There’s a lot of media to be consumed out there, and many times, there’s a lot of things to watch that fly under the radar, a lot of hidden gems that slip through the cracks. As someone who consumes a lot of media, I have also fallen into the trap of watching only what’s popular, but there are things that deserve our attention but haven’t quite made it in the mainstream.
We’re remedying that today with a list of underrated films that Chinese artists are in that you should take a look at.
The Healing (2012)
Starring Vilma Santos, and the Philippines’ Chinita Princess, Kim Chiu, this horror film is a good watch. Seth and a group of people go to see a renowned faith healer in the hopes that they can cure their ailing family members. But upon the arrival of Seth and her group, the healer refuses to perform anymore healing rituals. They plead with the healer who finally relents, but not without issuing a warning: they will have to repay in kind.
The Maid (2005)
Okay, so the thing is, Assunta de Rossi is NOT Chinoy, but I figured, the mix of Chinese lore starring a Filipino actress could not be a better blend of the two cultures. Plus, this horror film broke the box office record in Singapore for its genre.
This film tells the story of a maid who has just moved to Singapore and must acclimate herself to the Ghost Month practices and traditions. She moves there to make money to help her ailing brother. Her employers are kind-hearted and sympathetic — even their mentally-challenged son takes a liking to her immediately. But things start to go amiss and she wants to head home, but her employers implore for her to stay.
The Farewell (2019)
We have established our love for Awkwafina, and this is where she shines. A drama that pulls at your heartstrings without dragging you through sorrow like the Holocaust movie, Schindler’s List, did. This beautifully told story garnered a lot of nominations and awards, including a Best Actress Golden Globe for Awkwafina.
In the film, a family returns to China for a wedding, but it’s all a ruse. The “wedding guests” all gather to say goodbye to the family’s dying matriarch … who doesn’t know she’s dying. Billi (Awkwafina) is asked to stay in New York and away from the gathering for fear that she may reveal the deception to her NaiNai who she is extremely close to. But she goes anyway and therein lies our story.
We’re sure there are more underrated works that we don’t know about. In the comments below, why not tell us about the films you’ve discovered that deserve more attention than they got?
Want more movies to add to your list? Check out five Chinese-centric Filipino movies you should watch here.