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The Host
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The Host

2006
Drama
Sci-fi
2h 0m
Utilizing state-of-the-art special effects, The Host is both a creature-feature thrill ride and a poignant human drama. (Magnolia Pictures)
Your probable score
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The Host

2006
Drama
Sci-fi
2h 0m
Your probable score
Avg Percentile 55.42% from 3766 total ratings

Ratings & Reviews

(3766)
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Rated 05 Oct 2021
77
77th
An unusual but very well crafted monster movie/family drama/social commentary/black comedy. I really don't know what it is, but I liked it. They show the monster early, and it doesn't really suffer for this, and the odd assembly of human characters really grew on me as it went on. There's a lot going on in this one, and is well worth a look.
Rated 13 Feb 2011
65
51st
Originally they had several scripts: (1) generic mosnter blockbuster; (2) moving tale about a girl dying from a deadly virus-disease; (3) comedy about a middle-aged, kind-hearted loser living with his father; (4) story of a talented female archer fighting her way for an olympic success; (5) story of a revolutionary fighting with the scientists doing experiments on human animals. But then they realised that there's no money nor time to do all those films so they said fuck it and produced the Host
Rated 11 Jan 2008
86
77th
This Korean film is zippy genre fun. Bong has a keen eye and an expert sense of timing. He's especially strong with shrewd use of offscreen space, one of the most vital and yet often neglected aspects of turning a film like this into a rousing success. Even when the script tends towards dippy details (such as the opening when develops the obligatory "scientific" explanation for the creature), there are beautiful visuals to bask in, thanks to the sharp, gorgeous cinematography by Kim Hyung-ku.
Rated 17 Sep 2020
60
38th
I really like the band ††† (Crosses) featuring Chino Moreno, the singer from Deftones. I'm enamored with his voice and here it's at its sexiest. It amazes me as the first few Deftones albums would never lead you to believe you'd want to hear that voice croon. I've kept up with Deftones but I've begun to lean towards the singier songs like Rosemary. There's a correlation here with Joon-ho Bong but hell if I can elaborate it here.
Rated 25 Apr 2020
77
62nd
A pretty solid creature feature, as with pretty much any movie heavy on the CG, the effects haven't aged well, but it's also a Korean movie, and even a decade and a half later, most Asian movies tend to have less than stellar CG, save just a handful. Either way, it's pretty entertaining, I'd take this opportunity to tell all the sci-fi lovers out there to check it out, but I'm probably one of the last people to have checked this one out.
Rated 14 Jul 2017
76
60th
Godzilla meets Finding Nemo in the filthiest family movie you'll ever smell - it is completely vile and endearing, full of humor and devoid of romance. It must have had some killer reviews when it came out because I remember my dad taking me to see it and you couldn't get that guy to watch anything but Andy Griffith reruns. The cg monster still looks polished today but the emotional slow motion (emo-slo-mo) is an obvious crutch and appears to add about 20 minutes to the total runtime.
Rated 25 Mar 2007
66
32nd
I don't mind a little genre bending, but this is all over the place. The tone and the focus shift so dramatically and so frequently that it's hard to get into. I had fun watching it, but it never really struck a chord and it was too haphazard to be memorable.
Rated 05 Sep 2008
35
3rd
All I've heard about this film were great reviews, so I was amazed by how much I disliked it. I actually turned it off about halfway through, which I rarely do. Maybe it's a culture thing, but I just couldn't take the over the top slapstick humor in a monster movie. The funeral scene annoyed me almost as much as the "bad Peter Parker singing" scene in Spider-man 3. Which is just about the only other movie in recent memory that I've stopped watching half-way through.
Rated 29 Jun 2010
74
62nd
This is better than most Asian horror films, and one of the best monster films of any language.
Rated 11 Feb 2011
4
70th
Manages to combine thrill-ride entertainment with adept political commentary, black humor and engaging personal drama; has much more depth and nuance than you might expect from a big monster movie. The mish-mash of styles and genres might leave some cold (I seem to be in the minority here), but I find it incredibly cohesive and enjoyable. A really impressive film that works on several different levels.
