David is an English language teacher, so not only does the documentary follow the Westerners learning the Chinese culture, but the Chinese students learning the Western culture.
This documentary is upbeat and exciting; a totally different angle on the interaction between Western and Chinese cultures. The environmental hazards, work ethic and business dealings highlights the divide between East and West.
David and his girlfriend run their own English language company, but when David’s not teaching he’s recording an album with a group of friends. The documentary follows the band as they get an investor, before creative and business priorities begin to clash. These ‘characters’ aren’t quite expanded on enough though, making them seem quite harsh and hard to relate to.
There are a few parts where I think the editing could have been snappier, with a faster pace because it begins to look like a home movie. If this was to be aired on television, a re-edit would probably be needed with an obvious climax and resolution to make the footage have a larger impact.
Marketing and branding needs to be worked on. The title, My Brother Lives in China could be made more catchy. The backwards ‘N’ on the poster does make it look like the film is based in Russia, so perhaps the presentation of the poster could be revised.
The entire movie soundtrack is made up of the band’s music which fits so perfectly! The band, Tomorrow Is No, represents the perfect mix of Chinese and Western cultures in a pop-rock genre really well. Fantastic voice-overs!
The visuals are superbly filmed, particularly in the light-deficient areas.
Overall, a decent watch! I enjoyed seeing a different side to intercultural communication. I think this film is just shy of a seven. It is a great concept, but a faster paced version would pick up the slower points.
Well done to the filmmaker, Matthiew Klinck! Sincerely hope you get funding for the sequel.
Jodie’s rating: 6.5/10
Check out the documentary, My Brother Lives in China HERE
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