During Da-song's birthday party, after a brief conversation1 with Da-hye, Ki-woo takes the scholar's rock with him and goes down to the basement. What was his motive?
It wasn't entirely clear from the movie.
From what I searched on the Internet, the most popular take on the motive seems to be "To kill Guen-sae and Moon-gwang." However, I'm unable to accept this because:
- He doesn't necessarily require the rock to do the job. After all, a big rock is not a good option when you're not strong enough to effectively wield it and your plan is to kill two strong adults. Couldn't he have used one of the knives in the kitchen instead?
Also, if his primary motive was really to kill the couple without getting himself killed, he would have instead ran back when he dropped the rock while climbing down the stairs and come back better prepared with a knife from the kitchen. But, he decided to go on, regardless.
- Both, his demeanor when he noticed Moon-gwang's body on the floor and the tone of his voice when he says "Hey, are you okay?" twice, suggest that he was genuinely worried about the possibility that she was dead.
The alternative take is "He wanted to pass on the scholar's rock to the couple as a lucky charm." I'm unable to accept this as well because of one reason:
- Why was he sneaky?
At the very least, when he dropped the rock, couldn't he have announced (with appropriate level of loudness) "Hey, I come in peace. I'm not here to kill you. I just wish to help you."?
I understand that certain things in the movie can be left for subjective interpretation (such as what the scholar's rock represents). However, I don't believe "The motive behind why Ki-woo went down to the basement with the scholar's rock" is one of those things.
Related questions on SE:
- What is the significant of the rock?: Both the asker and the answerer of this question believe that Ki-woo's motive was to kill the couple.
1 The following is the conversation they had before his departure. This describes the thought-process that was running on his mind before he went down to the basement.
Da-hye: You were thinking of something else.
Da-hye: While kissing me, you were thinking of something else.
Da-hye: What do you mean, no? You are doing it now.
Ki-woo: Wow... Everyone looks gorgeous, right? Even for a sudden gathering, they're so cool. And look so natural... Da-hye, do I fit in here?
Ki-woo: In this setting, do I fit in?
Da-hye nods (weirdly)
Da-hye: Hey, where are you going?
Ki-woo: I'm going down.
Da-hye: Just stay with me.
Ki-woo: I need to go down there.
Da-hye: Why go to those boring people? Can't you stay here?
Ki-woo: Not to those people. Down lower.