Music, Movies, TV – An Insider’s Perspective

Tag: Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month

“The Rock” is Cooking Up Quite a Career!

Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson is one of the BIGGEST movie stars of all-time.

Over the last 13 years only 3.4% of the top grossing films featured Asian American or Pacific Islander leading actors.

44 films had an Asian American or Pacific Islander lead. 14 of these films featured Dwayne Johnson in a leading role. Dwayne is not just a Pacific Islander star he is one of the BIGGEST movie stars of the past two decades.

Since 2001 Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson has appeared in one movie or more each year. In 2013 he had five huge films within the same year.

There is no secret to his success. We have watched him in plain sight as he rose to wrestling stardom in 1996. Just three years later in 1999 he emerged as an actor. It did not take long until “The Rock” started making a name for himself as “Dwayne Johnson” in films. In 2001 he had a small role in “The Mummy Returns” but that led to a leading role in the 2002, “Scorpion King”.

Dwayne Johnson has been in or associated with 59 films. The hit TV show “Young Rock” is based on his life story. He is ranked at #6 of the highest grossing actors of all-time. His movies have earned $11.4 BILLION and counting….WORLD-WIDE


Dwayne strives to be successful at everything he does. Perhaps these are a few of the reasons why he also WINS at everything he does!


HE WORKS HARD….Nothing stops him!



If you are looking for movies that the whole family can see, you can never go wrong with movies starring Dwayne Johnson.

Here is a list of some of his most popular films that I highly recommend:


This is a fantastic Disney animated film that the whole family can enjoy.

MOANA, an epic adventure about a spirited teen who sets sail on a daring mission to save her people. Along the way, Moana (Auli’i Cravalho) meets the once mighty demigod Maui (Dwayne Johnson), and together they cross the ocean on a fun-filled, action-packed voyage. Bring home the movie full of heart, humor, and oceans of bonus extras!

Moana is one of my Grand Daughters favorite films, so I found other Moana related goodies for her. She especially loves the soundtrack, the karaoke CD, and the Moana collectibles.

You can find the Moana movie, music and more here: All Things MOANA from


Jumanji is a fantasy, adventure film franchise that started in 1995.

The film also gave birth to a popular animated television series that aired from 1996-1999. In 2017 Dwayne Johnson, Kevin Hart & Jack Black brought Jumanji back to theatres. It was one of the highest grossing non-Disney and non- comic book films since Transformers. Due to the success of this sequel (Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle), there was another film in the series released in 2019. Dwayne, Kevin, and Jack were back in Jumanji: The Next Level with another box office success story.

Jumanji centers around four teens that discover a 16-bit video game called Jumanji in their school’s basement. Upon opening the game, the teens find themselves transported inside the game’s jungle world. Each teen is assigned an avatar. There is an explorer (Dwayne Johnson) with huge muscles,  cartographer (Jack Black), a zoologist (Kevin Hart), and a beautiful martial artist (Karen Gillan). The four of them must survive a series of dangerous adventures to get back to the real world.

Jumanji will take the whole family on an adventure of a lifetime. Watch the first Jumanji and you will be wanting more so get all the Jumanji related films and products here: All Things JUMANJI from

In 2011 Dwayne Johnson joined the 4th most successful movie franchise of all-time!

When Dwayne Johnson joined the popular “Fast & Furious” franchise it kicked hit star-power into high-gear!

Fast Five (2011)…Fast & Furious 6 (2013)…Furious 7 (2015)… The Fate of the Furious (2017)…The Fast & the Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw (2019)

Fast Five

Dwayne brought the character of Luke Hobbs to the franchise in “Fast Five.”

Hobbs is a highly trained and skilled bounty hunter for the D.S.S. (Diplomatic Security Service). The character of Luke Hobbs gave birth to a spin-off of the “Fast” franchise in “The Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs and Shaw.

I realize that this feature is dedicated to Dwayne Johnson, but I am going to recommend seeing ALL the “Fast & Furious” films. If you LOVE Dwayne in these films there are double DVD sets that contain the films that he starred in.

Here is Dwayne’s “Fast Five” and “Fast & Furious 6” collection if you just want to start with Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson’s entry into this EPIC franchise.

Fast & Furious Collection: 5 & 6 Snap Case, 2 Pack on

If you are one of the few people that have not seen any of the “Fast & Furious” films or “Hobbs & Shaw” you can finally see what you have missed by clicking here: All Things FAST & FURIOUS from

Fighting With My Family

This is one of my personal favorite Dwayne Johnson films.

This biopic is about a young teen named Saraya-Jade Bevis (Florence Pugh) from a small town in England who was pushed into joining her family’s business. That business was pro-wrestling. She spent a year learning the ropes of wrestling from her family and then she was ready to enter the ring as “Paige.” She soon became a rising star for the WWE. Dwayne Johnson was a co-star and the Executive Producer of “Fighting With My Family.”

Fighting With My Family With DVD, Digital Copy, 2 Pack on

Pain & Gain

A group of personal trainers decide to steal the American dream.

I have two reasons for liking this Michael Bay hilarious crime comedy….DWAYNE JOHNSON & MARK WALBURG. I love them both and they are magical together in this action, adventure, comedy. When a group of personal trainers (Mark Wahlberg, Dwayne Johnson, and Anthony Mackie) decide to steal the American Dream, they get caught up in a criminal enterprise that goes horribly wrong. Now, living large will take everything they’ve got in the unbelievable true story that critics are calling “Goodfella’s on steroids”……and “outrageously entertaining.”

