Parasite (a film by Bong Joon-ho, 2019) |OT| Don't read anything about it, go watch it blind, thank us later

FairyEmpire

Member
Oct 25, 2017
18,889
I don’t believe his intent was to explicitly frame anyone as anything, so much as lay bare the social tapestry of modern society as experienced by both invalids and the elite. The juxtaposition and framing of scenes are important. For example in the lead up to the climax of the film, we see how the rain merely inconvenienced the elite family and literally ruined the invalids entire material existence. This is an attempt to show the audience the wide variety of experiences one particular event can have, based on where the individual is “observing it from”, so to speak.

No one came out looking good, Jessica, as told by the elite mother during a phone call, was to serve a vital part of her son’s birthday party, yet moments after Jessica was attacked during the birthday party, while she lay before everyone, blood still pouring out of her chest, the elite parents instantaneously abandoned her and disregarded her well being, just as the elites so often disregard the invalids of society, and instead only noticed and showed concern for their own son, who ironically was not even in any real danger of death, so not shockingly, this vast indifference towards her daughter, by the elites, caused Jessica’s father to finally at last lose control of his temperament and murder the other father. He never flipped out or lost his cool with regards to the various “smell comments” or other insults, throughout the film, it wasn’t until his own daughter was so callously thrown by the wayside, that finally triggered and ultimately unleashed his mounting inner resentment towards the elites, culminating in murder.

There was definitely no effort to garner sympathy towards this particular act of vengeance. I think its admirable and also necessary not to fetishize poverty and those who are poor. It is paramount not to reduce victims of systemic inequality into mere token ideals of “good” simply by virtue of their immense suffering, as suffering does not build character as so many philosophers believe, nor does it automatically make one a better person. Its important to remind ourselves, that as we and our society, strive towards justice, that not only the just deserve justice.
Its been such a common and disingenuous argument against minority right’s historically and you hear still to this day, the idea that one does not deserve justice and that they are not ready for equality, because they are not yet able to follow or understand its ideals and thus unable to withstand the ultimate burden of freedom. In fact, there are no “prerequisites” for philosophic values, these prerequisites are always just impositions, rationalized as an excuse to deprive others of natural rights, given under the veneer of sincerity. There are countless variations of arguments of that nature. You see it now mostly aimed towards the poor, which un-ironically also happen to be at a disproportionate rate, minorities. If you give the poor something, this something being material subsistence, which they did not “earn”, than you will stifle their ability to ever be financially independent and thus always keep them dependent upon societies continued help, or in other words, a Parasite...
Perfect analysis.
 

SweetVermouth

Member
Mar 5, 2018
4,255
I finally got around and saw the movie and it was pretty good. I have seen two other films by Bong Joon Ho, one of them was awesome (The Host) and the other one garbage (Snowpiercer).
If you think Snowpiercer is good I can see why Parasite would be one of the greatest movies of all time considering the insane quality difference.

The ending of Parasite was exactly what it needed to be given the script but it also made the movie look a bit like a documentary. That's not bad, it is just different. I'm glad a movie like Parasite gets some mainstream attention. I'm applaud everyone for watching that movie instead of the next MCU entry.
 

Dreamboum

Member
Oct 28, 2017
16,688
I finally got around and saw the movie and it was pretty good. I have seen two other films by Bong Joon Ho, one of them was awesome (The Host) and the other one garbage (Snowpiercer).
If you think Snowpiercer is good I can see why Parasite would be one of the greatest movies of all time considering the insane quality difference.

The ending of Parasite was exactly what it needed to be given the script but it also made the movie look a bit like a documentary. That's not bad, it is just different. I'm glad a movie like Parasite gets some mainstream attention. I'm applaud everyone for watching that movie instead of the next MCU entry.
People find it good in comparison to Memories of Murder, it's closest movie in terms of tone and commonly thought as one of the best movies of all time for more than a decade and a half
 

Doggg

Member
Nov 17, 2017
5,599
That link to Memories of Murder on youtube is down, and I can't seem to find any other way to view it online. Any options here?
 
