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Critic's Pick

'Combination Platter'

August 11, 1996|Kevin Thomas

With humor and poignancy, feature debut filmmaker Tony Chan pulls us into the uncertain everyday life of an illegal immigrant (Kenneth Lu, pictured), a diffident Chinese waiter in a Chinese restaurant in Queens, N.Y. There are some awkward, self-conscious moments in this 1993 release, but few films explore the need for cultural identity in creating an unconscious racism so thoroughly--and with such a subtle touch (Cinemax early Monday at 5:20 a.m.).

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