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YMMV / Broken Blossoms

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  • Fair for Its Day: Despite the Yellow Face and the racial slurs, Chen Huan (and the Chinese community in London generally) is depicted positively. And of course Chen is the hero of the story.
  • Signature Scene: The "closet" scene, which involves Lucy locking herself in a closet to hide from her raging father.
  • Values Dissonance:
    • Though he is an unambiguous hero, Chen is mostly referred to, even in narration, as a "Chink", or a "Yellow Man".
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    • It's not mentioned in the narrative but Lucy is supposed to be fifteen while Chen is obviously older. Lucy's abusive father isn't concerned that his teenage daughter is hanging around a twenty-something year old, only that he's Chinese.
  • Values Resonance: All told, this film comes about as close to having an anti-racist message as you could reasonably expect for a film from 1919.
  • The Woobie:
    • Lucy in all her life was a servant to her abusive father. When she does her un-smile, the narration notes that she never had a cause to smile genuinely. When she finally meets a man who's nice to her, she's murdered by her father because of it.
    • Chen, who has to see his ideals destroyed, and the girl he loved killed - partially because of him.
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