The Host (2006)
R | 120 min
Director: Joon-ho Bong
by Jason Koenigsberg
It’s October so it’s Halloween season, the time to sit back and enjoy horror movies by the barrel. So this month’s streaming picks are going to be horror films that you may have missed during their initial theatrical run. First up is the revisionist Korean monster movie The Host. Released in the United States in early 2007 I was fortunate enough to see it in the theaters and I knew it was something very special. Genre mashing the creature feature norms with elements of social drama, intimate family portrait, monster horror flick and, slapstick comedy, The Host is really unlike any other movie you have ever seen. The monster is great, the environmental message is strong but never beats you over the head and the working class family the story focuses on is so eccentric there are moments you forget there is a monster that terrorizing and killing people near Seoul’s Han River. Plus the ending is very bold and one that you would never find in a typical Hollywood picture. Director Joon-ho Bong has flourished since this film making the powerful Korean drama Mother (2009) and his first big budget English language film Snowpiercer (2014) which ended up on my best films of the year list. Seek out this inventive and unusual horror film that adds a lot to the creature feature sub-genre.
The Host is currently available to stream on Netflix.