The Host ★★★½

2019: The Pieper Review -- Film #529 (11/9/2019)

In my quest to watch the rest of Bong Joon-ho's filmography, The Host is the movie that has been on my radar the longest. 2006 was the first year I actively read the movie critic in my local newspaper and I recall that The Host received three and a half stars out of four. If I remember correctly, it even landed in his year-end top ten. It was one of the first non-English language films that piqued my interest as a budding cinephile. Now that I have finally gotten around to watching it, I am a little underwhelmed - especially coming off the absolute high that it is Parasite. That said, The Host is masterfully shot and usually a lot of fun to watch. It also served as an effective artistic space for Bong to focus on composing a family of likable characters that he would use to even greater effect in this year's Parasite. Inevitably, the Han River monster does look a little dated, but not nearly as bad as one may assume of a 2006 sci-fi flick.