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The Joy Luck Club (1993)

Ming-Na Wen , Lisa Lu , Wayne Wang  |  R |  DVD
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (407 customer reviews)

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Product Details

  • Actors: Ming-Na Wen, Lisa Lu, Tamlyn Tomita, France Nuyen, Kieu Chinh
  • Directors: Wayne Wang
  • Writers: Amy Tan
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Closed-captioned, Color, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: Buena Vista Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: June 4, 2002
  • Run Time: 139 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (407 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00005JKGK
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #6,777 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "The Joy Luck Club" on IMDb

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Editorial Reviews

Produced by Academy Award(R)-winning filmmaker Oliver Stone (Best Picture -- PLATOON) and based on the powerful #1 best-selling book, THE JOY LUCK CLUB tells the uplifting story of four remarkable friends whose extraordinary lives are filled with joy and heartbreak. Their lifelong friendship reveals a mosaic of the startling events and conditions that have shaped their lives -- and how these experiences have affected the hopes and dreams they hold for each of their children. Hailed as one of the must-see films of the year, this exceptional motion picture is sure to entertain and inspire you from beginning to end!

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
81 of 87 people found the following review helpful
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
"The Joy Luck Club" is a ground-breaking film with universal themes that anyone can relate to regardless of age, gender or nationality. Truly epic in its scope and haunting vision, the movie is also deeply heartfelt and familial, enhancing its ability to speak to the audience in myriad, boundless ways. This is an intimate portrait of two generations of Asian women - the mothers who risked everything to create a better life for their daughters in the United States. At this juncture in American history, the movie resonates more than ever by reminding the viewer of our fore-mother's immigrant experience. In doing so, "The Joy Luck Club" serves as a vibrant contemporary document on freedom and the pursuit of happiness.
Ming-Na Wen (now known to millions as Ming-Na or Deb Chen on NBC's top rated drama "ER") is superb in the central role of June, greiving for her recently deceased mother with the 3 "aunties" who miantain her place at the mah-jon table. Their gatherings continue, with June's presence, and in the process form the backdrop from which these women's personal stories and life-journies are shared. Each auntie - and their now-adult Americanized daughters - explain their often-harrowing attempt to escape Communist China and their difficult transition to an American way of life in the U.S. Tears flow in both generations, not only for what has been lost, but also for what has been found here - a society with different values that challenges these women in unexpected but nearly universal ways. As both generations - and all eight women eventually - share their stories, the viewer literaly steps into each life, aware of where the characters end up, yet fully experiencing the challenges each of them faces.
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32 of 35 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful! September 13, 2003
Format:VHS Tape
This tearjerker adaptation based on the book by Amy Tan, is about four Chinese mothers and their American born daughters, and how the distinct cultural chasm in their upbringing, play into their daily lives.
The flashbacks into the young lives of each mother is masterful storytelling filled with rich imagery.
But it is the everyday struggles of modern life with their daughters and the conflicts between them that most will easily recognize. In this way the movie does not exclude the general viewer from identifying with their own personal relationships with their mother, spouse, or friends.
This is one of the best technically engineered movies I have ever seen. The way in which the lives of the characters are weaved together is nothing short of genuis, and the movie slides flawlessly from the present to the past and back to the present again
The story of each mother's youth is both heartbreaking and wonderful at the same time, and with their somewhat broken english offer up an amazing amount of simple yet profound statements and insights as they tell their story and try to impart upon their daughters wisdom gained through both suffering and sacrifice.
The modern day entanglements of each daughter and their often tense relationships with their moms, show us in the end that no matter who we are, or where we come from, the bond between a mother and daughter is often a complex enigma, full of conflicting emotions.
Throughout all this, the main underlying issue is the trip to China one of the daughters is about to embark on, to meet for the first time, two sisters previously abandoned in wartime China while at the same time paying a personal tribute to her own mother.
If I had to flaw the movie it would be the constant onslaught on one?
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43 of 49 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Joy Luck Club is of best quality April 16, 2002
Format:DVD
Having not seen it since it was in the theater, I forgot just how good "The Joy Luck Club" is. The story of each of the women is personal and engaging. Different lives and pasts leading to the same destination, each road is harsh and lined with perils. The film is a nice blend of period piece and modern drama.
I love the dialog ("She will know I am waiting like a tiger in the trees, now ready to leap out and cut her spirit loose.") Visually, the film is almost too pretty. The women are all heart-breakingly beautiful, and each setting is dream-like in it's perfection. However, what could be a flaw is a strength, due largely to the quality of the actors. Each of the characters is strong and individual.
It is a very touching story of mothers and daughters, of hopes and fears. One of my favorite character actors, Victor Wong, even has a small part. A good film all around.
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23 of 27 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars a mix bag July 15, 2005
By D. Kim
Format:DVD
Overall, I like this movie. I've seen it a couple of times, and it's a heart-tugger.

As a second-generation Asian American, I could definitely relate to issues of trying to reconcile having parents of a previous generation and growing up "westernized" in the States. It can be difficult to strike a balance when Asian and western cultures and values appear to be so different. So I thought the movie portrayed this dynamic very well.

However, the movie's portrayal of gender relations between Asian men and women is awful. It's just way too one-sided and gives no depth to the characters of the Asian men. The movie characterizes Andrew McCarthy's character - a white guy - as the only "good" guy, while the only good Asian character is the father who plays the more stereotypical Asian grandfather type. If anything, this movie just reinforces stereotypes of Asian men - not only with roles they play in movies, but sadly as they relate to gender relations.
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