Tag Archives: John Cho

Who’s the Star with Netflix’s Wish Dragon?

14 Jun

Wish Dragon.pngBy Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

Now playing on Netflix

Sadly, Wish Dragon is a very paint by numbers Disney-style product. It has elements of Aladdin, Mulan and Raya and the Last Dragon all mixed in, and I’m fairly sure writer/director Chris Appelhans even drew upon the song When I Wish Upon a Star for inspiration. This blending delivers on the meaning behind the lyrics, “The sweet fulfillment of their secret longing…” but fails when considering other details. This work can’t decide if it wants to be a social commentary/comedy ala Crazy Rich Asians or a tween romance. The balancing act isn’t well done.

The introduction establishes Din (Jimmy Wong) and Li (Natasha Liu Bordizzo) as kids promising to be best friends forever, a la Lilo & Stitch. Both are troublemakers and it’s cute to see them together. Unlike this franchise, they eventually get separated. The girl becomes a model and has forgotten about her past. Her dad’s motives are good, but it turns out he has an “evil” agenda. He’s searching for that magic lamp to grant him a better life for his family. 

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Star Trek: Beyond Explores the Wild West But What’s Next?

29 Jul

timthumbBy Ed Sum (The Vintage Tempest)

Half-way through the five-year mission of exploring the fringes of Federation space, the crew of the USS Enterprise are starting to plan for their future when it will be over. Some have settled in to a comfortable life, finding relationships with fellow crew-mates, and others are just wanting it to be over. Before the end of the first act, Captain James T. Kirk (Chris Pine) mentions he’s looking to continue his career elsewhere, and still has a few daddy issues to mull over. Spock (Zachary Quinto) has his own share of problems and the rest of the crew are considering their options.

As for what happens next, a stop for supplies at a space station in the shape of a hexagonal orb is more like a new beginning. As options are weighed, one last mission is requested at a nebula that has not been fully explored. Here, shades of Star Trek: Deep Space Nine is hinted at. Instead of a wormhole for wayfarers to go through, the expanse of space is filled with a different hazard — aliens not encountered before.

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