In this week's release of 'Monsters,' aliens have taken over half of Mexico after a NASA probe full of space samples crashed in the area, unleashing octopus aliens that no human weaponry can defeat. Two poor saps -- a journalist and his boss' daughter -- must make their way through the infected zone to the safety of the U.S. border.

This premise is quite similar to the killer 2006 South Korean horror film, 'Gwoemul,' or 'The Host' (which we just learned is getting a 3D sequel). The Park family finds themselves not facing aliens, but rather a giant killer tadpole-like creature (also the result of U.S. mishaps) who's jumped out of the waters to terrorize the folks of South Korea, and has kidnapped one of their own.

In our review back in the day, James Rocchi wrote: "it hits all the right bases. It's primal and post-modern, scary and slapstick, gory yet good-hearted. The Host may be lumpy and bumpy, but it's also one of the freshest monster movies we've had in decades -- and, to any creature-feature buff, a rocket-ride blast of the highest order." Hit the jump to get acquainted.
'The Host'
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Though not his first film, Joon-ho Bong made an international name for himself with 'The Host,' moving on to direct a segment of 'Tokyo!' (similar to 'Paris je t'aime') and last year's highly regarded 'Mother' -- both of which are notably different from his creature feature.

Main Players
The most notable name on the roster is Kang-ho Song, who moved from 'The Host' to a starring role in 'The Good, the Bad, the Weird' and 'Thirst.' The rest of the family is played by Hie-bong Byeon, Hae-il Park, Doona Bae and Ah-sung Ko

The story starts when dumb dudes at a U.S. military base dump formaldehyde down the drain, which creates a tadpole-like super-beast who swims through the Han River and terrorizes crowds. When the beast makes itself known to the public, it has to contend not only with the strong arm of the military, but also the Park family. After kidnapping their youngest, her family -- from a crumbling-under-pressure archery whiz to a ne'er-do-well slacker -- attempt to free her.


-Believe it or not, this is based on an actual event. No, South Korea wasn't attacked by a huge monster, but rather a military civilian was ordered to dispose of formaldehyde by pouring it into the sewer system that flowed into the Han River.

-The director and designer of the creature nicknamed it "Steve Buscemi," after the actor's screen persona and acting in 'Fargo.' Can you note the similarities?

-In the news montage, Canadians can spot former Canadian deputy prime minister John Manley.

-It might be a silly horror movie, but 'The Host' blew away the South Korean box office, becoming the highest grossing film with over 13 million tickets sold. If no one saw it twice, that would've meant more than 20% of the population in the theater seats.