The Farewell

The Farewell ★★★½

As a second gen Chinese immigrant who recently lost a grandparent to cancer, I see many parallels between Bili’s experience and myself, including some hilarious moments in the way people treat us when we go back. Awkwafina does a respectable job, though her brand of child-of-immigrant definitely veers a lot more on the “white side”. Zhao Shuzhen (nai-nai) is great and the ensemble cast is strong. 
 
From my POV, which is probably more or less what this movie intends to address, The Farewell feels a tad overrated (at least on here). I applaud it for having characters that avoid bland stereotypes on Chinese culture and on an realistic environment that is often more than surface-level relatable. However, the clash between Eastern v Western culture, which I anticipated to be the meat of the matter, cracks upon closer inspection. The revelation doesn’t cut too deep, and here characters and interactions just appear a bit more simplified, or exaggerated.

Nevertheless I think it’s a solid and respectable  effort at a portrayal targeted towards a western audience. Fresh off the boat can only dream😌