Dim Sum: A Little Bit of Heart

Overview

Wayne Wang's follow-up to his low-budget success Chan Is Missing is a gentle, slice-of-life comedy about the shifting relationship between a widowed mother and her thirty-year-old unmarried daughter in San Francisco's Chinatown. Mrs. Tam Kim Chew lives with her youngest daughter Geraldine Laureen Chew -- her older children having already left home. Geraldine is a graduate student who wants to live on her own but tells herself that she should stay at home with her mother and her Uncle Tam Victor Wong, a ...
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Overview

Wayne Wang's follow-up to his low-budget success Chan Is Missing is a gentle, slice-of-life comedy about the shifting relationship between a widowed mother and her thirty-year-old unmarried daughter in San Francisco's Chinatown. Mrs. Tam Kim Chew lives with her youngest daughter Geraldine Laureen Chew -- her older children having already left home. Geraldine is a graduate student who wants to live on her own but tells herself that she should stay at home with her mother and her Uncle Tam Victor Wong, a happy-go-lucky bartender who would like to marry Mrs. Tam if only Geraldine would just go away and get married. Mrs. Tam, convinced that she will die before she hits 62, wants to see her daughter married. But under the surface, Mrs. Tam likes Geraldine's presence in her house, Uncle Tam may not be serious about his marriage intentions, and Geraldine herself could possibly be using her mother as an excuse not to get married and have to assume responsibility.
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Special Features

A conversation with Lauren Chew; Dim Sum Take Out: An introduction; Dim Sum Take Out: A short film
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Editorial Reviews

All Movie Guide - Craig Butler
Inspired when director Wayne Wang saw a pair of Western shoes left outside the home of a Chinese-American family, Dim Sum: A Little Bit of Heart is a gentle, almost fragile exploration of three characters who are using each other as an excuse to keep living in a safe, if unexciting, manner. Using his camera unobtrusively, Wang lets it catch the stray details -- the way in which Mrs. Tam converses over the back fence, the conflicting emotions that cross Geraldine's face at a brief pause in the conversation -- that cumulatively create fully rounded characters. At times, Wang is a little too unobtrusive -- the film does meander occasionally, and there is no strong plot to pull all the strings together. Still, Dim Sum beguiles, creating a milieu that is welcoming and pleasant, even when things get a little rough for the characters. Wang's leads fill their roles effortlessly, making a trio that feel realistic and natural, and mining the humor underneath their everyday lives. They also invest their characters with an endearing loveableness. The film is not as technically polished as one might wish (although it is considerably more advanced that Wang's previous Chan is Missing), but most viewers will be willing to overlook this to embrace this warm, low key comedy.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 1/24/2006
  • UPC: 741952308195
  • Original Release: 1985
  • Source: Koch Lorber Films
  • Time: 1:27:00
  • Format: DVD

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Laureen Chew Geraldine Tam
Kim Chew Mrs. Tam
Victor Wong Uncle Tam
Ida F.O. Chung Auntie Mary
Cora Miao Julia
John Nishio Richard
Amy Hill Amy Tam
Keith Choy Kevin Tam
Mary Chew Old Mah Jong Player
Nora Lee Old Mah Jong Player
Joan Chen Young Mah Jong Player
Rita Yee Young Mah Jong Player
George Wu Bar patron
Elsa Cruz Pearson Eliza
Helen Chew Linda Tam
Jarrett Chew Baby Tam
Technical Credits
Wayne Wang Director, Producer
Todd Boekelheide Score Composer
Michael Chin Cinematographer
Christopher P. Lee Art Director
David Lindblom Editor
Terrel Seltzer Screenwriter
Tom Sternberg Producer
Lydia Tanji Art Director, Costumes/Costume Designer, Makeup, Set Decoration/Design
Ralph Wikke Editor
Danny Yung Art Director, Producer, Set Decoration/Design
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Scene Index

Disc #1 -- Dim Sum: A Little Bit of Heart
1. Ordinary People [7:22]
2. Real Chinese [2:54]
3. Happy New Year [5:38]
4. Citizen Chew [5:08]
5. Everyone Plays Mah Jong [7:31]
6. Preparations [5:05]
7. The Gift [5:51]
8. Girflriends and Lovers [3:46]
9. Arrivals and Departures [7:19]
10. A Death in the Family [8:40]
11. Going Home [24:14]
12. End Credits [3:44]
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Menu

Disc #1 -- Dim Sum: A Little Bit of Heart
   Play
   Scene Selection
   Set Up
      English Subtitles: On/Off
   Extras
      Dim Sum Take Out - An Introduction
      Dim Sum Take Out
      Conversation With Lauren Chew
   Koch Lorber Films Online
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