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Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Aftershock- a guaranteed tear jerker.

I got the tickets from for the preview of Aftershock. Saw a lot of Mediacorp celebrities and they’re just as cheapskate as I am, going for free movies. Or maybe it’s an educational screening. They get to observe and learn how to cry convincingly, mucus and all.

There’re a few genres that Asian movie making is better than Hollywood.

1) Kung Fu (for obvious reasons)
2) Horror (asian ghost are just A LOT scarier than the ang moh ones)
3) Disaster (although their CGI cannot be compared to the Westerners technology)

Aftershock is NOT another disaster flick (2012 was an utter disappointment), it is about what comes after. The drama between a mother and her daughter. Based on the tragic true story of 1976 Tangshan earthquake. This was the largest earthquake of the 20th century, killing 240,000 people and injuring 164,000.
The first drop of tear rolled when I felt SO GRATEFUL that I am born in Singapore. A place free from natural disasters, how lucky I am to be born here. Singaporeans should stop complaining about Singapore being boring, so-and-so is not doing a good job etc etc. Look, we can walk on the streets safely after 10pm, we remain ignorant as to what to do in emergencies, we have a well-connected transport system, there’s so many other reasons I love Singapore for!

It took decades for Tangshan to rebuilt itself after the disaster. Till today, locals who have loved ones lost in the earthquake still mourns for them at the memorial. A friend from China revealed that there were TOO MANY dead bodies to excavate in the recent Sze Chuan earthquake that the government now build OVER these dead bodies. If you were to stand afar on a hill top, you can see the uneven grounds, a chill washes over you.

The second tear rolled when I felt ASHAMED that I haven’t done enough to help the less fortunate. Many years ago, I remembering writing here on this blog that I vow to put in at least $2 every time I pass by a student asking for donation. I did that for a while, and then I became a miser and started waving them off, avoiding their path, dodging them even. Especially when I am eyeing for another new dress or pair of shoes. I am fortunate to be blessed with my limbs intact, my senses working. I am blessed to have a job, a happy family and money to indulge in occasional luxuries. What is $2 every once in awhile I encountered those tin cans on the street? So many people walk pass them, dodging like I did. Imagine when an earthquake happens with no warning, you could be bathing, or you could be sleeping naked. What is a new dress (when i have plenty) compared to someone else who has none? Some people second guess the funds end point of how it will be utilized. But does it really matter? What if it DOES go to the beneficiary in question? I’m not suggesting that you be fool hardy, there are conmen out there who makes use of a human’s good nature. But that shouldn’t deter you from making any donation.
The third tear rolled when the mother in Aftershock was informed by the rescue team that, as her 7-year old twins are buried under the debris close to each other, digging one out would result in further collapse of the wreckage on the other, she is forced to make the most difficult decision of her life. As the clock ticked away, she finally ended her struggle and chose to save the boy. The mother shamefully whispered to save the boy, but still, the girl overheard. Sons are valued in the Chinese culture. The boy carries the family name, whilst the daughter is seen to be given away when she marries.

Being Chinese myself, it has created much pain and hurt during my childhood. My parents weren’t staunch in following their Chinese culture and provided me with the best they could. However, many times I felt my mum favoured my brothers more than me in our childhood. They had chicken drumsticks, while I had none. They had their school shoes washed for them, yet I washed my own. They did no household chores, while I did all. They got what they want, while I had to work for what I want. My mum often said when I protest the unfairness, “You ARE THE GIRL. That’s why.”

Now that I’ve grown up, I am thankful for the discipline. It has made me stronger, independent and capable. I can cook, clean and do a whole lot more. Besides, being a girl has its advantages. Don't have to pay for the man on dates!My mother has realised her mistake in inequality and it creates hurt whenever I remind her in anger of my childhood. So my tears rolled when the mother in Aftershock chose the son over the daughter. Although it doesn’t mean she loved the daughter ANY LESS.

The flood gates finally opened towards the end of the movie. When the daughter reunites with her family after holding the grudge for 32 years. I believe it’s something that I have to seek as well.

Strength, courage and forgiveness.
P.S Wear waterproof mascara or risk coming out like a Panda.
P.P.S Not only will there be waterworks, there'll be water of another sort too. So do empty your bladder as it's a rather long film.
Verdict: 5 Kleenex/ 5 Kleenex

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Nice review... :)

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