By John H. Foote

Every so often a film comes about that is wildly acclaimed, and I am on the outside looking in, not comprehending the acclaim. It happened with The Artist (2011), fun film, built on a gimmick, but Best Picture? Please! I felt the same gnawing annoyance about Slumdog Millionaire (2008), which I liked, but did not love. Hailed as wildly original, I saw at its core a romantic comedy, boy meets girl, boy loses girl, boy gets girl back forever. Set against the background of brutal poverty in India and a popular game show, I suppose it had some originality but eight Academy Awards!

The one that staggers me most was The English Patient (1996) which I, in a word, hated. Yes I know the desert vistas are endlessly beautiful, the design makes the film look incredibly expensive when it was not. I did not care a hoot about the characters, except the Nurse, Hanna, played with luminous raw beauty and honesty by Juliette Binoche. The rest, I loathed. During the great emotional, romantic scene in the cave, all I was thinking was “die, for God sakes DIE!! put us out of our misery!” I did not believe the romance between Ralph Fiennes and Kristen Scott Thomas at all, I did believe anyone could love her and he was so muted, I wondered how she even knew he wanted her. Hated it, even more, the second time, and then it wins nine Academy Awards!

I do not believe I am wrong with these films, I stand by what I wrote.

Parasite, from South Korea, is the most OVERRATED, OVER PRAISED film of the year.

Yep, I went there. Shoot me.

What is all the fuss about?

The film is impossible to believe, to begin with. Are we expected to believe a wealthy, very intelligent family would not smell a rat with the family they hire? Rich people are rarely stupid people. The end comes out of nowhere and I did not buy it. Forced, unimaginative, not for a second did I buy it. Yet it is hailed a masterpiece and a legitimate threat to win the Academy Award as Best Picture! It seems to have already claimed Best International Feature, but France’s Les Miserables (not the musical, not the novel) is a far better film and should win this award.

But no, it seems Parasite will latch on to the Academy.

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