We are certainly familiar with movies like the Portrait of a Lady on Fire, or Bacurau, and they were very enjoyable projects, however, we would be lying if we said that Parasite isn't our very favorite movie from Cannes 2019. It is known that we feel the movies and stories we see on screen very personally by what it really makes us feel in the inside, and Parasite undoubtedly made us feel a lot of good things. The movie proved to be exciting, quite hilarious, and with a good surprise factor so that you don't get bored of it for a single second in its run time.
It seems like Joon-ho wants to keep up his good record, bringing us Parasite with two years of difference between it and his last film Okja, a very positive movie that left Bong's name very high, something we haven't seen from him in recent years. This time, he presents us with two South Korean families, very alike in their structure but very different in, well, everything else. Their families are far away from each other in society, separated by an enormous economic and class gap, so be ready for some sharp and pointy social criticisms.
It is also notable that Joon-ho hasn't worked for a project in his home country in years, and it honestly feels like he's gaining control again over his roots, revisiting the sense of freedom he had in his career's beginnings. Parasite's development has a lot to do with its location, it has a mocking tone, and exposes uncomfortable aspects of the South Korean nation, like the high classist differences in population, and a kind of constant fear of its North Korean neighbors.
We don't want the spoil the whole thing, so we're just going to say that Parasite is mainly focused on the aforementioned members of a not so well economically positioned family, in fact they barely get by the end of each month. In order to leave this frustrating situation, they create an alter ego for each member and get to work and live with another similar family that lives an opposite reality, they're rich. All the lies give place to quite tense and funny situations throughout the 2-hour long movie. We even get to see some violence and horror, by the accumulation of a feeling that something strange is always about to happen.
Not only the script works marvelously, but also the movie's script as well, it's almost a genre cocktail that doesn't give the viewer respite. In particular, we were excited about how the director decided to take advantage of the scoring to increase all senses in the movie, utilizing great, according music to each and every situation, and that's without mentioning the awesome camera and shooting work, with original frames that reflect a unique personality.
It's no surprise that we get a good dose of black humor here, as it's common in Joon-ho's films, and this shows up among the interminable genre switches and plot twists, atypical changes and characters driven hopelessly to the extreme. And although Parasite it's not really innovative in that aspect, it achieves a level of fluency that makes it run seamlessly.
Joon-ho does not disappoint and offers a brilliant staging of a tragic and bitter tragicomedy with enormous social explosive power. Showing again in a very sophisticated way that Bong Joon-ho has a very good ability to match the author's classic cinema with genre films to create social criticism that often hits you suddenly and head-on. Here, the film connects with other works and film authors who also, although not so elegantly, treat the same themes.
What ultimately helps Parasite shine is the fact that Joon-ho treated all his characters in a dignified manner and filled them with sympathy. It is easy to point the finger at one, whether the rich or the poor. The fact that the system finally causes capitalism to cause many people without values out of poverty is an important part of its influence. The film is not interested in black and white. He wants to show the intermediate colors, until they finally merge into a bloody red.