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Film Review--Joy Luck Club

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Film Review-Joy Luck Club Producer: Oliver Stone Directed by: Wayne Wang Geographical Setting: China / San Francisco Time Setting: 1920s - 40s (China) / 1960s - 80s (USA) Cast: The Mothers: Suyuan: Kieu Chinh Lindo: Tsai Chin Ying Ying: France Nuyen An Mei: Lisa Lu The Daughters: June: Ming-Na Wen Waverly: Tamlyn Tomita Lena: Lauren Tom Rose: Rosalind Chao The book Joy Luck Club, written by Amy Tan, is undeniably a great success as it earns myriad praises from the viewers. Yet, the movie adoption draws more criticism due to some flaws and imperfections in the film. Though attracted by the scintillating story and content, I, like other critics, do feel a bit disappointed about the film. It could have been made a lot better than it is. The movie mainly focuses on four Chinese American immigrant families, who have established the Joy Luck Club for gathering and playing Mahjong which is one of the traditional games in China. ...read more.


Using the image of swan to symbolize the mothers, the movie sets off with highly symbolic narration. Swan is described as a creature stretching its neck, in hope of becoming a goose. This implies how the mothers spare no pains to flee from China to America for freedom. The giving of swan's feather to her daughter infers the mothers' expectation on their daughters as well. Unfortunately, the symbol is mentioned once only throughout the whole movie. As a result, I can scarcely recall the image of swan after two hours. I trust the idea of swan could have been made much more impressive if it is reiterated in the ending as well. However, the movie concludes with a mundane statement "I'd found the best of myself". Indeed, the ending can sound more intriguing and have a more emphatic effect with even simple wordings, like "Now the feather is treasured by the daughter with deep and heartfelt care". ...read more.


Despite the above drawbacks, the distinguishable characterization of the four daughters is worth compliment. June is exemplary. Compared with Waverly a gifted chess player all the time by her mother in childhood, June a relatively ordinary girl seems to have no talents. Such sense of inferiority constitutes her self-depreciating outlook on life. In fact, Ming-Na Wen the actress skillfully expresses her sense of loss in her eyes, as she will never look at people sharply in the movie. What I see on the screen is apparently a directionless and timid girl. In my discretion, she has triumphed over this role. On the whole, this movie is not unsatisfactory, in spite of the fact that it demands the viewers to watch it at least twice in order to get a better understanding. The thought-provoking theme about how we can cope with the conflict between different cultures may inspire you as well. If you have plenty of time and are only sensitive to the theme and meaning of the movie, Joy Luck Club may be your cup of tea. ?? ?? ?? ?? ...read more.

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