Finishing the Game (2007)
Critic Consensus: Though Justin Lin's premise is precocious enough, the sight gags and comic timing are tired in this mockumentary about Asian typecasting in the 1970s.
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Critic Reviews for Finishing the Game
This tedious mockumentary isn't even as entertaining as one of Ed Wood's actual films, and once-promising director Justin Lin has some karma to square for fumbling such a sure thing.
Intermittently funny at best, but mostly full of dead air.
The breezy tone and obvious fun being had by the cast make Finishing the Game a slight, low-key cool cinematic essay on identity politics.
A very funny, equal-opportunity broadside that targets Asian stereotyping, and not just by non-Asians.
What little potential there is ends up squandered within nanoseconds; as both a parody and a polemic, the film is finished before it's barely begun.
Finishing The Game doesn't get anywhere that Hollywood Shuffle didn't go to first.
Audience Reviews for Finishing the Game
OMG this movie is a trip! Love how it comically, but truthfully portrays the disappointment and racism actors of color face in Hollywood. Roger Fan was spot on as a pretentious, egotistical celebrity, Sung Kang played the innocent, wide-eyed actor from the South, and Brian Tee was almost unrecognizable as an emotionally and physically damaged Vietnam war vet!
At first glance the plot sounds interesting, but at the same time, may be a bit misleading. One may come to expect a serious documentary about replacing Bruce Lee for finishing the Game of Death. Instead the viewer is given a full on mockumentary.
What is a mockumentary? Basically, it is a comedic documentary and Justin Lin provides a fairly successful one with this film.
The style of this film plays out like it is done from the 70's, which is when the original Game of Death is from. The sound effects, the settings, the camerawork, and the costumes all contribute to the 70's look and feel. This film is only 85 minutes long and the first 15 of it is basically character introductions. The rest of the film follows these characters throughout the entire audition process. Just think of the early episodes in a season of American Idol.
The comedy is fairly consistent, although it does get a little tiresome in the latter parts of the film. The characters are hilarious and so are their lines of dialogue. The situations that the characters are put in set up humorous sequences, which a few of them also intertwine.
The acting is pretty good. There are a surprisingly number of noticeable faces playing small roles, like M.C. Hammer, James Franco, and Ron Jeremy. Yet, somehow the style of the film makes everybody seem like non-famous celebrities. This is actually a good thing.
This is not or nowhere near a Bruce Lee martial arts film, but fans of Bruce Lee films, or mockumentaries, may want to check this one out.
A spastic satire, as producers struggle to replace Bruce Lee.
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