Ilo Ilo (2013)

April 29th, 2014
Author: Meredith Taylor

Director: Anthony Chen

99min  Singapore  Drama

An effecting debut drama from this Singaporean filmmaker, sees a couple struggling to make ends meet during the economic crisis of the late nineties.  Their troublesome ten-year-old son Jiale (Koh Jia Ler) is a handful and the Filipina nanny hired to take care of him makes matters worse. Chen cleverly crafts his characters making them believable and authentic but not always appealing: Jiale and his mother (Hwee Leng) are strong-willed but Chen makes no attempt gloss over their defects, whilst allowing us to see their humanity. Moments of warm humour and compassion peep through the stresses and strains of normal family life in a story with universal appeal. MT

REVIEWED DURING DIRECTORS’ FORTNIGHT AT CANNES 2013- ON GENERAL RELEASE FROM 2 MAY 2014

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