Parasite may not have been my favorite 2019 movie, but it was far and away my favorite of the Best Picture nominees.
I’m particularly excited about Parasite‘s success because Bong Joon-Ho is a director fiercely devoted to illustrating the horrors of capitalism, the dehumanizing effects of a social structure built around competition. Some have argued that the fact that rich people love Parasite is evidence that its message is too muddled, but I found the opposite.
I wrote about that a little for my latest piece for Think Christian. Borrowing from the work of the great theologian Howard Thurman, my piece argues that Parasite rejects deception as a means for undoing oppressive social structures:
Parasite illustrates the horror of living such a lie. The Kims’ deception may have temporarily improved their status, but it did nothing to alter the system in which they live. There is still an upper position and a lower position, and there are always people on lower rungs. The most the Kims do for the least of these is hold them down, as they have been held down, reinforcing an earthly kingdom that keeps both families drowning in the lower depths.