Okja is directed by south korean director, Bong Joon-ho, and tells the story about superpigs that have been raised in order to solve world hunger. But, on a much deeper level, it exposes the selfish agendas that we have come to pursue over the lack of appreciating animal life. Okja centers around the Mirando corporation who have made these superpigs as well as the corporation’s ongoing conflict with the Animal Liberation Front. In some ways, while it would seem like the Animal Liberation Front would be in support of saving the superpigs, they are willing to let some pigs be slaughtered in order for the public to see images of the Mirando corporation’s evil actions. All the while, other characters (including the grandfather) have their own motives for gold and wealth. But, it’s only Mija, who has the truest intentions to save her friend and superpig, Okja, from everyone else. She pursues Okja through cities, across countries and even through Okja’s memory loss simply to have her friend back in the end - in pursuit of the most selfless agenda in the end, love and friendship.
I found Okja incredibly entertaining, delightfully eclectic, and a perfect film to bring into the classroom. Okja has moments of whimsicality, but also some beautifully created shots and an incredibly powerful message about how our food industry and our media industry have dangerously evolved to merciless agendas that will be pursued at any cost. Okja is a great platform to bring into any classroom as this is an issue that is faced by the world today. While the presence of superpigs would solve world hunger, at what cost are we willing to create life only with the intention of profiting from it, obsessing over it, and glorifying it?
I give Okja, an 8/10.