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Parasite

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Jaclyn Wall
Topic replies: 30
Topic Posts: 3
Parasite

When contemplating which film to watch and review I was torn between Parasite and The Farewell. My boyfriend said he would watch Parasite with me and alas that was the deciding factor! Parasite opens with socks hang drying on a light - we then get introduced to the Kim family who live in a semi-basement apartment in Korea. We soon learn that they are a thick as thieves family fighting the daily struggles of poverty and scraping by with little to no means. 

The son, Ki-woo is given an opportunity to tutor the daughter of a well off family, the Parks. He grasps the opportunity and soon sees this as an opportunity to not only benefit himself financially, but also the rest of the Kim family. He gets his sister a job as an art therapy teacher, who gets his dad hired as their driver, and the mom hired as a housekeeper. The first half of the film is a lot of character building and key developments involving the Parks' keen sense of smell when it comes to the Kim families characters. In the latter half, we discover a huge plot twist and it's a downward spiral from there. I don't want to spoil the ending!

Without giving too much away, the film relates to many discussions we've had in this course about higher classes having power over those less fortunate. While the Parks are a very gullible and naive family to what is happening in their day to day lives, they also weren't afraid to flaunt their wealth in the faces of others. Whenever they needed one of their staff (a.k.a. the Kim family) to do something it wasn't a negotiation. They just threw more money at them and exppected them to drop everything to do what they asked. 

While the film is not appropriate for students, I do feel clips and bits could be used for it to have a variety of class discussions including comapre and contrast Asian vs. American families, and/or hierarchies of classes. 

Dennis Vovchenko
Topic replies: 27
Topic Posts: 2
Parasite class divides

I also chose to review the same film since it is the most famous and awarded Asian film. While the movie is very straightforward, I thought it did chart a new path of portraying the lower classes as morally inferior to the rich. In classic social dramas like "The Grapes of Wrath" or recent ones like "Avatar" and "Elysium" the rich are depicted as much more wicked than the poor.

Thomas Pineda
Topic replies: 73
Topic Posts: 9
"The Farewell"

Based on your mention of this film and other recommendations from friends (and that my partner and I both like Awkwafina), I decided to check it out and I highly recommend it as well!!  It's on Amazon prime if you have that service. Definitely check it out- it shows some funny, but sentimental ways Eastern v Western cultures makes choices within families. I think students could relate to the issue that it presents. 

Betsy Telle
Topic replies: 49
Topic Posts: 8
Parasite

I thoroughly enjoyed the movie Parasite. It is a great movie with so many twists and turns and genre defying parts. I think that all adults should give it a view. I agree though that the movie as a whole is not appropriate for most students. Although it might be good for a high school cinema class as it does defy and span many movie genres.

 

There are plenty of shots and scenes that depict life and housing of the rich and the poor that could be used in class. Students could compare the lifestyles and the architecture of the two classes. They could even compare how those classes exist and live in the United States. Asking students what would this movie look like if it took place in LA.

Melina Melgoza
Topic replies: 35
Topic Posts: 2
Parasite is certainly a MUST WATCH!

Social and economic structures are key to this film. It is clear that the focus of the film is on the greed of humanity and the constant social structures that discriminate against those less fortunate. Throughout the film, the bricks continue to build and build, and then they topple. It truly was quite fascinating because the film has many unexpected twists and turns. The film is exciting, yet really highlights the sincere reality, revealing the unfortunate experiences of humanity. While the film itself was entertaining, I think the writer also wanted to tell a deep and meaningful story of social injustice.

I really truly enjoyed this film, I'd go as far as to say it is a masterpiece.

Melina Melgoza
Topic replies: 35
Topic Posts: 2
In addition -

After much thought, I think it would be interseting to use segments of Parasite to discuss social inequity in society with students. In my class, we focus on understanding intersectional identities, as influenced by: race, class, and other factors. So, using parasite as a way to unpack this creatively and in an engaging manner could be very interesting to see play out in a class setting. Has anyone else used the movie or segments of the movie in their class?

MM

Deirdre Harris
Topic replies: 51
Topic Posts: 4
Parasite - So funny & yet culturally accurate in so many ways

What an interesting, entertaining, and beyond satiric film.  I was happy to watch this film and found myself rooting for this poor family right from the beginning.  I agree with Melina that it can lead to so many discussions with classes about social inequities in the world, and ask them how money affects the cultures of all countries, comparing it to other countries.  (A comparison with India would also be interesting.)  The way the birthday party got so very silly, and out of control, then how violence worked it's way into the film are also unexpected, yet laughable.  There are so many topics covered in this film that could lead to wonderful lessons, such as family traditions, food items cooked, the gullible mother and how the family we meet took advantage of another family so easily, using flattery methods, etc..   It was a lot of fun to watch, and I highly recommend it to most people.  I don't think it's ok for children, at my grade level.  There is too much sex, violence and other things going on.  For High School possibly?    Great film though.  I enjoyed it.