Aaron Yoo

Aaron Yoo

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Aaron Yoo Thursday 12th June 2008 Scrabble Under The Stars to benefit St Jude Research Hospital Goldstein Estate in Beverly Hills Los Angeles, California

American Pastime Review


Good
Stumbling upon American Pastime soon after watching Ken Burns' epic World War II documentary The War was a happy coincidence. Burns does a great job telling the relatively unknown story of the Japanese-American internment camps, and this movie is a nicely detailed, albeit hokey, fictionalization of one family's experience in such a camp. Burns, who also produced a massive documentary on baseball, would certainly appreciate the film's pivotal baseball subplot.

When war breaks out, the Nomura family is enjoying a happy middle-class life in 1940s L.A. All that changes when the internment order arrives, and soon Mom (Judi Ongg), Dad (Masatoshi Nakamura), older brother Lane (Leonardo Nam), and younger brother Lyle (Aaron Yoo) find themselves in a drafty barracks in the middle of a desert somewhere in the American west. While most everyone tries to adapt with dignity, the volatile Lyle, who has been robbed not only of his baseball scholarship but also his beloved jazz music, simmers with rage. He's even more outraged when he learns that Lane has volunteered to fight with the 442nd division, the famous all Japanese-American unit that went on to glory in European fighting. Why would Lane want to fight for the same army that has machine guns trained on him day and night in the camp?

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Disturbia Review


Very Good
Disturbia is a critically vulnerable film at the outset. Its task is an audacious one: "YouTubing" Hitchcock. Who isn't disturbed by the prospect of D.J. Caruso (Taking Lives!) helming a Rear Window rip-off for the MySpace generation? In the role of Jimmy Stewart: The talented if somewhat untested Shia LeBeouf. Grace Kelly: Sarah Roemer, a bit player in the woeful The Grudge 2. Gulp. Instead of a telescope, we get about four sets of binoculars, video cameras, mobile phones, and some outrageously sophisticated computer surveillance equipment. Instead of the poignantly crafted Miss Lonelyheart and the frustrated composer of Hitchcock's film, the neighbourhood offers for our voyeuristic pleasures the bikini-clad girl next door and a group of prepubescents with a penchant for porn. There is so much wrong before the film has even begun.

The film's beginning will not allay your fears. Kale (LaBeouf) and his dad (Matt Craven) are fishing. Knee-deep in a lake and surrounded by mountains, they share a particularly cheesy father-son moment. We see that he's not just Kale's father, he is his friend. The relationship is so clichéd and the setting so cloyingly idyllic, that one wants to run for the (admittedly beautiful-looking) hills. However, before you go to switch off the Hallmark channel, Caruso offs the dad in a car accident just brutal enough to forgive what came before and dissolve some preconceptions. It's a pretty good move (although not quite Janet Leigh in the Bates Motel shower) and sets us up for a film that effectively handles and plays its audience.

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Aaron Yoo

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Aaron Yoo Movies

Gamer Trailer

Gamer Trailer

Watch the trailer for GamerGamer is set in the near future and the life of...

Disturbia Movie Review

Disturbia Movie Review

Disturbia is a critically vulnerable film at the outset. Its task is an audacious one:...

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