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The Trained Chinese Tongue



Director, Script, Photography, Editing, Sound, Producer : Laurie Wen
Source : Women Make Movies
462 Broadway, 5th fl. New York, NY 10013 USA
Phone: 1-212-925-0606 / Fax: 1-212-925-2052
e-mail: orders@WMM.com
USA / 1994 / English, Cantonese, Mandarin
Color / 16mm / 20 min

Laurie Wen

香港で生まれ、12歳の時に家族と渡米。ハーバード大学で映画を学び、卒業後インディペンデント映画の製作に携わる。ロスアンゼルス・アジアンパシフィック・フィルム・ビデオ・フェスティバルで短編ドキュメンタリー最優秀賞を受賞したこの『お味はいかが』はクアラルンプール、サンフランシスコ、ボストン、シカゴなど多くの都市で上映され、ニューヨークではテレビ放映もされている。現在は、ニューヨーク芸術基金から助成をうけて、第二作『Don't Worry, I'm Fine』の製作に取りかかっている。

Born in Hong Kong and moved to the U.S. with her family at age 12. She studied film at Harvard and has been working on independent films in New York since graduation. Awarded " Best Documentary Short " at the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film and Video Festival, The Trained Chinese Tongue has also screened in Kuala Lumpur, San Francisco, Boston, Chicago, and other cities, and has been broadcast on public television in New York. A fellow of the New York Foundation for the Arts, she is currently working on her second film, Don ' t Worry, I ' m Fine.


料理と言語という「舌」の働きにアイデンティティの接着剤を見いだす米国華僑の姿を映す。移民にのしかかる言語や差別の壁を自ら経験している香港出身の監督が、チャイナタウンで夕飯の買い出しをしている女性に声をかけ、カメラ持参で台所までついていってしまう。 This documentary explores Chinese-American identity and the myth incorporated in the communal exchanges of food and language. As the filmmaker joins strangers in their cooking, eating, and other everyday rituals, she discovers " instant bonding " through a common immigrant status, despite vast differences in class, geo-political origins, and even language.



私がいま作っている『Don't Worry, I'm Fine』という作品では、私が死んだ叔母、メイシーの名で祖母と文通したことを描こうと思っています。この「きまりごと」は叔母が亡くなった10年前に始まったのですが、それは精神に病を抱え、不安定な状態にあった祖母に叔母の死を話すのはどうかと母が決めたことでした。この映画ではこのような祖母とのやりとりなか、この二人の女性をつなぐ私の役割がどのように展開していったのかを、特に祖母の病気がひどくなった時の二つの逸話を通して描いてみようと思っています。


Director's Statement

I began to work in film because I was saddened and inspired by the ways people grapple with alienation and displacement. The Trained Chinese Tongue examines how Chinese immigrants live at the complex crossroads of food, language, colonization, and immigration. I approach a series of strangers--all immigrant women--in a Chinatown grocery store and follow them home for dinner.

My work-in-progress, Don ' t Worry, I ' m Fine, concerns the letters I have been writing to my grandmother in the name of her dead daughter, my aunt Maisy. The ritual began ten years ago with Aunt Maisy's death and my mother's decision that my mentally ill grandmother was too unstable to be told the truth. The film explores how my role as a link between these two women has evolved as I accompany my grandmother through two of the worst episodes of her long mental illness.

My hope is to represent these struggles on their own terms, using points of reference integral to everyday life--such as cooking or writing letters --to reveal narratives too often obscured.


Yamagata International Documentary Film Festival Organizing Committee