15 Best South Korean Zombie Shows & Movies, Ranked


Zombie movies have always been a staple in the horror and adventure genre, from the recently released campy Lisa Frankenstein to the thrilling blockbuster World War Z. Around the world, zombie films have proven to be a hit, as seen in the Korean cinema industry, which is experiencing a zombie resurgence. Zombies have been a rising cinematic inspiration of the 21st century in Korea with globally renowned works like Train to Busan. The prevalence and heat of these infectious diseases do not appear to be diminishing.

For fans of both South Korean and mainstream cinema, zombie films have always been a particularly popular and sought-after genre. As a result, the nation has been constantly producing zombie films and television shows to satisfy the desires of its viewers. These Korean zombie series and movies, ranging from Netflix’s recently released All of Us Are Dead to The Wailing, include psychological thrillers, class allegories, and even historical drama. All of them were brought together by a common theme: the undead, which will satisfy your need for a zombie apocalypse.

15 ‘Peninsula’ (2020)

Director: Yeon Sang-ho

Peninsula is a stand-alone continuation of the critically acclaimed 2016 zombie film Train to Busan. The story follows former soldier Jung-seok (Kang Dong-won) and his assigned crew on a mission to recover a truck full of cash four years after the zombie virus has infected all of Korea. They must traverse the peninsula through which zombies are currently living.

Peninsula expands the Train to Busan universe by featuring a desolate wasteland where humanity is desperately clinging to survival in settlements. While earning conflicting reviews regarding whether it is a worthy successor to the 2016 picture, Peninsula is still a fun and enjoyable action zombie movie. It is also a celebration of all that is admirable about people and the value of their lives.

Train to Busan Presents: Peninsula

Release Date
July 15, 2020

Sang-ho Yeon

Dong-won Kang , Jung-hyun Lee


Watch on Shudder

14 ‘The Neighbor Zombie’ (2009)

Directors: Jang Yoon-jung, Oh Young-doo, Ryu Hoon

The Neighbor Zombie begins when the hard but tranquil lives of the Seoul residents have been disrupted by a virus that has the ability to infect the entire world. They then need to fight back and find other ways to survive if they want to restore everything to normal.

The Neighbor Zombie debuted in South Korea in 2009, the same year that the US released Zombieland starring Emma Stone and Jesse Eisenberg. As a result, it has a quite similar American approach. The Korean counterpart, on the other hand, is considerably grimmer and more sincere, with plenty of scenes that show the compassion and humanity among the survivors. There are plenty The Neighbor Zombie has a considerable appreciation for the painful and utterly humiliating experience of seeing the collapse of society.

Rent on YouTube

13 ‘Horror Stories’ (2012)

Directors: Im Dae-woong, Jung Bum-sik, Hong Ji-young

Horror Stories is a must-see horror anthology film that consists of four separate segments, each with its own unique story and style, all tied together by an overarching narrative. The final installment titled “Ambulance on the Death Zone” follows a young girl who dies from an unidentified ailment and turns into a mouth-foaming zombie.

The anthology format of the program and how each piece approaches the topic matter make the movie easier to digest and be appreciated by viewers. Each of the segments has a different director, with each one adding their signature flair while still making the film as a whole feel cohesive. Additionally, the last segment captures all the beauty of the typical Korean zombie genre while maintaining just the right amount of horror and gore, making it a valuable addition to the genre.

Watch on Tubi

12 ‘The Cursed: Dead Man’s Prey’ (2021)

Director: Yong-wan Kim

The Cursed: Dead Man’s Prey is an extended version of the horror K-drama The Cursed that opens with a shocking murder. It tells the tale of a journalist who investigates an occurrence in which the perpetrator of an odd serial murder case turns out to be a revived corpse. With the help of a girl with psychic abilities, the two join together to unveil the truth behind the chilling case, uncovering horrifying details in the process.

The film’s captivating visuals and heart-pounding scenes of zombie attackers’ pursuit channel South Korean cinema its unmistakable trademark. Additionally, despite not having the typical zombie plot, The Cursed: Dead Man’s Prey is still highly intriguing and will undoubtedly give viewers nightmares after they finish watching.

Rent on Apple TV

11 ‘Rampant’ (2018)

Director: Kim Sung-hoon

Rampant follows Lee Chung (Hun Bin), the Prince of Joseon, who the powerful Qing family kidnaps to appoint him as the next Crown Prince. An invasion of horrific nocturnal zombies threatens to devastate the entire region as Lee Chung spars with Joseon Minister of War, Kim Ja-Joon (Jang Dong-gun).

