Parasite presents the harsh reality of classism


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The film’s poster featuring the Kim and Park families. Parasite won both Best Picture and Foreign Language.

Elyssa Reed, A&E Editor

*Warning* Spoilers Ahead
Director, Bong Joon-Ho effectively swept this past awards season. He made history with his wildly popular film,
Parasite, for being the first international film to win Best Picture at the Oscars.

The film follows the Kim family conning their way into working for the affluent Park family. Everything seems to work in their favor until they’re threatened with exposure and the facade begins to crumble. 

Parasite takes an in depth look at the classist structures in South Korea. It presents the audience with the stark and raw truth of how the lower class tries extremely hard to climb their way up the social ladder, but are always pushed back down. 

The ending scene featuring the son, Kim Ki-woo, was a sad but realistic moment. It shows him years later, having bought the former Park house for the sake of his father. However, it’s a moment that’s too good to be true. 

It eventually cuts to Ki-woo present day, sitting in their run-down home. It was only his mental vision of how he was going to get his father out of the house’s cellar. He was going to go to college, get a job, and have enough money to buy the house. 

It was a bittersweet ending because it allowed viewers to fantasize the impossible for just a brief moment. Bong gave us a glimpse of what could be, but it’s easy to understand that it would never happen. 

“It’s quite cruel and sad, but I thought it was being real and honest with the audience,” Bong Joon-Ho said in an interview with Vulture.

Single mother, his sister just passed away, his father is presumed missing, and Ki-woo recently out of the hospital with medical bills to pay. We know that Ki-woo will never have enough money to buy the house and won’t be able to live the life he had imagined. 

It’s sad because that’s the reality of our society. The poor stay poor and the rich stay rich. However, this isn’t a film to exact change, but more to let audiences know that this is the society they live in. Although this film reflects South Korea’s society, it effectively transcends into other societies 

This is to make viewers feel disturbed and unsettled after watching. Parasite is the film that leaves you staring at the screen, minutes after it has finished, completely speechless.