Parasite – Blu-ray Review


When I reviewed Parasite in October, I called it an “absolute masterpiece.” Upon multiple viewings, my thoughts have not changed at all. It’s a film that’s hard to describe, and that’s what makes the film so damn good. It mixes a lot of different genres, and that’s why the film is hard to describe. You’re watching the film and you expect it to be one thing then it ends up being something else entirely. That’s one of the biggest reasons why the film grabs you and then never lets you go.

Yet as you dig deeper into the film, you’ll find that Parasite is much more than a multi-genre film. The film has a deeper message in the film that’ll resonate with a lot of people. The stark contrast between the rich and the poor is a nice message about the kind of social inequality you see in most developed countries. The way that the Parks live a luxurious lifestyle that they take for granted. On the other hand, the Kims live crudely and depressingly. When their worlds collide, you’re sucked into the kind of twisted story that Bong Joon-ho and Han Jin-won put together.

The world is full of “rich” and well-developed characters, but no one is a hero in this film. All of the main characters in the film may seem like they’re good people, but inside they’re all despicable. Yet all of them are despicable for the simple reason of their economic class. The Kims lie and deceive to make ends meet while the Parks are pretentious and arrogant. It’s a dichotomy that’s as stark as their living situations.

Overall, Parasite is a film that you’ve never really seen. And in a year full of tremendous films, Parasite is still one of the best films in 2019. Even though you know all of the twists and turns of the film, it’s still an entertaining thrill ride. That’s how impactful the film is and why it’s a classic now and for the rest of time. Because as long as there’s social and economic inequality, then there’s always a need for Parasite.

Movie Rating: 5/5 atoms


Parasite - Park So-dam and Choi Woo-sik

Parasite hits Blu-ray with a 1080p MPEG-AVC with a 1.35:1 aspect ratio. The picture has a high overall brightness which does cause some bloom in the bright areas. At the same time, the shadows are a lighter shade of black. Luckily, this only happens during the day time scenes. At night, the shadows are a darker shade of black. When it comes to the colors, this is where it gets interesting. The film is colorful overall, but the color does change when it switches between the rich and poor areas. The scenes set in the rich area are full of bold and vibrant colors while scenes set in the slums are drab. It’s a subtle but awesome detail that is perfect for a film like this. The details are also super clear as well. Overall, this is a nice-looking video transfer.

Video Rating: 4.5/5 atoms


Parasite - Lee Sun-kyun and Jo Yeo-jeong

Parasite hits Blu-ray with a 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio track. Early on in the film, you can hear just how accurate the sound effects are to the scene. There’s a ton of sound effects that playfully emerge all over the soundstage. There are also a lot of atmospheric effects that complement the mix very well. Effects like the city noise or dogs barking can distinctly be heard in the mix. Unfortunately, the mix gets loud enough to the point where it drowns out the dialogue. Even the score is loud and boisterous enough to drown out the dialogue. For a dialogue-heavy film, that’s a bit of a problem. When you do hear the dialogue, it’s clear and audible. Overall, this is an immersive mix that’s brought down by the drowning of the film’s dialogue.

Audio Rating: 4/5 atoms

Special Features

Parasite - Jo Yeo-jeong

Parasite has the following special features on the Blu-ray disc:

  • Parasite – Fantastic Fest 2019 Q&A with Director Bong Joon-ho
  • Trailer #1
  • Trailer #2

As you can see there isn’t a lot of special features in this release. Like most Q&As, the information given by Bong Joon-ho is as interesting as the film itself. He reveals a lot of hidden secrets of the film—especially during the audience Q&A section of the feature.

Special Features Rating: 2/5 atoms

Overall, Parasite is an instant classic that’ll stand the test of time as long as there’s economic inequality around the world. The picture quality is superb but sadly, there are some issues with dialogue being drowned out by the loudness of the mix. Unfortunately, despite the interesting information you’ll discover while watching Bong Joon-ho’s Q&A.

Overall Rating: 4/5 atoms

This Blu-ray was reviewed using a retail/advance copy/unit provided by Universal Home Entertainment.

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