Rated 09 Mar 2007
68
49th
The beginning feels a bit over-the-top with how the creature was created. I have no problems with the U.S. being responsible but the process just seemed hokey. However, once that was over the movie certainly picked up and got better. I was impressed at how I was touched at parts and laughed my ass off at others. Personally I would've liked to see more comedy throughout and possibly cut the movie down by about 20 minutes or so as by the end it felt like it was dragging a lot.
Rated 10 Mar 2007
82
59th
Didn't quite live up to the immense hype I had been hearing, but it was overall a very enjoyable movie. Very funny, pretty scary.
Rated 28 Aug 2007
65
25th
The monster was too abstract and undefined to be that scary, there were some wide open plot holes and unanswered questions, and the ending was almost laughably predictable. I expected better from the director of the astonishing Memories of Murder (whose star Kang-ho Song takes the lead here, a role that doesn't offer him much to work with). It looked very good, I liked the moments of black humor and it held my interest for the most part, but overall I felt disappointed afterwards.
Rated 27 Jun 2008
82
72nd
The best "creature-on-a-rampage" movie that I can remember seeing. I was pleasantly surprised at how quirky some of the scenes were, for what I heard was a MASSIVE blockbuster in South Korea. American studios wouldn't have the guts to pull off a great many of the scenes that mix high drama and comedy. Also loved the touches of political commentary, which were subtle enough to not weigh down the action. And the CGI? Wow...the creature was just tremendously done.
Rated 15 May 2011
82
87th
Enjoyed this massively. Loads of great shots and set pieces coupled with an effective musical score and an interesting monster. I enjoyed the family dynamic too, with characters well rounded and believable, which meant that on demand "The Host" was able to be emotive and darkly comic. It's over the top and implausable, but effectively so. Recommended.
Rated 09 Feb 2009
90
94th
A pure daylight CGI monster rampage! How fucking ballsey is that? The monster looks great out there tearing shit up. I don't understand why they can apparently get CGI right in Korea for less money than it takes our American companies to produce shitty CGI.
Rated 19 May 2009
100
92nd
Despite its very anti-American themes, The Host (2006) is one of the better monster/horror movies that have been released this decade. Sure, the special effects aren't at par with Cloverfield, but the characters are so much better. There is some brief exposition to the monster's beginnings in this movie, but it's kind of pointless. Other than that, the script is pretty damn good. Scary as shit one moment, depressing as hell the next, then it'll be fucking hilarious.
Rated 20 Jul 2009
85
91st
The Host is a poignant social commentary and morbidly humorous dark comedy rolled into one, masquerading as a monster horror flick. You may find yourself appreciating this film more if you are familiar with the history behind US military presence in Korea, the many sacrifices of the different generations, and subsequent dissolution of families after the separation between North and South Korea. All in all, the family's moving plight and unexpected humorous moments make this a great film.
Rated 26 Aug 2009
77
49th
Best to ditch your expectations and go with the movie's flow. The monster is pretty well done. The FX team were not shy about putting it centre stage time after time. The human characters are more annoying, but later become endearing. The plot gets sidetracked time and again, which means the film loses its grip on the viewer, but ultimately that's what makes it "not just another monster flick". The quirkiness of the characters helps make this one more than the sum of its parts.
Rated 28 May 2011
66
49th
Somewhat all-over-the-place, with different genres mixed, but does well in each of them. It's flawed, being weighted too heavily towards the comedy in the beginning, the drama at the end, and the thriller aspects in the middle, but that doesn't stop it from being enjoyable throughout.
Rated 06 Jul 2016
80
79th
Its the greatest film made on the Iraq War and the US hegemony of 2000s. This monster stands both for the US war machine and the lies it produces (opening scene) out of some corrupt politicians' decisions. It narrates the struggle of an individual (stupid father) against that inhuman condition of brutal neoliberalism by mixing different cinematic genres. Great on many many levels.
Rated 02 Nov 2019
51
44th
He just wanted to be a good host :((((
Rated 29 May 2007
9
90th
(after repeat viewings) Over-the-top yet maintains its poetic charisma, I just love this film, but I'm a sucker for monster films.
Rated 17 Dec 2012
55
85th
"today i lost a daughter, but i gained a son, inappropriate wedding speech" -LiQuid3600
Rated 14 Oct 2011
57
59th
Does many things well, and some things not so well. Feels somewhat like a monster B-movie with a more modern cinematography.
