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34 Things We Learned From ‘The Host’ Commentary

The Host
By  · Published on August 17th, 2011

Headphones on. DVD player loaded. Blank page open. That’s right, folks. It’s another edition of Commentary Commentary, our weekly look at a film’s commentary track and all the amazing anecdotes and discernment that come with it. This week we’re going international for the first time here in Commentary Commentary. We’re headed all the way to South Korea and all the way back to 2006. Not exactly sure which of those two settings are further away, but we have them right here on this pressed, metal disc.

This week we’re listening to Bong Joon-ho’s commentary on his monster movie, The Host. Does he end up revealing in it how much he hates everything America stands for? Spoiler alert: he doesn’t, but I’m sure this article isn’t going to help matters. So take a look at what I learned. I suddenly have a craving for Kimchi and Soju.

THE HOST (2006)

Commentators: Bong Joon-ho (director, screenwriter), Tony Rayns (long-time friend of the director), the soothing sounds of a giant fish with legs vomiting up the bones of dozens of victims (I no longer want Kimchi)


“It’s a painful process, but it’s a very creative process. I can express tension or suspense without the creature on the screen.” – Bong Joon-ho


While there is much to learn from Bong Joon-ho regarding his views and the way he put The Host together, the DVD commentary is not a very enjoyable one. Sadly, much of what we learn comes in the form of broad stroke insight into casting, the film’s narrative about family vs. the American government vs. the monster, and the design and execution of the creature. Tony Rayns brings much out of him with the questions he brings up, but it makes for a less than completely interesting listen.

[Editor’s note: The original post included a comment by its author that should never have been allowed. It’s been removed, and we sincerely apologize for our lack of judgement upon publication.]

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