7.0/10
9,036
135 user 50 critic

Better Luck Tomorrow (2002)

Trailer
2:02 | Trailer
A group of over-achieving Asian-American high school seniors enjoy a power trip when they dip into extra-curricular criminal activities.

Director:

Justin Lin
1 win & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Parry Shen ... Ben Manibag
Jason Tobin ... Virgil Hu
Shirley Anderson Shirley Anderson ... Hot Dog Planet Customer
Nanette Matoba Nanette Matoba ... Housewife
Kenji Matoba Kenji Matoba ... Toddler
Sung Kang ... Han
Ashley Arai Ashley Arai ... Cheerleader
Danielle Conner Danielle Conner ... Cheerleader
Karen DiTota Karen DiTota ... Cheerleader
Smita Satiani Smita Satiani ... Cheerleader
Kristen Stinson Kristen Stinson ... Cheerleader
Jeff DeJohn Jeff DeJohn ... Ryan
Robert Zepeda Robert Zepeda ... Jock
Collin Kahey ... Jock
Christopher J. Francis Christopher J. Francis ... Jock
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Storyline

Ben is a perfectionist and overachiever whose tunnel vision leads to nothing less than graduating at the top of his class. As he struggles to achieve social success, he discovers his darker side. He and his friends: Virgil, Daric and Han lead a double life of mischief and petty crimes to alleviate the pressures of perfection. As their adopted identity grows, the gang tumbles into a downward spiral of excitement, excess and fun. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

The Boyfriend. The Beauty. The Overachiever. The Mastermind. The Clown. The Muscle. See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence, drug use, language and sexuality | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In a February 2016 interview with the New York Times, Justin Lin recalled than when he was struggling to arrange financing for Better Luck Tomorrow, he had one potential investor who offered Lin $1 million, but only on the condition that the movie had to have Macaulay Culkin in the lead. Lin said, "If I would have said yes, I would have gotten $1 million and I would have gotten to make the movie with a white cast, but it didn't interest me." See more »

Goofs

Orange and blue seem to be the school colors of the school where this was shot, as can be seen when Ben is making free throws. The sports and cheerleading uniforms, however, are yellow and green. See more »

Quotes

Virgil Hu: Oh dude, did I tell you? I got it.
Ben Manibag: Got what?
Virgil Hu: Remember how I told you I once saw Stephanie Vandergosh in a porn? Well I got it.
Ben Manibag: Shut the fuck up.
Virgil Hu: I'll show you right now fool!
Virgil HuBen Manibag: [Both Laugh]
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Alternate Versions

In the version shown at the 2002 Sundance Film Festival, Ben Manibag, played by Parry Shen, has taken part in the killing of a romantic rival, and towards the end he is heard saying, in effect, "Well, what I did wasn't right ...but I've got college to think about, and I've got a good life to look forward to, and I'm gonna move on." See more »

Connections

Referenced in Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle (2004) See more »

Soundtracks

Menace 2 Heterosexuality
Written and Performed by Myles of Destruction
Courtesy of the Artist
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User Reviews

Mediocre, not much to remember
11 October 2004 | by bgvaSee all my reviews

I picked up this movie at the recommendation of a friend, and must admit, I was less than impressed. It had a lot of potential, but the plot was all over the place. It felt like it was just too much going on during the 90 or so minutes of dialogue. What was worse was that they'd just jump into a scene, and add something in without any rhyme or reason. For example, right after the prostitute hotel scene, Ben narrates something about how his Academic Challenge team won the national championship. I felt they could've had something to elaborate on that moment, rather than just throw in a quick "Oh yeah! I forgot to tell you, we won the national championship." Ditto to the scene where one of the characters (IIRC Ben) wakes up in a daze, with a bloody nose, the result of cocaine. Not much of a build-up or anything. It's just BAM! All of a sudden, he's a cokehead.

This movie had potential, but was poorly executed IMO. With better pacing, and even writing, it could get a higher rating. But with such sloppy execution, I must give it a 4.


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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

25 April 2003 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Better Luck Tomorrow See more »

Filming Locations:

Alhambra, California, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$250,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$360,772, 13 April 2003

Gross USA:

$3,802,390

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$3,809,226
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (2003)

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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