7.4/10
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2 user 6 critic

To Whom It May Concern: Ka Shen's Journey (2010)

Not Rated | | Documentary, Biography, Drama
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The definitive and true-life story of Nancy Kwan who as a young Eurasian girl from Hong Kong captured the hearts and minds of cinemagoers around the world in her stunning motion picture ... See full summary »

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Edward S. Feldman ...
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Bernard Jamieson ...
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Ka Keung Kwan ...
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Veronika Kwan-Rubinek ...
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The definitive and true-life story of Nancy Kwan who as a young Eurasian girl from Hong Kong captured the hearts and minds of cinemagoers around the world in her stunning motion picture debut in THE WORLD OF SUZIE WONG (1960). Nancy Kwan's story is both fairytale and poignant as it takes its audience on a personal journey, a woman's journey, which is as equally compelling as it is inspiring. Written by Anonymous

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Documentary of the life and career of actress Nancy Kwan
25 March 2011 | by (Hilo, Hawaii) – See all my reviews

I thought the story was very interesting and gave us a glimpse inside at what it was like for Asians in show business back in the fifties and sixties. Hollywood's attitude toward ethnic actors and actresses were a bit racist and stereotypical until a young actress named Nancy Kwan (whose Chinese name is Ka Shen) broke onto the scene and helped changed the views of many. Most noted for her performances in The World of Suzie Wong and Flower Drum Song, this documentary looks at Nancy Kwan's entire career and shows us a strong, determined woman who no matter what, always pushed forward and delivered her best even when what she had to work with was not very good.

The story is solid and helps us connect by letting us in and seeing the personal hardships she has endured. The film is well shot with wonderful out takes from the various movie and television performances that Nancy did over her career, as well as interviews with some of the people that were closest to her. I also enjoyed listening to Nancy talk about her life and her thoughts about what she has been through. Many times documentaries like this are done after the person has passed away and we only hear opinions from others that knew them and what they think, so it was refreshing to hear her own accounts.

My only criticism of the film is about the constant cutting away to the scenes in the temple ruins. I felt this was way too repetitive, completely unnecessary and a bit distracting. It was almost like they were trying to stretch the film length out and used those scenes to do it. If that was their goal I think they could have found more creative ways to do so. Other than that, I found To Whom It May Concern a very enjoyable and informative piece of work. I definitely recommend it, especially to those who are cinema history buffs.


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