The Farewell

Critics Consensus

The Farewell deftly captures complicated family dynamics with a poignant, well-acted drama that marries cultural specificity with universally relatable themes.

98%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 321

87%

Audience Score

Verified Ratings: 2,490
User image

Tap to review this movie

  • User image

    Super Reviewer

    Rate this movie

    Oof, that was Rotten.

    Meh, it passed the time.

    It’s good – I’d recommend it.

    Awesome!

    So Fresh: Absolute Must See!

    Step 1 of 2

    What did you think of the movie? (optional)



  • You're almost there! Just confirm how you got your ticket.

  • User image

    Super Reviewer

    Step 2 of 2

    How did you get your ticket?

    • Fandango

    • AMC (Coming Soon)

      We won’t be able to verify your ticket today, but it’s great to know for the future.

    • Cinemark (Coming Soon)

      We won’t be able to verify your ticket today, but it’s great to know for the future.

    • Regal (Coming Soon)

      We won’t be able to verify your ticket today, but it’s great to know for the future.

    • Bought somewhere else

    You're almost there! Just confirm how you got your ticket.

  • User image

    Super Reviewer

    Rate this movie

    Oof, that was Rotten.

    Meh, it passed the time.

    It’s good – I’d recommend it.

    Awesome!

    So Fresh: Absolute Must See!

    What did you think of the movie? (optional)

    Verify I bought my ticket from

    How did you get your ticket?

    • Fandango

    • AMC (Coming Soon)

      We won’t be able to verify your ticket today, but it’s great to know for the future.

    • Cinemark (Coming Soon)

      We won’t be able to verify your ticket today, but it’s great to know for the future.

    • Regal (Coming Soon)

      We won’t be able to verify your ticket today, but it’s great to know for the future.

    • Bought somewhere else

      We won’t be able to verify your ticket today, but it’s great to know for the future.

  • How did you get your ticket?

    • Fandango

    • AMC (Coming Soon)

      We won’t be able to verify your ticket today, but it’s great to know for the future.

    • Cinemark (Coming Soon)

      We won’t be able to verify your ticket today, but it’s great to know for the future.

    • Regal (Coming Soon)

      We won’t be able to verify your ticket today, but it’s great to know for the future.

    • Bought somewhere else

The Farewell Videos

Where to watch

The Farewell Photos

Movie Info

The film follows a Chinese family who, when they discover their beloved Grandmother has only a short while left to live, decide to keep her in the dark and schedule an impromptu wedding to gather before she passes. Billi, feeling like a fish out of water in her home country, struggles with the family's decision to hide the truth from her grandmother.

Cast

News & Interviews for The Farewell

Critic Reviews for The Farewell

All Critics (321) | Top Critics (43) | Fresh (315) | Rotten (6)

Audience Reviews for The Farewell

  • Jan 23, 2020
    Lulu Wang never over-explains the themes or specific cultural references, which allows the movie to wash over you. The ending is greatly moving in its simplicity.
    Alec B Super Reviewer
  • Dec 30, 2019
    The Farewell is insightful, intimate and emotionally heartfelt thanks to its insightful story and themes as well as its solid lead performances from Awkwafina and company. The film does enough to make audiences feel and understand for the family. 4.26/5
    Eugene B Super Reviewer
  • Aug 05, 2019
    A24 is a studio that knows how to pick and choose their films wisely. Truthfully, I believe them to be the greatest current film studio, as far as releasing consistently great content. I will always back them as a company, so when I say one of their films is terrible (if the day ever comes), it must be a pretty bad movie. The Farewell is one of their latest theatrical releases and while it may not strike a chord for everyone like it did for me, this is a genuine film from start to finish, not straying away from the characters and story it's showcasing. Directed with a lot of care and effort by Lulu Wang, The Farewell follows a family as they travel to China in order to attend a wedding, simply as an excuse to bring the family together as a goodbye for a dying family member, who they refuse to give truthful information to. The fact that this is an actual thing that goes on is kind of odd, seeing as most people usually know when doctors have given the information, but this "based on a true lie" as the film states, and it really did make for an emotionally compelling narrative. I've only really ever experienced Awkwafina as a comedic actress in films like Crazy Rich Asians or Ocean's 8, but she has now proven that dramatic work may suit her even more than comedic. The focus is on her throughout the majority of the film, as the broke, kind of immature young adult of the family, and the fact that she disagrees with this whole scenario is what brought this film home for me, making it feel relatable. The Farewell does many things right, but the number one thing is the characters surrounding the premise. This movie would have collapsed without them as the backbone.  Lulu Wang is absolutely a director that I will be keeping an eye on after her work here. Only having done one other feature film in Posthumous, The Farewell feels like a giant leap forward and I can't wait to see how her career expands. The way she has delivered such a stellar cast of characters here feels more authentic than most films out there today, especially this year. With so many big-budget films hitting cinemas, this movie feels like a giant refresher and I loved nearly every second of it. In the end, as always, hardly any films in history are flawless, but The Farewell definitely comes close. If anything, I found the movie to be a little too short, as I would have liked to explore more about what is said in the credits of the film. With that said, this is an exceptional drama that I will gladly revisit in the coming months/years. The performances alone deserve to be seen more than once. If the Oscars were being held soon, I would say Awkwafina definitely deserves some recognition. The Farewell is a great indie film that deserves more attention.
    KJ P Super Reviewer
  • Aug 03, 2019
    his was a wonderful movie that just warmed my heart while holding to a beautiful melancholy. That is such a rare combination, and at its heights, The Farewell made me think it could have been plucked from the halcyon days of 90s indie cinema. The strange-but-true story follows an extended Chinese-American family that discovers its beloved Nai Nai (grandmother) back in China has terminal cancer. The family has elected not to tell her the devastating news and will reunite under the auspices of a grandchild hastily getting married (they've dated for only 3 months). Our protagonist is Billie (Awkwafina), a struggling New Yorker who disagrees with her family's deception. Her extended family is convinced she won't be able to keep her emotions in check, and so every scene plays with a great deal of subtext, as just about every character holds the burden of keeping a secret that deeply pains them. It makes for some pretty emotional moments, as different characters hold more meaning to their words and would-be goodbyes, but the movie is ultimately rather uplifting and winning. The matriarch of all this attention, played by Shuzhen Zao, is a bossy, compassionate, and deeply lovable old woman who welcomes her family's return. I smiled every time she affectionately referred to Billi as "stupid child" and after a while noticed my eyes were getting glassy. Awkwafini, in her first stab at dramatic acting, nicely sells her tumult with an understated grace. The characterization achieved by writer/director Lulu Wang (the real-life Billie) is generous and honest, providing worthwhile moments to the larger family and giving them perspectives so while there is conflict nothing ever gets too preachy or stagy. Speaking of that, Wang films many of her scenes with an almost static camera, allowing the scene to unfold in front of us as if we've dropped in on these people's lives. The film is about 80% Chinese subtitles but the story is really universal and deserves to be seen and celebrated. The Farewell is a terrific antidote to the summer blockbuster season and it left me thrilled to find a small little movie that could remind you again of the powerful pleasures of simple, sharply written storytelling (also stay tuned for the twist ending of the year in the credits). Nate's Grade: A
    Nate Z Super Reviewer

The Farewell Quotes

There are no approved quotes yet for this movie.

Movie & TV guides