I heard about Quentin Lee’s Today Has Been Weird from AngryAsianMan. It’s a short film, and it’s good: see the entire short movie above. It is based on a real life incident where a young 19 year Asian American boy named Simon Sek Man Ng blogged about his sister’s ex-boyfriend knocking on his door. The boyfriend ended up killing both Simon and his sister. The police used to information from his blog to find his killer.
Overall, the movie is very well done. The Vancouver Asian Film Festival commissioned it, and Quentin Lee did it on just $500 Canadian dollars (which by now is what? $1,000 U.S.? ). Pretty amazing what he did. He captured very well the loneliness of the boy living alone with his sister, and I thought it was a great portrayal of the alienation that many young Asian kids in Vancouver must feel. Mr. Lee is definitely talented.
That said, I googled the actual story, and it turns out that unlike the movie version where the killer ex is White, in real life, the killer was another Asian dude. I then checked the comment section of the YouTube video where the publisher (maybe Quentin Lee?) writes:
In real life, the killer was Chinese while the two victims were Hong Kong immigrants.
In my fictitious adaptation, I adapted the main character into a more Asian Canadian boy with his parents in Hong Kong. I also felt the sister’s boyfriend/killer should be Caucasian Canadian as 1) I wanted to open the role up to non-Asians and 2) to add a certain interracial tension to the mix. The Caucasian killer also symbolizes the subtle but present anti-Asian sentiment in North America.
As I said above, it’s a good movie. But I would have preferred he kept the Asian ethnicity of the killer. I can understand the desire to open the role to a non-Asian. I think most crimes against Asian American/Canadian women are committed by non-Asian men, such as this, this, this, this, this, this, and this. But in this case, it was an Asian guy who did it. We should own it, not because we should feel personally responsible for this tragedy, but because it’s part of the story of our immigration, the dirty part of where we come from. Good people and bad people exist in all cultures. This particular story, I felt, would have been better without the political overtones.