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Tribeca 2020: “Asia” (2020) ★★★


Parents always sacrifice something for their child and sometimes that sacrifice comes in the form of hard work that takes up all their time which could have otherwise been spent with their loved ones.

Originally intended to premiere as part of the Tribeca Film Festival that moved online this year due to the COVID-19 outbreak, Asia, the titular character, is a single mother. She was too young when she gave birth to Vika, her only child. Working as a nurse, she’s mostly seen outside of the home than inside, hence, giving enough freedom to her daughter to live her life. Despite the fact that they are too close, their bond will grow stronger in the face of a dangerous disease.

Asia and Vika are Russian immigrants living in Israel. Asia, who works as a nurse, is too busy at work. Vika, on the other hand, continues hanging out with her friends, drinks alcohol, and has little worries about her future. But once she collapses and ends up in the hospital, the young woman realizes that the future she thought she’ll build for herself may never come. This is when her mother steps up as Vika’s best friend and parent, during which they learn about each other more than they did before.

Directed by the Israeli filmmaker Ruthy Pribar, “Asia” is a decent drama about the hardships of motherhood, choices that Asia should make, and the love for her daughter that is greater than her own tears. The film explores a mother-and-daughter relationship in the most poignant and heartbreaking way. Indeed, it is not easy when, still a relatively young parent, Asia watches the life of her daughter slowly fade away right before her eyes. But Asia, as a nurse, someone who has taken care of way too many patients, realizes the matter of ultimate sacrifice and why this patient should better get all the love she can before it’s too late.

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