1) Trinh T. Minh Ha's Forgetting Vietnam asks us "what do we remember or know about Vietnam?"
Trinh T. Minh Ha's 2015 film Forgetting Vietnam screens at Tate Modern on December 1st, 2017. One of the most interesting aspects of the film is its recalling of an ancient myth on the creation of the country and its influence on the reality of Vietnamese society. The film also has interviews of local Vietnamese about remembering its history and its present geopolitical importance. Visually, the use of analog and digital video is to imply a progression from the old to the new. Forgetting Vietnam aims to revitalized the unspoken Vietnamese history and culture which are often numbed by the trauma of war and colonization. ...continue reading "December 2017 Vietnamese Cinema Vblog: Disaster Artist, Hong Chau, and The Propeller Group…"
A Film Festival Succumbs to Mainstream Taste
The Golden Lotus Award at the 20th Viet Nam Film Festival goes to Jailbait, an obnoxiously raunchy comedy that broke Vietnamese box office record. With the slogan "Building a Modern and Human Movie Industry", the festival celebrates the country's cinematographic department 65th anniversary. ...continue reading "November 2017 Vietnamese Cinema Vblog: Tran Anh Hung, Star Wars, Jailbait, Downsizing, and more…"
Viewers who have enjoyed I See Yellow Flowers On Green Grass should remained in their seats and be delighted by the film’s end credits animated sequence. ...continue reading "The Magical Toad: End Credits Animated Sequence of Yellow Flowers"
The 48 Hour Film Project took place in Saigon from June 10-11th, 2017. Different teams of young filmmakers compete to make the best short film in two days and one night. This is a sleepless and highly pressured experience great for young filmmakers to test their skills and meet potential future collaborators. ...continue reading "Gremsy Sponsors Vietnam’s 48 Hour Film Project"
Out of all the Vietnamese films I saw at this year's LA Asian Pacific Film Festival, the only one stood out was Father and Son (Cha Cõng Con). The other three films were rather tamed in my opinion. This article was written back in May immediately after I watched it in theater. I've wanted to hold off on it until father's day. Father and Son's familiar tear-jerking story mostly appeals to older audience but everyone should check it out for the stunning cinematography and nostalgic elements.
...continue reading "Happy Father’s Day: Review of Father and Son (Cha Cõng Con)!"
Whenever Vietnamese cinema is discussed, it's often criticized as having "notoriously stiff acting", "horrible script" and "embarrassing special effects". Maybe these criticisms are true but there are many great Vietnamese films upstaged by these bad reputations.
In this article of Vietnamese Cinema, we spotlight 20 films that really deserve more attention. Please note, the first 10 films are made by domestic filmmakers in Vietnam, and the next 10 are by overseas Vietnamese called Viet Kieu. ...continue reading "Ultimate Must See Vietnamese Films Directed by Domestic & Overseas Filmmakers 2017"
“Ăn Quả Nhớ Kẻ Trồng Cây", a Vietnamese proverb that means when eating a fruit remember who planted the tree. Not only do we remember our benefactor but we have to re-pay that generosity by planting new trees for others. With the current Syrian refugee crisis, it hits home to many Vietnamese Americans who’d been there before. A quick Google search shows heart wrenching images of Syrian civilians’ plight for freedom mirroring the Vietnamese boat people after the Vietnam War. It’s important for Vietnamese Americans to voice their concern over this emergency even though we are only a minority. Our actions do make a difference. We were on the same boats as the Syrians now, only we were a little luckier. What we do as American minority now is crucial to our future in this country. We can no longer stay silence and passive in politic. We have an obligation to at least do something. We must plant the seed for this tree that will grow.
Vietnamese are touched by the tragedy.
...continue reading "Ăn Quả Nhớ Kẻ Trồng Cây – Do Vietnamese Americans Support Resettlement of Syrian Refugees In America?"
Came across this rather entertaining and flashy Vietnamese animated commercial.
I thought this was produced by Vietnamese. To my dismay, an Ad agency called JWT commissioned a New Zealand animation studio to produce video advertising dairy products to Vietnamese kids. Most animations shown on Vietnamese TV are produced by foreign studios or by studios in Vietnam under foreigner's supervision. Vietnamese kids rarely get a glimpse of animation from their own country made by their own people. The lack of exposure to local audience is only the tip of the problem that prevents Vietnamese animation from growing. The other big issue is quality, in which a noted Vietnamese animation director bluntly says, “…the best Vietnamese 3D animation can hardly compare with the work of US university students.” That’s a pretty freaking depressing thing to say about an industry! But it’s kind of true though. This is very disappointing considering there is a decent history of Vietnamese animation reaches back to the early 60s. Let's dig deep and take a look.
...continue reading "Don’t Give Up & Sellout, Vietnamese Animation!!!"
I saw an article from Yahoo news the other day about why so many Viets work in the nail industry. I've always wonder about this since I have family, relatives, and friends who work with the trade. It turns out that Tippi Hedren, the famous Hollywood actress in a couple of Hitchcock films, inspires the start of it all. A very long time ago, while she was helping Vietnamese women refugees at Camp Hope, they saw her nails and were enamored by them. That adoration breathed life into the then unpopular industry. No doubt Michelle Phan should call Tippi grandma and pay her loyalty fees. Anyhow, that's how a lot of Vietnamese people got into the nail industry.
...continue reading "The MAN-i-CURE Behind Birdemic"