“Minari” directed by Lee Isaac Chung, follows the story of a Korean-American family and their move to Arkansas to build a farm. “Minari” is touching, warm, and despite misleading “foreign” nominations, a distinctly American story. “Minari” is nominated for Best Picture, Steven Yeun for Best Actor, Youn Yuh-Jung for Best Supporting Actress, Best Original Score, Best Director, and Best Original Screenplay.
Initially, the plot was slow, but the way it went from 0 to 100 so fast; I didn’t expect that at all. My favorite character would have to be Grandma, Monica’s mother. She isn’t your typical grandma; she’s like the cool aunt that everyone loves. Grandma can act childish at times, but that’s even more reason to love her, she’s hilarious. David, the one and only son to Jacob and Monica, is all over the place. At times, I loved David and then other times I thought to myself, “The audacity this kid has!” Not to spoil the film too much, but one of my favorite scenes was when David gave Grandma his pee to drink without her knowledge. In another scene, he didn’t want to go to his room “..because Grandma smells like Korea!” This kid has guts that even I don’t have. Throughout the film, David’s family had their ups and downs, but many lessons were learned. Lessons about values, family, and money that everyone should learn. I didn’t expect the movie to end the way it did, but the ending hurt my heart as it was a very sad way to end it. Overall, the film was great and it’s something I would definitely recommend to my friends!” – Ony Otiocha
“Minari,” in my opinion, is the standout film of the year and the nominee most deserving of Best Picture. Although it is not my personal favorite of this year, it features both stories that aren’t being told enough in our country, that being the lives of immigrants, and incredible performances with nuance to spare. There has been a lot of talk over the idea of “International,” “Foreign Language,” and other categories to specify global cinema. Although often about Korea and mostly in the Korean language, a story of immigrating to America is the most American film you can get. I’m glad the Oscars recognized this and continue recognizing stories like it. Youn and Yeun deserve their nominations and accolades and more this year. I only worry that the Oscars will swing from two extremes each year, seen in “Green Book”’s 2019 win and “Parasite”’s 2020 win. I hope the pendulum stays on interesting stories told by people who experienced those stories and doesn’t go for a more “Oscar bait” winner. “Minari” is tender, deeply American, told beautifully and is what I believe is most worthy of best picture this year. – Allie Remhof