'Kundo' draws record 3 million viewers in 5 days

S. Korea - Period action flick "Kundo: Age of the Rampant" drew more than 3 million viewers in just five days after its release, the fastest record so far this year.

The Korean movie also topped the rankings of local box office sales last weekend.

Almost 3.1 million people watched the movie from July 23-27, according to nationwide ticket sales compiled by the Korean Film Council Monday.

"Kundo" reached the 3-million mark three days faster than "Transformers: Age of Extinction," the previous record-holder. The Hollywood blockbuster took eight days to surpass the 3-million level.

"Kundo" attracted 2.1 million viewers to 1,394 screens across the country last weekend from July 25-27, taking up 61.5 per cent of the market in sales.

"How to Train Your Dragon 2," a Dreamworks animation, drew a total of 735,700 viewers, accounting for 22.6 per cent of the market last weekend for the second place in box office rankings.

"Dawn of the Planet of the Apes" fell by two notches from first place a week earlier to third last weekend.

"Kundo," directed by Yoon Jong-bin and starring Ha Jung-woo and Gang Dong-won is set in the 13th year of King Cheoljong's reign in the Joseon era (1392-1910), when rampant corruption in the ruling class and its exploitation of the populace pushed the common people over the edge.

Dolmuchi, played by Ha, is a not-so-intelligent, but kind-hearted butcher, a typical lower-class job at the time. One day, Dolmuchi makes a dangerous deal with Jo Yoon, played by Gang, a noblemen's son who oppresses people, which leads to the death of Dolmuchi's mother and sister. Deep grief and anger leads Dolmuchi to meet Kundo, a group of bandits. He joins and swears to take revenge on Jo.

By Ahn Sung-mi (sahn@heraldcorp.com)