Pelish at the Movies ‘The Farewell’

~By Randy Pelish~

Age is the great avenger. Death is the great equalizer. We may escape the former but never the latter. Lulu Wang wrote and directed The Farewell that embraces both in a deeply moving way.

Three generations of a Chinese family spread out across the world reunite in Changchun China, where the matriarch has been diagnosed with terminal cancer. In a collision between modern and traditional ways the family must deal with the impending tragedy.

This is an intimate portrait of one family in crisis where deception is decided upon as the only correct path for the family to follow. The decision is shared by all but not happily by granddaughter Billi. The film is simultaneously very funny and very moving. It is a wonderful film.

It was shot on location primarily in Changchun. The cast is uniformly excellent. Particularly fine are Awkwafina as the conflicted granddaughter Billi and Zhao Shuzhen as Nai Nai the strong matriarch.

The Farewell is storytelling at its very best. You will love this family. This film should not be missed.

The Farewell is currently playing at the Century 12 theater in Reno.

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