Parasite Should Have Been Dedicated to Hillary Clinton

The  movie Parasite is a piece of cinematic art totally aligned with our times. It is an undisputable fact that Hollywood's interactions with politics have changed over the years: It is actually interesting to note the correlation between the brightest years of Hollywood and the most glorious years of American politics -- when Hollywood shines bright and enchants the world with its magic, America is stronger as a nation and as an international power; when America is stronger as a nation, as a political superpower, Hollywood is more dynamic and more profitable.

In recent years, we have observed a paradox in Hollywood's posture regarding the main political events of the day: whereas the most well-known stars and powerful corporations of the movie industry keep bashing the current U.S. administration with an unprecedented  rhetorical violence, the movies they offer us reject discussing deep political questions. Obviously, Hollywood has preferred a short-term strategy, based on maximization of short-term profit margin, which is incompatible with sound stances on politics. Politics is by nature divisive. Democracy is a conflict of ideas, and markets do not like anything that can push consumers away. The entertainment business is by no means different.

But now Parasite has shown up -- surprisingly, it is a South Korean movie that best captures the 2016 USA presidential election: Donald Trump’s election was caused, to a great extent, by the same social atmosphere depicted in Bong Joon-Ho’s movie. Some would say that Parasite is a… populist movie.

First, the title of the movie aims to illustrate the social (un)fabric composed by two clashing social classes: “parasites” is the word representing the upper classes, the establishment, the political status quo, all of  those whom use their power, status, and means to perpetuate their entitlements and their self-sense of social command (after all, they are the so-called “ruling class”) at the expenses of the working class.

At the same time, “parasites” might represent, from that “ruling class” perspective, the workers, the unemployed, the ones who are called the “necessary victims of globalization” by the “progressive globalists” (a modern fancy expression to describe the new socialists). In short: Parasites describes the social war that is going on and which had been created in result of the (not so sexy) marriage between big government and big businesses.

Secondly, an eloquent  demonstration of the populist theme of Parasite is the scene when the poor worker, who lives in a basement, feels really ashamed after his boss -- a rich patriarch -- mentions his bad smell. A bad smell, which, according to him, identifies the people like his worker, someone from the lowest classes -- this is the Marxist idea of social class conscience (that the modern progressive globalists have recycled, calling it “identity politics”).  This is a turning point moment when the worker starts to hate his boss (and all the boss’ family members) from that moment on.

As shocking as it may sound, this scene resonates with what happened in 2016 presidential election: the rich patriarch basically calling the employee a “deplorable,” someone beneath the “ruling class.” Mr. Kim (the driver, the poor guy) never forgot his boss’s depreciative remark; likewise, the deplorables never forgot Hillary Clinton for her (disrespectful) commentary insinuating that they were inferior moral beings.

The anger of the miserable worker ends up with the assassination of Mr. Park (the rich patriarch), as the anger of the working class -- the “deplorables” -- led to Donald Trump’s landslide victory in the Electoral College.

Thirdly, Parasite points out that if you are not fortunate enough to be born from a “happy sperm” (as Warren Buffet once put it), then you are just a number, a consumer or a taxpayer (or not even that), much more so than you are a person and a citizen: you are like a disposable being, with a living body, but without a real, meaningful existence. The system -- the political and financial establishment -- gives you an identity but deprives you of your personhood.

The worker’s rebellion, which ultimately leads to chaos and tragedy ( see the movie’s final scene!), is an act of desperation performed by the “forgotten men” -- a radical gesture to try to reclaim their voice. This clearly resembles the “forgotten men and women’s role leading the way to Donald Trump’s entrance into the White House; they are proud to be Americans, so they demand that America be proud of them as well. “Americanism” might not be a mere vague promise or false ideology to them and their families.

To sum up, Parasite is one more pop culture example which proves that populism is not just an exotic political creation; populism is a product of the dominant social dynamics that have been forged in recent years. Hollywood was, as a matter of fact, where populism incubated. Therefore, oddly, Hollywood and politics really walk side by side; they are siblings even though they fist-fight every now and then.

Parasite should have been dedicated to Hillary Clinton – if she learned its lesson, she might not throw it into to her basket of deplorable movies.

