Parasite

Parasite ★★★★★

Parasite is the film of the decade. Not because it's the best (but it's in contention), but because it so perfectly defines the world as it exists right now. Capitalism has made us all parasites, as worker solidarity is crushed beyond hope beneath the veneer of consumerism and individualism. The workers now want to be capitalists and work within the system, not dismantle it. The rich people in Parasite may not do anything explicitly bad but society arbitrarily chooses to allow their wealth to let them avoid consequences and troubles, which is why we cannot and should not side with them. Rich people can afford to be nice, that doesn't mean we have to be.

What amazes me about the embrace of Parasite internationally is that it is totally uncompromised, unsanitised, and unmistakably Korean. The violence, the genre-bending, the very specific dissection of Korean class structure, the North vs South element (Kim vs Park), only Bong Joon-ho, working in Korea, could have made this. The subtle critique of America, through the way the rich idolise it, and the use of colonial imagery, makes the film's success with Hollywood liberals ironic. If also sad, since Bong's messaging is clearly not reaching everyone.

Parasite is a rare, near-perfect film. It is meticulously constructed and executed with the skill of a master craftsman. The ensemble cast is amazing, and Song Kang-ho continues his streak of being one of the greatest actors alive. What else can be said about Parasite? Everyone already knows how great it is. Except for me, I guess, since I didn't rate it 5 stars on my first viewing. I'm an idiot.

2019 Ranked
Bong Joon-ho Ranked
Academy Award for Best Picture Nominees Ranked
BAFTA for Best Film Nominees Ranked

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