Rated 17 Sep 2011
80
88th
Whilst still a great creature feature at it's core, it works better as a touching melodrama and is one of the very few films in the genre to have engaging human characters. Now we just have to wait for the inevitable bastardising by Hollywood.
Rated 14 Aug 2013
3
30th
there's comedy, drama, action, horror, and political satire. unfortunately none of it is particularly good, especially the family sentimentality and the iffy criticism of government misinformation.
Rated 03 Dec 2007
84
92nd
Okay, so the monster's origin is far-fetched. It's political commentary, and didn't really bother me at all. In fact, it serves to remind the viewer that what he's watching is essentially pretty low-concept, so as to surprise him with what the movie makes of it. This is a great movie, skillfully blending family drama with some of the best monster action I've ever seen. Looks better than some movies that cost ten times as much. Highly recommended.
Rated 02 Jan 2008
80
84th
It's kind of all over the map, jumping from suspense to melodrama to hardcore action multiple times, but the monster is cool, and the movie is never boring.
Rated 25 Oct 2017
70
52nd
A fun monster film, seemingly mixing a few genres into one.
Rated 22 Oct 2015
35
19th
Nice effects, but a totally crappy, illogical and melodramatic script prevents this from being at all scary. According to criticker mini-reviews it's also supposed to be comedic, but I really couldn't tell that by watching it.
Rated 11 May 2014
25
27th
I'd be willing to bet that if this was American made with American actors the scores I'm seeing here would be drastically different. Dear Korean fanboys, this was absolute shit.
Rated 02 Jan 2009
5
0th
Highly overrated movie! Worst piece of shit I've ever seen. Halfway into the movie I thought that it was a comedy, but these guys are dead serious. =)
Rated 20 Apr 2009
5
55th
Enjoyable but deeply flawed.
Rated 02 Jul 2009
80
70th
Combines genres very well, but with a few problems. Still, it beats the crap out of many recent American monster movies.
Rated 26 Jul 2009
75
79th
Great fun the way only Koreans make 'em.
Rated 20 Aug 2009
60
41st
Starts promising then when it concludes you begin to feel resentful. The Host is a conglomerational intermingle of several genres, but the two nucleus classifications it falls under are in the end a black comedy and monster mash-creature film. The accoutrements of the film are complimented by the perceptible configurations and arrangements of our behemoth and leviathan. The humor in this film however is almost ham-fisted and tasteless, adding inconsistent annotations that should not be included.
Rated 27 Mar 2020
75
67th
Under Quarantine Film Review #10: Bong Joon-ho makes film making look so easy. Yet again, he manages to seamlessly combine elements of various genres together to create a family drama, creature-feature, and comedy film. Underneath it all is also a scathing critique of American occupation and inept Korean bureaucracy. Although The Host no where near him at this best, he manages to make an entertaining and fun monster movie.
Rated 21 Aug 2010
90
66th
Great monster/sci fi flick. Could've used a bit of editing, was overly long in some spots. The monster CGI was fabulous and the creature was pretty frightening. Good ending. Very highly recommended.
Rated 23 Oct 2011
85
81st
Many monster movies shy away from showing the monster, and are often praised for doing so, but that's not the case here. The monster shows up early on and it's very well done, scary and disgusting and alive. Its constant presence adds to the film's intensity and makes the fear a very real thing. Despite the intensity and occasional gore there are moments of comedy scattered throughout which alleviate the tension without ever undermining them.
Rated 22 Mar 2011
76
40th
Korea's monster movie doesn't disappoint. The monster's scenes are always interesting, the characters are likable, and the transitions between scenes are so cool, (remember the empty bottles transitioning to the ocean anyone?) The middle moves a little slow, and the monster CGI isn't that good, but the camera's quality and cinematography make up for these little flaws.
Rated 03 Mar 2007
70
82nd
Very amusing.
Rated 07 Mar 2007
77
78th
Great monster, lots of humor, some social/political commentary, and a lot of fun. It's really very original for a monster movie too. Don't let the awful first 5 minutes fool you, it's definitely worth checking out.
Rated 10 Mar 2007
84
72nd
Not as great as I was expecting but still very enjoyable. Explanations for things are a bit unclear, but overall it is a worth while experience. The best parts were comey, although it can be pretty scary at moments. The score is really awesome too.
