Monday, April 27, 2009

Christopher Wong's Whatever It Takes; Tze Chun's Children of Invention

Two films showing at the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival -- organized by the dedicated folks at Visual Communications -- will be featured on Subversity 27 April 2009 from 9-10 a.m. The festival runs April 30-May 7; for more information, go to

We talk with Director Christopher Wong about his gritty documentary, Whatever It Takes, on students at an inner city school headed by a Chinese American headmaster in the Bronx, New York; and Tze Chun about his Sundance-selected Children of Invention, about two young Chinese children in Boston left to fend for themselves when their mother is incarcerated.

Children of Invention opens the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival Thursday 30 April 2009 at Directors Guild of America, 7920 West Sunset in West Hollywood at 7 pm (VIP reception at 5:30 pm). Whatever It Takes screens at the same location, Saturday May 2 at 4 p.m.

Meanwhile, Newport Beach Film Festival continues; see:

On Tuesday, 28 April at 3:30 pm at Edwards Island 1, Fashion Island, there is a screening of a Japanese film with exquisite vignettes of locals encountered at a lost and found office in a train station. See: Lost & Found, directed by Nobuyuki Miyake:

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Monday, April 6, 2009

Director Doan Hoang on Oh, Saigon; Radical Student Union Gears Up Protests

We dedicate this program to the victims of the Binghamton massacre, including former librarian Layla Khalil, a Muslim from Iraq. See: New York Times story. Rest in Peace. She leaves behind her husband (who teaches at SUNY Binghamton), a son (studying at the Sorbonne), a daughter (a Fulbright fellow at Binghamton) and another son (in high school). Irvine -- Continuing our focus on the the Vietnamese International Film Festival that continues this week, we talk with Doan Hoang, the director of a daring and revealing documentary, Oh Saigon (Saigon Oi), exposing to the world family fissures in the Hoang family -- the last family airlifted out of Saigon at the impending fall of Saigon in April 1975. Director Hoang exposes dark secrets in the family, including a communist uncle who fought for the liberation of Vietnam and a half-sister left behind initially in Vietnam. The film will be airing in May on PBS and may air on Hanoi TV eventually. Director Hoang is also active in Vietnam Relief Effort, celebrating its 10th anniversary today with the New York Stock Exchange ringing closing bells in its honor 6 April 2009.

Oh, Saigon screens at Chapman University Law School, in Donald Kennedy Hall in Room 237AB on Thursday, April 9th, 2009 @ 5:30 p.m. Admission is free. Chapman University School of Law is located at 1 University Dr., Orange, CA 92866.

We also talk with John Bruning, of UCI's new Radical Student Union, which is mounting several protests this month. One raises concern over sweatshops that are said to produce UCI-logo apparel. RSU and other groups have written an open letter to UCI Chancellor Drake on the issue.

Another RSU protest is over the UCI visit of former Mexican President Vicente Fox to speak April 8 at UCI. RSU protests the visit former Mexican Pres. Vicente Fox to UCI April 8. RSA is hosting a discussion with documentary filmmaker Simon Sedillo planned for April 8 at 5 pm at UCI's Parkview Classroom Building room 1300, on Fox's poor history on human rights. More information on Fox's talk at UCI is linked here A bibliography I compiled on Fox is linked here

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