Jul 18, 2018
2,984
So my South Asian parents & fam friends watched the movie this week after Oscar fare. They got nothing out of it because they said this is the same themes presented and repeated with every Indian film
 

Pikachu

Traded his Bone Marrow for Pizza
Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,571
That link to Memories of Murder on youtube is down, and I can't seem to find any other way to view it online. Any options here?
Didn't NEON just buy Memories of Murder? I suspect that video got taken down real quick to prepare for the Blu Ray / official release.
 

ty_hot

Member
Dec 14, 2017
4,508
Finally watched the movie! WOW! Exceeded expectations! The only thing I read about the movie was that it had some social critique and it was enough to make me want to watch it... After leaving the theater I talked to my girlfriend about many things we realized/noticed while watching, then we got home and watched a few Youtube videos that ended up repeating some of the stuff we saw, showing some things differently than what we understood and obviously some stuff we didn't realize. I believe most of the stuff was already discussed in the thread so I will just talk about 4 that caught my attention the most in the movie and that I haven't seen much being talked about:

1- The smell
The metaphor of the smell as a way of separating classes amazing. When the kid says that they all have the same smell the poor go home and want to take showers with different soaps, wash their clothes separately, but then the young boy realizes it is just the smell of his house. It is something almost intrinsic to them. She shitty dirty semi underground house with a street level window (literally), where people pee will make them smell like that. He knows what his smell is like. Then forward to the scene where the rich dad says that he can't even describe the smell of the driver, only that 'it crosses the line'. The class difference is astounding, the difference in living conditions is so big that the rich one can't even find words to describe what is just a normal thing for the poor. They leave in completely different worlds. Later the disgust of the rich dad from the smell of the attacker is what leads the poor dad to attack him. The only way they could describe the smell was 'Idk, I think I 've smelt that in the subway', which is the only place they would really 'share' an environment with people from different classes.

2- Crossing the line
The 'crossing the line' line is so impactful. Several times during the movie they use this to show how the rich treat their employees: they have to work well, be nice, gentle, etc, but THEY CANT CROSS THE LINE! Meaning that no matter what, they are on a different level, there is a social line separating them, they are superiors. They fire people because 'they crossed the line', the rich dad had a nice conversation with the poor driver until he dared to ask if he loved his wife. In that point his expression changed to 'who do you think you are to ask that about my wife?'. Later in the film another similar conversation happens right before the climax, and this time rich dad is clear about the line: "I am paying you, so you just think about that and do your job". I am the master, you will do whatever I want because I am paying you and you need my money, please shut up and dont even think about not being part in this stupid thing we created to make my son happy. The rich family is fine, they dont treat anyone bad, they are not mean... but there is this line that exist and the employees can't cross. They are disposable ("we had plenty of instructors that we fired before the first month"). Also, while inviting the poor girl for the party the rich woman says that 'she can even eat as much as she want', showing that on that special occasion she could be 'on the same level' and as an incentive for her to come over.

Now 2 more subtle (I think?) things that I noticed:

3- The Plan
When everything goes wild the poor dad tells his son that "he has a plan", he shouldn't worry. Later he talks again about it just saying that 'the only plan that doesnt fail is not having a plan'. So he spent his life and he learnt that not a single of his plans worked, so it is just better to not have a plan. Then at the same time the rich family went to the woods and when it started to rain they just came back home, called the poor woman to cook some Ram-Don, and it was totally fine for them. Then there is the in your face part where they clearly show that for the rich the rain was a minor inconvenience that 'turned into a birthday party in the grass' while for the poor it really meant that their shitty house really turned shitty. But the plan that really caught my attention was the plan from the boy: he will work his ass off and buy the house so that he can free his dad and live a normal life! But The plan is not just that, he wrote the plan and I believe he intends to contact his dad about it somehow, otherwise the dad can just go nuts in there, lose any hope, etc. But the boy's plan is dead from the beginning: there is no way he can contact his dad. And the final scenes also show that he never got rich (obviously!!!), but for me the message was that if you are poor it doest matter the plan you have for your life, it won't work, you will still be poor, while the rich don't even need a plan, they have lots of backups and they will be fine.

