Mah Jong Orphan

Honey Fisher

1994, 44:54 minutes, colour, English


Mother/daughter relationships are special, but what happens when that relationship is compounded by a cultural gap? Mah Jong Orphan is the story of Suzan, born and raised in China and her Canadian-born daughter, Lilly. Though Suzan now lives a modern lifestyle in Canada, her values are still rooted in China. She raised her daughter in a traditional Chinese home, but Lilly, wanting to fit in with her friends, preferred to be Canadian. Torn between two worlds, neither one understanding the other's point of view, their clash of cultural values prevented them from developing a close mother /daughter bond.
The audience has the privilege of simultaneously sharing in Suzan's and Lilly's poignant and sometimes humorous discoveries about themselves and each other. The trust that developed between the director and the subjects allowed for a remarkable degree of honesty and intimacy. So revealing are these two in front of the camera that you may think you're watching a therapy session, not a documentary. Their difficulties transcend any particular culture or class and strike a collective nod of recognition amongst all immigrant families. It is a powerful documentary dealing with family relationships that provokes discussion each time it is viewed by audiences.

Rental and Sales

Single Screening Rental


Educational Purchase DVD (Bluray +$15)


5 Year Educational Streaming License, Digital File with DVD Circulation Copy


Gallery Exhibition and Installation, complete Media Request form for quote

Institutional Archival Acquisition, complete Media Request form for quote

Curators and programmers, please contact to receive a login and password to preview Vtape titles online.

Screening and exhibition rentals and archival acquisitions include public performance rights; educational purchases or licenses include rights for classroom screenings and library circulation. When placing an order the customer agrees to our general online terms and conditions. Payment (or a purchase order number) and a signed licensing agreement must be received before media can be shipped to the client.

Critical Writing

Touring Women's Cinema: The films by the latest crop of Canadian...
by Noreen Golfman. Canadian Forum, Sept. 1994.