Watching TV with the Red Chinese (2012)
Three Chinese students, Tzu (James Chen), Wa (Keong Sim) and Chen (Leonardo Nam) come to study in America in the summer of 1980. They move into a New York City apartment next door to Dexter (Ryan O'Nan), a graduate student who introduces them to Suzanne (Gillian Jacobs), his occasional girlfriend and to Billy (Michael Esper), a struggling filmmaker. The Chinese find America fascinating. However, their perceptions, based on watching non-stop television, change when one of them is brutally mugged, when Suzanne takes up with Chen behind Dexter's back, and when Zap (Peter Scanavino), Suzanne's ex boyfriend, stalks them into a state of terror. When on December 8, 1980 John Lennon is murdered, the Chinese students decide to buy a gun for self-defense. -- (C) Official Site … More
No Friends? Inconceivable! Log in to see what your friends have to say.Login
Critic Reviews for Watching TV with the Red Chinese
Dotan takes this iffy story and makes it nearly unwatchable by jumping back and forth in time, using screens within screens and bouncing between color and black-and-white.
The film nicely captures the grad-student vibe: beer-fueled bull sessions about science, religion, probability and destiny; fragile, self-absorbed egos preening even as confidence wavers.
This quirky indie has an off-kilter, shaggy appeal and a filling story.
The conversations feel artificial, overly concerned with re-creating period detail or interjecting relevant philosophical life concepts, like a constantly rehashed theory of alternate universes built on different "what if?" scenarios.
The timeline jitters out of order, dropping viewers into a scenario it takes far longer than necessary to discover is straightforward and self-seriously soap operatic.
Less a story loosely bound by cause and effect than a kind of scrapbook of memories, all of which convey the concerns of being super smart and mostly confused in a culturally mixed Manhattan, circa 1980.
A cautionary tale of innocence lost, delivering a prophetic message with the benefit of 20/20 hindsight that a generation ago America might have already been 'a culture in decay.'
Audience Reviews for Watching TV with the Red Chinese
There are no featured audience reviews yet. Click the link below to see what others say about Watching TV with the Red Chinese!
Discuss Watching TV with the Red Chinese on our Movie forum!