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Shanghai Kiss (2007)

Art House & International movie directed by David Ren and Kern Konwiser

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A Beautiful Movie About Love And Identity

  • Jun 27, 2008
I got this movie as part of the Amazon Vine program in the UK, it was one of those moments where you simply just select an item because it's free and you know that you only have to write a review for it afterwards. I chose this movie as it starred Hayden Panettiere and I've become a fan of her acting from her role as Clare in the hit TV series Heroes. I have to admit that I didn't expect much, I expected a low budget movie with very little acting talent (with the exception of Hayden & Leung of course.) I was extremely surprised as I was given much, much more than I had expected. I was given a love movie that set the standard for which all other movies should try to aim for, it was intelligent, funny and heartwarming. The characters were believable and portrayed those who faced a genuine struggle, not only with their heart but with their identity; at least that's the struggle that faces Ken Leungs character, Liam Liu.

The story revolves around a struggling American Asian actor called Liam Liu, one day after being rejected from an audition for a toothpaste commercial he's forced to ride the bus home as his car was towed due to unpaid parking tickets. While on the bus he meets a flirty, sweet and intelligent teenager called Adelaide and they quickly become friends but although "Addy" looks at Liam as her Boyfriend he doesn't feel that way, or at least he thinks he doesn't. One day he receives a call from his alcoholic Father to inform him that his grandmother has died and left him her $500,000 house in Shanghai. He goes over there with the intention of selling the house, but while there he falls in love with the house and a new girl called Micki Yang. While living in China he discovers more about his true culture and identity that he ever thought he would, but he can't help but feel that his heart is still in the USA with Addy.

I absolutely loved this movie and I'm glad I gave it a chance, if you've never heard of it before or you're not the type of person to check out a pretty unknown movie then please take my strong recommendation for this one as you wont be disappointed.

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Steven Stewart ()
Ranked #47
Currently studying Law at University, my main interests revolve around Politics. I read quite a lot and love learning about History. Not just the history of a specific time, place and person, but I'm … more
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About this movie


Set in two dichotomous worlds,Shanghai Kisstells the story of a Chinese-American actor who doesn't quite fit in anywhere. In his hometown, he's considered a foreigner even though he's American. And in his family's native China, his mannerisms make him stick out in sea of familiar faces. Ken Leung (The Sopranos) does a wonderful job portraying Liam Liu, a complicated young man whose flirtation with the teenage Adelaide (Hayden Panettiere,Heroes) is reminiscent of Timothy Hutton's cautious infatuation with the Natalie Portman character in 1996'sBeautiful Girls. It could've been played a little creepy, but the relationship between the unlikely couple is sweet. When Liam inherits his grandmother's estate in Shanghai, he travels to China thinking he will sell the property and head back home. But "home" becomes a more elusive concept when he realizes that his feelings are torn between two countries and, with the meeting of Micki Yang (Kelly Hu,X2), two women. There are several moments when the film has the feel of an afterschool special (Liam's father blaming him for his mother's death), but overallShanghai Kisstells a love story in an honest, if not completely realistic way. Feelings aren't cut and dried, and people aren't interchangeable.--Jae-Ha Kim
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DVD Release Date: October 9, 2007
Runtime: 106 minutes
Studio: Starz Home Entertainment
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