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The Great Wall Is a Great Wall (1986)

A Great Wall (original title)
PG | | Comedy, Drama | 30 May 1986 (USA)
When computer programmer, Leo Fang, is passed up for promotion, he feels it is because he is Chinese, and quits. He takes his Chinese-American family to Mainland China to visit his ... See full summary »



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Credited cast:
Peter Wang ...
Leo Fang
Grace Fang
Qinqin Li ...
Lili Chao
Xiaoguang Hu ...
Mr. Chao
Guanglan Shen ...
Mrs. Chao
Kelvin Wong ...
Liu Yida (as Wang Xiao)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Jeanette Pavini ...
Han Tan ...
Old Liu
Jian Xiu ...
Ran Zhijuan ...


When computer programmer, Leo Fang, is passed up for promotion, he feels it is because he is Chinese, and quits. He takes his Chinese-American family to Mainland China to visit his relatives, the Chao's for a vacation. The clash of cultures, between the men, wives, and teenagers, leads to some confusion, and misunderstanding. Written by Brian W Martz <B.Martz@Genie.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Comedy | Drama








Release Date:

30 May 1986 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Great Wall Is a Great Wall  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


Paul Fang: All Chinese parents are racist.
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Featured in Slaying the Dragon (1988) See more »

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User Reviews

A fine film is a fine film; funny, warm, and deep, too.
15 January 2001 | by (San Francisco Bay, California) – See all my reviews

Peter Wang's most excellent adventure -- as director and actor in this work, his work simply shines. This film probably works best for adults, preferably in their thirties or forties or older. It's about tracing one's roots, one's ancestors across the sea -- in this case, the Pacific Ocean; but in other ways, many of the elements of the story are universal.

There's a friendly, respectful attitude taken to Mainland China here; none of the atmosphere or tension of investigative journalism presents itself. After all, the subject at hand is visiting with relatives. Wang does a nice job of presenting how both cultures tend to look down at the other, not necessarily in a bitter way, but more in a comic vein. We express sympathy for what we perceive as faults or missing elements in the culture or individual lives of the other relatives. What the American Chinese family perceives as a failing may be a source of pride or strength for the Mainland family -- and vice versa. This film is one of a handful that, immediately after seeing it, I wanted to go right back into the theater and see it again. I didn't. I went back the very night day. Finding the video to rent can be difficult in some places; but well worth the effort. I try to watch it at least once every two to three years; always gets me laughing again, and by the end, I still wish I could have been there with this young family in China and had them as personal friends to visit with here in California. They seem to have such fun and such spirit; a very beautiful rapport between father and son is shown and further developed as the film unfolds. Don't miss it, whatever you do -- the whole film, not just the ending. It took my breath away. Too bad the title is a bit much.

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