Film Review: Detective K: The Secret of the Living Dead (2018)

Detective K: “I’m called a detective and a shaman too. For I can find a killer just by looking at the corpse, I’m like a possessed shaman who knows all. Shall we begin?  “
Owner of Lodge: “Is he usually like that?”
Seo-pil (Detective K’s partner): “Worse sir, he must not be feeling well, less bragging than usual.“

          Invisible fire, two corpses, one decayed and the other burnt and missing, a pretty mysterious woman, a detective with shameless ego and magical shaman powers and his apologetic partner makeup this motley crime drama Detective K: Secret of the Living Dead. Detective K brag and exchange with his partner sets up the tone of the movie. His deductions are based on usually stationary corpses but in this case, he will have to chase them down to his comedic dismay. This is a historical comedy mystery film based off the novels written by Tak-Hwan Kim.1 It was originally released in South Korea on February 8, 2018.1 This the third in its trilogy that has branched off into supernatural entities.
             The main characters are Detective Kim Min (Detective K) and his partner or sidekick named Seo-pil are on a trail of mysterious deaths in order to catch the killer before the Full Moon Festival, a regal event where the Emperor will be in attendance. The main characters Detective K and his sidekick partner Seo-pil are my favorite part of the movie as their comedic timing plus their different antics work together to figure out what happens. The duo stumbles their way through the investigation and face the killers head on. Unbeknownst to the two, they are sent into a trap of political intrigues and ancient vendettas. It is a high energy mystery movie that keeps the viewer in suspended belief as the trail grows more complicated as alliances are set upon each other and Detective K’s duty and allegiance are strained to a bittersweet conclusion. 

“You fear of becoming a monster means you’re not one yet. All I see is a good person who’s afraid of becoming a monster.” – Detective K

                This is a mystery that follows the rules of game play where the mystery is set, the culprits are poised and introduced to the reader and the motivations are slowly revealed.  It does have a supernatural element that some authors may disagree with but this element is a clever device to interpret the otherwise horrific past. I think the movie handles it well while not losing the story of the mystery. If you have a few hours to kill and enjoy a vampire or two you will enjoy sinking your teeth into this detective drama Detective K: Secret of the Living Dead.


  1. “Detective K: Secret of the Living Dead.” IMDb,, 8 Feb. 2018,

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