Following its debut at the Cannes Film Festival last fall, Bong Joon-ho’s Parasite generated a massive wave of buzz… and that buzz is still flowing today just as strongly as it was back then. The proof of this is all of the chatter surrounding the movie during this awards season, which notably just resulted in the film winning the Best Foreign Language Film award at the 2020 Golden Globes.
The movie’s writer/director took the stage to accept his trophy, and in coordination with his translator, he delivered an awesome message to the movie-going public about the exploration and appreciation of films that don’t feature English as the primary language. Speaking through his translator, Bong Joon-ho said,
Once you overcome the one-inch tall barrier of subtitles, you will be introduced to so many more amazing films. Just being nominated along with fellow amazing international filmmakers was a huge honor.
To complete his time on stage, Bong Joon-ho said the last line of his brief speech in English himself, saying about his colleagues and the audience,
I think we use only just one language: the cinema.
As far as that last bit is concerned, Parasite is actually a phenomenal example. The film is notably a satire that takes aim at class and wealth disparity, and while it is a story that is set in South Korea, and features Korean character speaking Korean, the messages that it gets across about modern society are applicable in just about every developed nation. Cinema is an artform that brings us all together in understanding, because the reality is that none of us are really all that different.
In the award winning film, Woo-sik Choi, So-dam Park, Kang-ho Song, and Hye-jin Jang star as a lower class family that begins to infiltrate the world of an upper-class household, starting with the son, Ki-woo, getting a job as an English tutor for one of the children. Just as you think you have Parasite all figured out, however, the story takes a sharp left turn that no movie-goer in the world could ever predict.
It’s an incredible piece of work, and well deserving of not only its new Golden Globe trophy, but also the many others it’s been collecting, and will continue to collect, as this year’s award season continues. It should be noted that the win is also history making, as the movie is the first South Korean entry to win an award from the Hollywood Foreign Press Association.
For those of you who haven’t had the experience of watching Parasite yet, and those of you who are excited to watch it again, the film is now available on various OnDemand platforms and as a digital rental, and is also out on Blu-ray and DVD. If you’re in the latter group, I would absolutely recommend seeing it as quickly as possible, as the chatter surrounding this movie most definitely isn’t going away any time soon, and it’s really best to go into the plot knowing as little about it as possible.