Parasite – an Unpredictable, Chaotic Masterpiece

Fan art by Gustavo Cordero on Instagram

Released in 2019 and directed by Bong Joon-Ho, the movie Parasite received international recognition and awards, such as four Oscars and many more. It is a Korean drama thriller  with elements of a rather dark comedy.

Parasite is the perfect mix of confusion and clarity

Parasite depicts two families from different social classes and their journey after being heavily conjoined by a series of unpredictable events, with one family being totally unaware of them even happening. It is a dark fairytale about the uncomfortable reality of the less fortunate parts of society and about how those who manage to acquire fortune turn to greed. It is a masterpiece in the way it keeps you on the edge of your seat while you are constantly anticipating yet another plot twist. I believe it deserves its success to a large extent, but that does not mean I think it is a movie fitting for all types of audiences.

Constant suspense

It is certainly a very fast-paced movie, with a plethora of events crammed into just under 2 hours and 15 minutes of watching experience. However, even though this might seem quite tiresome and boring, the movie is directed in such a way that you very quickly get used to never fully relaxing and instead find yourself in a state of constant suspense. It demands your full attention if you want entirely to understand its storyline and message, making you appreciate the carefully plotted details of the story, such as small throwbacks to earlier events or explanations to the questions you were not even aware you had.

Two significant themes in the movie are identity and pretense, which are found in many aspects of the movie. For example, it is through pretending that the poor family manages to get out of the slum, but also it is  through their real identity that the dilemmas and even the climax of the movie are resolved. So if you are looking for a movie to watch during a dinner time, I would not recommend this one; however, if you are looking for a movie to fully immerse yourself  in while devouring buckets of popcorn, this one is the jackpot.

A certain “heaviness”

While this movie might have received many awards, do not be fooled and think that this is a kind, easy to watch picture with bright, fun characters. Parasite is R rated, which means not recommended for people younger than 17, and in my opinion, this is for a good reason, due to the cussing, drinking and blood spilling. Additionally, there is a certain “heaviness” to the movie. For example, the lower social class family is made to represent a larger group of people who are considered to be the parasites of society. Their characterization in the movie, while somewhat realistic, is by no means agreeable to watch.

An emotional rollercoaster

The movie makes you mad, sad and scared by combining plot twists with almost eerie elements of shock, but it can also make you happy by providing your watching experience with moments of true happiness and great family values. This tremendous spectrum of emotions makes an odd impact on the spectators, one I have not experienced before. Just like in a real life some characters come off as a combination of both likeable and repulsive, which makes you more invested in their actions as their next move might be the one to finalize your opinion about them. You might empathise with the hard situation of the poor family, but at the same time strongly disagree with the way they lie their way out of it.

This tremendous spectrum of emotions makes an odd impact on the spectators, one I have not experienced before.

In conclusion, it is a very complex movie which keeps having you anticipate its next plot twist and makes you go on an emotional rollercoaster ride. While you are watching it, it skillfully deters you from knowing how you truly feel about characters or the plot. Or anything at all! And while it might not be the right movie for just anyone, with its heavy use of cussing and elements of dark comedy, I wholeheartedly liked it. Parasite is the perfect mix of confusion and clarity, and I truly recommend it to anyone willing to fully invest a little over two hours of their time to experience this unpredictably chaotic masterpiece of a movie.

Written by Ebba Sahlén, Lund, Sweden


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