American Fusion

"Good"

American Fusion Review


Can a 49-year-old Asian-American divorcee find true happiness with a middle-aged Mexican-American dentist? Give that extended-family culture clash stories usually have happy endings (Romeo and Juliet and West Side Story are exceptions, of course), the chances are good. In the overcrowded and good-natured American Fusion, two California families collide, and much, as they say, is learned.

Meet the cast: Yvonne (Sylvia Chang), the meek woman looking for love, has her hands full taking care of her aged Chinese mother (Lang Yun); her volatile ex-con brother Tony (Collin Chou), who is having trouble conceiving a baby with his wife; her sister, whose son Steve (James Chang) is a stripper; and her 28-year-old son Josh (Randall Park), who is utterly unmotivated in life.

While trying to sell classified ads for the local rag she works for (it's owned by a toupee-wearing Pat Morita in one of his final appearances), she meets the hunky Dr. Jose (Esai Morales), a charming Mexican-American dentist to whom she's immediately attracted. It's mutual, but when the two start dating tentatively (bowling!), her family, and most notably her judgmental and busybody mother, is having none of it. Through her eyes, Jose looks like a dirty Frito Bandito, complete with sombrero and stinking cigar. It's one of the movie's major points: Even victims of racism have no problem being racist themselves. For his part, Jose's family, which has eerie parallels to Sylvia's, is far more laid back and accepting.

When Grandma's health declines, Steve's fertility problem hits the boiling point, Steve's stripper life is discovered, and Josh is sent off to China to get motivated, it's Sylvia who is called upon to hold everything together, even as she tries to make her romance work. Everyone races around with increasing velocity until the inevitable happy ending emerges from all the confusion.

American Fusion goes down easy. It's not particularly funny, angry, or insightful, but the families are entertaining, and the semi-legend Chang (anyone who appeared in Eat, Drink, Man, Woman is a legend to me) carries the film effortlessly. In fact, the entire cast seems to be having lots of fun, and there are plenty of weird moments to enjoy, such as when Collin Chou (much better known as a Hong Kong kung fu killer than a supporting player in American rom-coms) pleads with his wife to have sex in a contraption that will have them hanging upside down "because that's how bats do it and bats have lots of children." And then they actually do it! It's weird comedic moments like that (plus Pat Morita's toupee) that make American Fusion worth a look.

No you're awesome!



American Fusion

Facts and Figures

In Theaters: Saturday 22nd October 2005

Distributed by: Artisan Entertainment

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 3 / 5

IMDB: 5.9 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director: Frank Lin

Producer: Jason Inouye, John Dunn, Robin Oliver

Contactmusic


Links


Advertisement

New Movies

Star Wars: The Last Jedi Movie Review

Star Wars: The Last Jedi Movie Review

After the thunderous reception for J.J. Abrams' Episode VII: The Force Awakens two years ago,...

Daddy's Home 2 Movie Review

Daddy's Home 2 Movie Review

Like the 2015 original, this comedy plays merrily with cliches to tell a silly story...

The Man Who Invented Christmas Movie Review

The Man Who Invented Christmas Movie Review

There's a somewhat contrived jauntiness to this blending of fact and fiction that may leave...

Ferdinand Movie Review

Ferdinand Movie Review

This animated comedy adventure is based on the beloved children's book, which was published in...

Brigsby Bear Movie Review

Brigsby Bear Movie Review

Director Dave McCary makes a superb feature debut with this offbeat black comedy, which explores...

Battle of the Sexes Movie Review

Battle of the Sexes Movie Review

A dramatisation of the real-life clash between tennis icons Billie Jean King and Bobby Riggs,...

Shot Caller Movie Review

Shot Caller Movie Review

There isn't much subtlety to this prison thriller, but it's edgy enough to hold the...

Advertisement
The Disaster Artist Movie Review

The Disaster Artist Movie Review

A hilariously outrageous story based on real events, this film recounts the making of the...

Stronger Movie Review

Stronger Movie Review

Based on a true story about the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing, this looks like one...

Only the Brave Movie Review

Only the Brave Movie Review

Based on a genuinely moving true story, this film undercuts the realism by pushing its...

Wonder Movie Review

Wonder Movie Review

This film may be based on RJ Palacio's fictional bestseller, but it approaches its story...

Happy End  Movie Review

Happy End Movie Review

Austrian auteur Michael Haneke isn't known for his light touch, but rather for hard-hitting, award-winning...

Patti Cake$ Movie Review

Patti Cake$ Movie Review

Seemingly from out of nowhere, this film generates perhaps the biggest smile of any movie...

The Limehouse Golem Movie Review

The Limehouse Golem Movie Review

A Victorian thriller with rather heavy echoes of Jack the Ripper, this film struggles to...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.