4- The ghost
This just hit me while rewatching the scene at home: it is powerful in itself, no context needed. It feels like a fucking HORROR movie. The dude going up the stairs, the silhouette first, then 2 bright scary eyes, the boy looking at him, screaming. O M G. That was fucking terrifying. But if you look at it figuratively, it is another huge metaphor: the rich get terrified when the poor ascend socially. Wait what? What are these people doing in my airplane? My god this restaurant used to be so good but now look at the kind of people that are going there! This also connects with the 'cross the line' part, everyone has their own class so please keep it that way so that you dont scare any of us on top. We can share the same room with you but you are not allowed to cross the line, to ascend. And it creates a real trauma in the rich when they see people moving up in society.

My girlfriend loved the use of "cockroach". Also: The way the poor boy views the rich friend that gave him the job as an example ("I will ask her out once she is in college", he repeats the very same phrase from the friend) and when everything goes wild and he asks: "what would my rich friend do?" - that was savage!

So much stuff to talk about the movie. 10/10. Will read some random posts from this thread I am sure there are plenty of nice discussions about meaning/intent from the director!
 

effingvic

Member
Oct 25, 2017
6,122
Finally saw it. Great movie. The suspense and build up during the middle act had me on edge. One thing however:

We saw that Da-song saw the "ghosts" message for help from his tent outside but I dont think anything came off that? Did I miss something?
 

entrydenied

The Fallen
Oct 26, 2017
2,791
I think the reason people say don’t read anything about it is that the first half really is quite strikingly different from the second, and the turn and developments are more shocking if you don’t know what’s coming.

Also re-watching it I was struck by how nuanced it is. The rich people are shown to be decent people in many ways. But they have a sense of entitlement that they aren’t really aware of.

I do think memories of murder might be his better movie though.
The sense of naive entitlement reminded me of a quite well off person that I know.

She talked about how she was making a miserable 500 dollars back in the 60s to 70s when she started working (my mum was making 1/4 to 1/3 of that pay back then since she wasn't educated like this lady was) and had no choice but to stay with her in laws (in a house that is worth about 5 million these days, a luxury back in those days as well).

She proceeded to joke about how she doesn't do housework and had to hire an old lady to help wash her laundry, and then joked about how the lady's daughter became her laundry woman as well after the older lady retired.

She is not unkind but is simply oblivious to how her comments might come across to people at times.
 

UltraMagnus

Member
Oct 27, 2017
9,667
Finally saw it. Great movie. The suspense and build up during the middle act had me on edge. One thing however:

We saw that Da-song saw the "ghosts" message for help from his tent outside but I dont think anything came off that? Did I miss something?
Yeah I thought maybe that was a
red herring to throw the audience off perhaps as you don't quite know which way the story will go.
 
Last edited:
Nov 2, 2017
702
Finally saw it. Great movie. The suspense and build up during the middle act had me on edge. One thing however:

We saw that Da-song saw the "ghosts" message for help from his tent outside but I dont think anything came off that? Did I miss something?
There's a shot of some work he did starting to decode the message. It only says "Holp m". He made a mistake with O instead of E, and then shortly after gave up on it.
 

DudleyBoi

Member
Oct 27, 2017
1,065
ATL
I finally got to see this movie...I just can't stop thinking about it. Parasite is definite 10/10 for me, and one of the best movies I've ever seen honestly. The cinematography, acting, and writing were master class.
 

JaredG

Member
May 17, 2018
1,971
Just went into this blind in a theater tonight and I'm very glad I did. Haven't been that anxious watching a movie since Gravity.
 
Oct 27, 2017
471
Just saw Memories of Murder. Great movie. It really got to me. Especially that ending wow
Apparently the real murderer got caught last year. Now that final scene is even more haunting. The South Korean police actually step up their efforts to investigate those murders due to the popularity of Memories of Murders in South Korea. I hope I could says the same about Zodiac.
 

Dullahan

Resettlement Advisor
Member
Oct 25, 2017
4,591
Apparently the real murderer got caught last year. Now that final scene is even more haunting. The South Korean police actually step up their efforts to investigate those murders due to the popularity of Memories of Murders in South Korea. I hope I could says the same about Zodiac.
They got him dead to rights, DNA and everything. Most messed up part? He watched the movie with a cellmate. That final shot will now haunt me for life.
 