If you need some laughs and action, just click here: Pain & Gain Subtitled, Dubbed, Widescreen, Dolby on

If it’s BLU-RAY you need, click here: Pain & Gain With DVD, Subtitled, Dubbed, Widescreen on

These are just a few of my favorite and most popular Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson films. Browse and own all of films by clicking here: All Things DWAYNE THE ROCK JOHNSON from

Better Luck Tomorrow (2002)

A prequel to the Fast and Furious Franchise?

I didn’t see this film in 2002, but I did see it today. “Better Luck Tomorrow” is not my typical go-to genre but it did grab my attention and kept me entertained. I knew this film was loosely based on a murder that happened in 1992 in Orange County, California. I was aware of this story so I was interested in seeing this film. The film was directed by Justin Lin about four years prior to his success with “Fast and Furious: Tokyo Drift. If you are a fan of the Fast and Furious franchise, this film is a must see.

Better Luck Tomorrow, has action, cars, crime, girls and a young good-looking cast.

The film centers around a group of six Asian-American high school students. These students tend to stick together since they live in the suburbs and go to a predominately white school. One of the main characters is Ben. He is an over-achiever that gets good grades but gets sucked into situations and opportunities that he is not proud of.

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Mulan 2

The legacy of Mulan continues in Disney’s sequel, Mulan 2.

Mulan ended with a large celebration in which the Emperor presented her as a heroine. When Mulan returned home all the young girls of her village gathered to see her. They all looked up to the brave, courageous, smart, and beautiful Mulan. Every young girl wanted to be just like her. Each day they gathered to watch her as she continued her military type training. Eventually Mulan invited the girls to train with her.

During one of their training sessions Li Shang came to visit Mulan. This time he was wearing the uniform of a General. He was so handsome in his new uniform. He was there just minutes before he awkwardly tried to…

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The Animated Disney Classic

I am excited to add Mulan to the list of outstanding films I am reviewing for Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month.

I must admit that sometimes when I watch an animated film with my Godson, I watch the first 10-15 minutes and then allow myself to become distracted by my phone. I wanted to see how he would respond to a heroine instead of his favorite which is usually a male super hero with special powers. The film was based on a Chinese folktale about a young girl who did not have super-powers but she was brave, strong and fearless. She was also very clever, quick thinking and protective of her family and China.

As I watched my Godson paying full attention to the story and seeming to be enamored by Mulan, I found myself doing the same.

I was totally fascinated with this strong heroine.

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The Farewell (2019)

Awkwafina returns with another stunning performance!

After seeing Awkwafina in Crazy Rich Asians I could not wait till her next film. In “The Farewell” she takes on a more serious and complicated role. Although the film does have its fair share of comedy it also has a dark dramatic side as well. The film is written and directed by Lulu Wang.

It is based on Lulu’s own family…LIE!

The film opens with Billi (Awkwafina) in New York. She is living on her own but struggles a bit with her finances. On a visit to her parents’ home to do some laundry she notices that they seem a little distant. They tell Billi they will be traveling to China for her cousin’s wedding. She questions her parents about the wedding and soon finds out the real reason they are going to China. The family found out that the matriarch and grandmother of the family was diagnosed with terminal lung cancer.

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The Joy Luck Club

An underrated and somewhat overlooked masterpiece

I am very happy to present the Joy Luck Club as one the films I have chosen to feature during Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month. This iconic drama focuses on the relationships between Chinese immigrant mothers and their Chinese-American daughters.

This film was adapted from the best-selling novel, The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan. 1993 was a particularly tough year to release a GREAT film since there were so many HUGE and memorable films released within the same year. It had been over two decades since we had seen a year in film like 1993. There was something AMAZING in every genre of film. The Joy Luck Club was one of the stand-out, extraordinary films of 93. I remember seeing Joy Luck Club in the theater and leaving saying

“This film will win EVERYTHING”.

Then at the end of the year two more block-buster films were released. Those two films took home most of the awards for that year. Joy Luck Club was a masterpiece that was under-rated and over looked by most of the award shows. But to the people who lined up around the blocks of the theaters to see it on opening day it was a WINNER.

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A 2-hour and 12 minute roller coaster ride!

When Parasite was released, it was showing in my favorite independent art theatre. I did not know anything about this film and by the name it could have been about many different things. The name seemed like a horror film which I am usually not a huge fan of. I also noticed that it had subtitles. Sometimes when a film has subtitles, I tend to doze off in the dark theatre. So, I decided that Parasite was not going to be on my list of movies to see.

As I stood in line to see a different film, a group of four millennials standing behind me started to talk about a movie that they thought was the “BEST MOVIE OF THE YEAR”. We were all standing in the same line to see the same movie, so I knew we had similar taste in films.

I continued to eavesdrop on their conversation about the film they thought was the “BEST” of the year.

They talked about the plot and the twists & turns of the film. They spoke about the characters that they fell in love with. Their stories about this film made me very interested in seeing it, but they were not saying the name of the film. Finally, I could not take it any longer, I had to confess to over-hearing their conversation and I asked them the title of the film. They all loudly said “Parasite” and then proceeded to tell me more about the movie.

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May is Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month

In May we celebrate and recognize our Asian American and Pacific Islanders. Their tremendous influence, accomplishments and contributions to the United States is felt throughout our own history. There are over 23 million Asian Americans and 1.4 million Pacific Islanders that enrich our lives daily. They have made tremendous contributions to medicine, science and the arts. Since I write about the arts through movies, music and TV, I will feature some of my favorite Asian and Asian American films throughout May. This month you will see and hear a lot about the 50 ethnic groups that make up this diverse and beautiful group of people.

I invite you to come back to my page throughout May to hear more about my favorite Asian, Asian American and Pacific Islander films. helps sponsor this blog. They are celebrating this event with a month long sale on Asian films and TV. You can shop that sale here!