Five cents cents (at home): farewell


The open line on the screen is “Based on a lie”. This may be the most sensible writing of “Farewell,” which is actually a good idea. But, as many screenwriters have discovered, it counts what you do with a good idea.

Billy is a 20-year-old American from Asia (Aquafina) who left China with his parents at the age of 6 and worked as a struggling writer in New York City. Despite being expelled from Beijing, she is close to her grandmother Nai Nai (Shuzhen Zhao), who still lives there. Billy finds out that Nai Nai has terminal lung cancer and is only a few months old. The American and Japanese sides of the family decided to go to China for the last time to see Nai Nai, BUT – and that’s a “good idea” – not to tell Nai Nai that he’s going to die. To keep the secret a secret, a fake marriage, which ends with a lavish wedding reception, serves to cover up the attack of family members from abroad. Most of the family understands that “lying” is the Chinese way, but American Billy believes Nai Nai should know the truth of his situation.

Where does the screenwriter go from here? There is tension among his family members to keep the bad news (too much to follow them) and Billy is tense. It’s a family of counselors, and Billy gets a lot out of it. Does he deny the truth? Hope not! Nai Nai is also adept at the counseling game, and Billy gets a lot of screams about his career and marriage, and a Chinese scream from his grandmother, who has absolutely no knowledge of New York City and Billy’s life there, stops him. Of course, Billy loves Nai Nai and the two spend time together, which is as exciting and boring as life on screen. When Nai Nai, convinced that he is as good as a violinist, decided to get the results of a new chest x-ray, Billy had to save the day and go to the hospital a good mile (whether he would get there in time). ?).

A fake wedding should help with the imminent death and shooting of waiting rooms in the hospital, but neither the lengthy scene of the party or the crab at the party, nor the drunkenness and illness of the groom, nor the various friends and family doing karaoke, advance the story. Billy’s short speech at the banquet is also unthinkable (except for the theory, which worries us – does he give this secret?).

There are some interesting but simple arguments about the family about the differences between Chinese and American culture, and Billy feels about his move to the United States decades ago, which is a sign that China has learned more about him than he did. , is more. All of this is not enough to save this slow-moving film, writing and preaching. To add insult to injury, during the loans it was revealed that Nai Nai is alive after 6 years. Another meaning is “based on lies.”

Consciousness: 2019

Director: Lulu Wang

Participation: Aquafina, Shuzhen Zhao, Tzi Ma and Diana Lin

Language: Chinese and English; in English

Other awards: 32 winners and 178 nominations

Working hours: 100 minutes

Goodbye ★★1/2

Accessibility: To buy, rent or stream on many platforms, including Amazon Prime, Google Play, Redbox and Fandango Now; see JustWatch here.

See all reviews of Five St Cine by 2 Film Critics

2 Film Critics

William Greibner is a professor of historical practice at New York State University, Fredonia, where he taught courses in American film and culture. He is the author or co-author of 11 books and more than 50 scientific articles, including essays on The Sierra Madre Treasure, Mackab and Mrs. Miller, The Adventures of Poseidon, and related zombie films. to the Holocaust. Dianna Bennett, the first woman to run a major American law firm, is a retired U.S. tax lawyer.

Dianna and Bill were early and passionate participants in the Toronto Film Festival and today enjoy scenes from movies in Los Angeles, Rome, London and Buffalo, New York. They began reviewing films for Rome’s TheAmerican / inItalia website in 2016, ran their own blog in Rome for a decade, and published two alternative guidebooks to the Eternal City. They still can’t resist watching the movies, except for the subsequent arguments, which were sometimes heated over a bottle of Arneis at the nearest wine shop.

And this is just the beginning of our review process. Within an hour or two we discuss the film as one of us takes notes. The speaker takes notes and prints two copies. Dianna or Bill (usually depending on who had the most interesting insight into the film or who got the most out of it) writes the first draft of the review – ostensibly from a different perspective, followed by 3, 4, or even 7 other drafts. . In some cases, sometimes days, when we agree with the result (or accept it anyway), it’s over.

Watch all 2 critical reviews of the film

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