10 thoughts on “TBT: The Joy Luck Club (1993)

  1. The Chinese Costumes look maybe 1930s but I’m basing it in the Western style clothing. And I agree the wedding dress is totally amazeballs.

    Also I seem to remember that the war was WWII and Japan’s incursion into China (Rape of Nanking et all).

    Have beaucoup of fun in Marie Antoinette-land.

  2. Read the book several times and saw the stage adaptation twice, both a while ago. The book alludes to war with the Japanese, but doesn’t go into detail with with political background in early 20th century China, which gets complicated. And gruesome.

    In terms of costume movies featuring early 20th century China, I recommend “Farewell My Concubine” and “Lust, Caution.” I don’t remember the clothing in “Raise the Red Lantern” but the colors are gorgeous.

  3. i second Saraquill! ” Farewell my Concubine” and “Lust, Caution” , not only for the beautiful costuming but the storylines are super interesting and stirred up a bit of controversy. Make sure you get NC-17 version of “Lust, Caution” for all the juicy bits!

  4. I remember reading the book and watching the movie — beyond that — nothing. Lol

    Asia has some very interesting history and I read/watched this before living in Asia so it may be more meaningful now that I’m a lot more aware of Asian culture.

  5. I should see the movie — Amy Tan’s books are pretty much required reading for Asian-American women, so my mom, aunt, & I have gobbled them all up & discussed them at length! Also, Tan is a SF Bay Area native & went to SJSU!

  6. There are some beautiful costumes! However, a couple historical notes I want to make: the Cultural Revolution started in 1966, whereas the Chinese Communist Party began ruling in 1949, which is when the qipao would have stopped being worn by most women on a regular basis. In addition, the war a woman likely lost her children in is the second Sino-Japanese war, which occurred mainly during the same time frame as WWII. It’s possible, however, that family tragedy could also have occurred during the civil war between the KMT and CCP.

  7. If anybody is interested in learning more about the changes in Chinese clothing over time, I recommend the gorgeously-illustrated Chinese Dress from the Qing Dynasty to the Present by Valery Garret or Changing Clothes in China by Antonia Finnane.

  8. Still one of my very favorite movies and yes, the wedding headdress was everything.

  9. Haven’t seen this movie but the wedding headgear reminds me a lot of the kind of headgear traditionally used by the Miao women (perhaps the most beautiful in all the Chinese ethnic minorities)

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