Rampant is another idea that aims to breathe new life into a popular genre but has fallen into obscurity. Apart from its thrilling and exciting zombie storyline and scenes, Rampant also has plenty of political intrigue to keep the viewers interested in its story. Blending these creatures with the Asian epic action movie style and altering a few rules results in a film packed with adrenaline, stunning visuals, and stock characters in a fascinating plot.

Watch on Fubo

10 ‘Kingdom’ (2019 – )

Directors: Kim Seong-hun, Park In-je

The prince is raising his bow

This is Netflix’s first original Korean series; it has two seasons and was adapted from the webcomic serial The Kingdom of the Gods. In Kingdom, The Crown Prince of Joseon, Lee Chang (Ju Ji-hoon), is investigating a mysterious illness devouring his country in this historical horror drama. While defending his realm from the horrible plague, he gets caught in the middle of a political power struggle that threatens to overthrow him.

Kingdom deeply and subtly delves into the question of class conflict and social interests. The action sequences are also masterfully staged and will easily satisfy even the most discerning television watcher. Once you’re done with the series, be sure


Release Date
January 25, 2019

Bae Doona , Ju Ji-Hoon , Kim Hye-jun , Kim Sungkyu


9 ‘Doomsday Book’ (2012)

Directors: Kim Jee-woon, Yim Pil-sung

Doomsday Book is an anthology film that tells three distinct sci-fi stories. The themes include genuine human compassion as well as sarcastic depictions of human devastation in the contemporary high-tech world. The film’s opening chapter, “A Brave New World,” is a political parody of a zombie virus that follows a geeky scientist and his sister causing the population to transform into flesh-eating zombies after consuming poisonous meat.

The movie is praised for its deft use of the zombie outbreak to satirically critique both human nature and a political landmark in South Korea. Doomsday Book is a film that is worth watching even if it isn’t an apparent zombie entry since it goes beyond what zombies are capable of and how well humans can survive them.

Watch on Pluto

8 ‘Zombie Detective’ (2020)

Director: Shim Jae-hyun

Zombie Detective follows Kang Min-ho (Choi Jin-hyuk), who wakes up with amnesia and realizes he has also transformed into a zombie. He learns to walk and talk like everyone else to blend in and finally assumes the persona of a private detective while working on uncovering his history.

Despite being comic book-esque and eccentric sometimes, Zombie Detective manages to be amusing while also delivering plenty of poignancy, melancholy, and seriousness. The use of comedy was wisely employed to lighten the tone of various passages, which is reminiscent of the humor-filled scenes in the classic zombie comedy movie Shaun of the Dead. If you want to take a break from the ravenous flesh-eating undead and enjoy a gut-busting zombie comedy with a lighthearted tone, Zombie Detective is a good choice.

Watch on Kocowa

7 ‘Happiness’ (2021)

Director: Ahn Gil-ho

Happiness is a cheery Korean horror series set in the near future that follows a group of people in an apartment building plagued with zombies during a government quarantine. This was the outcome of a failed treatment medicine that resulted in a pandemic known as the Rita Virus, or “mad person illness” as it is more often known.

The show is well-balanced and feels fresh with frequent surprises and interesting twists happening in the plot. Furthermore, instead of frightening moments, Happiness focuses on developing social relations with a perfect combination of drama and comedy. With the characters trying their best to survive in the dangerous world, the resilience and perseverance of the characters in Happiness will surely strike a chord with the viewers.

Watch on Viki

6 ‘The Odd Family: Zombie on Sale’ (2019)

Director: Lee Min-Jae

The Odd Family: Zombie on Sale, directed by Lee Min-Jae, is one of the best rewatchable horror comedies to come out of South Korea, and it adds an unprecedented level of eccentricity to the mix. The Odd Family follows the Park family as their lives are turned upside down when a zombie bites the old patriarch. When the dysfunctional family in the movie discovers the zombie was developed due to an illicit pharmaceutical business experiment, the Park family tries to profit from it.

The Odd Family: Zombie on Sale lives up to the title, with the Park being an odd, humorous, and unexpectedly close family. The original idea of monetizing their misfortune is brilliant. When combining action, drama, and romance, fans will receive a film that is both original and engaging.

Watch on Amazon Prime

5 ‘The Wailing’ (2016)

Director: Na Hong-jin

A dirty, blood-covered demon sitting in 2016's The Wailing
Image via 20th Century Studios

The Wailing follows a series of supernatural events after a mysterious man arrives in a tiny fishing hamlet. A viral infection spreads throughout the village, considered to be caused by an evil spirit in the area. And it’s up to local police officer Jong-goo (Do-wan Kwak) to unravel the case.

