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Preface: I confess - the first time I watched this film, my initial reaction was, "wtf?" and I was a little annoyed at how Byler deliberately withheld information from the audience that would have made the narrative easier to access. But the next day, I was still haunted by the film and I realized that I had missed the point. As my review indicated, Byler evokes a powerful mood with this film and though the narrative might not be spelled out for the viewer, it succeeds very well in leaving a lasting impression on the viewer. Five years later, I now think of the film as one of the strongest debuts of any Asian American director and it, along with Better Luck Tomorrow, is an intriguing template for the post-'97 Asian American film in terms of new ways of handling the politics of identity.
THE REVIEW (originally appeared on Popmatters.com).
See also: An interview with Eric Byler (originally for Popmmaters.com).
Charlotte Sometimes website.