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Okja Trailer and Review From Director Bong Joon Ho

Updated on January 14, 2020
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The Okja Poster from Netflix Originals
The Okja Poster from Netflix Originals | Source

Okja has been streaming on Netflix since its release in 2017. A film directed and written by Bong Joon-ho with co-writer Jon Ronson. Now with Joon Ho's 2019 film Parasite becoming an Oscar award nominee, it's never been a better time to watch the trailer for Okja and see the movie for yourself.

What Animal is Okja?

Okja is a make-believe animal. In the film, we are told that genetically modified experiments have resulted in a giant pig. A pig that's big enough to farm and yield enough produce for much larger profits. As far as the design work for the animal goes, filmmakers used elements of an elephant blended with that of a pig and added a dollop of a hippopotamus. If you find that you're curious about how filmmakers brought this animal to life, The Hollywood Reporter has a great article about it.

Where is Okja Filmed?

The story itself is a bilingual film with English Korean and Spanish language used throughout it. Okja stars in the idyllic mountains in South Korea with Mija (An Seo Hyun) playing with her beloved pet.

The filmmakers utilized plenty of filming locations in the completion of the narrative. Beginning in Canada, opening scenes were made in Britannia Beach. As the storyline tends to get the travel bug somewhat, South Korea and New York were also used.

Mija (played by An Seo Hyun) and her beloved family pet Okja.
Mija (played by An Seo Hyun) and her beloved family pet Okja. | Source

Does Okja Have A Happy Ending?

Firstly, I won't tell you whether this has a happy ending or not. This is not a spoiler review. But the reasons to see this one are many.

The cast is a stellar collection of famous names and faces many will recognize. Tilda Swinton, Paul Dano, Seo-hyun Ahn and of course Jake Gyllenhaal are just some that are worth a mention.

The narrative is action-packed, and fast-moving. The heroine of the film, Mija goes to a lot of effort to save her pet Okja. She begins her journey in a remote jungle-like landscape which is beautifully filmed to capture the Mija's home life and imagination. The love, attention, and bond between a young girl and her pet are perfectly paced. You will when the idea of that is threatened.

It's easy to mistake Okja as a film for children. Be warned this is not a kids' movie. Aside from adult themes, the tale itself is not family-friendly as there is plenty of swearing and violence, and it earned its M-15+ rating. Okja is no horror movie, but it sure packs a punch and feels like one at times.

The story is filled with ideas surrounding animal cruelty and is not the type of story that excludes itself from danger or violence. There is a lot of scenes about how Okja was created and what she was created for. The treatment of their species will be upsetting to animal lovers and advocates out there. Just because this animal is fictitious, there is no denying the realistic thread attached to today's meat farming and techniques still used today.

Boon Joon Ho — A Prolific Director

Because the company looking to retrieve Okja essentially want to eat her and every other Okja on the planet, at times it feels like a giant vegan-friendly warning sticker has been placed on it. There is the introduction of animal activists including my favorite, Steven Yuen who leads the small group. I did, read a director's statement after watching the film and despite its prolific statement, cast, crew, and filmmakers are not vegetarian. I'm sure some are, but the movie itself is not some vegan war cry. The story is more of a testament to Boon Joon Ho's ability to blend tone and genre into a complete work. If you decide to eat less meat after watching this film, that's totally on you.

Not only will this movie have you wading through a whole sea of emotions but, cinephiles looking for excitement, are guaranteed to find that too. Despite some of the character portrayals being totally over-the-top, performances are on-point. Whether you hate the type of hyperbole from Tilda Swinton's' Lucy and Nancy' (yes she plays twins) or the insanity injection from Jake Gyllenhaal's Johnny there is enough star power in this bizarre yet poignant movie to keep you going.

If anything this film is memorable, witty and totally worth your time if you like to Netflix and chill.

I give OKJA 4 pigs do fly out of 5.

A film distributed by Netflix — Okja

If You Watched Okja, Are You Now Vegan or Vegetarian?

If You Watched Okja, Are You Now Vegan or Vegetarian?

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© 2019 Mother of Movies and Series Reviews

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