The performances are almost enough to overcome the story's essential inertness.
| Original Score: 2.5/4
By the end of Face, we've been drawn deep into the battle for both communal support and individual freedom that marks the progress of so many ethnic groups in America.
| Original Score: 3/4
With no access to these women's inner selves, we are left wanting at least a fuller portrait of their outer lives, some way to infer the meaning that the film declines to provide.
| Original Score: 3/5
Ling, delicate and haunted, and Wu, a real spitfire, make their reconciliation sting as much as it soothes.
| Original Score: B
A film with visual flair, musical inspiration and dramatic gravity. From the top to the bottom of the cast list, there are performances rich in detail and intelligence.
New Jersey-born, Taiwan-raised director/cowriter Bay-Sa Pan gives the conflict a culturally particular spin and elicits strong performances from her appealing cast.
| Original Score: 2.5/5
It's a tale worth telling again -- especially if you feel the material as strongly as recent Columbia film-school grad Bertha Bay-Sa Pan seems to.
| Original Score: 2.5/4
A sincere but superficial version of a familiar story.
| Original Score: 2/4
A meditation on the conflict between family loyalties and personal ambition, Face ... can feel slight on a first viewing. But ... it is likely to remain in your head long afterward.
the director seems all too cognizant of her pedestrian script's inability to express more than superficial pathos
The movie never really finds a fresh groove.
Bertha Bay-Sa Pan gets good performances -- notably from Ling, who convincingly evolves from mixed-up coed to successful businesswoman.
| Original Score: B+
There's something especially frustrating about small, personal independent movies that adhere to the stodgy conventions of small, personal, independent movies as if compelled by a cadre of militant MFA candidates.
| Original Score: 2/5
Well made, nice performances, very slowly paced.
The story's conflicts between modern and traditional attitudes, family and independence feel like familiar fodder, and the pedestrian approach fails to inject much freshness into the material.
Feels like the stretched-out short student film that it is.
Too slight in realization and trite in characterization to work as it might have.
It is the best performance of [Ling's] eclectic international career, and it raises the level of this otherwise competently made movie to something more special.
Face is a film of considerable charm and warmth, even if the material sometimes feels well worn.
| Original Score: B-
It is an emotional and rewarding film for anyone who's ever struggled to find their place in their family and the world.
| Original Score: 3.5/5