The story’s masterly combination of powerful cultural and genre aspects creates an unforgettable concoction. The Wailing is not only one of the best contemporary zombie films, but also one of the greatest modern horror films, featuring a brilliant performance, a gut-wrenching slaughter, and a profound morality tale. The Wailing also goes beyond the supernatural horror genre by crouching into psychological horror territory with its eerie atmosphere and slow-building tension that lingers long after the movie ends.

The Wailing

Release Date
May 12, 2016

Na Hong-jin

Kwak Do-won , Hwang Jung-min , Jun Kunimura


4 ‘#Alive’ (2020)

Director: Cho Il-hyung

A man is standing on the bacolny rail to take a selfie w the zombies

#Alive follows Oh Joon-Wo (Ah-In Yoo), a reclusive gamer who must remain hunkered down in his flat and battle off droves of home-invading zombies in a densely inhabited building under siege from a savage zombie incursion borne from an unknown infection. As the days pass and the situation continues to deteriorate into the end of days, he contacts a neighbor, and the two arrange their escape together.

Cho Il-hyung’s first feature film flourishes in moments of psychological contemplation and deftly navigates the difficulties of a zombie-horror-romance in the age of smartphones with blood, guts, and selfie sticks. Thanks to a strong, youthful cast, compelling horror comedy couple, and a pretty intriguing premise, the movie is undeniably fascinating.


Release Date
September 8, 2020

Il Cho

Yoo Ah-in , Park Shin-Hye , Jeon Bae-soo , Hyun-Wook Lee

98 minutes

3 ‘All of Us Are Dead’ (2022 – )

Directors: Lee Jae-kyoo, Kim Nam-su

The cast of All of Us Are Dead
Image Via Netflix

This South Korean Netflix drama is based on the popular Webtoon Now At Our School and follows a group of high school kids who are stranded at their school due to a zombie virus outbreak. The pupils try everything they can to prevent being turned into zombies and escape from their school.

What distinguishes All of Us Are Dead from other zombie shows is the focus on a group of teenage kids and how they navigate tough decisions in dangerous scenarios that will keep you on the edge of your seat. The show features a cast of interesting characters as well as some of the most heroic leads in a zombie series, a terrifying bunch of undead, and an environment that throws the protagonists challenge after challenge.

All Of Us Are Dead

Release Date
January 28, 2022

Park Ji-hu , Chan-Young Yoon , Yi-Hyun Cho , Park Solomon


Watch on Netflix

2 ‘Seoul Station’ (2016)

Director: Yeon Sang-ho

Seoul Station, directed by Yeon Sang-ho of Train to Busan and released the same year, is an animated feature-length zombie film for adults that acts as a prequel to the live-action horror smash. The animated film is set one day before the events of Train to Busan, which imagines downtown Seoul being overtaken by armies of zombies. Before the zombie plague, Suk-Gyu (Ryu Seung-Ryong), a father anxiously seeking his lost daughter, Hye-Sun (Shim Eun-Kyung), is central to the plot.

While Train to Busan revels in the spectacle of violence and the socioeconomic forces that gave rise to it, Seoul Station examines the lives of those on the fringes, most likely to be forgotten in the case of a disaster. It’s an intriguing chapter in Train to Busan’s story that fans should see, and it takes a unique approach to the setup.

Watch on Tubi

1 ‘Train to Busan’ (2016)

Director: Yeon Sang-ho

A man in white is turning his head while separating alive humans with dead walking ones

Train to Busan is more of an action film than a horror film, cementing South Korea’s cinematic status in the hearts of worldwide moviegoers. As a zombie outbreak advances, the film follows a father (Gong Yoo) urgently trying to safeguard his little daughter aboard the titular overrun train. As certain characters learn they were personally engaged in the virus’s unintentional spread, there are also undertones of guilt presented in the film.

Train to Busan‘s compelling class commentary demonstrates the advantages of collective action above individual survival. Thanks to its unique characters, passionate performances, and fast-paced action, it was an instant smash with moviegoers worldwide, becoming a landmark for Korean zombie movies.

Train to Busan

Release Date
July 20, 2016

Sang-ho Yeon

Yoo Gong , Yu-mi Jeong , Dong-seok Ma , Su-an Kim , Eui-sung Kim , Woo-sik Choi


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