Though the trailer is solely in Bong’s native Korean, we’d be remiss not to share the first real look at the Korean auteur’s next feature, Parasite, which today also gets a funky-lookin’ poster.
Coming off of international releases Okja and Snowpiercer, Parasite sees Bong returning to his native soil and language, and seemingly some of his grimier, spookier earlier characteristics.
Little is known regarding the plot, though an early article on Variety mentions “a drama about a family of four, in which each member has unique characteristics,” and that “Bong says that, despite the title, the film does not include either parasites or alien creatures.” Part of what makes Bong such an interesting filmmaker, I feel, is his ability to alternate between not only large-budget, international productions like Snowpiercer and smaller ones, but his refusal to become “the sci-fi guy,” or a “horror director.” He works in genre but not always in the most-expected way.
Brief personal anecdote: During my time working at an arthouse theater we hosted Bong for an extended stay in New York, playing a small retrospective and facilitating Q&As. In all my dealings with him he was an incredibly nice, funny, and unpretentious guy; things I always admire when meeting artists, especially famous or much-lauded ones. So I’m always glad to see him back in action with something new.
Though there are no concrete details regarding its release, it’s known that Neon holds rights for North American distribution, and the pending Cannes Film Festival lineup is expected to include Bong’s film, having premiered Okja in 2017, as well as earlier films Mother (2009) and The Host (2006). Nothing is confirmed though, so take a gander at the Korean poster and speculate just what the hell’s going on here.