Following the horrendous snubbing of Lee Chang-dong’s Burning last year, South Korea is going for round 2 in the country’s attempt to get its first-ever Oscar nomination. South Korea has submitted Parasite as its contender for the Best International Feature Film category at the 2020 Academy Awards. If Bong Joon-ho‘s black comedy earns one of the five slots, that would make it South Korea’s first-ever Oscar nomination.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, South Korea has selected Parasite as its entry for next year’s Best International Feature Film category at the Oscars. Despite the country’s bad luck at the Oscars — last year’s Burning was widely hailed as one of the best movies of the year and failed to receive a nod — this year could finally be the year that South Korea earns an Oscar nomination, maybe even a win.
Parasite has been making waves at the festival circuit, winning the prestigious Palme d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival earlier this year — a first, historic win for the country. The genre-defying black comedy is not Bong’s first brush with the Oscars; his film Mother was selected by the Korean Film Council (KOFIC) in 2006, but didn’t make the final shortlist. But with Parasite already being hailed as one of the best films of the year, 2020 could finally be the turning point for South Korea’s sad track record of zero Oscar nominations (just a reminder that Suicide Squad has more Oscars than the whole of South Korea). And if the buzz keeps building as it is for Parasite, perhaps the country could score its first win.
Parasite is a vicious social satire that stars Song Kang-ho, a frequent collaborator with Bong on The Host and Snowpiercer, as well as Jang Hye-jin, Park So-dam and Choi Woo-shik (Okja, Train to Busan) as a struggling family that slowly ingratiates themselves into the lives of an ultra-rich family (Lee Sun-kyun and Jo Yeo-jeong). Critic Jason Gorber, reviewing for /Film at Cannes, called it “a twisty, twisted ride and gets under your skin. With mind-warping shifts in tone and storyline, there’s a feeling that you’re getting more bang from Bong than in a dozen lesser films. It’s a mighty work from a mighty director, and a master who schools the world on how a film like this can be so deftly pulled off.”
Here is the synopsis for Parasite:
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.
Parasite opens in U.S. theaters on October 11, 2019.
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