Year of the Fish (2008): David Kaplan’s Modern Version of Cinderella

In Year of the Fish, a modern-day adaptation of “Cinderella,” filmmaker David Kaplan transposes the fairytales archetypical characters to an urban setting, specifically a massage parlor in New Yorks Chinatown specializing in happy endings.

An optimistic young girl travels alone to New York City where she hopes to earn money to send home to her ailing father. Expecting work in a beauty salon, the girl is instead delivered into the hands of her fathers distant cousin, an embittered woman who runs a seedy massage parlor. The girl surrenders her passport as collateral for her debt and is informed of her duties. When she refuses to do the requisite sex work, the girl accepts her fate as the operations browbeaten servant, her only solace a magical goldfish given to her by a sidewalk fortuneteller.

Combining fantasy, romance and suspense, “Year of the Fish” is presented in an animation style that evokes a painting come to life.

The films ensemble cast includes Ken Leung (LOST, X-MEN 3), Tsai Chin (THE JOY LUCK CLUB), acclaimed Broadway veteran Randall Duk Kim (THE MATRIX RELOADED, the upcoming DRAGONBALL), and introduces An Nguyen.

“Year of the Fish” will open at the Angelika Film Center in New York City Labor Day Weekend, August 29, 2008.

Running time: 96 minutes.