The pollution in the Han River gives birth to Korea's greatest terror: a giant amphibian monster that is the host to a deadly disease! When the monster strikes the Wonhyogyo riverbank and captures a young girl, it is up to her family to band together and come to her rescue. While it appears to be a monster movie on the surface, THE HOST is a touching family drama at heart that is filled with plenty of fun characters and light humor. The Park family is by no means perfect, but they must each put their differences aside in order to save their courageous daughter Hyun-Seo. Director Bong Joon-Ho takes a far different approach to the monster movie and opens with an incredible attack sequence that is beautifully shot and choreographed, revealing the monster to the audience very early on. From here, the beast becomes a background player that is simply a catalyst for the family's struggle. Also unlike most traditional Japanese monster movies, the slimy creature is rendered entirely by computer, but its sleek design and interactions with the surrounding environments give it a life of its own. Bong infuses the plot with a strong sense of satire and biting social commentary as well, but in a way that is both relevant and entertaining at the same time. THE HOST is one of the stronger Korean exports in recent years, and a worthy addition to the giant monster genre!
If you liked THE HOST, check out:
ALLIGATOR, GOJIRA, GAMERA THE BRAVE.