SecondNature

Member
Oct 25, 2017
7,976
Anyone have any good articles on the movie as it relates to economic inequality or that dives into the film's symbolism?
 

D-Man

Member
Oct 25, 2017
287
Watched this alone in an empty theater last night after hearing all the praise and I was completely blown away by it. The farther you get into it the more anxious you become which goes perfectly into the insane climax. It lived up to the hype.
 

Crocodile

Member
Oct 25, 2017
4,951
Saw it this past weekend. A powerful film. I don't really have any analysis to add to this thread (but I've enjoyed reading some of the analyses in here after I had seen the film) so I'll just say that I really enjoyed it and will be recommending it to friends <3
 

DickGrayson

Member
Jan 30, 2020
828
Was the implication that he finally realized who the killer was? That was my take on it.
You mean the final shot where he is intensely staring into the camera?

I think the implication is that he is trying to use his intuition to find the killer amongst the audience, to remind us that at the time the movie came out the killer was still at large.

Spoiled that just in case it ruins Memories of Murder for anyone.
 

capitalCORN

Member
Oct 26, 2017
9,786
You mean the final shot where he is intensely staring into the camera? I think the implication is that he is trying to use his intuition to find the killer amongst the audience, to remind us that at the time the movie came out the killer was still at large.
It's in line with the little kid's statement that the killer was just some normal looking guy, when the investigation was heavily centered around catching 'deviants'.
 

DickGrayson

Member
Jan 30, 2020
828
It's in line with the little kid's statement that the killer was just some normal looking guy, when the investigation was heavily centered around catching 'deviants'.
It was amazing to me, watching Memories of Murder back to back with Parasite, how Bong has remained so consistent with his social commentary. The first time I watch Memories of Murder was years ago and it didn't hit me as hard back then.
 

Serpens007

Member
Oct 31, 2017
3,822
Watched it last week, what an amazing film. Will watch it on BD again at a later date.

I was left wondering about the rock. I imagine it's a symbol of hope and stuff, but does it have any deeper meaning in Korean culture?
 

Khanimus

Avenger
Oct 25, 2017
17,953
Greater Vancouver
Watched it last week, what an amazing film. Will watch it on BD again at a later date.

I was left wondering about the rock. I imagine it's a symbol of hope and stuff, but does it have any deeper meaning in Korean culture?
I can't speak to any cultural significance, but
this rock representing hope and blessing for good fortune floating to the surface during the flood tells you that these hopes are actually just hollow and meaningless.
 
Oct 27, 2017
357
Watched it last week, what an amazing film. Will watch it on BD again at a later date.

I was left wondering about the rock. I imagine it's a symbol of hope and stuff, but does it have any deeper meaning in Korean culture?
I was really interested in the rock too, so I can share some links that provided context. There's a reddit thread that has some information about significance and connotations for Korean viewers here (and other cool things non-Koreans might miss, besides the scholar rock): https://www.reddit.com/r/movies/comments/f22qv0/insights_on_parasite_as_a_korean/

A comment on this other reddit thread also mentions that the term for that stone in Korean (suseok) and Japanese (suiseki) is basically "water rock". It is another way of highlighting water in the sense of how it shapes things. https://www.reddit.com/r/movies/comments/cp79uc/question_about_parasite_2019_spoilers/

I also learned that suseok is a term that is also used for the top student of a university class - thus calling even more attention to the gap between the reality of Ki Woo's lack of academic success and what he believes he is capable of.
 

ultra7k

Member
Oct 27, 2017
628
This is a great review by TK at Ask a Korean, perhaps the most insightful review I've read so far. Obviously spoiler alerts if you haven't watched the movie.


Highly recommend everyone give this a read.
 

Serpens007

Member
Oct 31, 2017
3,822
This is a great review by TK at Ask a Korean, perhaps the most insightful review I've read so far. Obviously spoiler alerts if you haven't watched the movie.


Highly recommend everyone give this a read.
That's such a great read.

