I do not watch Oscar winning movies. This is not a rule that I have made but a statistic that has come out from the short research that I did before writing this post. As it turns out I have watched only 3 out of the last 20 Oscar winners for “Best Movie”. Gladiator, Slumdog Millionaire, and Parasite. The very simple reason for this is that I prefer watching movies in 2 genres only - comedy and action. I can still watch thrillers but I actively avoid drama. I realize that I am missing a lot of good cinema by following this stupid rule but then I do not watch movies for “good cinema”.
So it was a pleasant surprise that Parasite was the winner this year. This movie had been on my radar for a pretty long time already but the Oscar win gave me the final push to finally make time to watch it. And it was worth it.
As it must be pretty clear from the first paragraph, I do not consider myself a movie connoisseur so this is not a review. These are a few observations/notes that I have recently started making. Also - SPOILERS
At no point during the movie did I see the “parasite” family as villains. The gap between them and the rich family is so huge that even when the entire family was “exploiting” them to their full extent I knew in the back of my mind that they will still not be able to make irreparable damage. My mind has internalized this wealth gap so well that I know that they were barely scratching the surface there.
The parasite family never conspired or had any ill-will against the rich family. All they did was fight with fellow poor people (driver and the housekeeper) to snatch what they had. This is yet another effect of the class divide that the movie has portrayed. Instead of uniting and working together against the Bourgeoisie the Proletariat continues to fight among itself only. This is how it has been for ages and still shows no signs of changing.
The visual representation skills of the director are beyond brilliant - The one frame where the parasite family is living in the rich family’s living room looking out in the rain is the perfect summary of the movie. The gap among the families can be seen from the amount of uphill travel the parasite family had to do every time they came to the rich house. The rain that caused just a minor inconvenience to the rich family wreaked havoc in the lives of the other family. The book is so full of such symbols that I am sure one can find new things every time you watch it.
If you are reading this, chances are you are closer to the rich family in the spectrum of wealth distribution than that of the parasites. I know so. This means my aspirations, as morally disturbing it might be, are to reach the position of the rich family myself. The idea that we as a society need to work to reduce this gap comes next. I would rather build a moat of wealth and influence around me than building the community up. Most of us feel the same. Nothing wrong with that. The movie brings this realization out.
It’s possible I am over-reading here. But all things considered, I liked this movie.
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