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Master Chu, a retired Chinese Tai-Chi master, moves to Westchester, New York to live with his son Alex, his American daughter-in-law Martha, and their son Jeremy. However, Martha's second novel is suffering from severe writers' block brought on by Chu's presence in the house. Alex must struggle to keep his family together as he battles an inner conflict between cultural tradition and his modern American lifestlye. Written by
Beautiful presentation and analysis of cultural differences
This film is about an elderly Chinese man moving to America to join his son and family. He faces adjustment problems due to cultural clash.
The film is initially dull and boring. 7 minutes into the film and not one word is said! Though silence enhances the cultural rift between Mr Chu and Martha, the silence is probably too long. As the film progresses, more cultural differences are displayed. It is striking that during dinner, Martha and Jeremy uses forks to eat while Mr Chu and Alex uses chopsticks. Another striking scene is when Mr Chu and Mrs Chan talk in the community centre towards the end of the film, behind Mr Chu is an American flag while behind Mrs Chan it is a piece of Chinese calligraphy. Such subtle display of cultural differences is clever. The film is also heavy on Chinese traditional ideas, such as children taking care of parents as a natural duty, parents not wanting to burden children of their troubles etc. Such cultural ideas are beautifully explored.
It is a pity that this film is shot with a very low budget. There are even three occasions that the boom mike is visible. Fortunately, such imperfections do not hinder my enjoyment.
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