Heartbreaking footage recorded by a student inside the capsized South Korean ferry that became his tomb has emerged.

The video, shot by Park Su-hyeon, 17, on his mobile phone, shows students aboard the Sewol unaware of the severity of the situation as the ship begins to list before it sinks.

At least 213 people have been confirmed dead and 89 are still missing.

In the cameraphone video, they take selfies and make jokes. Some wonder if they will make the news.

"Am I really going to die?" a student says two minutes into the video. That was at 8.53am; two minutes later a crew member on the bridge made the distress call.

"It's like we're becoming the Titanic," a student says as the ship starts to lean.

The Sewol sank off South Korea's southern coast en route from Incheon to the tourist island of Jeju.

Three hundred and twenty-five of the 476 people on board were students on a school trip.

In the recording, teenage students are seen joking about taking "final commemorative pictures" or recording their "final words" on camera. "This is fun," a student says.

Ferry captain Lee Joon-seok, 69, and other crew members who survived were arrested on accusations that by delaying the abandon ship order they had doomed hundreds of passengers to be trapped below deck.

In the footage, the ship's loudspeakers are heard blasting messages telling passengers to remain inside the vessel.

"Do not move from your current location and be prepared for a dangerous situation," one announcement says.

"Is this for real? Seriously, it is shaking," one student says on the film footage.

"We're again announcing: for passengers who can wear lifevests, please wear them now. Never move away from your places," the crew member repeats minutes later.

When the evacuation was finally ordered, the ship was tilting too severely for many people to get out, prosecutors alleged.

Lee argued that he waited because there was a danger that passengers could have been swept away by strong currents around the ship.

"I'm getting out of here," a student says in the recording. "Me too, me too," says another.

A third says: "We have to survive now."

"We're all finished. I have to leave some farewell words before I die," says another.

The video was released by Park's father, Park Jong-dae, who found the cell phone among his son's belongings after the teenager's body was retrieved from the sunken vessel.

The captain can be seen in a separate video released by the coast guard in which he abandons ship and leaps into a rescue boat. Hundreds of passengers were still on board at the time.