Theater review. Possible spoilers. One of my favorite movies of 2014 was “Snowpiercer” (Number 7 on my Top 10 List), a dystopian thriller from Korean director Bong Joon Ho (also co-writer). "Parasite" is a black comedy that is genre defying. While I was aware the movie has been getting rave reviews, I had successfully managed not to get too deep into the details. Therefore I won’t give away anything here. You’re better off not knowing.
The film starts off almost like a sitcom you might see on TV. The film stars Kang-ho Song and Hye-jin Jang as the parents of teenagers played by Park So-Dam and her brother Woo-sik Choi. They live in a crummy subterranean apartment in the city and survive by putting together pizza boxes and making deliveries.
Through a friend the son gets an opportunity to tutor the daughter of a wealthy suburban family. I’m no architect but the previous owner of the Park family home was and this house is gorgeous from my perspective (your mileage may vary). I found myself spending as much time looking at the details as I did following the subtitles.
The comedic aspects come and go and are subtle but the brilliant shifting is something special. Like his previous films including his last, “Okja,” there is an element of social class distinctions, using his distinct style. “Parasite” is a terrific film that will keep you scratching your head before dropping your jaw. Recommended.