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11-21-2012, 02:51 PM
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Decided to catch up on some Ang Lee films in anticipation for The Life of Pi.

The Wedding Banquet (1993)

This is a really lovely comedy about a wedding between a gay man trying to appease his parents from Taiwan and a woman who is in need of a green card to stay in America. In lesser hands, this would have been a very cliche film... in fact there are probably several bad versions of it out there, but it is such a sweet movie with enough heart and genuine humour that made me come to love it. I never felt like it took a too predictable route and although I wouldn't really classify it as a romantic comedy, if you did it would probably be one of my favourites.

Eat Drink Man Woman (1994)

An ageing master chef still lives with his three daughters between the ages of 20 and 30 when events in their lives threaten to disrupt the balance of their relationship. Although Ang Lee does do very meditative pictures, this is probably the closest one I've seen that resembles the master of those films: Ozu. In fact it would probably be fair to call this the anti-Late Spring in some ways. It, unsurprisingly, isn't as good as those Ozu classics or even an excellent imitator like Koreeda's Still Walking, but there is enough to keep it moving and the message is still there at the end. It is more drama-orientated that The Wedding Banquet but it also remains funny and heartfelt when it needs to. In the end I didn't like it as much as The Wedding Banquet but it is still a very nice film.

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