Dragon Wars: D-War
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D-War (Korean: 디워, released in North America as Dragon Wars: D-War), is a 2007 South Korean action-adventure fantasy film written and directed by Shim Hyung-rae, and starring Jason Behr, Amanda Brooks, Robert Forster, and Elizabeth Peña.

At the time of its release, it was the highest-budgeted South Korean film of all time. The film grossed $75 million worldwide and received generally negative reviews.


The story follows the adventures of Ethan Kendrick, charged in his childhood by the enigmatic Jack to protect the Yuh Yi Joo, an individual who had been born able to change an Imoogi chosen by heaven into a Celestial Dragon, from a corrupt Imoogi identified as Buraki , who was prevented from obtaining it in the past by Ethan and Jack s previous incarnations. To this end, Jack gives Ethan a medallion formerly belonging to Ethan s previous incarnation Haram, and reveals that the reincarnated Yuh Yi Joo is Sarah Daniels, whom Ethan will find in Los Angeles.

15 years after this revelation, Buraki invades the city, bent on capturing Sarah; whereupon Ethan, now a television news anchor, rescues her, conveys the knowledge of her purpose, and attempts to save her from Buraki, during which they eventually regain the memories of their past lives. During the resulting chase, Buraki s Atrox Army enters the city and engages the United States Army, the United States Air Force, and the Los Angeles Police Department in battle. Here, the Atrox Army is shown to consist of black-armored, humanoid knight warriors; theropod-like cavalry called Shaconnes ; small, winged Western dragons called Bulcos ; and immense, slow-moving reptiles carrying rocket-launchers on their backs, identified in the dialogue as Dawdlers . Despite losses, this army overwhelms the human forces, while Ethan and Sarah escape the city, but are subsequently captured by the Bulcos and taken to a menacing fortress in the midst of a darkened desert landscape. There, as Buraki emerges from the fortress to consume Sarah, Ethan s medallion unleashes power that destroys the Atrox Army. Ethan then attempts to prevent Buraki from consuming Sarah, but he is knocked away, whereupon the Good Imoogi, of whom the power in Sarah was to be given, emerges from the fortress and attacks Buraki. The two Imoogi, good and evil, engage each other in a duel that Buraki appears to win after seemingly snapping the Good Imoogi s neck. After this, Buraki again approaches Sarah, who finally offers herself willingly; but instead gives her power to the injured Good Imoogi who absorbs it. Sarah faints, and Buraki can do nothing as the Good Imoogi becomes the Celestial Dragon (Type: Lung Dragon), continuing the duel until it finally destroys Buraki.

After Buraki is destroyed, Ethan watches Sarah dissolve into a spirit form, and the Celestial Dragon permits her to speak to Ethan, whom she assures that they shall see each other again, and promises to love…for all eternity ; then withdraws Sarah into its body and ascends into the sky, through the parting clouds to the heavens. Jack appears behind Ethan, reminding him that the two of them have been given a great honor to take part in this transformation, and vanishes. After whispering Goodbye old man , Ethan walks away into the desert.


  • Jason Behr as Ethan Kendrick Cody Arens as Young Ethan
  • Cody Arens as Young Ethan
  • Amanda Brooks as Sarah Daniels, the holder of the Yeo-Yi-Ju Cheyenne Alexis Dean as Young Sarah
  • Cheyenne Alexis Dean as Young Sarah
  • Robert Forster as Jack, Ethan s mentor and Sarah s guardian
  • Chris Mulkey as Agent Frank Pinsky, senior partner of an investigation
  • Elizabeth Peña as Agent Linda Perez, a scientist employed by the FBI
  • Craig Robinson as Bruce, Ethan s fellow-member in televised journalism
  • Aimee Garcia as Brandy, Sarah s friend
  • John Ales as Agent Judah Campbell, junior partner to Frank Pinsky
  • Billy Gardell as Mr. Belafonte
  • Holmes Osborne as Hypnotherapist
  • Geoff Pierson as Secretary of State
  • Derek Mears as Bounty Hunter
  • Retta as Receptionist Nurse
  • Michael Shamus Wiles as Evil General
  • Hyun Jin as Haram, the previous incarnation of Ethan s soul Kyuho Moon as Young Haram
  • Kyuho Moon as Young Haram
  • Hyojin Ban as Narin, the previous incarnation of Sarah s soul
  • Roberta Farkas (uncredited) as Narrator


Originally titled Dragon Wars (and still referred to by this title in publicity material), D-War has a long production history in South Korea. The film was announced in 2001 by director Shim Hyung-rae as his follow-up project to 1999 s Yonggary. The budget was set at 30 million won (approximately US$35 million), but ultimately went over budget in order to create the various creatures in the film, with some outside estimation as high as $US75 million dollars. The DVD release confirmed that it did indeed cost US$99 million.

As with Yonggary, Shim opted for a mostly American cast. Veteran actor Robert Forster landed a pivotal role and Jason Behr and Amanda Brooks were cast as the two young leads.

The next three years were spent creating the creature effects, all of which were done in house by Shim s Younggu-Art Movies company. The completed film premiered at the American Film Market in early 2007. The film was released in South Korea on 1 August 2007. In the U.S., the film was released on 14 September 2007 by Freestyle Releasing.

On 7 August 2007, South Korea s Munhwa Broadcasting Corporation (MBC) Morning Live TV Show broadcast the film s final scene on TV without the permission of the studio, causing a controversy. A few days later the Ministry of Culture and Tourism released a statement in which they said that the incident did not violate South Korean copyright laws.



A 110-minute cut was shown at the American Film Market on 4 November 2006 and at the Berlin Film Market on 8 February 2007. The film s final cut was edited down to 92 minutes for its South Korean and American release, after getting feedback from preview screenings. The film was released in South Korea on 1 August 2007. Freestyle Releasing released the film to 2,277 in the United States on September 14, 2007. It was the first Korean film to receive a wide release in the U.S.


Box office

D-War set a record of grossing US$20.3 million in South Korea in its first five days of release. As of 1 September, the film has grossed US$44 million in Korea and another US$10 million in other countries, totaling a worldwide gross of US$54 million as of 16 September. In North America, the film grossed US$5 million on 2,275 screens in its opening weekend. As of 25 November 2007, the film has grossed US$10,977,721 in North America,

Since then, D-War has been released theatrically in Malaysia and China, both with moderate critical reaction. China was the only one to live up to the South Korean release record, spawning 3,000,000 admissions and a premiere including pop idol Libing Chen. The movie grossed an equivalent of less than $850,000 USD in Japan.

Critical response

D-War received mostly negative reviews upon release in the U.S. As of June 2020, the film holds a 30% approval rating on the review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, based on 37 reviews with an average rating of 3.96/10. The website s critics consensus reads: Dragon Wars special effects can t make up for an unfocused script and stale acting. . The film scored a 33 out of 100 at Metacritic, based on nine reviews indicating general unfavorable reviews .

Derek Elley of Variety, reviewing it at the Berlin Film Festival s market section, called it visually entertaining, and superior to helmer Shim Hyung-rae s last monster movie (Yonggary in 1999) , while also saying the film had a Z-grade, irony-free script, and likely to end up the most expensive cult movie on DVD. The Hollywood Reporter s Frank Scheck said, the CGI effects are undeniably impressive but that the laughable story line, risible dialogue and cheap humor … seriously detract from the fun. Luke Y. Thompson in L.A. Weekly derided the film as one for connoisseurs of the totally preposterous crap school of fantasy cinema… You know who you are: You have all the Warlock sequels on Laserdisc the complete Leprechaun series on DVD and says it s funnier when it tries to be serious than when it goes for the gag.

Within nine days of its South Korean release, D-War attracted five million viewers, setting a national box office record for an opening week. The seemingly positive reaction from the Korean population, as indicated by the movie s box office success in Korea, was widely attributed to the film s appeal to Korean nationalism; a logical impression drawn from Shim s message at the end of the Korean version of this film, D-War and I will succeed in the world market without fail, accompanied by the Korean folk anthem, Arirang. However, despite box office success, D-Wars was far from critically acclaimed by either Korean critics or Korea s general public. Korean film critic Kim Bong-sok said, They want it to be successful in the U.S. because it s Korean, not because it s good and called the film immature and poorly made and below criticism . Other reactions from Korean critics have been similar.


In March 2016, it was announced that a sequel entitled D-War II: Mysteries of the Dragon would be co-financed with Japan s H&R Global Pictures. The film s release date is to be determined 2028.

