The 13 Best Documentaries About The Korean Culture

Aug 28, 2023 | Best Of, Culture, History

If you’re looking for a way to explore and gain insight into Korean culture, documentaries are an excellent source of knowledge. By watching these amazing films, you can learn all about the history, customs, values, beliefs, and traditions of Korea – without leaving your home. From award-winning classics to more modern takes on traditional themes, there is something for everyone among these films. Here, we’ve compiled a list of the best documentaries about Korean culture to help you explore new perspectives and discover something new. Whether you are curious about modern life in Korea or want to learn more about the culture’s ancient history, this list has something for everyone.


1. The Cost Of Being Successful In South Korea

It’s no surprise that South Korea has become one of the world’s most powerful economies – its people have a relentless work ethic and commitment to success. From long working hours to high-stakes schooling, South Koreans go beyond their limits to reach the top. But with this ambition comes stress and pressure, which is why documentaries about Korean culture can be so eye-opening. Through these films, viewers get to explore the unique culture of South Korea as well as its people’s struggles and triumphs. From stories about Korean immigrants in America to glimpses into the lives of influential politicians, these documentaries offer an insightful look into a vibrant culture that few know much about.


2. The Harsh Truth about Toxic Korean Culture

Korean culture has been the subject of many documentaries over the years, but few explore how toxic it can be. The League of Documentary dives into the harsh truths and reveals the dark side of South Korea’s culture: from its oppressive caste systems to its tendency toward conformity and to its gender inequality. Through interviews with experts, activists, victims, and perpetrators alike, this documentary provides a comprehensive look at the toxicity of South Korea’s culture. It traces the history of oppression and examines how it has evolved over time, as well as discussing potential solutions that could help bring about change. Through its in-depth research and analysis, The League of Documentary reveals both the beauty and dark side of Korean culture – and ultimately hopes to inspire action.


3. The Power Of Hallyu

The phenomenon of Hallyu (K-Wave) is now one of the most popular and successful global entertainment movements. From Grandmas in Tunisia to Hollywood Stars, it has infiltrated every corner of the globe with its multi-billion dollar industry. BTS, K-Beauty products, and K-drama actors have become well known throughout the world for their unique and captivating content.


4. South Korea. The most advanced country in Asia

I have been lucky enough to have travelled to both South Korea and North Korea. In doing so, I was able to experience two distinct societies that had been forged from the same country – a consequence of the political divisions implemented at the end of World War Two. The South embraced capitalism whilst the North adopted socialism under its affiliation with the Soviet Union.


5. The Price Of Happiness In South Korea

The extraordinary success story of South Korea is truly inspiring. From a once-small agricultural nation to one of the most developed countries in Asia, their rise to power is something that many countries across the world aspire to replicate. But beyond success and economic growth lie hidden struggles – data shows that South Korea has one of the highest suicide rates among developed nations.


6. The Joseon Dynasty Reign In Korea For 500 Years

On a journey deep into South Korea, Singaporean Peter Lee uncovers the fascinating history of the Joseon Dynasty. Lasting over five centuries, this powerful era set in motion many of the traditions still seen today. Accompanying him is a fashion designer who breathes new life into traditional costumes for a modern audience, and pop bands that draw inspiration from Pansori, a form of musical storytelling.Through the course of his travels, Peter tests his Korean language skills in a local classroom and joins in on rehearsals with popular bands, learning how their music is rooted in this ancient dynasty. By the end of his experience, he finds himself understanding more and more about how Korean culture has evolved over time through .


7. 10 Weird Things That Only Exist In North Korea

Welcome to Discoverize, your source for uncovering the most fascinating and mind-blowing secrets of cultures around the world. Our mission is to bring you on a thrilling journey of discovery and education that will leave you in awe. Whether it’s exploring ancient artifacts, unraveling amazing scientific theories, or delving into Korean culture, there’s never a dull moment here!


8. Samsung’s Dangerous Dominance over South Korea

Samsung’s total hold on South Korea has been a major concern for many in the country. From its influence in politics to its control of popular culture, Samsung casts an omnipresent shadow over the region. This documentary looks into that phenomenon from multiple angles, exploring how it got to this point and what the implications can be for average citizens.


9. South Korea’s Obsession With Plastic Surgery

Join Jason Godfrey as he embarks on a journey to discover the unique obsessions of different societies. From mysterious traditions that have stood the test of time, to modern-day quirky behaviours, learn how cultures from China, Japan, India, Korea and The Philippines express their passion for life in unusual ways. With insight and humor, find out what makes these nations.


10. Daily Life of a North Korean

Voyage to a world rarely seen – North Korea. The mysterious realm has been closed off from the rest of the world for decades, but now you can gain an intimate look into daily life there with today’s new video. Get ready to be amazed by what you will discover: witness first-hand how citizens in this isolated country go about their lives .


11. How North Korea Brainwashes its People

The people of North Korea are subject to a unique form of control through a carefully crafted system of obedience and fear. The regime has been able to keep its population living in an echo chamber, where only state-sanctioned information can be heard. This isolation from the rest of the world gives the government free reign to propagandize their citizens with false narratives and lies. It is estimated that 80% of North Korean citizens are unable to access the internet, making any outside information inaccessible for them.


12. Plastic Surgery: The Cost of Beauty

In the bustling and fashionable streets of Seoul’s Apgujeong district, beauty seems to take on a whole new meaning. The evidence is right in front of you: an endless row of plastic surgery clinics, each one boasting satisfied customers who come from far and wide seeking to perfect their image. Here in South Korea, it’s all about achieving the coveted V-shaped jawline, double eyelids, and dimpled smiles – a set of features that have become the standard of beauty. It’s no wonder why this industry is worth an incredible $5 billion annually! But what lies behind this multi-billion dollar success story? What does it tell us about Korean culture and identity? It’s questions like these that make for an intriguing.


13. Welcome to Seoul, South Korea

Greeting adventurers! Join Drew Arellano this week as he embarks on a journey of discovery in Seoul, South Korea. Ranked as Asia’s 6th busiest city, Seoul is sure to have something for everyone. From the unique Korean bath houses to the delicious street food from your favourite K-dramas, there are plenty of experiences to be had. Tune in to watch Drew take it all in and explore the culture. Who knows what he’ll find! Annyeonghaseyo!


Read On – Our Latest Top Documentaries Lists

David B