Rated 18 Nov 2018
4
72nd
Need to rewatch, but the way the monster is presented is still so good esp with societal reaction of paralysis and action at the same time
Rated 27 Nov 2015
7
69th
Definitely pulp, but not too bad.
Rated 02 Jun 2007
65
47th
I think the beginning was supposed to be over-the-top (and I loved it), so I won't really chalk that up as a negative. Other than that, the comedic moments in the film are excellent. The characters aren't amazing, but they'll win you over eventually. The political side of it is kind of heavy-handed, and it is a bit long (the resolution really seems to drag). I don't mean to sound so negative, but this really was an original/good movie (just not amazing).
Rated 07 Aug 2007
85
69th
A really good monster movie.
Rated 08 Aug 2007
84
70th
The Host combines virtually every genre under the sun without suffering in anything. It's a thrill-a-minute from start to finish with truly endearing characters that are both interesting and fun to watch. The story is superbly dramatic to say the least, and in a monster movie, that's a pleasant change. The Host is simply excellent.
Rated 10 May 2018
80
70th
Some of the offbeat humour was lost on me but otherwise this was a rollicking good time.
Rated 19 Aug 2007
94
83rd
Delightful blend of genres under the guise of a straight-forward monster movie. Excellent creature design.
Rated 24 Aug 2007
79
66th
It took a while for this one to grow on me, but it's an odd one, and one to be remembered. It's Hollywood and anti-Hollywood at the same time. I don't even know what to say about it.
Rated 25 Aug 2007
70
39th
Wonderfully cheesy monster movie. Special effects are anything but special, bordering humor. Fun plot with a couple of twists. Definitely a B-rated film worth seeing. Dubbed version adds extra laughs.
Rated 24 Nov 2016
40
27th
This is not what I expected from the director of Memories of Murder. Overall, it is a decent sci-fi try but the plot was complicated rather than rich and complex. The story has its little flows and most of the "funny" scenes were not funny as it's supposed to be.
Rated 07 Mar 2012
15
13th
An otherwise okish movie ends up being annoying due to lame attempts on comedy.
Rated 15 Nov 2007
50
57th
The woman with the archery skills comes through in the end. Pretty useless up until then though.
Rated 28 Dec 2007
90
82nd
Delivering visually amazing black comedy / monster movie in a style that Hollywood could never do.
Rated 22 Feb 2008
65
36th
There were parts that were cool. The first monster attack was phenomenal. But the rest of the movie kinda bored me to death. I also was confused as to what was going on most the time.
Rated 20 Mar 2008
54
53rd
Gwoemul is fustrating. While I was more than ready to throw out the praise for this pioneer in Korean cinema, it is spoiled by its own ambition by attempting to do a little bit of everything at once. The main thing that stands here is the fantastic monster design, it's just a shame that we don't see more of it but on a limited budget I can understand why. The thing moves so smoothly and acts so much like an actual animal, you can't help but be captivated by it. Enjoyable, but quite flawed.
Rated 13 Sep 2014
50
56th
Really unfocused for a monster movie, and what's worse, inconsistent. There are some funny or touching scenes here and there, but they are effectively buffered by the more mundane ones. The family dynamics were obviously important, but completely lost on me, perhaps because of cultural differences. I did love the intro, where American influence was personified by an old man who thinks his word should be law, logic and consequences be damned.
Rated 03 Jul 2013
64
21st
The movie fluctuates from being sort of funny, actually scary, a good political statement, and completely stupid. The ending, if it were to another movie, would have been sweet and wholesome. But to end this movie in that way? I suppose it's fitting given the stupid tendencies throughout the rest of the film, but at the end, I couldn't help but feel like I had somehow wasted a good 2 hours to some degree.
Rated 25 Apr 2008
53
21st
Some interesting scenes (like the monster's first rampage), however there's a lot of stupid and absurd stuff in here, and most of the comedy falls flat, lending to an overall annoying experience.
Rated 27 Apr 2008
60
39th
Nothing memorable, but somewhat funny and charming.
