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Charlotte Sometimes
Charlotte Sometimes
Actors: Jacqueline Kim, Eugenia Yuan, Michael Aki, Matt Westmore, Shizuko Hoshi
Director: Eric Byler
Genres: Drama
R     2003     1hr 25min


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Movie Details

Actors: Jacqueline Kim, Eugenia Yuan, Michael Aki, Matt Westmore, Shizuko Hoshi
Director: Eric Byler
Creators: Robert Humphreys, Eric Byler, Brooke Dammkoehler, Chris Miller, John Bard Manulis, Lara Lyon, Marc Ambrose, Michael Kastenbaum, Jeff Liu
Genres: Drama
Sub-Genres: Love & Romance
Studio: Arts Alliance Amer
Format: DVD - Color,Widescreen - Closed-captioned
DVD Release Date: 09/30/2003
Original Release Date: 01/01/2003
Theatrical Release Date: 01/01/2003
Release Year: 2003
Run Time: 1hr 25min
Screens: Color,Widescreen
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaDVD Credits: 1
Total Copies: 0
Members Wishing: 1
MPAA Rating: R (Restricted)
Languages: English, Japanese

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Movie Reviews

A Fine Example of Cinematic Minimalism: An Art Form
Grady Harp | Los Angeles, CA United States | 11/04/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)

"CHARLOTTE SOMETIMES is a nocturne of a film, a story that gently meanders through the lives of four people and with very few words says quite a bit about human relationships, about the cocoons we spin about ourselves for safety, for protection against fear, for hoping the chrysalis will metamorphose into a butterfly or moth. Eric Byler is to be commended for having the courage to keep this story simple - a tale of four personality 'disorders' and how they find the means to exist in this odd world. Michael Idemoto is perhaps the loneliest outwardly, but all four characters seem to crave connection and simply cannot attach. Eugenia Yuan is the idiosyncratic girl-child, Jacquelyn Kim is the woman of mystery who with Matt Westmore plays more of a catalytic agent than a character. All four actors are beautiful, sensitive, and convincing. The lighting and settings are well chosen. In all, this little indie film is a quiet diversion, dealing more with what is not said than with just a script."
Beautifully filmed & minimal dialog... a relationship film
Grady Harp | 10/12/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)

"I originally saw this in the theater, where the sound quality was rather poor, and I ended up missing some of the dialog. Given that this movie is rather minimalist in terms of dialog missing *any* dialog is a lot. Not that it's necessarily a bad thing.... the silences are those that actually occur in real life -- the awkward silences and the comfortable silences -- or at least in the life of a character who is not particularly garrulous.The main character, Michael, is your typical Strong, Silent Type... the responsible son who stayed to work in the family business. The sense of obligation and duty rests on his shoulders, but you don't get the feeling that it is necessarily a heavy burden. And while there is a faint sense of restlessness or a mild discontent about him (he is obviously very intelligent... "a mechanic who reads"), being the keeper-of-the-family-things is simply who he is. Now, this is not necessarily an Asian thing... he could be Italian or Jewish too. But there is something about him (not just his face) with which Asian-Americans identify: we *know* him...he is our friend, our cousin, our brother...Michael's silence, his distance, is his wall of protection... perhaps another thing with which Asian-Americans can identify. Yet, perhaps because of his sense of Family Duty, there is also a bit of The Hero about him. His tenant (Lori) has the typical Jerk Boyfriend (Justin). While Michael may be annoyed with their sessions of loud sex, and perhaps more annoyed about her habit of coming upstairs afterwards to fall asleep in his arms, he doesn't complain... the Hero in him senses that, while she may be with Justin, there is something wrong enough about their relationship that she feels needs a sleep in a place she feels safe. It doesn't mean that a part of him doesn't resent it a bit, but he is the Nice Guy to this Nice Girl in a relationship with The Jerk. He is that sort of "asexual", nice guy that women trust... though perhaps because of his wall, he also doesn't allow himself to notice the women who are *not* in dysfunctional relationships who are interested in him.Enter "Darcy". Darcy is mysterious. Michael doesn't know whether she really has a place to stay. Playing the Hero again, he sort of lets her stay at his place, no strings attached. She is intelligent, self-assured, and has traveled a lot. Darcy has her own issues. She knows all about men who are attracted to those Asian women who are "tiny and petite, with a high voice" (like Lori), things she is not. Yet she has also noticed that those same men have all been jerks. Rather than be used, Darcy is a User. She puts out a strong, self-assured, animal vibe that men are attracted to (and is perhaps what made Michael notice her at the Club). The little games she plays (the mind games, the sex), are her wall of protection against the insecurity of not being the typical Petite Asian Girl, the ones that Jerks are attracted to, and to whom guys like Michael like to play Hero. She doesn't want a hero. She doesn't want to *need* anyone.And yet... she senses the Michael is different: he doesn't just want a quick, shallow relationship... "No shortcuts," he says. And Darcy recognizes that the things that keep him in his family house and his family business don't necessarily bind him, but are simply who he really is: steady, loyal...nice. And so, it is comes as a shock to her when he decides that, for once, he doesn't *want* to be The Nice Guy. It is that horrible moment when two people have their guards down and slipped out from behind their their carefully contructed walls, and become exactly opposite of what the other needs them to be."
A movie about life
Michael Nigro | Offutt AFB, Nebraska United States | 10/23/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)

"A lot of movies come out that try to show how the director thinks life is. This movie is one of the few that has actually captured how I view life. There are many different types of players in life. Charlotte Sometimes showcases rebellion against the norm, loving from afar, being the friend who is there, and many other roles. The director portrayed the characters in a way that made them seem real. You did not have to be asian or hapa to feel like you knew or were one of his complicated characters. His use of silence, darkness, and body language was incredible. I highly recomend this movie to anybody who has been, is in, or wants to be in a relationship. The only way you will not enjoy this movie is if you have no heart. If you are lacking a heart then and only then should you head out to that TGIF's with that mirror, but I recomend you stare at yourself in the mirror and I hope you find yourself"
Enjoyable and rewatchable
Kazu | 04/14/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This is an asian american film that forgets it's about asian americans...and it's better off for it. Yes, there are cultural aspects in the storyline, but they do not push their way to the forefront but remain as part of the color in the whole story.

The actors and story are subtly put together which adds a lot of life to what could have been very straightforward and boring. Instead, what is unsaid gives a depth to the characters that draws the viewer into the story more and more because we're trying to figure out their motivations through their actions rather than having everything spelt out for us.

This one of my favorite films in my DVD collection. It's very rewatchable because there's so much to observe in the scenes and really stays away from the cliche romantic motifs in favor of something that has a lot more tension in it."