Hi, Mom Review: Passing Maternal Love in Laughter

Writer: Biao Su (Bradley) 

 

After experiencing the Covid-19 pandemic in early 2020, the Chinese New Year holiday in 2021 gradually returned to normal, which led to the Chinese movie box office setting a new record during the holiday period. The comedy “Hi, Mom” became the most popular movie and topic during the Spring Festival.

 

Up to now, the box office of this movie has been close to €700 million, which is the highest-grossing film of 2021 and the second highest-grossing non-English film of all time. The movie is still being shown in cinemas in China and some other countries, and it may be shown in Ireland soon.

 

“Hi, Mom” is adapted from the personal experience of Jia Ling, the director and star of the film. One day in 2001, Jia Xiaoling (played by Jia Ling) who had just been admitted to the university, experienced big ups and downs in her life. She was deeply saddened by her mom’s sudden serious accident. In a state of emotional breakdown, she unexpectedly returned to 1981 and met her young mother Li Huanying (played by Zhang Xiaofei). They became best friends and met a group of innocent and kind friends. Xiaoling wanted to make her mother happier but she was surprised by the result.

 

As the director, Jia Ling is very attentive to the production of her directorial debut. She used unpretentious means to show the outlook on life, love and values of her mother’s generation.

 

There are many highlights in this movie, of which both mother and daughter appear in the form of flashbacks are the biggest highlight. The mother travelled back to her youth with her worries about her daughter to satisfy her daughter’s wishes and do her final farewell, while the daughter returned to her mom’s youth age with self-blame to try her best to change the ordinary destiny of her mom in the future. When the audience noticed this detail, their emotions changed from the full sense of humour in the first half of the movie to the moving scene in the second half.

 

When Jia Xiaoling learns the truth about the flashback, she lays on her mother's lap in grief and cries. Her helplessness towards life’s irreversible and attachment to her dying mother is revealed at this time. This is the most touching part of the whole movie.