Rated 06 Feb 2012
94
86th
this movie is pretty bad ass, it is the prime example of how a movie with not the best cgi can still be awesome with a tight script and great characters. The bes thing about this movie is that it makes you care about the people and what happens to them and then crushes those feelings. Way better than i expected and probably better than you think as well!
Rated 04 Mar 2015
40
22nd
Loved the creature design and the attack at the park. Didn't like anything else. Found the humor grating.
Rated 02 Sep 2008
55
28th
I get what it was trying to say, about American occupation and environmental involvement, but it felt rushed, narratively flawed, and ultimately lackluster. Will make you scratch your head more than hold your breath.
Rated 04 Sep 2008
40
10th
Do not watch with friends or family, leave this viewing to yourself. I wanted to see this out of my love for cinema and respect for professional reviews. My mistake was sharing that with my family. Not that I liked it on my own either. How utterly unwatchable!
Rated 24 Dec 2011
50
27th
I think if you're much into monster movies, this might be good. But I'm not really, so I found it pretty rediculous most of the time.
Rated 17 Oct 2008
79
67th
I enjoyed this. I enjoyed the mesh of comedy/drama/action/monsterness of it all. I'm glad we got to see the monster so early. It was a fun story, but it does feel rather long at times with quite a few bits that drag and probably could have been written out.
Rated 25 Mar 2017
65
54th
What Dr. Strangelove is to the cold-war-thriller, this movie is to the giant-monster-attacks-city-genre. And I appreciate any monster movie, that understands that humans are always the real monsters.
Rated 21 Feb 2015
70
53rd
Entertaining monster flick with some black comedy thrown into it.
Rated 13 Jan 2009
50
12th
not a good comedy, not a good horror film, not a good drama, not a good splatter film. While watching the movie, I had the feeling, this movie was made by 3 or 4 regisseurs. Everyone wanted to make another genre movie...
Rated 17 Nov 2012
36
27th
A genuine B movie. Soon after promising beginning the confusing movie tumbled with genres and too complex storyline. There was no decent acting skills on any of the cast. The monster was for change well animated though they did not build up it more than a killing machine.
Rated 18 Feb 2009
4
56th
Starts off with some promise and goes nowhere with it - a good example of a poor script making everything subsequently useless. Kang-ho makes such a pathetic character, and once again this director gets humor out of almost every occasion, it's just less successful than his previous work on all accounts.
Rated 19 Mar 2009
50
39th
I was really digging the movie until the last 15 minutes. The last 15 minutes really ruin the entire thing for me. That's all I'll say.
Rated 01 Mar 2019
75
53rd
A good film, marred by a strain of anti-american sentiment. Seemed oddly placed.
Rated 22 Apr 2009
40
54th
A surprisingly funny monster movie considering all the horrible things that happen. Well monster movie is a bit of a misnomer, it's more about people dealing with personal tragedy. Some iffy plot choices take away from this otherwise great film.
Rated 17 Mar 2013
71
55th
A very interesting amalgamation of multiple genres that sadly gets lost in those same genres a bit too many times. I enjoyed how obvious it wore the political message and the monster itself seems alive and well-thought out. The comedy bits was not as successful, though. The cast seems to grow a tad superfluous as the film progresses also, as there is only any real development with Gang-du. However, it is still an enjoyable movie overall and one that doesn't sit still for one second throughout.
Rated 24 May 2012
70
54th
Very cool 'monster movie'!! Everyone who liked Cloverfield should watch this movie. The monster in this movie is not as huge and doesnt have such a big impact, which made the movie nicer to watch. This was actually the first monster movie where I actually thought what I saw on screen could be real! Amazing work by the director! Cool background story but horrible character development.
Rated 12 Jun 2009
70
35th
Pretty dumb but fun until the ending.
Rated 21 Nov 2014
75
57th
A mixed bag. No matter how greatly I admire Joon-Ho Bong's direction and sense of humor, Gwoemul never managed to grasp me in the way it grasped his characters. Showing the monster so early is a welcome twist to a stagnated genre, but poses a challenge on the second act. Lacking the expert build-up needed to pull of the monster's grand scheme, the family relations that dominated the middle part quickly bored the hell out of me.
Rated 22 Dec 2011
75
49th
This film is a lot of fun at times. Although it ran a little long, overall it was very enjoyable. I found the monster interesting as well as some of the characters.
