Saturday, April 30, 2016

"Orientalism in Big Trouble in Little China"

Before you read this: did you watch the Dr. Strange trailer? You should, because I’m going to compare it to Big Trouble in Little China, a movie thirty years its senior. “Why?” you ask. Because John Carpenter made BTLC with the understanding that Chinese-ness is context and not just culture, and that the mixture of cultures in America can be a strange and wonderful thing. On top of that, BTLC features Asian actors who have accents and no accents, mixed race Asians, a Muay Thai world champion, and the first Asian-American woman featured on the cover of Penthouse magazine. BTLC, made at the tail end of the exploitation film era, does a better job of exploring (specifically) Asian-American culture than any blockbusters made recently.