Before I watched “Parasite,” I had very high expectations. After all, it won a Golden Globe and multiple Oscars and is critically acclaimed. Not to my surprise, my expectations were met and exceeded. It’s such a good movie that comments on society and is relatable even though it takes place in South Korea.
The movie, written, directed, and produced by Bong Joon-ho, was the first Korean film to win a Golden Globe (Best Foreign Language Film 2020) and made history at the Oscars for being the first non-English film to win the award for Best Picture. The film won four Oscars for Best Picture, Directing, International Feature Film, and Writing (Original Screenplay). “Parasite” premiered at the Cannes Film Festival, where it won the Palme d’Or — the first South Korean film to do so. “Parasite” is the highest-grossing Korean film in history, and it’s Joon-ho’s second film to hit the screens in America – “Snowpiercer” (with Chris Evans) being the first.
Now that we’ve talked about how this movie has broken boundaries and made history, is it actually that good? Short answer: Yes!
It follows the story of the Kim family: Ki-taek (father), Chung-sook (mother), Ki-woo (son), and Ki-jung (daughter). They live in a small semi-basement apartment, and at the beginning of the film, we get to see how hard their life is and how little money they are able to make. One day, Ki-woo’s friend, Min, who is a university student, offers Ki-woo a tutoring job for a rich family. With the amount of money the job pays, Ki-woo cannot turn it down. One problem: He’s not a university student. So his little sister, who happens to be able to forge documents, gives him a fake admission letter, and Ki-woo goes to start his new job.
The rich family is the Parks: Park Dong-ik (father), Choi Yeon-gyo (mother), Da-hye (daughter), Da-song (son). Mrs. Park is very gullible and believes in Ki-woo, so she hires him to tutor. After learning about Da-song’s art, Ki-woo tricks Mrs. Park into believing he knows an American art student who can help him get into art school. Mrs. Park goes with it and the next day Ki-woo returns with his sister Ki-jung who is acting as “Jessica.”
One by one, the Kims become involved with the Parks and earn lots of money by working for them. That is until one rainy day when their lies catch up with them. I’m not going to spoil it, but you will NOT expect what happens. In the last hour of the film, I was completely shocked. It’s so interesting, and it really makes you think about who the parasite in the movie is supposed to be.
It’s also completely in Korean, which is a cool experience. Yes, you have to read subtitles the whole time, but trust me it’s worth it. The movie is a must-watch even with the subtitles, and it was even able to win Best Picture at the Oscars, so take it from them.
The storyline was the best part. There were so many metaphors and connections you could make while watching, and everything was done methodically. It commented on social structure, greed, and the human condition, and there are so many ways you could interpret it.
“Parasite” is also pretty funny. It’s kind of amusing to watch the Kims infiltrate the Park household. It is categorized as a comedy thriller for a reason. You might think those are two opposite genres, and they are, but somehow they integrated both, and it’s great.
You can stream this on Hulu or rent it on Prime Video, and I highly recommend that you do. Just a warning, the ending gets kind of violent and some people might not like that, but I personally think it’s not that bad. Go watch it.