This movie is stuck in my head. I really have to watch it another time.
 

KeRaSh

Member
Oct 26, 2017
2,091
Finally watched this movie last night and I really liked it.
Great camera work, acting and music all around.
My wife and I are currently binge-watching tons of Korean shows on Netflix so it was cool to recognize most of the cast from some of those series.

After all the hype I did kind of expect there to be a bigger twist in the end but I knew better and tried to keep my expectations low in that regard.
That being said I still very much liked the movie but I couldn't really put into words why exactly I enjoyed it. I love movies that do that to me.

Reading some of the social analysis in the thread here just made this move even better.
The crass difference of impact the rain has on the families didn't really hit me until I read some comments here.
The fact that it's a minor inconvenience for the rich while it literally destroys the home of the poor is absolutely eye opening.
I was still so focused on the tension of the family sneaking out of the home while dealing with the former house keeper and her husband that I didn't even realize the significance of the rain and what it means for both families. Absolutely great work by Bong Joon Ho.
 

SolidChamp

Banned
Oct 27, 2017
4,014
So there’s a limited theatrical re-release happening in Asia-Pacific countries. For this special release it’s actually a B&W version of the film.

I saw it first at home on iTunes and then the B&W theatrical release this past week. It gives the film a much softer tone and a different vibe overall. I can say I definitely appreciated being able to see it this way, but the original color version of the film is king in terms of conveying mood throughout the various settings and giving power to some of Bong’s striking suburban shots.

Either way you cut it though, movie is a masterpiece and Bong’s best film to date by a very wide margin.
 

TheKeyPit

The Fallen
Oct 27, 2017
3,163
Germany
I was waiting for the "rent"-button to appear here in Germany on Amazon, and today's the day.

I can finally give this movie a watch.
 

Yata

Member
Feb 1, 2019
852
Spain
Watched it last night. It was really enjoyable, but it didn't speak to me in any way, in that sense I was dissappointed. It didn't leave much of a lasting impression.

Also, it annoyed the fuck out of me
how the family let the previous home caretaker into the house, it was the dumbest decision they could have done, and considering how smart they were portrayed before this and how it fucked them up big time it soured the rest of the movie for me.
 

Fugo

Member
Nov 16, 2017
92
Watched it last night. It was really enjoyable, but it didn't speak to me in any way, in that sense I was dissappointed. It didn't leave much of a lasting impression.

Also, it annoyed the fuck out of me
how the family let the previous home caretaker into the house, it was the dumbest decision they could have done, and considering how smart they were portrayed before this and how it fucked them up big time it soured the rest of the movie for me.
I think it spurt from a sense of low-class fellowship
 

Idde

Member
Oct 27, 2017
334
Watched it again for the second time. It's good to rewatch it, having read up on the themes after the first watch.

It's noticeable how Min for example doesn't think of Ki-woo as an equal. He thinks of him as 'safe' to guard Dah-ye, when compared to his university friends. Even though they're friends there's this class disparity. Even though Ki-woo is just as capable a teacher as Min. Because ms Park would only accept Ki-woo if he was as good as Min.
 

capitalCORN

Member
Oct 26, 2017
9,786
Watched it again for the second time. It's good to rewatch it, having read up on the themes after the first watch.

It's noticeable how Min for example doesn't think of Ki-woo as an equal. He thinks of him as 'safe' to guard Dah-ye, when compared to his university friends. Even though they're friends there's this class disparity. Even though Ki-woo is just as capable a teacher as Min. Because ms Park would only accept Ki-woo if he was as good as Min.
Did you notice when Ms. Park pays Ki-Woo, she leaves out a few bills and tells him he's getting a little extra?
 

Idde

Member
Oct 27, 2017
334
More that the micro-aggression starts early.
I think I caught that/had that feeling the first time I watched. How casual the Parks are with money. And with firing their help.

Anyway, was watching with my mom, but she had to leave an hour in, just before the Parks left on the trip and shit hit the fan. Even before that she commented how the film felt a bit surrealistic and had this creepy undertone to it. She's gonna finish it tonight and boy, is she in for a surprise :)