A translated Chinese harangue that laughs at American missteps.




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A translated Chinese harangue that laughs at American missteps.

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Short | Comedy | Drama



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January 2006 (USA)  »

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Sharp, entertaining and yes a little scary.
8 June 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This film flows very well and has a high production value. The maker seems to want to drive home a few main points with this piece:

1.Remove the notion many middle-Americans have that "we're number 1" and will remain that way indefinitely by virtue of our inherent superiority to Chinese.

2. Clue the viewer in to how poised China is to become the world's most important economy (a spot still held by the US, I believe).

3. Direct the anger Americans might feel after learning these facts towards the policies of the Bush administration.

I have mixed feelings about how the film's creator attempts to achieve these objectives. Clearly, the U.S. media generally tries to keep Americans in the dark about all things China. What we see on cable news often has to do with isolated incidents of crime and yes, celebrity affairs, neither of which motivate the viewer to improve his or her work ethic or to see the world as anything other than a collection of violent and vain people.

Movies such as this could serve as valuable tool to educate Americans in ways the mainstream media refuses to. However, while this movie does present some very important facts, it unfortunately does so in a way that may make the viewer think that ALL Chinese feel the same way about Americans that the narrator depicts (I hope this isn't true?). The movie shows highly condescending monologue across the bottom of the screen paired with pictures of Chinese people laughing or going about their day, giving the impression that the monologue is attributed to these people. This tactic is similar to posters which were created about Japanese people during World War 2 by the US government in order to create unfounded xenophobia and drum up support for that war.

While this strategy may have its downside, the shock factor is very high, adding to the entertainment value (who doesn't love a good rant?) and to the memorability of the film. In the long run, a cold splash of water in the face is far better than slowly drowning in one's own ignorance. What this film does very well is educating and either inspiring, enraging or both. The maker found an important message and delivered it well.

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