Reviewed by Tiffany Ran
Northwest Asian Weekly
“Eden” is a film based on the true life experience of Chong Kim, who was abducted as a teenager and forced into sex trafficking. In the film, Jamie Chung, of Real World San Diego fame, plays young Hyun Jae, who is abducted and imprisoned in Las Vegas as a sex slave for more than two years. Chung’s acting was not as convincing when playing a young teenage girl, but she did well in portraying the silent turmoil felt by her character’s plight. Chung’s stoic but evocative exterior reveals a dark journey as her character struggles to navigate the inner workings of the operation, while staying alive.
Though the acting evoked some raw emotions, the storyline lacked authenticity. The film aims to shine a light on a sinister reality, but the plot seems Hollywood at best. The characters in the film beside the protagonist were like caricatures — a big bad federal Marshall who is the ring leader of the prostitution ring, and a skittish, insecure right hand man — with very little development or depth. A Google search on Chong Kim reveals that the details of her experiences were different from the story in the film. However, the film satisfies a major goal, to create awareness of sex slavery and how the trade affects many of our own citizens. If anything, the film plants a seed and leaves viewers wanting more. However, a better understanding of this issue may lie elsewhere. (end)
May 29 at 8:30pm at Everett Performing Arts Center