Rated 23 Sep 2012
59
36th
Very strange indeed.I'd cross out "comedy" and "horror" labels from the description.This movie depicts several different problems in life,any of which can be really serious.However, everything is mixed and because of that you won't see a concentration on any of them. Positive aspect are: special effects-the monster moves are very realistic and it doesn't look too strange to exist & a surprising ending.Also, the young girl acts very natural,which cannot be always said about the rest of the cast.
Rated 27 Sep 2014
75
67th
I enjoyed it a lot but I was confused by some of the humor aspects at first. This isn't the movies fault but when one of the early humorous parts comes during a mourning scene and the viewer doesn't know it's supposed to be partly a comedy it can be a bit disconcerting.
Rated 10 Sep 2009
85
36th
Now this is how you do a monster film.
Rated 29 Sep 2012
84
41st
Decent horror film.
Rated 08 Oct 2009
80
65th
Host is NOT a comedy,
Rated 25 Nov 2009
60
31st
I liked the blending of genres and the movie was fairly good until you see the monster. The suspense/terror just doesn't work after that.
Rated 02 Apr 2011
82
31st
The lull of the midsection in this film hampers much of the beginning and end's effort in regards to plot. The eccentric family element works for the most part with the film's dire and emotional themes but sometimes the narrative became grating. Great performances and a beautiful score ultimately save the film. Unique, but often times overly-noticeable usage of cinematography worked for the most part; the director relying on landscapes instead of high budget shots to transition the story along.
Rated 05 Apr 2020
70
30th
A lot of the humor and satire gets lost in translation and the whole movie suffers tonally from it. It is never that engaging from a character standpoint as you are never really sure when you are supposed to laugh and when to take them seriously. (Perhaps never?) Has a lot of directional flair but the cinematography is honestly a little ugly outside of a few standout shots and I could've done without all the slow-mo. The CGI hasn't aged that well. Feels daring in how dark it gets by the end.
Rated 09 Mar 2013
5
42nd
It's unfortunate The Host slowly fizzles out towards the end because there are some terrific moments and a lot to like: a couple of great monster mayhem scenes, lots of oddball comedy, good photography + special fx, and a snarky political undertone. I recommend it but it doesn't really amount to much, sadly.
Rated 18 Apr 2010
79
61st
While I like the film in theory, all of the parts do not ultimately come together. At some point I just lose any and all empathy for the characters and considering the sentimentality is played up at the end, it becomes difficult to stomach this movie. However, it's worth a watch, because the script really was quite clever.
Rated 28 Apr 2010
75
71st
One common theme in Korean films is the government/civil servant's portrayal as dangerously corrupt incompetents. Joon-Ho Bong took that popular sentiment and stretched it out into a dark comedy with a big monster. You can take the film at face value or you can read into the obvious social subtext but either way it's a lot of fun. The CGI is a tad weak and there are some rather serious somber moments that are odd from a foreign cultural perspective but it's all entertaining nontheless.
Rated 05 May 2010
19
18th
An awesome monster. Applause for the work on his movements and style!
Rated 01 Nov 2021
66
65th
Uh oh there is a movie in your environmental metaphor
Rated 01 Mar 2013
70
60th
At times funny and the monster design is pretty cool. Has an ok story, but could've been better. Also the soundtrack is at times not that good.
Rated 27 Nov 2010
75
77th
Stupidly entertaining. There are several plot-holes and moments when your credibility is stretched to the verge of breaking, but why worry about that when the entire film is about a giant mutant fish-lizard? The CGI is fantastic, and I found all the characters quite endearing, especially the dozy father. It also contains a few shocking twists that you definitely would not see in a Hollywood monster-film. The political and environmental message is subtle as a brick, but eh... it's a lot of fun.
Rated 17 Apr 2012
64
37th
Things really start to drag along after the second half or so, and some of the monster effects are hit-or-miss, but it was still a pretty good unique story. Typical Korean family movie, I suppose.
Rated 20 Feb 2011
80
47th
A funny monster film about a family.
Rated 27 Mar 2011
30
18th
A great beginning and a great ending, but everything in between is one big mess. It's almost as this was a compromise between 2 or 3 directors. With a tighter script and some tight direction this could have been a fantastic film.

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