'Blue Bayou' Will Rip Out Your Heart
Start writing a post

'Blue Bayou' Will Rip Out Your Heart

Justin Chon and Alicia Vikander star in a film that brings awareness to international adoptees unexpectedly facing deportation

​Kathy (Alicia Vikander) and Antonio (Justin Chon) dance during a dinner party scene in the film "Blue Bayou." Kathy is wearing a green-white striped dress while Antonio wears an open red shirt with a white tank underneath. The photo is a tight, intimate shot of the couple dancing in each other's arms.
Courtesy of Focus Pictures.

There hasn't been a movie as heart-breaking and depressing as "Blue Bayou" since "Manchester By The Sea."

This film attempts to shed light on international adoptees living in America who unexpectedly face deportation, and boy, does it stick the landing. Justin Chon, a triple threat as the director, writer and lead actor in this drama, soars as Antonio, a Korean adoptee who faces deportation despite living in America for more than 30 years.

BLUE BAYOU - Official Trailer - Only in Theaters September 17 www.youtube.com

Throughout the movie, Antonio rarely catches a break, and at times his punishments are well-deserved. But audiences continue to root for him beyond the credits scrolling because of how far Antonio's come. In turn, Chon himself has come a long way as an actor. Audiences most likely remember him from the "Twilight" series as Bella's friend Eric, so this movie is a nice reminder of Chon's talents beyond comic relief.

Along with his arresting performance, he has notable chemistry with each cast member. His scenes with Sydney Kowalske, who plays Antonio's stepdaughter Jessie, are a delight to watch. With Alicia Vikander who beautifully plays Antonio's wife Kathy, the lead cast is ready to pull at the audiences' hearts. But arguably, Parker (played by Linh Dan Pham) steals every scene she's in with Antonio.

As an international adoptee, the film speaks volumes in the little moments. For example, when Antonio brings his family to a dinner party Parker hosts, he makes fresh spring rolls with a little girl. Her roll is impeccably wrapped, but what about his? It's not pretty. After swapping their rolls, they laugh with his wife watching the entire thing.

People in Antonio's shoes might feel they're not embracing their culture like one perceives they should. In Antonio's case, he is inexperienced and doesn't know how to properly make a spring roll. It is a genuine scene that adds to how little he knows of his roots, which makes the prospect of being deported to a foreign land scarier. So as the plot snowballs into larger problems, the narrative's effects might have a greater impact on multicultural, adopted families.

Though it's not the film's message to share, it cannot go unnoticed.

The movie flourishes in its story and talented cast, but there's a small chip in the armor. The shaky camera style is a bit much, especially when it's not used sparingly. Most of the film isn't filled with fancy cinematic shots, especially some of which feel lazy and uninventive. But, again, it's a small flaw.

Overall, "Blue Bayou" is highly recommended. Be advised, bring the tissues and prepare for the emotional rollercoaster. However, that might not be enough in the end.

Score: 8/10

"Blue Bayou" premieres only in theaters Friday, September 17.

Follow the reporter Samantha Incorvaia at @s_incorvaia.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

5 Cool Gadgets To Make Your Car Smart

Don't let this stop you from making your car smart. You can change the one you have using smart gadgets that transform your car into a smart car.


Cars are no longer just a mode of transport, where you only worry about the engine and how beautiful its interior is. These days, everyone wants to make their cars smarter, those with advanced technology systems. It makes sense for several reasons. It can make your vehicle more efficient and safer when you need to drive.

Keep Reading... Show less

The Inevitable Truth of Loss

You're going to be okay.


As we humans face loss and grief on a daily basis, it's challenging to see the good in all the change. Here's a better perspective on how we can deal with this inevitable feeling and why it could help us grow.

Keep Reading... Show less

'Venom: Let There Be Carnage' Film Review

Tom Hardy and Woody Harrelson lead a tigher, more fun sequel to 2018's 'Venom'

Photo Credit: Sony Pictures Entertainment – YouTube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-FmWuCgJmxo

When Sony announced that Venom would be getting a stand-alone movie, outside of the Tom Holland MCU Spider-Man films, and intended to start its own separate shared universe of films, the reactions were generally not that kind. Even if Tom Hardy was going to take on the role, why would you take Venom, so intrinsically connected to Spider-Man's comic book roots, and remove all of that for cheap action spectacle?

Keep Reading... Show less

'The Addams Family 2' Film Review

The sequel to the 2019 reboot is an enjoyable, but unremarkable start to the Halloween movie season

Photo Credit: MGM – YouTube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kd82bSBDE84

There's a reason why the Addams Family have become icons of the American cartoon pantheon (although having one of the catchiest theme songs in television history doesn't hinder them).

Keep Reading... Show less

The Latest Trends in the Music World

The music world is a fast evolving and ever changing landscape of influence. Over the last 20 years, we've seen the influx of home recording technology paired with the rise of streaming, making way for new independent artists and communities to flourish.


The music world is a fast evolving and ever changing landscape of influence. Over the last 20 years, we've seen the influx of home recording technology paired with the rise of streaming, making way for new independent artists and communities to flourish. This is the positive side of the streaming coin, different kinds of music can exist in the same spaces in much more fluid ways. Aesthetic and musical styles are merging and taking on new life in the 21st century. Trends in the music industry can be most easily followed by exploring instagram, TikTok and other social media platforms to see what people are wearing and listening to. Let's take a look at a few style and artistic trends influencing the world of music.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments