Any time Bong Joon-ho makes a movie, it tops the list of things I need to see like right this damn minute. That’s just a fact. Since it debuted at Cannes earlier this year, folks have hailed his latest, Parasite, as one of the best of the year, which I find entirely plausible. We don’t know much about it, nor have we seen a ton of footage, but distributor NEON just dropped a new U.S. trailer and, also not a shock, it looks great and dark and weird in that particular way Bong does so well. Watch it below.
Bong rarely makes the same movie twice. He’s tackled apocalyptic sci-fi (Snowpiercer), black comedy (Barking Dogs Never Bite), and dark crime dramas (Memories of Murder). Even his two creature features, The Host and Okja, couldn’t be more different.
Though the subject matter varies wildly, certain thematic concerns carry through most, if not all of Bong’s movies. Two of these are family and class, and from what we knew already, and what we see in this trailer, both figure prominently into Parasite.
Here’s the synopsis:
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.
Being a rock star at the top of his game, Bong has also, of course, assembled a crackerjack team of actors to bring his vision to live. Parasite stars the great Song Kang-ho (The Good, The Bad, The Weird), Jang Hye-jin (Atlanta), Choi Woo-shik (The Divine Fury), Park So-dam (The Priests), Lee Sun-kyun (A Hard Day), and Jo Yeo-jeong (The Target).
NEON plans to release Parasite on October 11, but it also screens at the Toronto International Film Festival if you happen to be there in September. I may or may not have the release date circled on my calendar. Okay, I don’t have a calendar, but I did scrawl “Oct. 11” on my wall and circle it with red pen, so…