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Shanghai Calling


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Product Details

  • Actors: Daniel Henney, Eliza Coupe, Alan Ruck, Bill Paxton, Zhu Zhu
  • Directors: Daniel Hsia
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: PG-13 (Parental Guidance Suggested)
  • Studio: ANCHOR BAY
  • DVD Release Date: September 17, 2013
  • Run Time: 101 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00DNB1PNY
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #81,299 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Editorial Reviews

Hotshot Chinese-American attorney Sam Chao (Daniel Henney of X-MEN ORIGINS: WOLVERINE) is certain he'll be named a partner at his New York City law firm. Instead, his bosses send him to Shanghai where Sam's problems soon include a language he doesn't speak, a culture he can't understand, a relocation specialist (Eliza Coupe of ''Happy Endings'' and ''Scrubs'') he's instantly insulted, and a billion dollar deal he's about to lose. But just when his world is falling apart, will Sam find more than he bargained for in the place he least expected? Zhu Zhu (CLOUD ATLAS), Alan Ruck (''Spin City'') and Bill Paxton (''Big Love'', TITANIC) co-star in this smart and surprising romantic comedy about foreign business, domestic pleasures, and discovering the expat wonders of SHANGHAI CALLING.

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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See all 14 customer reviews
No wonder Koran women adore him, and he's an American born from the Midwest.
Camera newbie
With the amazing talents of Eliza Coupe, Alan Ruck, Geng Le, Zhu Zhu, Jim Bennett, and Arran Hawkins.
E. (Harry) Hernandez
By the end of the movie we also realized that people are people, both for good and not.
Rayleen Grim

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By E. (Harry) Hernandez VINE VOICE on December 14, 2013
SHANGHAI CALLING (Writ./Dir. Daniel Hsia, 2012, 100 minutes) is one of those movies that causes me to ache with anger and resentment at the fact that we miss these gems in the first place. I cannot understand the wasted hard work, the talent, that essentially goes down the drain from lack of an audience for such films.

This jewel of a film, which should be seen by everyone, grossed just over $10,000 when it opened. That's right, this classic film grossed less than it costs to buy a crappy SUV.

Oscar-worthy all around, this is the story of gorgeous corporate lawyer Sam Chou (Daniel Henney), a Chinese-American who is tapped to go to Shanghai by his firm. Since he is of Chinese descent - though 100% American - his firm thinks he'll be more effective. The odious task on which he embarks will not only warm your heart, it will open your eyes about Sino-American business practices.

Arriving in Shanghai, Sam quickly learns that the American "expat" community understands what it really is: a group of immigrants. The "mayor" of the community is a charming and understated Bill Paxton; along the way, others will appear and make this film totally worthwhile and fun.

I must say, not only Daniel Henney but this entire film was redolent of a fine Buster Keaton film. Being an aficionado and connoisseur, I felt the entire time as if BK had made this film. Henney has a Keatonesque talent for the smooth, elegant bumbling that endears an audience immediately. Since this is a true family comedy, there is no need for Henney's character to be a true shark. As a comic-dramatic actor, Henney is set free here in a way only Keaton understood/exploited properly.

And let's face one fact: Henney is not tough on the old eyeballs in the least.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Michael B. Druxman on September 5, 2013
SHANGHAI CALLING is an entertaining "fish-out-of-water" romantic comedy, an American-Chinese co-production.

Daniel Henney plays a hotshot young Chinese-American attorney, born and bred in New York City. Hoping to make partner after winning a major case for his law firm, he is, instead, sent to Shanghai where he doesn't speak the language, nor is he comfortable with the culture. It also appears that he is about to blow a billion dollar deal for a major client of his firm.

Written and directed by Daniel Hsia, SHANGHAI CALLING has a likeable cast, which includes Eliza Coupe, Alan Ruck and Bill Paxton, as well as several amusing sequences. However, watching the film, I couldn't help thinking that it could have been much better had it not been a Chinese-American co-production.

Before I create an international incident, I should explain.

First, much of the dialogue in the movie is in Chinese, which is okay, but the subtitles are so small and flash by so fast on the bottom of the screen that it is difficult to read them, let alone watch what is happening on screen. For example, what could have been a laugh-out-loud visual comedy sequence is totally squandered because one is trying to read the subtitles.

Second, screenwriter Hsia, at times, seems to forget that this is a story about Henney and his misadventures in Shanghai. Yes, it is nice to build up the roles of the secondary characters, particularly those portrayed by Chinese actors, but those scenes distract from and impede the primary plotline. Hsia does not protect the "spine" of his story and, in failing to do so, the ultimate conversion of Henney from a ruthless lawyer to a man with a conscience is not as convincing as it should be.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Rayleen Grim on August 12, 2013
As my wife and I watched this movie we realized how little we knew about modern China. By the end of the movie we also realized that people are people, both for good and not. Great characters and humor. Hint, by the end of the movie you will be cheering for the common, friendly Chinese. Loved it and will add it to our video library.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By mommyofchristopher on July 3, 2013
This was a funny movie. Very amusing. Asian American who is very American gets sent to Shanghai to work, and he didn't want to go.
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This is a very good movie. I'm surprised nobody knows about it. Even though it takes a funny perspective of a Chinese-American visiting China for the first time in his life, these are events that are possible to relate to since the treatment you'll receive as a Chinese-American visiting China, could be both, good and bad to the point that they start feeling hilarious and unbelievable. Nothing in this movie feels far-fetched from reality and the love outcomes will still leave you with a warm fuzzy feeling =-)
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By SVILLA on June 30, 2014
Verified Purchase
very good
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How did mainstream miss this movie? It's like it was kept secret, hidden. Only my dental hygenist who reco'd this movie to me when she heard I was learning Mandarin has heard of this movie. Well I am lucky she did. I think I am well traveled, I have been to Hong Kong and Japan years ago, but this was like a cram course for modern China. And funny! It's like the missing piece of the puzzle living in today's world. The compromises made to both countries in order to make this film are nearly palpable, but the content succeeds regardless. Affable characters, well played, a deft farce lilts over the storyline. My first view of modern Shaghai knocked me off my chair. This has been a big help to me understanding my Chinese friends.
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