Brow Beat

Bong Joon-Ho and Tilda Swinton Get Their Spielberg On in the Trailer for Netflix’s Okja

South Korea’s Bong Joon-Ho has been compared to Steven Spielberg in his prime, but it’s been a good 10 years since he ventured into classic Spielberg territory. That looks set to change with Okja, whose first trailer reveals that it centers on the friendship between a young girl and a genetically engineered dinosaur-type creature. Said creature appears to be the creation of Tilda Swinton, who exults, “I took nature and science, and I synthesized” before getting made up to share her findings with the world. But the movie’s capsule synopsis suggests that it won’t be long before nature and science find themselves at odds, as a multinational corporation tries to lay claim to the “beast in all of us.”


Bong’s 2006 movie, The Host, put a similarly surprising spin on the monster movie, and 2013’s Snowpiercer showed a dim view of both humanity’s future and science’s ability to change it for the better—although it was surprisingly optimistic about the taste of baby meat. The trailer for Netflix’s production, which was co-written with Jon Ronson, strikes a decidedly milder, softer tone. Whether that’s just marketing or just the soft sell, we’ll have to wait until a few months to find out.

Okja, whose cast also includes Jake Gyllenhaal, Lily Collins, Giancarlo Esposito, Paul Dano, and Steven Yeun, hits Netflix and selected theaters June 28.