Choking Man
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At the Olympic Diner, Jorge, the dishwasher, is choking on the American dream. Jorge is caught between his Ecuadorian roots, his new American life working at the diner for Rick and his own crippling shyness. When the diner adds a bright new member to the staff, Jorge's world gets a little more complicated as his affections grow for the new waitress, a beautiful Chinese girl named Amy.

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 50%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"There's a low-key New York drama lurking somewhere, but Barron can't seem to decide if he's making that or something more flashy."
‑ Tom Huddlestone, Time Out
"Barron's direction is low-key but efficient."
‑ V.A. Musetto, New York Post
"Low-key indie."
‑ Dennis Schwartz, Ozus' World Movie Reviews
"There's enough charm and enterprise here to win over viewers who have the patience to stick by the tongue-tied Jorge. An intriguing change of direction for pop-video pioneer Barron, though next time he might like to cut loose that bit more."
‑ Trevor Johnston, Film4
"The film marries digicam naturalism to animated fantasy to oddsome but fascinating effect, rendering magical the inner world of the shy and almost muted Jorge. It's an unusual but valuable addition to the cinema of contemporary migration."
‑ Sukhdev Sandhu, Daily Telegraph
"Overburdened with disorienting stylistic devices and contrived plot elements that reduce the psychological depth to which it aspires."
‑ Frank Scheck, Hollywood Reporter
"The movie suffocates under the weight of too many wrong choices."
‑ Elizabeth Weitzman, New York Daily News
"For all its concern with social and mental disintegration, Choking Man is a strangely tender film."
‑ Anton Bitel, Little White Lies
"The creepy and original power of the film is the schizophrenic other who taunts him when he finally crawls home to his maggoty bedsit. Weird."
‑ James Christopher, Times [UK]
"It's all a bit anonymous despite engaging performances, especially from Yuan as the sunny optimist, but the character of Jorge is so cripplingly introverted that there's nothing to latch on to."
‑ Tim Evans, Sky Movies
"In this case, what looks like an ambitious film-school project, complete with heavy-handed sincerity, experimental camera style, and an overplayed central metaphor, becomes gently lyrical and melancholy."
‑ Tasha Robinson, Chicago Tribune
"Choking Man mainly falters in its inability to reconcile the darker psychological elements of Jorge's mind and all that they portend."
‑ Kevin Crust, Los Angeles Times
"Despite efforts to impart a little tension and human interest, the tale is told with such discretion, it's almost anonymous."
‑ , Empire Magazine
"Some US indie films are so torpid, so pointless and so incredibly whingey that you want to reach into the screen and slap the face of everyone involved. This film, by writer-director Steve Barron, is one such."
‑ Peter Bradshaw, Guardian
"Steve Barron's darkly melancholic, low-budget drama is worlds away from the blockbuster swagger of his earlier Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles."
‑ , Total Film
More reviews for Choking Man on Rotten Tomatoes