With dreams of becoming the perfect ruler of Joseon, King Yeongjo (Song Kang Ho) aspires to greatness as he ascends the throne. Hoping his acts as king will wipe his tarnished background from the minds of the people, King Yongjo does all he can to lead his country well. But the rumors of his lower class mother follow him wherever he goes, as does the whispers of his brother’s murder, and his desperate grapple for the throne. It would seem some moments in time can never be erased.
But time passes and with it comes the blessings of marriage and family. Father to a son, King Yeongjo has great plans for his young prince. Hoping his son will follow in his footsteps, the King does everything in his power to give his son a thorough education. Watching his son grow into a man, the King begins to see some less-than-desirable qualities emerge. Shunning his education, Crown Prince Sado (Yoo Ah In) shows more interest in art and swordplay than studying. As the schism between father and son grows, so does the general sense of unrest within the palace.
Thirty-five years into his father’s reign, Crown Prince Sado is accused of plotting treason. Though unable to carry through with the final, killing blow, the Prince must be punished. Realizing the implications of fathering a traitor could threaten his position, King Yeongjo orders his son to take his own life. Unwilling to follow his father’s orders, the King orders his son to be locked in a wooden rice chest and left in the palace courtyard to die a slow and agonizing death.
Inspired by one of the most notorious events in Korean history, “The Throne” is a 2015 historical drama film directed by Lee Joon Ik.