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S E A R C H    D V D B e a v e r

(aka "Gisaengchung")

 

Directed by Bong Joon Ho
South Korea 2019

 

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.

***

Midway through the brilliant and deeply unsettling “Parasite,” a destitute man voices empathy for a family that has shown him none. “They’re rich but still nice,” he says, aglow with good will. His wife has her doubts. “They’re nice because they’re rich,” she counters. With their two adult children, they have insinuated themselves into the lives of their pampered counterparts. It’s all going so very well until their worlds spectacularly collide, erupting with annihilating force. Comedy turns to tragedy and smiles twist into grimaces as the real world splatters across the manicured lawn.

The story takes place in South Korea but could easily unfold in Los Angeles or London. The director Bong Joon Ho (“Okja”) creates specific spaces and faces — outer seamlessly meets inner here — that are in service to universal ideas about human dignity, class, life itself. With its open plan and geometric shapes, the modernist home that becomes the movie’s stage (and its house of horrors) looks as familiar as the cover of a shelter magazine. It’s the kind of clean, bright space that once expressed faith and optimism about the world but now whispers big-ticket taste and privilege.

Excerpt from Manhola Dargis revioew et the NY Times located HERE

Posters

Theatrical Release: May 21st, 2019 (Cannes Film Festival)

Reviews                                                                                                       More Reviews                                                                                       DVD Reviews

 

Review: Universal - Region 'A' - Blu-ray

Box Cover

CLICK to order from:

 

Coming to the UK on Blu-ray by Artificial eye in June 2020

and also in a steelbook:

Distribution Universal - Region 'A' - Blu-ray
Runtime 2:12:04.124        
Video

2.39:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 37,053,534,233 bytes

Feature: 31,288,246,272 bytes

Video Bitrate: 27.99 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.

Bitrate Blu-ray:

Audio

DTS-HD Master Audio Korean 1949 kbps 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1949 kbps / 24-bit (DTS Core: 5.1 / 48 kHz / 1509 kbps / 24-bit)

Subtitles English, None
Features Release Information:
Studio:
Universal

 

2.39:1 1080P Dual-layered Blu-ray

Disc Size: 37,053,534,233 bytes

Feature: 31,288,246,272 bytes

Video Bitrate: 27.99 Mbps

Codec: MPEG-4 AVC Video

 

Edition Details:

Parasite - Fantastic Fest 2019 Q+A with Director Bong Joon Ho (19:05)
Trailer (2:02)


Blu-ray Release Date:
January 28th, 2020
Standard Blu-ray Case inside slipcase

Chapters 13

 

 

Comments:

NOTE: The below Blu-ray captures were taken directly from the Blu-ray disc.

ADDITION: Universal Blu-ray (January 2020): Universal have brought Bong Joon Ho's Parasite to Blu-ray. It was shot on digital with an Arri Alexa 65 with a 4K master format. It looks pristine - as you might expect a modern film to appear in 1080P. The image quality is consistent throughout with a strong level of detail and frequent depth. There are no flaws with this HD image with no compression or noise in the later dark sequences. It is on a dual-layered disc with a supportive bitrate.

On their Blu-ray, Universal use a DTS-HD Master 5.1 surround track (24-bit) in the original Korean language. I believe theatrically it had Dolby Atmos and this film is surely a candidate for a UHD release although the surround effects are subtle with aggression often diffused utilizing the score by Jaeil Jung and classic music such as Handel's Rodelinda: Act 2 - Spietati, io vi glurai, In Ginnochio Da Te performed by Italian singer Gianni Morandi and A Glass of Soju (lyrics by Bong Joon Ho!) performed by Woo-sik Choi (as Choi Woo Shik). It sounds as flawless as it looks. Universal offer optional English subtitles on their, uncharacteristically, Region 'A'-locked Blu-ray.

The Universal Blu-ray offers no commentary but include a 20-minute Parasite - Fantastic Fest 2019 Q+A with Director Bong Joon Ho with his Korean responses translated. He claims the whole world is living in this one big world of capitalism. He discusses how the film has many staircases with people travelling (symbolically) up and down on these. he talks about his own small time jobs in high school and the mutually parasitic relationship of the two families. There are also two similar trailers.

Parasite is fascinating viewing with Bong Joon Ho peering subtly deep into class structure. He touches on a number of different genres from black-comedy to horror. It's nominated for many Academy Awards including Best Picture - and deservedly so. This unique examination and riveting cinema deserves as wide an audience as possible. You have to say that the Universal Blu-ray is underwhelming in terms of the supplements but the presentation is top-shelf. I'd love to see Criterion or Indicator take this on in a few years to do more exploration on the film's themes and visual associations. Our highest recommendation!

Gary Tooze

 


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Box Cover

CLICK to order from:

 

Coming to the UK on Blu-ray by Artificial eye in June 2020

and also in a steelbook:

Distribution Universal - Region 'A' - Blu-ray


 


 

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Gary Tooze

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