The film that shook the 2020 Oscars, Bong Joon-Ho’s drama about class discrimination has arrived at EAP theatres. I saw the film a few weeks back during the awards season and man, here was a little gem that no one would have thought would topple all the other best picture contenders much less get nominated for it.
It’s actually somewhat incorrect to label this film a drama since the film bounces continuously from one genre to the next and therein lies its beauty in storytelling. The film tells the story of the Kim family who live in poverty, doing whatever odd jobs they can to support themselves in the basement-like structure that houses them. When Ki-woo, the son obtains the opportunity to teach the daughter of a wealthy family, he soon schemes to wriggle his family into various roles posing as different individuals. He initially tutors the upper-class Parks’ daughter in English but when a vacancy opens up for an art teacher for the younger son, Ki-woo directs Mrs. Park to his sister, Ki-jung. The chain reaction begins and the family soon infiltrates the Park household as different unrelated entities related via recommendation from the other. However, as they soon realize, actions have consequences and not everything goes according to plan.
The film manages to achieve something that most festival darlings don’t; it is a crowd pleaser and also an arthouse marvel. Bong Joon-ho’s influences from Hollywood are clearly visible in the genre jumps, there are moments reminiscent of a heist, a comedy, thriller, an awesome moment of horror and even some action to cap it off. It feels as if the director’s entire career has been building up to this one single project and if this is the peak, then it’s definitely a good one.
I understand that the awards season sometimes tends to blow certain films and their ratings out of proportion but Parasite needs to be watched before one can make any sort of judgment. It manages to satisfy every question that I had and surprisingly enough, left me satisfied with its ending despite leaving certain things ambiguous. The fun part about the story is that it’s actually believable – what the class division can do to human beings, elicit weird irrational responses simply due to discrimination and ego. All in all, Bong Joon-ho has painted his masterpiece, and I still don’t know how to end this review.
Hopefully, it would suffice to say – do go see this whenever you get the chance, the cinematography is dope, the story is amazing and the film in itself is classic Bong Joon-ho.
Courtesy of Akash SK