The Farewell Review: A Bittersweet Family Tale

17th September 2019

By Sabrina Lemer

With my trusty Cineworld card at hand I was able to get to see ‘The Farewell’ directed and written by Lulu Wang based on her own families lie before it opens officially in the UK and Ireland. This family drama which was one of the standouts of the Sundance film festival, is a modern take on what happens when eastern traditions and new western notions come to a head. 

When the matriarch of Billi’s ( Played by triple threat actress/rapper/comedian Awkwafina) family is not given long to live, the family has to devise a way in which they can all be together so they can say a final goodbye all the while keeping Billi’s Nai Nai (Chinese for Grandmother) in the dark. The family decides a family wedding is the perfect excuse to reunite for one last time. 

I loved this film and though there is some very funny moments, It definitely leaned towards sad and moving to me. It’s a beautiful take on the things we say and do to protect each other. The real meaning of family and sacrifice and those silly quirky moments that are particular to everyone’s own family. 

The dialogue is mostly in Chinese so get ready for subtitles but it’s not one to miss. Issues of immigration and what we do for our children are strewn through the film. It’s a special little movie about love and what’s really important about life.

The film opens across the UK and Ireland on Friday Sept 20th.

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