Class 3: Wedding Banquet v. Saving Face

Last class

Reading before class:

How Movie Critics and Moviegoers View Films Differently

Discussion Questions:

  1. After reading the excerpt below in mind, critique Wedding Banquet and Saving Face from an average audience member’s perspective then a movie critic’s perspective.
    1. An established movie critic views a film from a much different perspective than does the average audience member. First, they are attuned to the critical aspects of cinematography studied in films; they are instead looking for cinematic elements such as proper stage setting (Mise en scène), directing, plot, character development, cinematography, editing, and special effects. A problem associated with this is that there is a significantly lower ratio of moviegoers who regard these things as very important. A critic will analyze a film for visual, auditory, and plot perfection, while the general audience only regards the movie as a form of escapism and entertainment. This is a key difference between critics and their audience counterparts.
  2. Who are the intended audience? How do you think the Asian American filmmakers worked toward this?
  3. Both films center around family and the elders’ expectation and push for marriage. How did the elders act similarly or differently? Did the gender of the main character affect the elder’s actions? How or how not?
  4. Describe the the similarities and differences between the actions of the male elder and their impact on the main character. (Wei Tung’s father, Wil’s grandpa)
  5. What stereotypes did you see at play? Did they stand out to you at first? Explain.
    1. How do you think this affected the film?
  6. Compare the two happy endings. Was one more realistic than the other? Why or why not?

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