Entertainment Weekly

Subscribe

Stay Connected

Subscribe

Advertise With Us

Learn More

Skip to content

Article

Saving Face

Posted on

Saving Face
Lynn Chen: Larry Riley

Saving Face

type:
Movie
Current Status:
In Season
mpaa:
R
runtime:
90 minutes
Limited Release Date:
05/27/05
performer:
Joan Chen, Michelle Krusiek, Jessica Hecht
director:
Alice Wu
distributor:
Sony Pictures Classics
author:
Alice Wu
genre:
Drama, Comedy

We gave it a B-

In America, when you watch an ethnic soap opera in which old-world parents reject their adult children’s dreams of love, it’s no secret that a lot of us can feel a twinge of nostalgia for those deeply rooted parental puritans, even though we’re aware their view of relationships is all wrong. Saving Face, a pleasant if sketchy Chinese-American family drama, is a study in multigenerational guilt-tripping. Wilhelmina (Michelle Krusiec), a rising young surgeon, prefers women to men, but her mother (Joan Chen) would disown her if she knew. Mom, however, is every bit as scandalous: At 48, she gets pregnant without a husband, and her parents, who are stern survivors of the Cultural Revolution, are aghast. The writer-director, Alice Wu, fudges a lot of the basics — I never believed the heroine was really a physician — but the final, proudly public girl-on-girl smooch still jerks a tear.

Comments