The film that took the world by storm and rightfully made history as the first non-English language film to take home the Best Picture Award at this years Oscars. Belive the hype. Parasite is a masterpiece in storytelling. It’s an intellectually crafted story that is thrilling, humourous, and haunting. With a breathtaking score, visually striking cinematography, and a cast that keep you hooked to the screen, Parasite is a lesson in movie magic. These words do not do justice to the brilliance of this film but don’t let the fear of subtitles deter you from experiencing this movie. If you need further convincing, this post has four additional reasons to watch Parasite.
The humour in Parasite is used to lull viewers into a false sense of security as its charm disguises the tension that slowly unravels as the Kim’s deception threatens to fall apart. The humour is never forced and, if anything, it makes us relate to the Kim family by providing an insight into the varying personalities that exist within the family dynamic, making them relatable. Even when things take a darker turn, there’s always that flash of humour, dark as it may be, that helps to break the ice, ensuring that the film doesn’t drown in its intensity.
Even with its humour, there’s a constant source of tension that lingers in the background and progressively makes its way to the forefront, culminating in a dramatic end that ironically resets this twisted cycle stemming from this family’s deception. The tension built is unnerving stands as time and again, and when an unforeseen twist throws a wrench in their plan, the Kims are faced with unsettling consequences that ultimately lead to their undoing, with scenes that are both horrifying and unnerving. This constant source of tension starts as a whimper that slowly festers as the blatant resentment and aversion of traits from both sides of the social spectrum gives weight to an explosive ending, one that is darkly humorous, dramatic, and horrifying.
Throughout the film, you’re often left wondering who the Parasite is. Is it this lower-class family that manipulated their way into the lives of a wealthy family? Or do the Parasites work from the top as society neglects the struggles of the working-class family? One of the most poignant scenes in this film lies in the aftermath of a rainstorm that floods the Kims’ home, yet to the Parks is nothing more than a nuisance. The blatant ignorance of how something as mundane as the weather can dramatically alter the circumstances of the already misfortunate is just one example of the social divisions that plague this society. This divide is a constant presence in the film, as the visual contrast between the basement and the Park’s residence reminds you of the drastic divide that separates society. Honestly, there is no villain in this film, just two families from vastly different worlds that capitalise on the opportunities presented to them.
Parasite is one of those films that is haunting in its execution as the set-pieces allowed Bong Joon-ho to manipulate the serenity of the house and create a sinister atmosphere that unlocks a construct built on secrecy and lies. It’s both beautiful and eerie, and in many ways, this film is like a ghost story. This serenity is a direct contrast to the claustrophobic tension, but the intricacy of its execution is masterful that builds to an ending that unravels the lives of both families. If anything, the consequences of this deception lie in the intricate exploration of the conflict within the social hierarchy.