Year 2007
ReleaseDate 2007-09-14
RuntimeMins 107
RuntimeStr 1h 47min
Plot Once in 500 years, ancient mythical creatures come to Earth, wreaking havoc and destruction. This time they must be stopped.
Awards Awards, 2 wins & 3 nominations
Directors Hyung-rae Shim
Writers Hyung-rae Shim
Stars Jason Behr, Amanda Brooks, Robert Forster
Produced by Joon-hwan Choi,Sungho Choi,Taesung Jeong,Woonjin Jung,James B. Kang,Hak Hun Kim,Kwang Jin Kim,Woo-taek Kim,Young Joon Kim,Jamey Kitchens,Dennis James Lee,Miky Lee,Sascha Schneider,Hyung-rae Shim,Jeong Tae-sung
Music by Steve Jablonsky
Cinematography by Hubert Taczanowski
Film Editing by Timothy Alverson
Casting By Christine Sheaks
Production Design by Yong Suk Kim,Jong Nam Shim
Art Direction by Dong Won Nam,Pamela B. Warner
Set Decoration by Donald Elmblad
Costume Design by Niklas J. Palm
Makeup Department Minjoung Cha,Jennifer Gerber,Changju Gwon,Jiho Jeong,Daeyoung Kang,Ron Karkoska,Dohyung Kim,Jooil Kim,Youngsim Kim,Jinwuk Lee,Heather Mages,Keleigh Lippert Palladino,Jeonghyeon Park,Wendy Southard,Bora Yeon
Production Management Dooho Choi,Sungho Choi,Ki-Wook Shim,Sascha Schneider
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director Billy Greenfield,Seiyoung Jun,Mingoo Kim,Euijin Lee,Alexa Sheehan,Hanseung Song,Jonathan Southard,Alexa Sheehan
Art Department Evelyn Barbier,Joe Barden,Don Bracken,Tonya Brewer Hunt,Karen E. Burnett,Carol Decarr,Steven DeSantis,T. Scott Elliott,Sookyung Ha,Seamin Her,Melanie Hubbard,Jungeun Huh,Sukyoung Hwang,Kyonghwan Jang,Heecheon Jeon,Yongwoo Joo,Dukjin Jung,Minjung Jung,Hyunjung Kang,Mitchell W. Katzman,Erik Kieltyka,Hyunjin Kim,Miyoung Kim,Sangkyoon Kim,Soo-Hyun Kim,Taewon Kim,Yoosik Kim,Maureen Kropf,Daniel Kuzmick,Rick Kyker,Grant Lau,Junhwang Lee,Kyungjin Lee,Sanghee Lee,Woonhyoung Lee,Eunju Lim,Sookkyung Lim,Lawrence D. Lira,Sammy Loreno,Steven Pacitto,Eunjung Park,Analisa Quilty,Buddy Ray Reynolds,Ryan Rittmiller,Glenn Ryan Jr.,Monti Santilli Rainbolt,Grant Sawyer,Bennet Silver,Hyunsoo Song,Jaecheon Song,Edward Tamayo,Sehee Won
Sound Department David Beadle,Beau Biggart,Joey Bilger,Mark Binder,Keith Birchfiel,Josh Bower,Nakgu Choi,Sunghwan Choi,Derrick Cloud,Thomas Curley,Dave Davenport,Justin Doyle,Andrew Ellerd,Nathan Hankins,Catherine Harper,Patrick Hogan,Gahye Jung,Hyunsoo Jung,Jongho Jung,Andy Kim,Hyuntae Kim,Yongkook Kim,Donghyun Lee,Sean Lee,Soonsung Lee,Mark A. Mangini,Darrin Mann,Stuart Martin,Jeahong Moon,Christopher Moriana,Steven Morrow,Piero Mura,Todd Murakami,Harry Nah,Brian Thomas Nist,Rodrigo Ortiz-Parraga,Ralph Osborn,Jonggeun Park,Bryan Pennington,Nick Shaffer,Andy Sisul,John Snider,Dave Whitehead,Matilda Yang,Larry Hopkins,Rodrigo Ortiz-Parraga,Steve Schatz,Nick Shaffer,Richard Taylor
