Teddy Award „Best Documentary“ – Intl Filmfestival Berlin 2017
Anu is a tomboy. Although she was married off at a young age – as was customary in Taiwan in the 1970s – and had two children, she quickly divorced her violent husband and brought up her daughters alone. Since then her only relationships have been with women who, like her, earn a living as professional mourners at funerals. One of her daughters is filmmaker Hui-chen Huang. It’s considered taboo in Chinese culture to question a mother’s unconditional love, and yet this is exactly the topic of Huang’s intimate portrait. Mother and daughter set off on a journey together into the past during which Anu is confronted with questions that have tormented her daughter for years. In a series of long shots the two women discuss such topics as trust, abuse and cognizance, and yet most of these discussions end in painful silence. Shifting focus in order to plumb the depths of the depicted room, the director attempts to understand her mother by also talking to her mother’s siblings and ex-lovers. In doing so she paints a picture of changing living conditions for three generations of women in Taiwan. (Berlinale 2017)
was born in Taiwan in 1978 and began supporting her mother in her work as a Taoist priestess in funeral processions at the age of six. She had to leave school in the third grade to help her single parent make ends meet and learned to read and write from comic books and television. At 20 she became a political activist and worked with labor organizations and unions as well as beginning to make documentary films. Her short films, which focus on the plight of domestic and migrant workers in Taiwan, have screened at numerous international festivals.
Hospital Wing 8 East (2006), Uchan Is Going Home (2009), The Priestess Walks Alone (2016), Ri Chang Dui Hua (Small Talk, 2016).