Joy Ride (2023)

by | Jul 7, 2023 | Movie Reviews, New In Theaters | 0 comments

Joy Ride emerges as an international gut-busting comedy, packed to the brim with tons of emotion and a wonderful story of friendship and feeling like you belong wherever you go. Boasting a comedy quartet that share the spotlight in a complementary fashion, this film balances the raunch with a straightforward approach to discussions about immigrants, adoption, and the challenges Asian’s and other people of color face in every facet of American life. There have already been some online who cried out that this film hates white people and objectifies men and after seeing the film, it’s almost laughable how fragile some individuals are. By no means is this a film that hates any type of individual, as it simply showcases life as a minority in an overwhelmingly white area. How we all are raised and grow up is completely out of our control and this film highlights the difficulty of looking different than most people around you and how hard you must work to exceed people’s expectations and generalizations about you.
Joy Ride

Following our two leads Audrey (Ashley Park) and Lola (Sherry Cola) exemplifies two different lifestyles and upbringings that are both family-oriented, but with one having a more “traditional” Chinese upbringing, while the other grew up mostly separate from her heritage. At no point does director Adele Lim’s film ever condemn Audrey’s parents for being white and raising her as their own daughter, but outside of the U.S. we see how she’s perceived by those who only see her as a typical American and not actually the Chinese woman that everyone in the U.S. sees her as. Once we journey overseas to China following Audrey in her attempt to close a business deal, we’re treated to a cultural reset as they all enjoy and explore their roots along the way.

There are some exceptionally funny and explicit moments in that film that had our theater laughing and wincing for minutes a time, rivaling some of the best girls and guys trip films of the last decade. It was a treat to see an audience of all ages and nationalities laughing and crying together as the film took our expectations and turned them on their heads. Joy Ride is more than worth the cost of admission for the comedy alone, but it really shines as an undercover drama about figuring out who you are and being comfortable with that person. We’re starving for original comedies and comedies in general and Joy Ride is a refreshing and incredible time at the theaters that all should seek out!

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