An ambitious Chinatown flyer girl, a musician on Mission Street, an unfaithful wife and a forgetful husband in their mansion by misty Golden Gate Park—in this cinematic and musical ode to San Francisco, we meditate on the dreams, the heartache, and the love that endures in the city’s eclectic neighborhoods.
Aileen Nguyen — Chinatown Girl
Andrew Bertolina — Musician
Claire Montaut — Missus
Paul Curtin — Mister
Rose Chen — Chinatown Girl’s voiceover
Lianna (Jian Lian) Cheng — Shopkeeper
Mick Diener — Photographer
Glenn Chin — Driver
Elissa Pociask — Artist at Bottom of the Hill
Aaron Chaiclin — Musician’s Friend
Lily Taylor — Singer at the Rite Spot
Ted Savarese — Guitarist at the Rite Spot
Ashley Adams — Bassist at the Rite Spot
Jeff Koch — Bartender
Writer, director, DP, editor — Izzy Chan
Producer, sound designer — Aaron Chaiclin
Composer — Ted Savarese
Producer — Caroline Larrouilh
BAY AREA MUSICIANS FEATURED
Becky Aur and Grooming the Crow: myspace.com/groomingthecrow
Joel Murach and the Low Rollers: joelmurach.com/
Lily Taylor: lilytaylormusic.com
Elissa P.: elissap.com/HOME.html
To Mick Diener, Doug Green and Jay Rendon for their mentorship and encouragement.
MAKING “LOVE IN SAN FRANCISCO”
You can say it started with a dare.
Aaron, my husband, challenged me to a short film “face-off.” With today’s powerful digital film tools, who is to say a regular guy with a good idea cannot make a better movie than a film snob who went to a fancy film school, he taunted. A theme was set. Love, since the deadline would be Valentine’s Day. 14 years after I packed up my film equipment, I was inspired to make a film again.
You may call it my serenade to San Francisco. Not just any San Francisco—but the San Francisco I love. The festive sounds and dialects of Chinatown that evoke memories of home. The colorful people and places of the Mission where I hang out. The many talented musicians I meet in the bars and on the streets—dedicated to their art even in the face of uncertainty and hardship. And the fog, a constantly morphing backdrop to the city that reminds us of the fleeting nature of our lives.
At times I think of it as my crazy experiment. How could I pull a good performance out of friends with no acting experience? Don’t show them the script or tell them anything about the characters, I decided. Instead I tapped into the intimate knowledge of friends, and dredged up memories, secrets and dreams from their real lives to evoke the emotions I needed onscreen.
So really, I’d say this film is about love. A husband’s love. A passion for filmmaking. The generosity and trust of good friends. And this desire that so many of us in San Francisco share, to keep each other true to the things we love, whatever it takes.