Sundance Film Festival – Asian Presence 2023

We present the Asian feature films that will be screened at the Sundance Film Festival which will take place from January 19 – 29, 2023

Against the Tide by Sarvnik Kaur – India | 2022 – 92 minutes
Section: World Cinema Documentary Competition

Rakesh and Ganesh are so close, they consider themselves brothers. Both are fishermen of Bombay’s Indigenous Koli community, but they’ve taken contrasting paths. Rakesh uses his inheritance — his father’s boat and the knowledge passed down by generations of Koli fisherman — to fish in the traditional ways, while Ganesh — who was educated abroad — has instead embraced modern, technology-driven, and environmentally destructive methods of deep-sea fishing, causing increasing friction between the friends. But with declining fish populations caused by pollution and invasive species, neither man is finding much success, adding to the burdens facing their young families, and testing the bonds of their brotherhood.

In My Mother’s Skin by Kenneth Dagatan – Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan | 2022 – 97 minutes
Section: Midnight

Philippines, 1946. Nearing the end of World War II, an affluent family lives stranded in their country mansion, tormented by the occupying Japanese soldiers who are losing grip over the island nation. Rumors spread that the patriarch, Aldo, stole Japanese gold and stashed it somewhere nearby. Aldo knows that his family will be slaughtered if they find the riches, so he escapes to seek help from the Americans. Soon they fear he will never return while sickness overtakes the mother. Searching for help, their young daughter, Tala, mistakenly places her trust in a beguiling, flesh-eating fairy, who desires to consume them all.

Joyland by Saim Sadiq – Pakistan, UK | 2021 – 127 minutes
Section: Spotlight

Haider rushes his sister-in-law to the hospital where she gives birth to a girl, devastating the extended family desperate for a baby boy. The brothers’ elderly father is still hopeful Haider and his wife Mumtaz, despite their unorthodox relationship, will bring them their much desired male heir. Everything changes though when Haider takes a job as a backup dancer at an erotic theater and falls in love with its beautiful transgender star Biba.

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