Updated: Mar 20, 2020
With the the two big Oscar Best Picture predictors coming out from the producers and screen actors guilds, I'm thrilled to see SAG push Parasite up in contention, a big honor for a film from Korea. Back when I went to Busan as a panelist on a program for the city's film festival, I'd never seen a Korean movie. But a strong governmental push to help filmmakers changed that. By the time my book Around the World in 80 Movies came out, I easily listed five impressive Korean films in my piece about Busan (plus included Black Panther in another chapter). The book mentions The Host and Snowpiercer, which both impressed me for their director's energetic style. That director, Bon Joon-Ho, continues that flair with Parasite, earning Oscar nominations for himself and his film. While more traditional films tend to win the big prize, Parasite worms its way into the consciousness with the potential to upend expectations.