Is ‘Parasite’ the Most Important Best Picture Winner Ever? Film Critics, Hollywood React

indienews

Staff Member
It’s going to take a while for Hollywood to come down from the high that is “Parasite” sweeping the 92nd Academy Awards. Bong Joon Ho’s Palme d’Or winner entered the 2020 Oscars in history-making fashion as the first South Korean feature film nominated for Academy Awards. Many Oscar pundits expected “Parasite” to win the Best International Feature Film category with ease, but very few saw Bong sweeping the major prizes for Best Picture, Best Director, and Best Original Screenplay. “Parasite” now marks the first time any foreign-language film has won the Best Picture prize. For this reason, many film critics, directors, and actors are championing “Parasite” as the most important and game-changing Best Picture winner in Oscar history. Along with Barry Jenkins’ “Moonlight,” “Parasite” is also being hailed as the best Best Picture winner in recent memory.

“‘Parasite’ has dealt a much-needed slap to the American film industry’s narcissism, its long-standing love affair with itself, its own product and its own image,” writes LA Times film critic Justin Chang about the “Parasite” Oscars sweep. “It has startled the Academy into recognizing that no country’s cinema has a monopoly on greatness… And in a year of unwelcome resurgence for #OscarsSoWhite, especially in the acting categories, the sight of actors Song Kang Ho, Park So Dam, Choi Woo Shik, Lee Jung Eun and other members of the ‘Parasite’ cast and crew taking the stage was nothing less than a balm — and a sign, perhaps, that the Academy’s efforts to diversify its ranks and become a truly global institution are having an imperfect but measurable effect.”

Owen Gleiberman, film critic for Variety, writes that “Parasite” winning Best Picture is a vote for cinema’s future, adding “It’s a vote for a future of storytellers who come from fresh places, who see our passions and dilemmas with new eyes, who invent new forms…On Oscar night, Hollywood sent out a message to the world — as it always does during the Academy Awards — about the kind of movie it’s chosen to represent the industry. And in honoring a film that wasn’t even made within the industry, it was saying: We can look to lights from outside. In a year when the debate was framed as ‘Marvel vs cinema,’ the Oscars voted for cinema.”

Filmmaker Ava DuVernay shared her joy on social media for “Parasite” winning Best Picture: “The world is big and it is beautiful and films from everywhere deserve to be on that stage winning The Academy’s highest honor. This is wonderful and right.”

Not only has “Parasite” now become an Oscars juggernaut, but it’s also a box office sensation around the world. The film is heading to $40 million at the U.S. box office, making it one of the top non-English-language releases in domestic history, and it has already crossed the $160 million mark worldwide. “Parasite” is Bong’s first movie to top the $100 million mark internationally. Expect “Parasite” to continue to thrive at the box office this weekend following its major Oscar victories.

MASSIVE! HISTORIC! LANDMARK! PARASITE! The world is big and it is beautiful and films from everywhere deserve to be on that stage winning @TheAcademy’s highest honor. This is wonderful and right. #Oscars pic.twitter.com/Q8go53lqmd

— Ava DuVernay (@ava) February 10, 2020
Congratulations, @ParasiteMovie!
👏🏽
#Oscars pic.twitter.com/IAYseYmobc

— PRIYANKA (@priyankachopra) February 10, 2020
Parasite Parasite Parasite Parasite!!!! Oh my gawwwdddd Parasite did it!!!! Director Bong did it!! The whole insanely talented cast did it!! South Korea did it. History made. Heading out to celebrate all night!!!

— Jon M. Chu (@jonmchu) February 10, 2020
Wrote this in a blur, but I hope it conveys some sense of my utter euphoria:https://t.co/dPre7fkfOG

— Justin Chang (@JustinCChang) February 10, 2020
WHEN BONG JOON HO WON https://t.co/4vQHXwEjom

— jen yamato (@jenyamato) February 10, 2020
HISTORY IS MADE. PARASITE IS BEST PICTURE. #Oscars

— Joshua Rothkopf (@joshrothkopf) February 10, 2020
Oscars continue to be the most mixed of bags: PARASITE winning: miraculous and amazing. The embarassing as hell “how do you do fellow young people of color” presenter introductions were bad and tokenizing. Just honor some people of color in your nominations for crying out loud.

— Katie Walsh (@katiewalshstx) February 10, 2020
#Parasite is the first film I remember winning that most cinema-loving folks would generally agree is the truly best film of the year. It’s the first time MY favorite film won since Unforgiven. And I for one am really happy that more people will now go see it.

— James Gunn (@JamesGunn) February 10, 2020
That acknowledgement from Bong of Scorsese’s influence on his craft and Tarantino’s on his profile, as he collects Best Freakin’ Director from the Academy – that beautiful transnational cross-pollination – is EXACTLY where cinema should be in 2020. #Oscars

— Robbie Collin (@robbiereviews) February 10, 2020
🎶
🎵
HITS FROM THE BONG
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🎶


— SAFDIE (@JOSH_BENNY) February 10, 2020
Congratulations @ParasiteMovie So so proud to be Korean
🇰🇷
❤
pic.twitter.com/aISEy1HUpz

— Sandra Oh (@IamSandraOh) February 10, 2020
 
I don't think I'd use the term "important", cuz really, what the heck does that mean? The historical significance, however, cannot be denied.

First of all, I like the fact that the Academy changed the name of the first award "Parasite" won from "Best Foreign Language Film" to "Best International Feature". Bong Joon-ho commented on this. He didn't say much about it so I can't speak for him, but the reason I like the change is because the United States of America doesn't have an official language. Spanish, for example, is just as American as English. So, by changing the award to "Best International Feature", they're no longer implying that anything other than English is un-American, and that's a big deal.

As far as "Parasite" also taking home "Best Picture", I say kudos not just to Bong Joon-ho and everyone involved in that production, but also to the voting members of the Academy for making that vote. There's no reason why International films shouldn't also get their fair shake in this category, and so this historic win is also a very big deal. I hope this sets a precedent that turns into a trend.

Now, if only the Academy would start giving fair consideration to movies that are more "fun" as opposed to the "serious" ones that dominate this category. "Endgame" should've at least gotten a nomination.
 

sfoster

Staff Member
Moderator
Ive been listening to dc reporter Krystal Ball and even she was talking about parasite last month and what a significant film it was. Probably the only time I’ve heard her talk about movies. I gotta see this film.
 

sfoster

Staff Member
Moderator
There's no reason why International films shouldn't also get their fair shake in this category, and so this historic win is also a very big deal. I hope this sets a precedent that turns into a trend.
well as I mentioned in the rate th e last film you saw thread... I believe it was 1969 when t the film “Z” won best picture and best foreign film. First time it happened. Funny I just mentioned that and then it happened again
 
Now, if only the Academy would start giving fair consideration to movies that are more "fun" as opposed to the "serious" ones that dominate this category. "Endgame" should've at least gotten a nomination.
Actually, they did give consideration to "fun" films in the early days of the Oscars, and even one or two recently. Here are some winners.....


It Happened One Night - 1934 (BTW, this Capra film is the basic template for almost all Romantic Comedies.)
The Great Ziegfeld - 1936
You Can't Take It with You - 1938 (Another Capra film.)
Going My Way - 1944
The Sting - 1973
Slumdog Millionaire - 2008

There were a fair number of musicals sprinkled in there as well...

Cavalcade - 1933
Gigi - 1958
An American in Paris - 1951
Around the World in 80 Days - 1956
West Side Story - 1961
My Fair Lady - 1964
The Sound of Music - 1965
Oliver! - 1968
Chicago - 2002
 
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