Movie Review: Packages From Daddy
Packages From Daddy is a film that is filled with tear-jerking moments from start to end, and one will definitely leave the cinema with a heavy heart - and used tissue.
Directed by Tsai Yin-chuan, this Taiwanese film tells the story of Lan (Xie Fei), a nine-year-old boy who has to handle the sudden death of his father (Li Li-ren), and things are not easy with his sister, Cheng (Yu Jo-ching) and mother (Fann Wong).
The first half of the film starts out quite slow and draggy, which is usually when I start to tune out, but I felt that this time, it worked on many levels.
There are a lot of quiet scenes, save for the background noises, where I could fully feel how each character is feeling about the father's death.
Wong is no stranger to the movie and television industry, which shows in her portrayal of a grieving wife, and at the same time playing a helpless mother having to understand the emotions that her children are throwing at her.
But the real talent lies in the two children. Their strong performances allow them to dominate the screen, especially Xie.
Both of them have all these feelings bottled inside for a while, which then finally explode, coupled with some serious bullying of Lan.
His outburst sent chills down my spine, and I realised that I was holding my breath throughout until it ended, and this acting is coming from an 11-year-old child.
The journey of Lan trying to decipher a marine chronometer given to him by his father before his death is also meaningful. It makes Lan understand why his father did certain things.
Even though Li appears only a few times in the film, his flawless performance shows his character's deep intentions.
This film may not be for everyone due to its slow pace, but the strong cast gives us more reasons to catch it.
STARRING: Fann Wong, Li Li-ren, Ryan Tang, Yu Jo-ching, Xie Fei, Ding Ning
DIRECTOR: Tsai Yin-chuan
THE SKINNY: Lan (Xie) and his family live happily in their beautiful and peaceful seaside home, until his father dies suddenly. His whole world turns upside down as everyone grieves. Lan receives a package sent by his father before he died, and the boy decides to fix the marine chronometer that is in the package, while at the same time figure out the things happening around him.