The Official DC Asian Pacific American Film Blog

Saturday, October 04, 2008

Only three films left


You'll be sorry if you miss them. The films today, all documentaries, will challenge and hopefully inspire your thoughts on the power of film, the role of mass media, the representations of Asian people in this era of modern communication, and the importance of making the lives of Asians and Asian Americans heard in this world-- one of the core missions of film festivals such as ours.

In The House of Sharing, the filmmakers focus on the lives of former Korean comfort women, living proof of the heinous act of military sexual slavery, a form of government-sponsored violence towards women. Their voices have been consistently and deliberately ignored and we owe it to them to be their advocates-- through this film and other ways-- so that they can reconcile with the lives that they have lost and that we can promise for such injustice to never happen again.

Vincent Who?
investigates perhaps the single most defining moment in American history where Asian Americans of all backgrounds came together under a singular identity to challenge the legal and media systems on their treatment of people of Asian descent as a protected racial class under the law. It is crucial for us to understand how this incident carved a new face in the racial politics of this country. It made us look at race in a way that was always present but was never was talked about before-- how Asians have been perpetually perceived as the Other, as foreigners, as "not really American". Sadly, these notions still exist, and with this film it is my hope that the community will be able to mobilize even greater around these issues.

The Killing of a Chinese Fortune Cookie
(pictured) shows how a simple food item linked to Asian cuisine has pervaded the pop culture landscape, making it's mark on the US and the world. It's more than just a story about a cookie-- it's a lesson in the power of a cultural trend and its impact on the consumer and the creative class that drives its popularity and existence.

Thank you to everyone that has supported these films and this festival! We have had a great 9th year and can't wait to bring you our 10th!

Friday, October 03, 2008

Doc n' Rocks Friday

Yes, there's a lot going on tonight-- hanging out with Foxes, Swedes, Nick & Norah, and Viggo. Surely you can fit in a 90 minute film screening into your evening. 62 Years and 6500 Miles Between is an emotional documentary that captures the passion and history behind the struggle for Taiwanese independence, through the story of one woman, nicknamed "Democratic Grandma" by her family.

The Love on the Rocks shorts program is for the romantics in the crowd. Not to be missed-- Best Short Winner Damn the Past!, Rock Garden: A Love Story (pictured), which features a dreamy set design, and California King, my personal favorite, a quirky delight of a film.

p.s. t-shirts will be sold at discounted prices tonight. come out to find how much!

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Favorite Shorts on Thursday

The secret's out. Thursday's shorts program "Endings" is our favorite shorts program. All six films in this series deal with facing the end-- the end of life, the end of relationships, the end of the world. These are the types of films that make you sigh and leave a lump in your throat. When was the last time you saw a film that did that? We are proud to include them in our festival and hope you'll support these hardworking filmmakers by coming out to see their films. Most filmmakers start their careers with shorts-- so you could very well be seeing the first project of someone who's going to become the next big thing. And with the quality of these films, I would say it's very likely that we'll be seeing these filmmakers making it into the international independent film circuit.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Double Feature + T-Shirt deal tonight

Do a double feature on Wednesday AND get a t-shirt, for just $20! At 6:45, Against the Grain: An Artist's Survival Guide to Peru screens at NMWA. It was voted Best Documentary of the festival. Read about the rest of the best docs of the fest here. Directly following it at 8:30, Sita Sings the Blues. This was featured in the Style section of the Post last week. It's a real feast for the eyes-- colorful and funky animation with an Indian twist. Someone mentioned it reminded them of Yellow Submarine and it's definitely on the same psychedelic wavelength as that. It was at Tribeca this year and the filmmaker has been under some heat for interpreting the Hindu Ramayana as a metaphor for her own life. Come watch the film and let us know what you think! View the excellent trailer here.

Tickets are available at the door only and for $5 for each show. Another special deal for those that attend tonight's screenings: We're offering a $5 discount on festival t-shirts. Get one for just $10 tonight. So that's two films + a t-shirt all for $20!

Sunday, September 28, 2008

We heart shorts

Short film programs are so much better than features in many ways. You get to see 7, 8, 9, sometimes 10 different films in the same amount of time you would be seeing 1 feature length film. We're showing two great shorts programs today. Also later at the AFI is Flying on One Engine, one of the best documentaries of the festival, which was featured in the WP Express on Thursday. You won't want to miss seeing the subject of the film, an Indian octogenarian surgeon, perform operations for 12 hours at a time, from a wheelchair, and still have time left to dis Al Gore AND Mother Teresa from his larynx-less throat (he has to speak through his esophagus).

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Two docs, two features today

FOUR films today. Three of them are FREE and at the Freer (so it's a good excuse to come down to the Mall for the Book Festival + see a movie). The 2pm screening was highlighted in the Express on Thursday, Siamese Connection. The 6pm screening was a weekend pick in The Onion this week as well, Santa Mesa. The evening program is Kissing Cousins, and was featured at the happy hour last week. It's a fun movie for "date night". And we're having a fab party afterwards in Columbia Heights. A great lineup for hopefully a rain-free Saturday. See you there.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Skip the debate!

You know you only want to see the good parts anyway. Come see the shorts program tonight. Lots of shorts films, many of them funny, about race and culture clash. Unlike the debate, you cant watch these films later, its the only time they will be shown in DC! And three filmmakers will be in town tonight that you can debate with!