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The Farewell (2019)

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  • M: The Original
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    #1202990832

    Saw it this afternoon. While recognizing how well made it is this is not the award season juggernaut hinted at by taste makers.

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    BICTH
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    #1202990950

    a very interesting look into chinese family dynamics, I appreciate it for that alone. although knowing the language I have to say half of the jokes (or at least whenever people were laughing) were only funny in the subtitles

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    Icecreamben
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    #1202991042

    Totally disagree, I think this will get quite a few nods.  It’s an extremely accessible film that has a deeply emotional core.  It’s the kind of Indie flick that the Oscars will give attention to.  I don’t think it will win, but I think it will be recognized.

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    Victor Cruz
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    #1202993176

    I don’t see Akwafina getting anything other than a GG Comedy or musical and Critics Choice for Comedy Actress nomination. She was good but her role wasn’t challenging nor demanding.

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    moviefan617
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    #1202993542

    My grandmother passed away about three and a half years ago, and I constantly think about her and her role as the strong-headed matriarch who held such deep affection and desired greatness for her grandchildren. I also moved away from home a little over two years ago and am sometimes not around for every family function or to deal with the tribulations of family dynamics like I would growing up. Just recently, I was home mere days before my parents had to put down my dog and had to say goodbye knowing that was probably the last time I’d see him.

    I give this context in order to explain why two of this film’s central themes resonated so strongly with me, and to illuminate why I found this film to be absolutely phenomenal. Lulu Wang’s depiction of family dynamics is grounded in a universality that makes it easy for any audience member to identify with, while also presenting us with details that are specific to her experience and the Chinese culture as a whole. Through that, you admire the singular voice she brings to this experience while seeing parts of your own family in this story. Nai Nai and my grandmother (who we called Babci) were not note-for-note similar, but there were parts of Babci I saw in Nai Nai. That admirable stubbornness and tendency to be a bit judgmental that still provoked a smirk, the playful affectations of “stupid child,” the consistent phone calls, and the repeated desires for success in all aspects of life… I teared up constantly throughout the film because I could see Babci in Nai Nai.

    This film also very smartly and mostly indirectly addresses the difficulty of identifying “home.” Is home where you are physically located or the place where you have the most intense physical attachment? I think it’s a bit of both, and they influence one another intensely. Being away from what “home” is in your heart means you may not be around to care for family and see them through times for turmoil and change. But in the end, you’re away from home because you have an opportunity to create a better life somewhere else. This film questions that decision when we feel like everything is going wrong. Sometimes you want to run home to a place of comfort, out of a sense of responsibility but also a hope that you’ll find the answers that don’t come easy when you have a chance to get back in touch with your roots. This internal struggle for a clear answer is played beautifully, mostly due to Awkwafina’s stunning performance.

    If I haven’t outright said it yet, this is a beautiful film and a deeply powerful one that was illuminated by hitting very close to home for me. Lulu Wang has a great sense of how she wants to tell this story, and her direction allows for small moments of visual flair, but the star is her script, which really does send you swinging from wide-grinned laughs to deeply felt pain accompanied by tears. Awkwafina, as I said before, is so great and erases any preconceived image you might have had of her before. She says so much with her face and conveys so many emotions in the span of mere seconds. It’s a marvel watching her contend with the same rollercoaster of emotions that the audience is experiencing. The rest of the ensemble is also great, with very good performances by Tzi Ma and Diana Lin, but I absolutely adored Zhao Shuzhen. She imbues such warmth and tough love that I think anyone who had a special relationship with their grandmother will appreciate. Because of the nature of the central lie of the film, her line delivery comes out one way but is interpreted another way entirely by the audience. That’s an achievement of Shuzhen’s performance and Wang’s screenplay in tandem.

    I saw the film last night and I haven’t stopped thinking about it since, honestly. The film’s box office success overjoys me and I want to see this film continue to be a hit and for audience members to experience this special story. I hope it can make a substantial awards run, and I trust A24 to put their heart and soul behind this film because these are the stories that deserve to be seen and rewarded in our modern film landscape. If you haven’t seen it yet, go as soon as it gets to your theater. It’ll exceed your every expectation.

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    FairWeatherAffair
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    #1202993544

    Saw it this afternoon. While recognizing how well made it is this is not the award season juggernaut hinted at by taste makers.

