Golden Gate (1993) Poster


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love and witch hunts
Lee Eisenberg5 May 2015
John Madden's "Golden Gate" mixes issues of racism with McCarthy-era witch hunts. Matt Dillon plays an FBI agent in San Francisco who trumps up charges against a Chinese-American man and later starts up a relationship with the man's daughter (Joan Chen). I actually thought that one of the most effective scenes was the college scene in which the Asian-American students reflect on discrimination. But even so I thought that they did a sufficient job looking at the issues. I understand that screenwriter David Henry Hwang is a noted dramatist; indeed, part of the movie feels like a play.

Anyway, pretty good movie. Also starring Bruno Kirby (young Pete Clemenza in "The Godfather Part II"), Teri Polo (Pam in "Meet the Parents") and Tzi Ma (one of the accomplices in the remake of "The Ladykillers").
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A touching and timeless film of tragic love
radio_tokyo8 June 2007
I caught this film late one night in Japan. I had never heard of it and was amazed. I've always liked Matt Dillon, and fell in love with Joan Chen watching this film.

Matt Dillon is his usual brilliant self playing an FBI agent who falls in love with a subject under observation. He contrives a way to meet her and they connect with a blinding love. However a love founded on a great lie and betrayal. Joan Chen is beautiful and pure, true to her culture and family. Her role here could not have been portrayed by an American-Chinese actress with such realism.

This film spoke to my heart and I would definitely rate that night in Japan watching this as an unforgettable experience. Watch it if you like films that speak true.
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Interesting, era-relevant, and outstanding lead roles
divincenzo-1236725 January 2016
I came across this film while in my workshop. I stopped working and from there on, I sat and was drawn into this film. Matt Dillon (you either like him or hate him). I like him, as the FBI agent Kevin David Walker, and Joan Chen as his lover Marilyn Song, have chemistry that appears real. The plot is era correct, in every way. The paranoia about Communism and Marijuana was depicted as a tool of subversive abuse by the FBI and local police. This was well acted by character actor Bruno Kirby who portrays Dillon's boss, Ron Pirelli and is good in this role. The story is a bit slow in some spots, but that is overcome by the underlying disintegration of Dillon's life. The last scene was a cinematic masterpiece and had me in tears. It is a gem that should be on every viewers list.
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Entertaining and relatively accurate view of how lives were destroyed by right wing hysteria
midas5516 October 2008
Despite the ridiculous comments about the movie "not taking seriously the Communist threat" there was no Communist threat in the 50's. The only threat was that of the right-wing zealots who, in their crooked hysteria, did their best to destroy the Consitution and the Bill of Rights for their own political gains! Sort of sounds like today, doesn't it? The movie is very well done, although a little hazy in the script but excellent performances by the leads make up for it! The ending is a little too sudden and a little too fantasy laden for my tastes but I get the impression that it was meddled with by the studio types.
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an under-rated film gem
dmans-899-51084613 January 2016
Feel like this is an under-rated classic with a film noir touch. Had an odd way of drawing you in until you were completely seduced. Just something about it made me love it more each time I viewed it. The acting was wonderful and well-done. Always nice to see Bruno Kirby though a different role for him. Same for Matt Dillon - totally unexpected but nice the same. Liked the atmosphere & setting which adds to the allure. A shame this was not better promoted as seems to be somewhat unknown. Regardless people should really give this a chance & check it out. Will be purchasing this as I could watch many more times. Truly unique.
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dillon saves this from being a one-star dog!!!
inframan18 June 2000
Hey, don't these screenwriters know how to read any more? I mean this screenplay is so rank with vague cliches & timeless imprecision, it's beyond comprehension. There's no cohesion here, narrative, emotional, political or otherwise. It's beyond embarrassment. Woof. Only poor Matt Dillon gives it any dignity or professionality. What is he, the indie's Jeff Bridges? The guy deserves some kind of special award. Definitely.
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Left wing view of FBI and San Francisco in the 60's
irish4427 November 1998
Warning: Spoilers
I'm no big fan of the FBI, but the story line of this movie is ridiculous! The writer and director couldn't have care less about telling a realistic story of the communist threat in the 1950's and the social and political changes of the 1960's. Instead, the FBI and its agents are portrayed as evil and devoid of integrity. When agent Kevin Walker (Matt Dillon) finally realizes the "error of his ways", he turns into a drunk and degenerate who eventually commits suicide. Technically, the movie is well done. The cinematography is first rate, with San Francisco filmed it all of its glory. But, as for the left wing "brain washing", I'll pass, and I recommend that you do the same.
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A bridge made of cardboard
poj-man2 May 2013
Warning: Spoilers
Who knew that the Golden Gate was made of cardboard instead of steel? Obviously not the producers and the director of this garbage. They filled the film with cardboard characters and standard tripe.

Matt Damon plays a guy who wanders around morosely spouting below stock lines trying to reconcile his life as a Federal Agent. He works in Chinatown for years but throughout a whole film set in Chinatown not one damn person speaks Chinese ever in the film! Throughout the film the Chinese actors and actresses speak fluent 1980's style English. They all dress drably except when it is time to show of Ms. Chen. Then she wears a bright red tittie-forming top that makes her stand out against the drabness all around Chinatown. The hokiness of the story and characters dribs and drabs making one dread each next line of dialog for it is obviously going to be worse than the prior one. an Okie of John Steinbeck's...Matt Damon never is seen having a home in Chinatown at all. All he does is wander around from scene to scene. There is not one shred of him being a realistic human at all.

This film is so awful it makes one want to throw themselves off the Golden Gate bridge.
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