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Parasite (2019) - Blu-ray Review

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Parasite (2019)

Seven films into his career and Bong Joon Ho continues to impress audiences with dark and thoughtful material.  This time, with Parasite, he delivers a film that is so topical and so well made that even Hollywood had to stop and take notice.  Parasite is THAT memorable.

"a film that is so topical and so well made that even Hollywood had to stop and take notice.  Parasite is THAT memorable."


There is a reason this film took home the Oscar for Best Picture this year.  Parasite, operating without an identifiable genre, is an honest and frightening look at the war between classes.  The rich profit more pitting the poor against the poor and that is exactly what happens here in this tale of domestic disturbance.  For three families, nothing will ever be the same when their fates unfortunately come together under the roof of one dazzling house.

It doesn’t take much to assemble pizza boxes for a poorly maintained pizza delivery service, but Kim Ki-taek (Song Kang Ho) and his family, living in a cramped basement apartment, can’t even do that correctly.  Their miserable lives are spent chasing away people in the alley as they piss all over their windows. They don’t have much, but they have each other and their dreams of a better life.

Their son, Ki-woo (Choi Woo Shik), believes in a better and brighter future for them all.  They truly love each other, but there has to be more for them. {googleads}

When he cons his way into a high profile job tutoring Da-hye (Jung Ziso) for the wealthy Park family, who live in a very organized and very wealthy part of the city, Ki-woo dares pull off the impossible.  His idea, to get ALL members of his family under the employment of the Park family (unbeknownst to them that they are, in fact, related), goes from being a pipe dream to reality.

With no money and only an art for the con as skills, the family - thanks to the sudden good fortune of their their son are suddenly living in a world of servitude.  The upper class world is warm and inviting and, one by one, Ki-woo’s family enters into the Park household as a cook, a driver, another tutor/babysitter, and the Park family - trusting Ki-woo and each family member’s recommendation - couldn’t be happier.

But this happiness is short lived as secrets are revealed one drunken night. Parasite (2019)

There is something dark hiding below the well-manicured lawn of the Park family’s home.  It is a home that, while inviting to Kim Ki-taek’s family, soon becomes a house of horrors as a disturbing truth is uncovered from down in the depths.  Soon, the clash of the classes takes over and our smiles that were present at the beginning as Ki-woo’s family charmed and conned their way into the household turn into horrified grimaces, reacting to the sudden reversal of fortunes and the startling violence as the poor, once again, are pitted against each other for the sake and the satisfaction of the rich.

Co-written and directed by the brilliant Bong Joon Ho (Okja), Parasite is no less fantastic and memorable.  Filmed and framed in such a way as to keep our eyes on that what is not, Parasite builds its unsettling statement thanks to the director’s use of space, his actors, and his unflinching dedication to presenting the families at the center of this tale as matter-of-factly as possible.  It is frightening just how effective his film is. This certainly was the best film of the year and its big win was rightfully deserved.

Eat the rich.  Parasite is now on blu-ray thanks to Universal Pictures Home Entertainment.

5/5 stars

Parasite (2019)

Blu-ray

Blu-ray Details:

Home Video Distributor: Universal
Available on Blu-ray
- January 28, 2020
Screen Formats: 2.39:1
Subtitles
: English
Audio:
Korean: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1
Discs: Blu-ray Disc; single disc
Region Encoding: Locked to Region A

Meet the Park family, the picture of aspirational wealth. And the Kim family, rich in street smarts but not much else. Be it chance or fate, these two houses are brought together and the Kims sense a golden opportunity. Masterminded by college-aged Ki-woo, the Kim children expediently install themselves as tutor and art therapist to the Parks. Soon, a symbiotic relationship forms between the two families. The Kims provide "indispensable" luxury services while the Parks obliviously bankroll their entire household. When a parasitic interloper threatens the Kims' newfound comfort, a savage, underhanded battle for dominance breaks out, threatening to destroy the fragile ecosystem between the Kims and the Parks. By turns darkly hilarious and heart-wrenching, Parasite showcases a modern master at the top of his game. 

Video:

Universal Pictures Home Entertainment presents Parasite with an aspect ratio of 2.39:1 and a very crisp transfer.  Colors - especially on the well-manicured lawn - are full of life, with greens and reds dominating. When in the city and in the basement apartment, yellows and browns assimilate and create a cramped space, as intended.  Black levels are thick and inky and, as there are a couple of scenes at night in the limo, they hold their edges well. Everything is flawlessly executed here thanks to Universal’s expert handling.

Audio:

Every flick of the light can be heard thanks to the robust DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 soundtrack that accompanies this release.  There are two options for the audio: French (DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1), Korean (DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1).

Supplements:

Commentary:

  • None

Special Features:

There could have been more.  I am fairly certain that a re-release is bound to happen for this film.  Until that happens, we have just a Q and A session with the director and some trailers to hold us over.

  • Q & A Session with Director Bong Joon Ho
  • Trailers

Blu-ray Rating:

  Movie 5/5 stars
  Video  5/5 stars
  Audio 4/5 stars
  Extras 2/5 stars

Overall Blu-ray Experience

4/5 stars

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Parasite (2019)

MPAA Rating: PG-13 on appeal for crude sexual content and language.
Runtime:
132 mins
Director
: Bong Joon-Ho
Writer:
Bong joon-Ho
Cast:
Kang-ho Song, Sun-kyun Lee, Yeo-jeong Jo
Genre
: Comedy | Thriller
Tagline:
Misplaced familyhood.
Memorable Movie Quote: "If I had all this I would be kinder."
Theatrical Distributor:
Neon
Official Site: https://www.thehustle.movie/
Release Date:
November 8, 2019
DVD/Blu-ray Release Date:
January 20, 2020.
Synopsis: A poor family, the Kims, con their way into becoming the servants of a rich family, the Parks. But their easy life gets complicated when their deception is threatened with exposure.

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Parasite (2019)

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