Easter Sunday Parent Guide
This movie's strongest appeal is to viewers who appreciate the Filipino cultural comedy but it's charming enough for general audiences.
Parent Movie Review
Since moving to L.A. to pursue his dreams of becoming a comic, Joe Valencia’s (Jo Koy) relationships have suffered. His ties to his family are strained by distance, and the hectic work schedule that broke up his marriage now prevents him from spending enough time with his son, Joe Jr. (Brandon Wardell).
A recent audition for a TV pilot has Joe hoping for more flexible family time, but his timing couldn’t be worse. While ironing out contract details with his agent, Joe travels to Daly City with Joe Jr. to spend Easter with his big, crazy Filipino family. As if the work stress weren’t enough, the family is counting on Joe to mend a growing argument between his mother, Susan (Lydia Gaston) and her sister Theresa (Tia Carrere), and to help his cousin Eugene (Eugene Cordero) out of some serious money trouble. If Joe is going to survive the holiday, he’ll have to figure out what means more to him: his job or his family.
Given my general lack of familiarity with Filipino culture, I think I missed a lot of the charm Easter Sunday has to offer. The non-stop barrage of cultural references and in-jokes is designed for a culturally literate audience, and I just don’t have the base knowledge to appreciate most of it. That said, the characters are fun, larger-than-life, and usually charming, which kept the film more or less on track for me.
On the other hand, this flick is criminally clichéd. You can predict almost the entire movie based on the first fifteen minutes because every single major plot point has been used, reused, and used again in dozens of other movies. The story’s familiarity doesn’t make the movie unwatchable - especially if you’re just there for the Filipino cultural jokes - but it does make it frustrating. It also doesn’t do the pacing any favors, since you’re just waiting for the movie to catch up with its predictable, inevitable conclusion.
Easter Sunday avoids sex or substance use, but there is one scene of violence and a little more profanity than I was expecting from a fun family comedy – one f-bomb and 17 scatological curses. That aside, the movie is definitely designed for a family audience, specifically a Filipino family audience. It’s nice to see some obviously loving cultural representation on screen, but it would have been even nicer if they’d managed to come up with a halfway original plot. But hey, your mileage may vary – it all depends on the type of cultural comedy that resonates with you.Directed by Jay Chandrasekhar. Starring Jo Koy, Lydia Gaston, and Brandon Wardell. Running time: 96 minutes. Theatrical release August 5, 2022. Updated August 5, 2022
Watch the trailer for Easter Sunday
Rating & Content Info
Why is Easter Sunday rated PG-13? Easter Sunday is rated PG-13 by the MPAA
Violence: Individuals are threatened with a gun, and a character is knocked out.
Sexual Content: None.
Profanity: There is a single sexual expletive plus 17 scatological curses and occasional uses of mild profanity and terms of deity.
Alcohol / Drug Use: Adults are briefly seen drinking socially in the background. The protagonist is in a commercial for non-alcoholic beer.
Page last updated August 5, 2022
Easter Sunday Parents' Guide
What does Joe Jr. learn about his family and culture? How does this trip change his relationship with his father? What did Joe learn about his son and his own childhood? How did he try to get his family to get along? Do you think Eugene learned any lessons about his behaviour? Why or why not?