The  movie Parasite is a piece of cinematic art totally aligned with our times. It is an undisputable fact that Hollywood's interactions with politics have changed over the years: It is actually interesting to note the correlation between the brightest years of Hollywood and the most glorious years of American politics -- when Hollywood shines bright and enchants the world with its magic, America is stronger as a nation and as an international power; when America is stronger as a nation, as a political superpower, Hollywood is more dynamic and more profitable.

In recent years, we have observed a paradox in Hollywood's posture regarding the main political events of the day: whereas the most well-known stars and powerful corporations of the movie industry keep bashing the current U.S. administration with an unprecedented  rhetorical violence, the movies they offer us reject discussing deep political questions. Obviously, Hollywood has preferred a short-term strategy, based on maximization of short-term profit margin, which is incompatible with sound stances on politics. Politics is by nature divisive. Democracy is a conflict of ideas, and markets do not like anything that can push consumers away. The entertainment business is by no means different.

But now Parasite has shown up -- surprisingly, it is a South Korean movie that best captures the 2016 USA presidential election: Donald Trump’s election was caused, to a great extent, by the same social atmosphere depicted in Bong Joon-Ho’s movie. Some would say that Parasite is a… populist movie.

First, the title of the movie aims to illustrate the social (un)fabric composed by two clashing social classes: “parasites” is the word representing the upper classes, the establishment, the political status quo, all of  those whom use their power, status, and means to perpetuate their entitlements and their self-sense of social command (after all, they are the so-called “ruling class”) at the expenses of the working class.

At the same time, “parasites” might represent, from that “ruling class” perspective, the workers, the unemployed, the ones who are called the “necessary victims of globalization” by the “progressive globalists” (a modern fancy expression to describe the new socialists). In short: Parasites describes the social war that is going on and which had been created in result of the (not so sexy) marriage between big government and big businesses.

Secondly, an eloquent  demonstration of the populist theme of Parasite is the scene when the poor worker, who lives in a basement, feels really ashamed after his boss -- a rich patriarch -- mentions his bad smell. A bad smell, which, according to him, identifies the people like his worker, someone from the lowest classes -- this is the Marxist idea of social class conscience (that the modern progressive globalists have recycled, calling it “identity politics”).  This is a turning point moment when the worker starts to hate his boss (and all the boss’ family members) from that moment on.

As shocking as it may sound, this scene resonates with what happened in 2016 presidential election: the rich patriarch basically calling the employee a “deplorable,” someone beneath the “ruling class.” Mr. Kim (the driver, the poor guy) never forgot his boss’s depreciative remark; likewise, the deplorables never forgot Hillary Clinton for her (disrespectful) commentary insinuating that they were inferior moral beings.

The anger of the miserable worker ends up with the assassination of Mr. Park (the rich patriarch), as the anger of the working class -- the “deplorables” -- led to Donald Trump’s landslide victory in the Electoral College.

Thirdly, Parasite points out that if you are not fortunate enough to be born from a “happy sperm” (as Warren Buffet once put it), then you are just a number, a consumer or a taxpayer (or not even that), much more so than you are a person and a citizen: you are like a disposable being, with a living body, but without a real, meaningful existence. The system -- the political and financial establishment -- gives you an identity but deprives you of your personhood.

The worker’s rebellion, which ultimately leads to chaos and tragedy ( see the movie’s final scene!), is an act of desperation performed by the “forgotten men” -- a radical gesture to try to reclaim their voice. This clearly resembles the “forgotten men and women’s role leading the way to Donald Trump’s entrance into the White House; they are proud to be Americans, so they demand that America be proud of them as well. “Americanism” might not be a mere vague promise or false ideology to them and their families.

To sum up, Parasite is one more pop culture example which proves that populism is not just an exotic political creation; populism is a product of the dominant social dynamics that have been forged in recent years. Hollywood was, as a matter of fact, where populism incubated. Therefore, oddly, Hollywood and politics really walk side by side; they are siblings even though they fist-fight every now and then.

Parasite should have been dedicated to Hillary Clinton – if she learned its lesson, she might not throw it into to her basket of deplorable movies.