in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Some profanity, including "a--hole," "pr--k," "bastard," "bitch," and "damn."
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Language in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Did you know you can flag iffy content? Adjust limits for Drinking, Drugs & Smoking in your kid's entertainment guide.Get started
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that The 8th Night is a Korean horror movie in which two monks try to stop a demon that has been unleashed after being locked away for 2500 years. Expect horror violence and some nightmarish imagery. One of the lead characters, a detective, works a bloody crime scene. Characters shot and killed. One character thrown into a tree and is killed when one of the branches impales his chest. Character struck in the back with an ax. An older woman has cutting scars on her wrists. Characters possessed by the demon get demonic eyes and move their heads sideways in a creepy manner reminiscent of other horror movies involving demonic possession. Occasional profanity includes "a--hole," "pr--k," "bastard," "bitch," and "damn." A younger monk is caught and chastised by an older monk for ogling the body of a woman. Beer drinking. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
This movie is derivative at times, original at other times. The 8th Night is a Korean horror movie combining The Exorcist's story of demonic possession with The Conjuring's creepy zombie neck jolts, all filtered through a Buddhist lens. There are prophecies fulfilled, demons unleashed, skeptical cops, sage monks. It can be hard to follow at times, with its dual narratives of the monks in pursuit of the demon on one side, and a detective in pursuit of a murderer that he's disinclined to believe has demonic powers, but it mostly stays on track, and it's enough to know that once a certain number of humans are possessed within a certain timeframe (the title is a not-so-subtle hint in that regard), the Earth becomes a hellscape.
What's most surprising about The 8th Night is its occasional flashes of humor. Mystical movies like these tend to make M. Night Shamalayan movies look like Jerry Lewis slapstick, but there are actually some laugh-out-loud moments. For instance, not to spoil anything, but the detective says something hilarious while on a bloody crime scene and asked about the victim's "current occupation." The movie also makes full use of the "opposite character" trope, between the young and naive monk who has just been freed from both the monastery and his vow of silence and the middle-aged beaten-down-by-life monk trying to move on from his past. These are moments of refreshing levity in a genre that's usually so dour and dreary in themes, dialogue, and even the movie's colors. That said, the originality is, more often than not, overshadowed by horror tropes we've all seen so many times before.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.