South Korean film Parasite had a historic night at the Oscars, picking up four Academy Awards and becoming the first non-English film to win best picture. Much to the delight of director Bong Joon Ho.
But not everyone was delighted. And not just because their favorite films came up short.
Right-wing political commentator Jon Miller had a different gripe: South Korean director Bong Joon Ho gave the majority of his acceptance speech in… Korean.
This might be the dumbest thing to have come out of the Oscars this year. Even dumber than the internet becoming obsessed with Kelly Osborne’s cleavage .
Let’s get one thing straight: I don’t think Miller’s tweet was racist. He did complain about “these people,” but that was just a poor word choice. He was clearly talking about the Academy selection committee.
So no, Miller’s tweet wasn’t racist. Completely idiotic fits the mark much better. Maybe a dash of xenophobia for good measure. He did find it necessary to complain about Ho not speaking English, after all.
But the really idiotic take comes in his follow-up tweet where he whines that the Oscars are too “woke.”
Trying to judge which movie is “best” is far too subjective to be even remotely possible. Parasite won because it’s an important film that Hollywood wants more people to watch. Not because it’s better than all of the other movies.
Miller’s claim that “these people are the destruction of America” is just the dumb-as-paste icing on the cake.
So why is Parasite so important?
More than just a breakout hit, it’s an international phenomenon. It’s made more headway with Western audiences than any foreign film since Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon.
It doesn’t matter whether Jon Miller thinks Once Upon a Time in Hollywood or 1917 are better films than Parasite. That’s a debate worth having, but the answer is entirely subjective. And it’s not the purpose of the “Best Picture” Oscar – no matter what the name suggests.
What isn’t a subjective question is which of those three films is the most important.
Once Upon a Time in Hollywood and 1917 are typical “Oscar-bait.” 1917 has impressive cinematography, which is why it won “Best Cinematography.” But no other film nominated for best picture came close to achieving what Parasite did.
It got people who don’t watch international cinema talking about a Korean movie. That’s an unqualified triumph.