1054 Parasite

Discuss DVDs and Blu-rays released by Criterion and the films on them. If it's got a spine number, it's in here. Threads may contain spoilers.
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tehthomas
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Re: Parasite (Bong Joon-Ho, 2019)

#101 Post by tehthomas » Mon Oct 28, 2019 5:13 pm

Michael Kerpan wrote:
Mon Oct 28, 2019 1:09 pm
I think these earlier films featured much more interesting characters -- which made any allegorical elements less central (for me).
I would offer that these characters are more archetypes.

Anyway, I found this to be brilliant. It seems to share a universe with "Get Out" to some degree (people "feeding" off of others to survive).

And, this might be a reach, but it's as least fun to consider that maybe...
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Min was the son of the housekeeper and husband in basement and sent the son to that house/family

Daneurism
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Re: Parasite (Bong Joon-Ho, 2019)

#102 Post by Daneurism » Mon Oct 28, 2019 5:54 pm

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I appreciate all of the character building that Bong does showing the family genuinely enjoying each other's company, not just the cruel scoundrels we think they are initially...I didn't see the sister as much more than that, though, and didn't think her death carried weight because of it.

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Re: Parasite (Bong Joon-Ho, 2019)

#103 Post by nitin » Mon Oct 28, 2019 6:01 pm

DarkImbecile wrote:
Mon Oct 28, 2019 12:40 pm
I realize my prior post makes it sound like I'm giving him zero credit for what he's doing here, but I think he did as well in this respect as he ever has with Parasite; just surprised to see people ragging on the film for any slack in its socio-political allegory, which I guess doesn't live up to the standard set by Okja, Snowpiercer, and The Host?
Can’t comment on Okja as I haven’t seen it yet, Snowpiercer I would actually rate slightly less than Parasite for similar reasons, but as Michael alluded to earlier, The Host and earlier films like Memories Of Murder have more interesting characters in play and any socio political allegory is also not as front and centre as it is in these later films (which makes their lack of nuance less noticeable).

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Satori
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Re: Parasite (Bong Joon-ho, 2019)

#104 Post by Satori » Sun Nov 03, 2019 10:57 am

Shrew wrote:
Mon Oct 28, 2019 2:43 pm
I don't think the film is nihilistic, but rather takes a structuralist view on class. Meaning that the enemy is inequality itself, not rich people who obtained their wealth in morally objectionable ways or are otherwise just plain evil (as in the recent Ready or Not). That inequality forces those on the low end of the totem pole into competition, which breeds amorality and suffering, while the morality of the haves (and here I'd agree the best word is "benign") is irrelevant to whether the system is fair or not. But this also means that an "eat the rich" mentality isn't productive, as seen in the anti-cathartic ending.
(Sorry to quote/ reply to conversation from more than a week ago, but the film just now opened where I live.)

I agree 100% with this. I thought this film was quite a bit more sophisticated than Snowpiercer in its examination of class. That film felt like a clumsy, heavy-handed attempt to make a popular Marxist blockbuster with a simplistic view of class struggle (which I loved for that reason, but it was hardly saying anything about revolution that one couldn't glean from the wikipedia entry for the Manifesto).

Parasite is more interesting because it refuses easy answers.

It is also notable that the film takes on some specific facets of contemporary global capitalism: the "gig" economy (the pizza box scene), environmental inequality, and the focus on the unemployed or underemployed rather than the traditional "working class." Especially key is its distinction between the working class and the unemployed, especially those who were formerly employed. Employment becomes a zero-sum game for the poor, and the film constantly demonstrates (often in a comic register) that someone has to lose a job in order for someone else to have one. This forced competition between those with jobs and those who want jobs is one thing that prevents working class solidarity. I think this is the essential tragic theme of the film.

Similarly, it effectively demonstrates the way that poor people often identify with the rich rather than with other members of the working class, once again foreclosing solidarity.

Finally, it does a great job dramatizing how the poor continue to hold out hope that they can be rich, either through marriage or hard work:
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This is what makes the son's fantasy at the end that he will one day buy the house and free his father so poignant and tragic.
I think it is precisely because it is so effectively dramatizing these dilemmas that the ending refuses catharsis.
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An act of violence against a rich person does nothing to change the balance of power. Snowpiercer can only imagine violence as revolutionary because it reduces the complexity of the world to the difference between first class and coach on a train.
Politics aside, I think this makes the film better precisely because it results in a more "open" narrative that cannot answer the problems that it poses.

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Persona
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Re: Parasite (Bong Joon-ho, 2019)

#105 Post by Persona » Sat Nov 09, 2019 11:06 am

I adored this. It's rare these days that we get a script that is equal parts clever and rich (and tightly composed to boot), and Bong's filmmaking is at the top of its game (the mise-en-scene, golly) to wind his trademark flights of absurdism and tonal rollercoasting into something that plays like an efficient, effective banger--but one that still has plenty of time for quiet and suggestive moments, provocative conversations and images that linger with you. It was lovely to see this in a Midwest theater that was actually packed and with an audience that ate it up.

