Showing posts from May, 2021

The Joy Luck Club (1993)

Director: Wayne Wang Writers: Amy Tan & Ronald Bass, from the novel by Amy Tan Stars:  Tsai Chin, France Nuyen, Lisa Lu,  Ming-Na Wen, Tamlyn Tomita, Rosalind Chao, Lauren Tom A farewell party for a young Chinese-American woman  who is about to leave for China to visit the sisters she has never met provides the backdrop for an anthology of intriguing stories told in flashback.  Three immigrant woman from China (Tsai Chin, France Nuyen, Lisa Lu) recall the difficult journey from pre-Revolutionary China to their present comfortable San Francisco lifestyle, while their four daughters (Ming-Na Wen, Tamlyn Tomita, Rosalind Chao, Lauren Tom) remember how difficult it is to please their demanding mothers, who are still very much influenced by a culture that the daughters have never experienced.   It is the universal dilemma of the newly immigrated, this cultural disconnect between parents and children, but this film also touches upon family issues that anyone can recognize.   The complex

The Postman Always Rings Twice (1934)

by James M. Cain A drifter takes what he intends to be a temporary  job at a roadside diner but is soon involved in an affair with the owner's wife, which leads to a plan to bump the husband off.   James M. Cain had an engaging story and stripped his prose down to the essentials, producing one of the greatest sustained examples of narrative momentum I can recall.   James M. Cain With scarcely any interior dialogue (despite the use of a first-person narrator), he paints a penetrating psychological portrait of the conspirators as their relationship develops from their initial attraction, through their attempts at murder, until their post-crime mutual mistrust and ultimate reconciliation.   The end is shattering, completing Cain's bleak portrayal of the human condition. "The Postman Always Calls Twice" (Persian) "The Postman Always Calls Twice" (Dutch) "The Postman Always Rings Twice" (Slovenian) "The Postman Rings Twice" (Spanish) "Inj

The Sixth Sense (1999)

Writer / Director: M. Night Shyamalan Stars: Bruce Willis, Haley Joel Osment, Toni Collette, Olivia Williams, Trevor Morgan, Donnie Wahlberg A ghost story that actually becomes less scary as the  film goes  on .   However, my involvement with the characters grew and the end is beautifully done.   Unfortunately, back when I saw this in the theater, so many people had told me that there was a twist at the end that I couldn't help trying to figure out what it was.   I guessed about twenty minutes in.   Even knowing the end, though, it's interesting to see how writer/director Shyamalan sets it up.  Great performance from a very young Haley Joel Osment, too!