QMN to Discuss “The Wedding Banquet” (1993)

(Graphic by Elijah Janka)

Monday, May 23, 7-8:30 p.m.

Currently meeting on the Zoom platform. See this page to learn how Queer Movie Night works. We view the movie prior to meeting for our discussion.

Zoom Link for Queer Movie Night:

https://us02web.zoom.us/j/85916588712

Description by Manny Lopez, QMN regular:

WHAT SEEMS TO START OFF as a simple way to stop his parents from continuing to harass him about his plans to get married, spirals into a wild, and funny snowball of predicaments for the main character Wai-tung. While originally his boyfriend’s Simon’s plan, it seemed like killing two birds with one stone, as the person Wai-tung plans to marry is in need of a green card to stay in the United States.

One of the reasons this movie always stood out to me, was I watched it around the time gay marriage was legalized in the United States, and it was interesting to watch this film and reflect on how this movie really stands as a reminder that gay marriage has not always been possible. I think it was interesting to see how despite being in this meaningful relationship with Simon, Wai-tung didn’t come out to his parents, and kept trying to avoid their inquiries of when he would settle down. I remember thinking marriage often is a sign of commitment and stability, and for parents it makes sense that it is something they hope for their children. Plus there is this cultural significance to marriage, which the film demonstrates as Wei-tung’s parents start to plan a very extravagant marriage ceremony. Because gay marriage wasn’t legal at the time of this film, this wasn’t something Wei-tung could share with Simon.

I think the lasting impression that I got was this question of what people will do for love. I think that Wei-tung never was all that enthusiastic about this wedding for pretenses, and it seemed like for both him and Simon, it could be a way for them to keep being together, once his family was appeased. But as the wedding plans ensue, it’s interesting that Wei-tung tries to keep up with the pretenses for the sake of him getting to be with Simon, and Simon seemingly being sidelined as the wedding plans go forth. This doesn’t even take into consideration Wei Wei, who is in the middle of this, as she is the one set to make this commitment to Wai-tung.

The Wedding Banquet is available to stream for free at Kanopy.com through your local library.

Please join us! Queer Movie Night is a program of Under the Rainbow.

Under the Rainbow is supported by Edmonds Library, Edmonds Arts Commission, Seattle Storytellers Guild, Edmonds Neighborhood Action Coalition, and a grant from the Pride Foundation.

See Queer Movie Night to contact us.

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