Red Light Revolution is the second feature of the Shanghai-based Australian writer and director Sam Voutas. It failed to get a release in China so the U.K and Canada are the first regions to get this film. Perhaps Chinese censors are reluctant to release this film due to the subject matter: a comedy looking at the explosion in adult-toy stores in China. Was this too American Pie and no dignity? A shocking expose on people forced into the adult entertainment industry by economics?
Shunzi (Jun Zhao) is a low-paid cab driver who can’t provide the life his wife wants. After getting fired from his job and thrown out of his house by his wife he moves in with his mother (Ji Qing) and father (Huimin Tian). Things look bad but a chance encounter with an old friend leads to him opening an adult-toy shop. Unfortunately he winds up stuck with a Japanese supplier named Iggi (Masanobu Otsuka) who turns out to be a psychotic gangster and a conservative neighbourhood watch that harasses him. Shunzi could lose everything but his customer base and his partner Lili (Vivid Wang) have other ideas.
There is nothing daring or shocking enough to sate the appetites of gross-out comedy fans or those looking for drama. There are no gross-out gags, no nudity, and no bodily fluids. The jokes are inoffensive to the point of being harmless and it ducks showing anything too risqué, eschewing heavy smut for a light-hearted tale of a community brought together by a taboo subject.