The social anxiety of a morbidly shy Ecuadorian dishwasher working in a Queens diner provides the psychological engine that powers this blend of drama and magical realism.

Director:

Steve Barron

Writer:

Steve Barron
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1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Octavio Gómez Berríos ... Jorge
Eugenia Yuan ... Amy
Mandy Patinkin ... Rick
Aaron Paul ... Jerry
Kate Buddeke Kate Buddeke ... Terri
Philippe Brenninkmeyer ... Dutch Man
Rupak Ginn ... Din
Al Roffe Al Roffe ... Chef
Mando Alvarado ... Stand-In Chef
Paolo Andino ... Choking Man
Russell G. Jones ... Subway Man
Philip Levy Philip Levy ... Middle-Aged Customer
John Anthony Ferrara John Anthony Ferrara ... Spoiled Brat
Ruth Yaffe Ruth Yaffe ... Female Diner (as Ruth Jaffe)
Mitchell Greenberg Mitchell Greenberg ... Gene
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Storyline

Choking Man is an intense blend of psychological drama and magical realism that encapsulates the contemporary immigrant experience in America. Jorge is a morbidly shy Ecuadorian dishwasher toiling away in a shabby Jamaica, Queens, New York diner run by Rick. He works all day long in the shadow of the ever-present Heimlich Maneuver instruction poster which hangs in the diner kitchen. From his solitary kitchen corner, Jorge gropes mutely for a bond with Amy, the newly hired Chinese waitress and even though she tries to reciprocate, the gulf that separates them may be too large. On the job he is continually tormented by his coworker Jerry and at home in his Harlem boarding, under the psychological control of his domineering 'roomate,' he battles his inner demons. Set in the vicinity of JFK airport, the most culturally diverse neighborhood in the world, Choking Man captures the feeling of claustrophobia and almost literal asphyxiation newcomers to America experience as they struggle to ... Written by Anonymous

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Plot Keywords:

ecuadorian | social anxiety | See All (2) »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Soundtracks

Mariposa
Lyrics by Oliver Barron and Octavio Gomez Berrios
Performed by Octavio Gomez Berrios
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User Reviews

 
I saw this film at Tribeca...
30 April 2006 | by marty416See all my reviews

I really think this film is some kid of masterwork. Really I do. The Festival described the film in its catalog much better than I can: "If you think you know Steve Barron from his music videos ("Billie Jean," "Money for Nothing," "Take on Me"), think again. The director best known for his seminal work on MTV in the early 1980's (not to mention the glitzy 1984 feature Electric Dreams) brings an entirely new aesthetic to bear on Choking Man, an intense blend of psychological drama and magical realism that speaks eloquently of the contemporary immigrant experience in America. Jorgé (Octavio Gómez Berríos) is a morbidly shy Ecuadorian dishwasher toiling away in a shabby Jamaica, Queens diner run by Rick (a Greek-accented Mandy Patinkin). Tormented on the job by his coworker Jerry (Aaron Paul) and controlled at home by his older, domineering male "roommate," Jorgé gropes mutely for a bond with Amy, a newly hired Korean waitress (Mail Order Wife's Eugenia Yuan). She tries to reciprocate, but the gulf that separates them may be too large. Interstitial fantasy sequences featuring an animated rabbit gives us the impressions of life from Jorgé's point of view, while a poster instructing diner patrons on how to perform the Heimlich Maneuver looms over and ultimately catalyzes the action. Shot over 18 days in Harlem and at Queens' Olympia Diner, Choking Man effectively portrays the polyglot milieu of the area around John F. Kennedy Airport, capturing the feeling of claustrophobia and almost literal asphyxiation newcomers to America experience as they struggle to find a place and a purpose in this strange land.

  • Elliot Larkfield"


I would say this is a must see film.


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Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

USA

Language:

English | Spanish

Release Date:

14 November 2008 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

Lanchonete Olympia See more »

Filming Locations:

New York City, New York, USA

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$4,189, 11 November 2007

Gross USA:

$5,474

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$14,632
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color
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