Taking into consideration the surge of hate crime against Asian Americans following the Covid pandemic, cinema was bound to take a stance concerning the events. Joseph Juhn “rose up to the challenge” with a documentary that requires the 1992 L.A. riots and the idea of anti-Asian hate crimes as its base, but basically focuses on five Asian Korean candidates operating for Congress.
“Chosen“ is screening at San Diego Asian Film Festival
Taking into consideration that, prior to 2018, there was only one particular Korean American ever elected to Congress, the simultaneous operating of 5 is an occasion in itself, with Juhn highlighting the reality rather eloquently. At the very same time, although, apart from the basic idea, the concentrate on the people is equally intense. As such, we initial meet David Kim, a young progressive LGBTQ candidate in Koreatown, Los Angeles, whose pastor father is a Trump supporter. His partnership with his conservative father and the influence of his coming out ends up in a rather captivating story, which basically requires center stage in the film.
Subsequent up is Marilyn Strickland, a Black Korean centrist Democrat in Tacoma, WA, whose mother faced years of stigma in Korea for becoming a “military bride”, in a story that highlights (as does David Kim’s) that racism and prejudice goes each techniques, especially in the case of the preceding generation. Young Kim and Michelle Park Steel, well-known Trump Republicans in Orange County stick to subsequent, though the portraits are concluded by New Jersey Democratic incumbent Andy Kim—who faces an uphill battle, as no Democrat has been reelected in his district given that the Civil War.
The mixture of the history of Korean Americans in the US, with the current events as considerably as the lives of the present generation, along with the portraits of the “protagonists” outcomes in a diversity that is rather attractive, basically creating the documentary rather quick to watch. In that regard, the editing, which combines sequences of the lives and the campaigning of the candidates, interviews and historical videos and images, emerges as one particular of the greatest traits of the film, also in the way all these components are combined and interchange with each and every other. .
On the other hand, there are lots of moments that the documentary appears like a promotional film for the Korean Americans it focuses on, with the rather polished cinematography also moving towards this certain path, and the sometimes lengthy interviews regularly seeking like political speeches with precise aim, as an alternative of an organic element of the narrative.
This even so, is basically a smaller (and anticipated taking into consideration the capacity of the protagonists) situation and the documentary emerges as a rather attractive collection of stories, that also manages to showcase the problems Asian American nonetheless face and the techniques they have located to move forward.