I won't pretend to know what its like being an Asian-American living in California or anywhere else in the U.S. I have many relatives that have migrated to California and I have some idea how this works. It certainly isn't Gregg Araki's Totally Fucked Up. And that is okay. It's like post Totally Fucked Up and nobody dies at the end. It's also a musical and well. I think that's the best part of it. The break out into song is spectacular. But I heard there was a budget crunch so that's fine.
The story totally missed the orphan psychology aspect of it and well, the song writer seemed a little self-absorbed. Yes, the songs are clever but they aren't THAT clever. Actually, I found Aaron Zaragoza, who plays a pouting runaway teen, to be one of the best actors -- although sometimes his lines didn't really connect with the rest of the story. Sometimes its like, the movie breaks and Aaron Zaragoza appears, then the movie moves on -- without him. Zaragoza plays the character of runaway teen as well as I am familiar with them -- like Herbs. It turns out that he's made a movie and is really into showbiz. You can read more about him at his website.
If you have some spare time, it wouldn't hurt to watch. You might even enjoy it.
Second Wind - In the dream, I asked him, "*Pa, how do I become strong like you?"* Upon waking up, I realized it was one of the most honest things I've said in the past ...