- Rated: R
- Run Time: 1 hours, 32 minutes
- Video: Color
- Released: October 4, 2005
- Originally Released: 2005
- Label: First Independent
- Encoding: Region 1 (USA & Canada)
- Packaging: Keep Case
Performers, Cast and Crew:
Los Angeles Times - 03/11/2005
"A wickedly funny satire..."
Rolling Stone - 03/24/2005
"[F]ilmmakers Huck Botko and Andrew Gurland are hunting something fierce and darkly funny in this story..."
MAIL ORDER WIFE: Filmed in mock documentary style, this dark comedy follows filmmaker Andrew Gurland's misguided attempts to document the mail-order-bride process. The documentary's main subject is Adrian (Adrian Martinez), an overweight security guard who drives a beat-up El Dorado and lives in a dumpy house in the Queens borough of New York City. After finding no success in the dating world, Adrian decides to purchase a wife through a mail-order catalogue, with the documentary production company funding the venture in exchange for filming rights. After they write each other several letters, a young Burmese woman named Lichi (Eugenia Yuan) agrees to come to the United States and marry Adrian. Adrian's expectations for her reveal his true character: he wants her to cook chili and clean the toilet. But when he tries to trick Lichi into getting a sterilization procedure, Andrew (Gurland) attempts to intervene, feeling Adrian has gone too far. Next, Lichi shows up at Andrew's doorstep to present evidence of Adrian's abuse, and Andrew feels obligated to help her. As Andrew gets more and more personally involved with both Lichi and Adrian, he becomes a subject in his own film. Despite their obvious class differences and their dislike for each other, antagonists Andrew and Adrian have more in common than either will admit.
Filmmakers Gurland and Huck Botko (who use their own names for the characters they play in the film) exploit the comedic potential of the documentary format while also forcing the audience to question their narrator. By forcing the audience to laugh at the most uncomfortable, politically incorrect moments, the filmmakers succeed in making a statement about female objectification and the power imbalances inherent in male-female relationships. This satirical and hilarious film is a true original.
- Theatrical Release: MARCH 11, 2005 (LIMITED)