SMOKING TIGERS (Tribeca 2023) – Review by Leslie Combemale

Smoking Tigers won the AT&T Presents: Untold Stories award, offering a million dollars and a screening at Tribeca, but it landed in the US narrative competition, and the fest is the better for it. The film is set in LA in the early 2000s, where Korean American 16-year-old Hayoung is dealing with the breakup of her parents about as well as most kids her age might. It has thrown her. She’s lonely. In a city where lots of her peers come from money, both her parents are just scraping by. Her strict mom, hoping Hayoung will get into a prestigious school, spends thousands for a brutal college prep bootcamp. Her dad’s visits are getting fewer and farther between, and often he can’t come to pick her up as promised

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