    I have a feeling a lot of that talk is due to Wang’s relationship with Jenkins. Predicted success by association, perhaps?

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    Icecreamben
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    #1202993572

    I have a feeling a lot of that talk is due to Wang’s relationship with Jenkins. Predicted success by association, perhaps?

    No.  It’s because it’s a great movie that does seem very much so like an awards juggernaut.   At what point are we going to stop dismissing indie ventures, especially from A24, as serious contenders for award recognition?  Especially after Indie flicks get nominated over and over again, every year.

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    FairWeatherAffair
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    #1202993746

    No. It’s because it’s a great movie that does seem very much so like an awards juggernaut. At what point are we going to stop dismissing indie ventures, especially from A24, as serious contenders for award recognition? Especially after Indie flicks get nominated over and over again, every year.

    For every Moonlight, there are 15 Swiss Army Mans. Similar to all other production/distribution studios, A24 is no better at creating viable contenders.

    The glorification of this specific company to me is laughable. A24 has cultivated a very specific aesthetic with its releases that seems to appeal to a particular American cinephilic demographic – a good thing if you fall into that demographic and a confounding thing if not.

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    Icecreamben
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    #1202993752

    For every Moonlight, there are 15 Swiss Army Mans. Similar to all other production/distribution studios, A24 is no better at creating viable contenders. The glorification of this specific company to me is laughable. A24 has cultivated a very specific aesthetic with its releases that seems to appeal to a particular American cinephilic demographic – a good thing if you fall into that demographic and a confounding thing if not.

    What a bizarre and elitist thing to say.  Good movies are good movies and this one is more Moonlight than it is Swiss Army Man, that’s for sure.

    I know that you get off on being rude and pretentious, but it’s absurdly gross to suggest that a female filmmaker is only getting good notices because of the success of her boyfriend. Disgusting.

    • This reply was modified 2 months ago by  Icecreamben.
    • This reply was modified 2 months ago by  Icecreamben.
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    Tyler
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    #1202993939

    Holy shit I didn’t know Wang and Jenkins were dating!

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    FairWeatherAffair
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    #1202993992

    What a bizarre and elitist thing to say. Good movies are good movies and this one is more Moonlight than it is Swiss Army Man, that’s for sure.

    I know that you get off on being rude and pretentious, but it’s absurdly gross to suggest that a female filmmaker is only getting good notices because of the success of her boyfriend. Disgusting.

    Okay, I am really not sure where this is coming from. Nowhere was I discussing the quality of The Farewell, I was instead speaking to the media perceptions surrounding the film’s awards narrative. Suggesting that the partner of a director whose film recently won Best Picture may be the beneficiary of some awards season talk is in no way commenting on her abilities, but is instead commenting on the politics of an awards season.

    I won’t comment on the claims of elitism and pretension – I have previously spoken on my feelings around such defensive accusations, but suffice to say that I disagree.

    But, really, thank you for trying to paint me as a misogynist because you enjoyed a film which I also enjoyed.

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    Icecreamben
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    #1202994342

    Well dear, when you say misogynistic things, people are going to call you a misogynist.

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    24fanatic
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    #1202995554

    Just saw this… so far my favorite film of the year! Everything about it was great. It deals with a subject matter that everyone can relate to, even if some cultural elements might be foreign to some viewers. I think voters are going to eat this up!

    The Farewell will definitely be in play for nominations:

    Best Picture
    Best Director (outside shot)
    Best Actress
    Best Supporting Actress (but ONLY if critics rally behind her)
    Best Original Screenplay (prob a lock here… at least for now)

    I’m not as sure about tech categories… it will really depend on how well the film does down the line with box office (so far so good) and critics awards in the fall.

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    EsOS
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    #1203010286

    That score simply has to get recognition. Gorgeous.

    Also, I’ll be stanning for Awkwafina all season long.

    GIVE LENA HEADEY HER EMMY

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    linecelts
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    #1203010995

    It’s been a while since I been on this board but………..I went to see The Farewell in theaters yesterday and I really enjoyed it, very refreshing.

    Awkwafina could get a Best Actress at the Golden Globes and maybe Critics Choice Awards but I would like to see her advance to SAG and Oscars. I thought her performance was pretty good.

    The actress who played her grandmother, I could possibly see her getting nominated for Supporting Actress and I hope she does with support because she was pretty good and funny.

    Best Screenplay I can see that and maybe Best Picture.

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