Advertisement

Movie Mom

Movie Mom

Shanghai Calling

posted by Nell Minow
B+
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
MPAA Rating:Rated PG-13 for some language including sexual references
Profanity:Some strong language
Nudity/Sex:Sexual references
Alcohol/Drugs:Drinking
Violence/Scariness:None
Diversity Issues:A theme of the movie
Movie Release Date:February 20, 2013
B+
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
MPAA Rating: Rated PG-13 for some language including sexual references
Profanity: Some strong language
Nudity/Sex: Sexual references
Alcohol/Drugs: Drinking
Violence/Scariness: None
Diversity Issues: A theme of the movie
Movie Release Date: February 20, 2013

Shanghai Calling” is a fish out of water story filled with charm.

YouTube Preview Image

Korean-American actor Daniel Henney plays Sam, a Chinese-American lawyer who is sent to China to work on a big project.  He does not speak Chinese and he knows very little about his heritage.  He has never been further out of New York City than 79th Street.  But he is ambitious and confident and is sure that he can make turn the project around quickly and make a triumphant return home.

Advertisement

Of course, he is wrong about, well, everything.

“Happy Endings'” Eliza Coupe plays Amanda, Sam’s “relocation specialist,” an American single mother who is fluent in Chinese. ¬†Bill Paxton (“Big Love”) plays the head of the “Americaville” expatriate community, mostly made up of business people who have come to China to take advantage of the enormous economic opportunities. ¬†And Alan Ruck (Cameron from “Ferris Buehler”) is the client, a cell phone manufacturer who wants to lock in an exclusive deal with a quirky inventor. ¬†Sam also has an assistant named Fang Fang (Zhu Zhu of “Cloud Atlas”).

Advertisement

The skills that made Sam successful in New York just get him into deeper trouble in China.  He unwisely ignores the advice from Amanda and Fang Fang, and ultimate discovers that his biggest failings come from his own unrecognized prejudices.

The laughter comes more from character than displacement mishaps. ¬†Coupe is lovely in a more natural, understated character than her hilarious Jane in “Happy Endings,” and Henney’s lanky appeal as he tries to cope with an avalanche of language and cultural challenges is a pleasure to watch. ¬†You will root for him to learn his lessons, save the day, and get the girl — and you will recognize and question your own assumptions and prejudices as well.

“Shanghai Calling” is in limited theatrical release, now available on Amazon instant video, ¬†on iTunes, and on demand.

Previous Posts

Interview: Matt Mamula of Celebrity Impersonator Documentary "Just About Famous"
Matt Mamula co-directed "Just About Famous," the very entertaining new documentary about celebrity impersonators. He generously took time to talk to me about the unexpected opportunities that open up when someone looks like someone who becomes ...

posted 3:59:51pm Apr. 26, 2015 | read full post »

Interview: Barak Goodman of "Cancer: The Emperor of All Maladies"
Director Barak Goodman talked to me about his superb series for PBS, Cancer: The Emperor of All Maladies, now available on DVD. The series is produced ...

posted 3:55:04pm Apr. 26, 2015 | read full post »

Creativity Conference 2015: Nancy Pelosi, Snoopy, and Drones with GoPros
I had so much fun at last year's Creativity Conference that I could not imagine how they could top it this year, but they succeeded. This is ...

posted 3:07:48pm Apr. 26, 2015 | read full post »

Trailer: The Little Prince
The beloved book The Little Prince has been gorgeously animated, with voices including Jeff Bridges, James Franco, and Rachel McAdams.  I love this trailer. [iframe frameborder="0" width="480" height="270" ...

posted 8:00:24am Apr. 26, 2015 | read full post »

Trailer: Samuel L. Jackson is the President in "Big Game"
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DKThy0cipVA ...

posted 8:00:34am Apr. 25, 2015 | read full post »

Advertisement


Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.