Special Effects by Sungsang Cho,Yongjae Choi,Choong-Ki Han,Kihoon Hong,Nari Hong,Myungha Hwang,Kipyo Jeon,Hungju Kim,Sukwoo Kim,Yong Suk Kim,Young-Il Kim,Hakjin Lee,Hee-kyoung Lee,Jungil Lee,Kyungjae Lee,Manyong Lee,Sungyeol Lee,Woongyoung Lee,Jongyeol Lim,Jooho Mang,Daniel Mustoe,Seungpil On,Kyungjin Park,Miae Park,John Roth,Seungho Ryu,Byungsup Shim,Jong Nam Shim,Kunsup Shin,Seungmin Shin,Heongup Song,Eddie Surkin,Jooyoung Yoo,Kichol Yoon,Eric Won
Visual Effects by Daewoong Bae,Jiyoung Bae,Taekwon Chung,Patrick Clancey,Matt Davis,Tim Drnec,Dongho Han,Seong-Hwan Hong,Jonghyun Hwang,Joongsub Hwang,Ho Suk Jang,Hosuk Jang,Hyeran Jung,Ilsik Kang,Dongkeun Kim,Dongwoo Kim,Hyemi Kim,Hyunsook Kim,Jinho Kim,Kee-Won Kim,Kibum Kim,Mingoo Kim,Mira Kim,Miyoung Kim,Soohan Kim,Taeuk Kim,Sunguk Ko,Bonmin Koo,Hyundong Lee,Jaesung Lee,Joo-Hyun Lee,Dongwon Nam,Hojoon Oh,Scott Paider,Gyebin Park,Keun-Pyo Park,Yong Park,Todd Semmes,Ki-Wook Shim,Kiwook Shim,Junhee Sung,Rich Volp,Seungjun Yong,Choongyul Yoon,Danny Shinwoong Kang,Thomas Mathai,Danita Slaughter
Stunts Geunchul Ahn,Yongwoo Ahn,Gap Yong An,Brian Avery,Jaeil Bae,Dong Hyun Baek,Kyungchan Baek,Hungguk Choi,Bud Davis,Sun Do Lee,Mong Dol,Ji Bin Han,Jung Hyun Han,Jung Wook Han,Toby Holguin,Sangsuk Hong,Craig Jensen,Kyu Ho Jeon,Ilwon Jung,Yoon Hun Jung,Chul Gu Kim,Chungeun Kim,Pil Soo Kim,Sang Yong Kim,Sukjoon Kim,Sung Sil Kim,Taedeuk Kim,Young-jin Kim,Hyoung Woong Ko,Michael ‘Pugita’ Kobayashi,Hannah Kozak,Jong Taek Kum,Choi Kwang-rak,Seung Ku Kwon,David LeBell,Bong Keun Lee,Jae-Woong Lee,Se Eun Lee,Sang Bum Mo,Anthony Molinari,Hugh Aodh O’Brien,Jin-Soo Park,Tea Gi Park,Robin Petgrave,Dennis Scott,Jae Won Sim,Brian Simpson,Ator Tamras,Thom Khoury Williams,Tae Woon Won,Tea Yonl Yang,Alex Daniels,Jesse Jam Miranda,Sonja Munsterman,Michael Owen,Steve Tartalia,Tyler Vogt
Camera and Electrical Department Tae Hoon Ahn,Jongseok Baek,Glenda Bingabing,Melchor Bingabing,Don Burton,Frank Calabria,Danielle C. Carroll,Cheol Gi Choi,Gwangjin Choi,Matt Cohen,Collin S. Colberg,Brandon Cunningham,Chris Dambra,Peter DePhilippis,John Doherty,Tim Drnec,Curtis Failor,Robert Garcia,Sangsoo Gil,Ron Goodman,Seungpyo Hong,Hunhui Hwang,Myeongdong Hwang,Kyeongmuk Im,Seokhyeon Jeong,Geuncheol Ji,Gilsu Ji,Seunghyeon Ji,Greg Johnson,Byungyun Jun,Juil Jun,Dukhee Jung,Ahnhong Kim,Dae Gyu Kim,Deok Hyeong Kim,Gyeongbeom Kim,Jongmyung Kim,Jukyong Kim,Kwanghwa Kim,Seong Lae Kim,Seonghyeok Kim,Wonjin Kim,Yeonju Kim,Dean M. King,Chang Seup Lee,Donggyu Lee,Jaein Lee,Jaejong Lee,Jeongdae Lee,Junho Lee,Kyeongshin Lee,Seongguk Lee,Seungkyu Lee,Wonhyeong Lee,Yeong Ho Lee,Chris Linares,Kim McCall,Seong Won Min,Juchon Moon,Diego Negrete,Tommy Noroian,Jarrod Oswald,Scott Paider,Rodney Pardey,Hyeonguk Park,Jisung Park,Kyongseok Park,Wanyong Park,Young Cheul Park,Gustavo Peña,Yusin Pyo,Richard Ralston,Chad Reavis,Andrew Robison,Hugo Rojas,Hammer Semmes,Jongsoon Shin,Hyeokjae Song,Joshua Stern,Jim Unsinn,Rich Volp,Aiken Weiss,Yeongmin Yang,Chad Glendon,Clinton H. Wallace,Sam Wayman,Matt Zschoche