I guess I understand where some criticisms are coming from in terms of characterizations that border on caricatures in certain moments or simplifications of sociopolitical realities... and yet I also wonder how you go into this knowing it's a Bong film and not expect those things to some degree? At the same time, Bong seems quite aware of how to make those "weaknesses" work for him in the context of this story and creates a layering of potent scenes that interact with each other thematically in a way that unspools all sorts of implications while leveling the contrapuntal movements at each other. The end of the film defies reductive or dogmatic readings, and I think maybe that's a little frustrating for those who want their social class satire more pointed in message, but I find myself still thinking about it and marveling at what Bong was able to deliver with the cumulative effect of everything he attempted and, quite frankly, achieved with this movie.

The technical craft and performances all-around were marvelous, so Bong had a lot of help, too, in making this thing work. The editing in particular I think was of the absolute highest order.

Anyways, South Korea is killing it: Burning was my favorite movie last year and unless The Irishman is a grand-slam, Top 5 Scorsese movie, then Parasite will probably be my favorite movie of this year. Also I think someone could probably write a fascinating comparison of Burning and Parasite. Very similar and yet also radically different films.

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Finch
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Re: Parasite (Bong Joon-ho, 2019)

#106 Post by Finch » Tue Nov 26, 2019 10:08 pm

I liked the film but was also disappointed by it at the same time as a Bong Joon Ho fan. I liked the scenario and individual scenes were wonderful but the characters are so underwritten that it left me largely cold. Ties with Snowpiercer as his weakest film (not seen Okja yet) so for me Bong has not exactly been knocking them out of the park lately.
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I liked comic touches like the sprinkling of red sauce onto the tissue the housemaid just dumped into the trash to make it look like she was coughing up blood from her alleged tuberculosis. Or the dog nibbling away at the sausages on the stick the rich husband got stabbed with.
edited to fix my error of confusing Joon-Ho for the second name instead of the first as Michael Kerpan kindly pointed out (I take it it's an Asian-wide thing of listing surname first? I thought it was just Japan doing this).

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Michael Kerpan
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Re: Parasite (Bong Joon-ho, 2019)

#107 Post by Michael Kerpan » Tue Nov 26, 2019 11:22 pm

China, Korea and Japan do family names first. Hong Kong folk (and sometimes other Chinese-speakers) have an interesting variant -- Western personal name -- Family name -- Chinese personal name. Thus Tony LEUNG Ka-fai (as opponsed to Tony LEUNG Chiu-wai) and Vicky ZHAO Wei.

Vietnamese seems to be Family mame -- "Middle" name (if given one) -- Personal name.

Not sure about other East/South Asian naming conventions.

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goblinfootballs
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Re: Parasite (Bong Joon-ho, 2019)

#108 Post by goblinfootballs » Tue Nov 26, 2019 11:30 pm

Hungarian also uses the Eastern order, which I learned from watching Sátántangó.

During the Meiji restoration, Japanese names were reversed in communicating with Westerners, hence our use of Akira Kurosawa but Hou Hsiao-Hsien. I've noticed that Eastern conventions are not typically upheld in MLB (Hyun-jin Ryu) but are in soccer/football, MLS included (Kim Kee-hee, Song Heung-min)

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Michael Kerpan
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Re: Parasite (Bong Joon-ho, 2019)

#109 Post by Michael Kerpan » Wed Nov 27, 2019 12:50 am

I've seen that Japan may soon outlaw (or extremely disfavor by law) use of Western name ordering by Japanese.

My solution is to always BOLD the family name for East Asian individuals (at least when first mentioning them in a post).

I learned about Hungarian name order due to encountering its use in regard to BARTOK Bela. ;-)

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MichaelB
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Parasite (Bong Joon-ho, 2019)

#110 Post by MichaelB » Wed Nov 27, 2019 5:27 am

I have never, ever seen “Bartók Béla” in a non-Hungarian sentence outside one specifically talking about Hungarian name-order convention.

Neither have I ever heard a Hungarian refer to “Jancsó Miklós” in an English-language sentence.

The strong impression I get is that they’re totally cool about Western name order outside the Hungarian language itself, and even within Hungary the convention applies exclusively to Hungarians - hence the opening credits for A Long Weekend in Pest and Buda listing Darvas Iván, Törőcsik Mari and Eileen Atkins.

Short version: “BARTÓK Béla” just looks plain weird.

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Michael Kerpan
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Re: Parasite (Bong Joon-ho, 2019)

#111 Post by Michael Kerpan » Wed Nov 27, 2019 10:31 am

MichaelB -- I got lots of Hungaroton LPs back in the day....

