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Sistah Sinema Presents Saving Face

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Join Sistah Sinema-Richmond as we laugh and cheer with the screening of an oldie, but goodie. Saving Face, a romantic comedy, directed by Alice Wu and starring Joan Chen is our August feature. The film focuses on Wilhelmina, a young Chinese-American surgeon; her unwed, pregnant mother; and her dancer girlfriend.

The title is a reference to the pan-East Asian social concept of “face”. In Manhattan, the brilliant Chinese-American lesbian surgeon Wilhelmina is surprised by the arrival of her forty-eight-year-old widowed mother, Gao, to her apartment. Gao was banished from Flushing, Queens, when her father discovered that she was pregnant. The presence of Gao affects the personal life of Wilhelmina, who is in love with the daughter of her boss and closeted to her mother. Once her grandfather has promised that her mother would only return to Flushing remarried or proving that it was an immaculate conception, Wilhelmina tries to find a Chinese bachelor to marry Gao. Along the way, she comes to realize that love triumphs over societal expectations.

Alice Wu, who directed and wrote the script, drew upon her own experiences of “coming out”. Featuring the NYC Chinese-American community the film features a mixture of English and Mandarin with English subtitles.

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