CHARLOTTE SOMETIMES is a cryptic, low-key drama about four young Asian Americans in Los Angeles. It is a slow-moving tale of emotional longing that doesn’t really involve viewers in a coherent, dramatic story.
The plot focuses on Michael, a shy Asian American who has taken over the family car repair shop with his aunt. Michael rents out space in his duplex to a beautiful Asian girl, Lori, and her half-Asian boyfriend, Justin. Michael is secretly in lust with Lori, who often visits Michael for companionship. Lori and Justin’s nightly, noisy love-making drives Michael to the local singles nightclub. One night, Michael meets the mysterious Darcy, who claims to be just visiting Los Angeles, apparently from Canada. Darcy insinuates herself into the triangle between Michael, Lori and Justin. Midway through the movie, Lori privately confronts Darcy, who turns out to be Lori’s quirky, troubled sister, Charlotte.
CHARLOTTE SOMETIMES mistakes cryptic storytelling and repressed dialogue for psychologically complex, realistic cinema, but it fails to be truly compelling, except for humanist elites fascinated by politically correct notions of ethnicity. Although the characters seem realistic enough, the director overplays his hand by increasing the boredom of their lives to ridiculous levels. Lori, in fact, seems to be the only character capable of smiling.
CHARLOTTE SOMETIMES has little to offer morally discerning viewers or Christians. As the story ends, it finally becomes clear that Michael and Lori are the better couple because they share a deeper friendship. Before that conclusion, however, the audience has to wade through some silly sexual couplings and the tensions between Darcy/Charlotte and her sister Lori, who wants to keep Charlotte away from both Justin and Michael.
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SUMMARY: CHARLOTTE SOMETIMES is a cryptic, low-key drama about four young Asian Americans in Los Angeles (two men and two women) involved in an emotional quadrangle. CHARLOTTE SOMETIMES has a meandering script and little to offer morally discerning viewers or committed Christians.
(HH, L, SSS, NN, A, D, M) Humanist worldview; seven obscenities, including a few “f” words; no violence; scenes of depicted and implied fornication, graphic sounds of fornication; brief upper female nudity and partial male nudity; alcohol use; smoking; and, lying and snooping.