In 19th century rural Vietnam, 14-year-old May becomes the third wife of wealthy landowner Hung. Soon she learns that she can only gain status by asserting herself as a woman who can give birth to a male child. May’s hope to change her status turns into a real and tantalizing possibility when she gets pregnant. Faced with forbidden love and its devastating consequences, May finally comes to an understanding of the brutal truth: the options available to her are few and far between. Read More »
Tag Archives: Vietnamese
One of the myths surrounding the creation of Vietnam involves a fight between two dragons whose intertwined bodies fell into the South China Sea and formed Vietnam’s curving S-shaped coastline. Influential feminist theorist and filmmaker Trinh T. Minh-ha’s lyrical film essay commemorating the 40th anniversary of the end of the war draws inspiration from ancient legend and from water as a force evoked in every aspect of Vietnamese culture. Read More »
In the curious story of this magic-realistic film, the customs of ethnic mountain peoples in Vietnam are linked to the idiosyncrasies of modern art. There are three protagonists, who live on a lonely mountain. They are the old father and his two children: his beautiful, nubile daughter and a mentally handicapped son. Tradition dictates that the son first has to marry in order to ensure the male family line is continued. For that, young men go to the annual marriage market, but the undesirable son returns every year without a bride. The old man is determined that his son will father a child before he dies and takes unusual measures to ensure this.
The film was banned in its own country, primarily because of the sexual themes, but also possibly because of its unruly form. Read More »
Set in a breath-taking primitive landscape in the mountainous provinces of Vietnam, the film tells the story of a Hmong tribe girl named Pao. She was raised by her stepmother, for her real mother left her when she was little. One day, her stepmother dies in an accident, and she begins to track down her birth mother. But her journey turns out to disclose an unsealed sentimental drama of the family in the past. Read More »