Sunday, February 24, 2008
Long Story Short
Upon being cast in the Broadway revival of "Flower Drum Song" her father played forty years ago, Jodi Long tells a compelling story about her pioneering Asian American vaudevillian parents in a documentary "Long Story Short" (USA 2008, 52 min.).
Jodi Long is the daughter of pioneering Asian American vaudevillians: Larry Long and Kimiye Tsunemitsu. Born in Australia, Larry Long tapped danced his way into the Music Hall of Sydney. After married to Kimiye Tsunemitsu, they created a remarkable show called "Larry and Trudie Leung" and appeared on "The Ed Sullivan Show."
Larry Long performed in a Broadway play called "Flower Drum Song" that also ended his acting career.
Forty years later in 2001, Jodi is cast in the Broadway revival of "Flower Drum Song." Through Jodi, this terrific documentary tells a compelling story about her parents' struggle to succeed despite how Asians are perceived in American media. It also shows the legacy of these extraordinary performers from the past, their impact on the younger generations, and their contributions to the current Asian American media environment.
The director of the film is Oscar nominated filmmaker Christine Choy. This film is solid documentary filmmaking which not only superbly tells an untold American history but also delights the audience with enchanting and charismatic characters. Long's family story profoundly inspires us as much as it entertains us.