5 Feature films you shouldn’t miss at the 11th Seattle Asian American Film Festival

These are five feature films you shouldn’t miss at the Seattle Asian American Film Festival which will take place in-person from February 23 – 26, and online from February 27 until March 5, 2023.

Crossings by Deann Borshay Liem – USA | 2021 – 96 minutes

In CROSSINGS, a group of international women peacemakers sets out on a risky journey across the demilitarized zone between North and South Korea, calling for an end to a 70-year war that has divided the Korean peninsula and its people. When their crossing becomes precarious, the women debate how to proceed, forging deep respect for their differences and greater unity every step of the way. Undeterred, Women Cross DMZ expands their global campaign to educate and advocate for a peace treaty. Thousands join worldwide as they forge a path with their Korean sisters toward peace and reconciliation. (SAAFF 2023)


Finding Her Beat by Dawn Mikkelson, Keri Pickett – USA | 2022 – 89 minutes

In the midst of a frozen Minnesota winter, a Japanese drum master and Korean adoptee from North Dakota join forces to assemble the world’s best Taiko drummers in a bold effort to claim a cultural spotlight that has historically been reserved only for men. Their rhythm revolution includes rock stars from the world of Taiko: Tiffany Tamaribuchi, Kaoly Asano, Chieko Kojima, Megan Chao-Smith, and Jennifer Weir. Buoyed by dynamic drum performances and do-or-die spirit, FINDING HER BEAT is an energizing and uplifting story of music, cultural expression and sisterhood. (SAAFF 2023)


Liquor Store Dreams by So Yun Um – USA | 2022 – 85 minutes

So Yun Um wants nothing more than to become a filmmaker in South L.A., much to the bemusement of her father. In this vibrant and bold film, So turns the camera on herself, her community and her friends, and documents a rarely seen slice of the American dream as she struggles with creating her own path in life. (SAAFF 2023)


Rice Boy Sleeps by Anthony Shim – Canada | 2022 – 117 minutes

Inspired by his own childhood, director-writer Anthony Shim made RICEBOY SLEEPS, following a Korean single mother who immigrates to Canada with her young son in the 90s. Shim navigates the space between a widowed mother’s isolation and determination to provide a better life for her son, and a son’s loneliness and his frustration with circumstances beyond his control; both are bruised by discrimination and confinement in a new country. (SAAFF 2023)


We Don’t Dance For Nothing by Stefanos Tai – Hong Kong, Philippines | 2022 – 86 minutes

WE DON’T DANCE FOR NOTHING is a Photo-Montage love letter to the Filipina domestic workers of Hong Kong. This visual recreation of true memories shared by this community of 400,000 women (millions globally) follows one woman’s plan to run away blending stills with motion to highlight the passionate Street Dancing of these marginalized women. (SAAFF 2023)


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