Plot: A poor family, the Kims, con their way into becoming the servants of a rich family, the Parks. But their easy life gets complicated when their deception is threatened with exposure.
Director: Bong Joon Ho
Released: February 2020
I feel like I might get some hate for this review of Parasite, especially from film twitter, but As hard as I tried to see what others have clearly seen in the film and despite enjoying Bong Joon-Ho’s previous work including the criminally undervalued Snowpiercer, I can’t help but feel a disappointed after watching this years Best Picture Winner and maybe just maybe some praise was unworthy.
With so many people posting reviews stating that Parasite was the best film of the year and how all the metaphors and allegories really make you think, while all the many twists and turns leave you wondering where the film will take you next. I mean sure there are some of both in the film, but they feel too late in the story to rescue it and the one main dramatic moment that could be seen as a twist, ultimately didn’t do enough to make up for the utterly predictable turns the plot took in the run-up. All of which makes it harder to understand why so many people made this film out to be some unprecedented feat of cinema that had never been seen before, making me wonder if the fact that the film is in Koran has something to do with it and if was produced English, would people have celebrated it as much?
Additionally, I couldn’t get passed how incredibly convenient some narrative elements used to move the plot along ended up being and in the end coming across as laziness on the part of the filmmakers including Bong Joon-Ho, with one of the main plot devices that pops up in the third act becoming more and more unbelievable and far-fetched the more you think about it. I mean seriously!
I would say from a purely technical standpoint Parasite doesn’t disappoint, visually the cinematography is a treat to look at, coupled with acting that was generally good, mostly. Sadly for me, these couldn’t make up for the glaring holes in the plot and over-reliance on adding a “twist” to move the plot along. Parasite tries to take an unfamiliar look at the class struggle in South Korea, but everything good in the film also has a bad, the worst being the downer of an ending.