Americanese (2006)

Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 4.9/10 from 150 users  
Reviews: 3 user | 6 critic

Long after their breakup, Chinese American Raymond Ding and Amerasian Aurora Crane struggle to let go. Torn apart by mismatched ideals, meddling friends, and the complexities of racial ... See full summary »



(based on the novel "American Knees" by),
0Check in
2 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Almost Perfect I (2011)
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A 30-something career woman tries to find the balance between her demanding family and her perfect new boyfriend.

Director: Bertha Bay-Sa Pan
Stars: Kelly Hu, Roger Rees, Christina Chang
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.2/10 X  

A story about a group of estranged Chinese-American siblings who reunite after the death of their mother.

Director: Anna Chi
Stars: Bai Ling, Steph Song, Talia Shire
Undoing (2006)
Crime | Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.9/10 X  

A crime drama set in LA's Koreatown, UNDOING introduces us to Samuel, who returns after a mysterious absence to reconcile the death of his best friend exactly one year ago.

Director: Chris Chan Lee
Stars: Sung Kang, Kelly Hu, Tom Bower
Kush (2007)
Action | Crime | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 3.8/10 X  

A young drug dealer Dusty, is torn between the money and getting out. When his partner Christian, is caught up in a kidnapping and murder scheme. Dusty and King come to his rescue but only ... See full summary »

Director: York Alec Shackleton
Stars: Nick Annunziata, William Atherton, Thomas Beaumont
Farm House (2008)
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

Farmhouse is a psychological thriller set in the modern day mid-west. We follow a young couple as they leave their everyday lives behind and head out to a new beginning; starting over from ... See full summary »

Director: George Bessudo
Stars: Jamie Anne Allman, William Lee Scott, Steven Weber
The Haumana (2013)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  
Director: Keo Woolford
Stars: Tui Asau, Tauarii Nahalea-Marama, J.D. Tanuvasa
Comedy | Romance | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  

After an accident, a chauvinistic executive gains the ability to hear what women are really thinking.

Director: Daming Chen
Stars: Andy Lau, Li Gong, Li Yuan
Devil's Den (2006)
Action | Comedy | Horror
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.9/10 X  

Two small time drug-dealers cross paths with a female-assassin, a monster hunter, a Japanese swordsman and even the Devil himself at a gentlemen's club housing murderous she-demons.

Director: Jeff Burr
Stars: Kelly Hu, Devon Sawa, Ken Foree
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

Michael, a young mechanic, is forced to choose between a daring tryst with an alluring stranger and the habitual comfort of his bittersweet obsession: his beautiful young tenant.

Director: Eric Byler
Stars: Jacqueline Kim, Eugenia Yuan, Michael Aki
Shanghai Kiss (2007)
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

An Asian-American actor, living in Los Angeles, is forced to reconsider his roots as well as the possibilities afforded him by his present situation after suddenly inheriting his grandmother's home in Shanghai.

Directors: Kern Konwiser, David Ren
Stars: Ken Leung, Hayden Panettiere, Kelly Hu
Stiletto II (2008)
Action | Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5/10 X  

The seemingly random killings of an assassin puzzle her former lover, a wealthy Greek crime boss whose organization is jeopardized by his love for her, and the detective following her rising body count.

Director: Nick Vallelonga
Stars: Stana Katic, Tom Berenger, Paul Sloan
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Chinese kid Julian, who was adopted by the black family of Joe and Annabelle Lee and Asian exchange student May-Ling, who is housed with a black family, are trying to adapt to their mostly ... See full summary »

Director: Timothy A. Chey
Stars: Ernie Hudson, Pam Grier, Margaret Cho


Cast overview, first billed only:
Wood Ding
Test Driver #1 (as Munda Razooki)
Carol Saraceno ...
Woman with Dogs
Jimmy Chan
Nathaniel Taylor ...
Test Driver #2 (as Nathaniel H. Taylor)
Yuri Treschuck ...
Amerasian Youth at Bus Stop
Jen Van Epps ...
Rumana (as Jen Brown)
Kayvon Esmaili ...
Brenda's Boyfriend at Party
Rumana's Boyfriend


Long after their breakup, Chinese American Raymond Ding and Amerasian Aurora Crane struggle to let go. Torn apart by mismatched ideals, meddling friends, and the complexities of racial identities, they find other suitable mates but cannot stay away from each other. Written by

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Some love stories begin with goodbye...


Comedy | Drama | Romance



Official Sites:



Release Date:

13 March 2006 (USA)  »

Filming Locations:


Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


See  »

Did You Know?


Referenced in Popcorn Zen: Episode #2.2 (2006) See more »


Stand By The River With Me
Written and Performed by Quinn
Published by Mysterion (ASCAP)
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

The American Life: Six New Perspectives on Film
17 March 2006 | by (San Francisco) – See all my reviews

Eric Byler, whose low-key, quietly fascinating film opened the S.F. International Asian American Film Festival March 16 in the Castro Theater, may well produce a great movie soon. "Americanese" is not it, but it's a huge step up from his already excellent "Charlotte Sometimes," and it is a work with gripping, unforgettable moments... even if they come rarely during two hours of what may feel like near-tedium to some.

In an interesting, and perhaps significant, coincidence Byler's film appears at the same time with five other new works of Americana: Paul Weitz's "American Dreamz," Nicole Holofcener's "Friends with Money," Sidney Lumet's "Find Me Guilty," Robert Towne's "Ask the Dust," and Wim Wenders' "Don't Come Knocking." As Byler, the other directors are also responsible for their script. As in the case of "Americanese," these films deal with aspects of life in America, but Byler's focus is very different.

Once again, Byler writes (taking Shawn Wong's novel, "American Knees," as his text) about what he knows, who he is: the lives of young (and now, middle aged) people of racially mixed parentage. From the 1915 "Birth of a Nation," Byler says in an essay, American film-makers "have typically approached race issues with stories that involve murder, mob violence, police brutality, and/or exaggerated melodrama." (A statement made even before the arrival of "Crash.") "Americanese" has none of that. It is a slow, thoughtful portrayal of private lives, against the background of many factors, including race. Byler is daring, risk-taking, difficult, in showing ordinary and yet complex characters in ordinary and yet extremely complicated relationships.

The story's protagonist is a divorced, middle-aged history professor (Chris Tashima) with two romantic crises, being unable to let go of a younger ex-girlfriend (Allison Sie), or to take charge of a push-pull relationship with a beautiful, kind, and deeply-scarred and near-unstable Vietnamese refugee, played by Joan Chen.

If three Chinese stars can take over "Geisha," why not have a fourth portray a Vietnamese as well? One's head may be injured by the scratching occasioned in contemplation of this mysterious shortage of talented and attractive actresses in Japan and Vietnam, but nothing can take away from Chen's performance. She is perfect, yielding and pushing away, bewitching and torturing the character played with appealing simplicity by Tashima.

The slow, "naturalistic" development of "Americanese" culminates in a shocking surprise that belies all the apparent resolutions the film's characters achieve, and it does something more. As you leave the theater, the story continues within, and as you think about various sequels to it, suddenly, there is a realization how valid and deep that "surprise" ending was, how it explains some of what went on before. Depth: a hallmark of American cinema? I think not, but of Byler - more so.

8 of 13 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Autumn Reeser chiricos
Fantastic Film Making. claw9
Discuss Americanese (2006) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: