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The Joy Luck Club

movie reviewmovie reviewmovie reviewvideo review out of 4 Movie Review: The Joy Luck Club

Starring: Kieu Chinh, Tsai Chin
Director: Wayne Wang
Rated: R
RunTime: 135 Minutes
Release Date: September 1993
Genre: Drama

*Also starring: France Nuyen, Tamlyn Tomita, Lauren Tom, Lisa Lu, Ming-Na Wen, Rosalind Chao, Chao-Li Chi, Melanie Chang, Victor Wong

Review by Steve Rhodes
3½ stars out of 4

[This is one of my golden oldies reviews - written years ago when I was just getting started and never posted. I stand by the conclusions, but in most cases many details are missing that I would normally include today.]

I saw THE JOY LUCK CLUB this weekend. I loved this show, thought it was fantastic and gave it *** 1/2. I would recommend it to anybody who likes movies with real and vibrant people in them. What a great show.

Now, all of that having been said, I would like to spend the rest of this review discussing one aspect of the film. Did anyone else notice how men were portrayed in this movie?

Men in this movie came in basically two types with few exceptions. Either they were horrible brutes, or they were like wallpaper. Either they were mean and cruel, or they had almost no lines at all. It was more than just they tried, and rightly so, to emphasize the women. In such a wonderful show why such stereotypes of men?

Given this show was about eight women who were either all married or in relationships, I would have hoped for a little more realistic/sympathetic/hopeful image of men. Given Oliver Stone was one of the executive producers and given he sees the world in black/white and good/evil, maybe that was the reason. I do not know why it was done, but it bothered me.

Still, my strong recommendation stands, but if I could have edited it just a bit ...

Copyright 1993 Steve Rhodes

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