March 10 only

Hang In There, Kids! – 5.15pm

Directed by Laha Mebow

Cinema Asia / Taiwan / 2015 / Narrative / 90 mins / Mandarin with English subtitles / San Francisco Premiere

In her second feature film, Laha Mebow brings to light a moving narrative about childhood mischief and complicated family life in the Taiwanese mountains. The film follows a trio of young boys from the indigenous Sqoyaw tribe as they navigate the day-to-day: hunting, selling peaches, chatting up tourists, and going to class and after-school programs (or sometimes ditching them), all while dealing with rough household troubles. These big dreamers go to Taipei for their last sixth-grade field trip and help their handicapped after-school instructor (Played by Albee Huang) in the process. What the boys end up finding is some closure to their own personal sagas.

The film won five accolades at the 2016 Taipei Film Festival, including the Grand Prize, and it is Taiwan’s submission in the Best Foreign Language Film category at the 2017 Academy Awards. With charming performances, stunning scenery, a bouncy score and poignant songs, it’s no wonder this feature has already captured the hearts of many. This spirited tale about youth and overcoming difficult circumstances is one that will touch its audience long after the final fadeout.

Co-presented by: TAP-SF

Wexford Plaza – 7.20pm

Directed by Joyce Wong

Narrative / Canada / 2016 / Narrative / 80 mins / English

An unexpected sexual encounter forever changes the once simple friendship of security guard Betty and bartender Danny in WEXFORD PLAZA, Joyce Wong’s first feature film.

Wong’s dark comedy follows the mundane, repetitive life of Betty, who just started her new job in the anything-but-lively world of nighttime security at a suburban strip mall. When she joins her maturity-stunted co-workers for a drink at one of the mall’s restaurants, she meets laid back and charming Danny, whose kindness to her encourages Betty’s interest. As their interactions continue, she feels a spark and makes a move, which changes the two in unexpected ways.

We soon learn a different side to the same events as Wong shifts to Danny’s perspective leading up to their encounter. The quirky humor meshes well with the drama, both paired perfectly with a soundtrack from The Post Office Inc. that captures messages lost in translation. Dancing around the different perspectives and emotional baggage gives deeper meaning to the story.

— Brian Ray

Expected Guests in Attendance: Joyce Wong (Director/Writer/Producer), Darrel Gamotin (Actor)

Co-presented by: Consulate General of Canada


92 mins

Chance encounters, poignant goodbyes, turbulent moments and chased dreams weave in and out of characters’ lives in this shorts program, showing how love can be rewarding, confusing and crazy, all at the same time.


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