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Re: Parasite (Bong Joon-ho, 2019)

#112 Post by MichaelB » Wed Nov 27, 2019 10:49 am

But do they say "Bartók Béla" in the context of an English sentence?

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BenoitRouilly
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Re: Parasite (Bong Joon-ho, 2019)

#113 Post by BenoitRouilly » Wed Nov 27, 2019 12:09 pm

As for Bela TARR, I spelt it TARR Béla for a long time because I learnt the Hungarian name order (similar to Japan, Korea and China)... But in the end, Bela TARR, himself, (like other Hungarian expatriates) prefers to reverse order, to fit in with the standard Western convention. This might be in part connected with the rejection of the current Hungarian government. Hungarians who live in the USA or Western Europe tend to use the First Name LAST NAME order. They even drop the funny accents : thus Bela TARR.

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Michael Kerpan
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Re: Parasite (Bong Joon-ho, 2019)

#114 Post by Michael Kerpan » Wed Nov 27, 2019 12:13 pm

Can't recall -- but the liner notes were (at least) bilingual. ;-)


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Re: Parasite (Bong Joon-ho, 2019)

#116 Post by JabbaTheSlut » Sun Dec 01, 2019 10:34 am

Same here, dissapointed by a good film. A big fan of Bong but I felt the writing was also a bit sloppy in the the plot department. There was elegance, I would have expected from Bong, missing in these ”fake coincidence” scenes that lead the whole poor family inside the rich family’s house.
Finch wrote:
Tue Nov 26, 2019 10:08 pm
I liked the film but was also disappointed by it at the same time as a Bong Joon Ho fan. I liked the scenario and individual scenes were wonderful but the characters are so underwritten that it left me largely cold. Ties with Snowpiercer as his weakest film (not seen Okja yet) so for me Bong has not exactly been knocking them out of the park lately.
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I liked comic touches like the sprinkling of red sauce onto the tissue the housemaid just dumped into the trash to make it look like she was coughing up blood from her alleged tuberculosis. Or the dog nibbling away at the sausages on the stick the rich husband got stabbed with.
edited to fix my error of confusing Joon-Ho for the second name instead of the first as Michael Kerpan kindly pointed out (I take it it's an Asian-wide thing of listing surname first? I thought it was just Japan doing this).

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The Fanciful Norwegian
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Re: Parasite (Bong Joon-ho, 2019)

#117 Post by The Fanciful Norwegian » Wed Dec 18, 2019 3:04 pm

Looks like this is getting one of those black-and-white postconversions, to premiere at the Rotterdam fest. Wouldn't be surprised if Neon gives it a limited theatrical run afterwards.

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Re: Parasite (Bong Joon-ho, 2019)

#118 Post by Nasir007 » Wed Dec 18, 2019 3:27 pm

Can't say it would be something I want to see. Nothing about the composition of the images led me to believe they would work just as well in b n w.
So even though I think it is the best film of the year, I don't think I am going to be watching it again in that format (or any other format for that matter).

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zedz
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Re: Parasite (Bong Joon-ho, 2019)

#119 Post by zedz » Wed Dec 18, 2019 4:09 pm

It'll be worth a look. With Mother it worked surprisingly well. I think I might have even preferred it in black and white: it suited the twisty noir plotting.

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Murdoch
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Re: Parasite (Bong Joon-ho, 2019)

#120 Post by Murdoch » Wed Dec 18, 2019 5:49 pm

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I feel like the scene with the father/driver pulling the maid's "bloodied" tissue from the trash would lose a lot of its effect in black and white.

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Re: Parasite (Bong Joon-ho, 2019)

#121 Post by therewillbeblus » Wed Dec 18, 2019 5:59 pm

One of the film's best strengths is the contrast in pairing shiny, colorful vibrancy of the Park's family home vs. the Kim's muted barren habitat. I suspect a lot will be lost by altering the film to B&W, especially since it wasn't shot with that in mind (to my knowledge) so clothing/set design may impact the effectiveness of the presentation.

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Re: Parasite (Bong Joon-ho, 2019)

#122 Post by swo17 » Wed Dec 18, 2019 6:03 pm

Murdoch wrote:
Wed Dec 18, 2019 5:49 pm
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I feel like the scene with the father/driver pulling the maid's "bloodied" tissue from the trash would lose a lot of its effect in black and white.
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Oh no, she was coughing up ink!


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domino harvey
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Re: Parasite (Bong Joon-ho, 2019)

#124 Post by domino harvey » Thu Jan 09, 2020 6:17 pm

Why the hell would you remake one of the few foreign films of recent years to have genuine carryover appeal and success with non-foreign film viewers?

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therewillbeblus
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Re: Parasite (Bong Joon-ho, 2019)

#125 Post by therewillbeblus » Thu Jan 09, 2020 7:49 pm

The prospect that Bong and McKay are collaborating on anything makes me shudder

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