Vancouver Asian Film Festival opens Thursday Nov 4, closes Sunday

There are some very interesting films scheduled for the 14th Annual Vancouver Asian Film Festival.

Catching my eye are the films that cross cultural boundaries or deal with Chinese Canadian history.

Check out the programs for



1. Opening Night


2. Promise Lands

3. Places and Spaces Fri. Nov. 5th, 9:30 PM

– These films explore place and identity. Dark and urban New York City is explored by lonely souls in WORKS OF ART and EMPIRE CORNER. In I DON’T SLEEP I DREAM, the protagonist must navigate a surreal, deserted road and in TAKEO the idyllic rolling landscape of midwestern United States is contrasted by a struggle for survival and revenge. But Hawaii's Oahu island is the setting for Ajumma! Are You Krazy?? – a study about the 'older ladies' who are addicted to Korean tv dramas and will stop at nothing to meet their latest heartthrob, hunky Korean superstar Michael Park.


4. An Activist's Life: AOKI Sat. Nov. 6th, 11:00 AM

Did you know that a Japanese American man is one of the founders of the Black Panthers, in the USA? Find out how Richard Aoki, a Japanese-American internment descendent, grows up in African-American dominated Oakland, and becomes a leading figure in the Asian-American Movement.

5. Lt. Watada

6. Lost and Foundations

7P. Mighty Asian Shorts Sat. Nov. 6th, 4:30 PM

– This is always lots of fun. Vancouver area aspiring film makers create quirky shorts. This year one of my my library colleagues was part of a team that won first prize. Catch the Ko-Ni-Chi-Wa, which explores what happens when an Asian-Canadian woman witnesses White Asianphiles hitting on Asian ESL students… she dresses up as an ESL student and guess what happens?

8. Loss and Reunion

9P. Love Wins Out

10. Centrepiece: Sing China!

11P. Au Revoir Taipei

12. It's a “Mad, Sad & Bad” World


13. Made in Vancouver

14. Canada Apologizes

Redress Remix: Canada’s Apology For The Chinese Head Tax – I attended the special preview for this film which interviews our family friend WW2 veteran Frank Wong. I was part of the Vancouver committee for Head Tax Redress descendants. Trevor Chan (No Luck Club), created a very interesting mash of hip hop beats and people's quotes. Also interviewed from Toronto are Dr. Joseph Wong the founding president of the Chinese Canadian National Council; and Simon Li, former CBC radio host who now teaches Chinese Canadian history to students in Hong Kong.

15. Closing Night Sun. Nov. 7th, 7:00 PM

– I got to know film animator Jeff Chiba Stearns when he created “What Are You Anyways” which comically explored the relevations of mistaken assumed ethnic heritage, when you grow up Hapa, or Half-Asian/Half-Caucasian. I quickly invited Jeff to share “What Are You Anyway” with the audience at the annual Gung Haggis Fat Choy Robbie Burns Chinese New Year Dinner – especially when the main character was drawn with a Chinese coolie hat, and holding bagpipes. ONE BIG HAPA FAMILY explores the journey when Jeff attends a family reunion, and explores why everybody in the family is in a inter-racial relationship, thus creating generations of Hapa children.

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