A Thousand Years of Good Prayers

A Thousand Years of Good Prayers

Genre: Romance, Drama; Starring: Vida Ghahremani, Henry O, Feinhong Yu; Director: Wayne Wang; Author: Yiyun Li; Runtime (in minutes): 83; MPAA Rating: Unrated; Distributor: Magnolia Pictures

Hong Kong-born director Wayne Wang made his name with quirky, observant films rooted in Chinese culture like Chan Is Missing and Eat a Bowl of Tea before Hollywood lured him into Styrofoam projects like Maid in Manhattan (2002). So his return to personal form is welcome. Based on a story by Yiyun Li about an elderly man from Beijing (Henry O) who comes to the U.S. to visit his grown businesswoman daughter (Faye Yu), A Thousand Years of Good Prayers is a spare, controlled study in communication gaps and a piercing sketch of suburban American loneliness. B+

Originally posted September 24 2008 — 12:00 AM EDT

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