Life is not going well for Captain Kang. He returns from a fishing trip to discover his wife in bed with another man. But this doesn’t even faze him because it’s the least of his troubles. The catch was not good and his aged ship needs repair. In desperation, he agrees to smuggle illegal immigrants, ethnic Koreans from China—but he doesn’t tell his crew members until they’re already out to sea. The old crew members are as down on their luck as Kang is, but there is one newcomer, Dong-sik, played by pop star Park Yu-chun. Ominously, when the immigrants are transferred from another boat, it is in the midst of a storm. Dong-sik saves a young woman who falls in the water…and falls in love with her, hiding her in the engine room to avoid the cold on deck. Then the whole enterprise goes terribly, terribly wrong.

Haemoo is based on a play that in turn was based on a shocking real incident. It’s a grim thriller that goes from bad to worse for the characters and then worse again.