ReelWorld: RED DOORS (Special Presentation)

Director Georgia Lee splices life from her own home videos to tell the story of 3 girls and their father in RED DOORS.

This was the second of three movies I screened with my friend.

Ed Wong (Tzi Ma) has retired and tries to escape his purposeless life through attempts at suicide. Unfortunately, this cry for help is not seen by his 3 daughters attempting to navigate the world by themselves. The eldest, Samantha (Jacqueline Kim) questions the practical path she chose when an old flame re-enters her life. Quiet, middle sister, Julie's (Elaine Kao) life is set through a whirlwind when she falls for movie star Mia Scarlett (Mia Riverton) and the youngest, Katie (Kathy Shao-Lin Lee) engages herself in a prank war with a longtime neighbour that dangerously escalates.

What starts off as a pretty slick looking film by the US director, it quickly becomes too many things to too many people which I can see why it was picked up by CBS for a primetime tv series pilot.

But does it make a decent film?

What holds the narrative together is the theme of LOVE, which beats you over the head again and again. The unfortunate part is that the one plotline that is supposedly suppose to connect the entire film gets thrown into the background because the daughters are much too involved with themselves and their lives ... which is reality ... just not cinematic.

I mean, it could've gotten really interesting if writer/director Georgia Lee actually revealed something about the human condition rather than having what seems to be a cop-out solution to a very serious thought process. It's like what my director told me of my material: "You went somewhere, then you took two steps back ... go there!" I kept asking questions of the film, wanting to know answers; What's a man to do after he retires? What is his purpose and where should he go to find it? Does retirement really mean ... THE END? And does a man really mellow out THAT much when he gets older?

As the credits rolled I asked my friend what she thought, "Better than the last one, but kinda cliche."

It has great potential to become something more as a television series and I wish the producers and its writing team best of luck. The Asian community just may get the equivalent of the Cosby show people have been yelling at us for years now. If they're looking for writers, tell them to give me a shout.

RED DOORS - Special Presentation @ ReelWorld Film Festival
Thursday, April 6 - 7:30PM @ Rainbow Cinemas

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