Animation Department Gary Hebert,Eric Keller,Ryan Zunkley
Casting Department Rebecca Gushin,Georgia Simon,Debe Waisman
Costume and Wardrobe Department Chulyoung Bae,Shandra Beri,David Childress,Mary Lou Diaz,Rebecca Dominguez,David S. Heifetz,Hungju Kim,Elyse Lain,Hongsun Lee,Sunhwa Lee,Melanie Lewis,Diane McCloskey,Deanna M. Saul,Bess Stansell,Samantha E. White
Editorial Department Matthew Booth,Richard Conkling,Rick Grayson,Michael Hatzer,Soo Bin Kang,Annie E. Kim,Jack Lewars,Jim Mackiej,Nicolas Peterson,Loan Phan,Martha Pike,Keith Roberts,D.R. Farquharson,Royce Smith
Location Management Ivo Deranja,Miho Deranja,Federico Ferro
Music Department Jeffrey Biggers,Jay Flood,Benoit Grey,Steve Jablonsky,Kory Kruckenberg,Robert Puff,David Sabee,Pieter Schlosser,Tom Trafalski,Greg Vines,Hyungyeol Yoo,Rossano Galante,Danail Getz,Jay Kim,Christopher Thomas
Script and Continuity Department Tracy Scott
Transportation Department John W. Barbee,Roy Beville,Steve Bonner,Dennis Brock,Jorge Cisneros,Mike Clark,Dennis A. Coleman,Charles J. Conley,Elizabeth Dominguez,Scott Dudley,J. Armin Garza II,Michael Hindman,Nicholas Howard,Gary Jackson,Kyle Jetton,Dennis Lape,Josh Lauth,Frank Mejerski,David Murrell,John Pohmisano,Irv Press,Tom Provenzano,James B. Rhodes,George Schmid,Ricardo Sepulveda,Paul Smith,Gary D. Stalker,Chris Stathes,Paul Thomas,Mike Volpe,Ron Volpe
Additional Crew Judy Ahn,Ryan Ashley,Jeeyoung Bang,Amanda Baudo,Rob Bloch,Braden Bowen,Victor Manuel Castro,Esther K. Chae,Yun Jung Chang,Alisa Charoen-Phol,Minsuk Choi,Troy H. Choi,Sal Cocuzza,Tara L. Craig,Martin J. Crotty,Stephen Dale,Michael Del Polito,Chad Easton,Arthur Edmonds III,Frier Son Edward,John Fukuda,Barbara Gannen,Gary Hebert,Bridget Hoffman,Karen Huie,Rif Hutton,Marabina Jaimes,Kelly Jones,Myung Ho Jun,Seiyoung Jun,Amanda Jurgensen,Songgu Kang,Charles Kim,Donghwa Kim,Hyungjin Kim,June Kim,Min Soo Kim,Myungjong Kim,Taesung Kim,Wonho Kim,Youngnam Kim,Mijung Kwon,James Kyson,Grant Lau,Geunwoo Lee,Hyuk Lee,Renee Lee,Ronald J. Levin,Rosa Lin,Deeter Lota,Sangjun Ma,John Marquess III,Eric Meyers,Jeanine Meyers,Junho Min,Daniel Mongeon,Kyungok Noh,Greg Joung Paik,Paul Pape,Changseung Park,Eunkyung Park,Youngkyu Park,Nicole Runkle,Sijin Ryu,Sahil Sai,Clay Savage,Jim Sharon,Jungmi Shin,Debbie Silverman,Chin2 Singh,Skip Stellrecht,Duncan Stewart,Josh Swoveland,Ila Taluban,Russ Tanaka,Kwangyeon Won,Boseok Yang,Michael Zeininger,Ryan Zunkley,Angel Brown,John Charles,Nora L. Ferris,Annie Jeeves,Larry Zanoff
Thanks Yoon Jin Back,Yong Jin Choi,Mike Hopkins,Ethan Van der Ryn
Genres Action, Drama, Fantasy
Companies CJ Entertainment, Showbox Entertainment, Younggu-Art Movies
Countries South Korea
Languages English, Korean
ContentRating PG-13
ImDbRating 3.5
ImDbRatingVotes 24561
MetacriticRating 33
Keywords creature,giant,giant creature,giant snake,giant monster