GTI Taiwanese Film Week

GTI Taiwanese Film Week

Wednesday, October 21, 2020 – Thursday, October 29, 2020
Location: Online Only (Films on Vimeo On Demand – limited to the United States; Q&A sessions on Youtube – accessible worldwide)

*Please note that a separate registration is required for each individual film.

Event Description

The Global Taiwan Institute is very pleased to present Taiwanese Film Week, GTI’s first ever virtual film festival. From October 21-29, GTI will feature a diverse selection of Taiwanese films and documentaries streamed on Vimeo On Demand. The film screenings will be complemented by Q&A sessions with the director of Long Time No Sea, Heather Tsui, and the director of Small Talk, Hui-chen Huang, which will be livestreamed on YouTube. The Q&A video will also be accessible on Youtube after the live stream.

All screenings and Q&A sessions will be free of charge. Each film screening will require registration in advance in order to acquire a URL link containing a promotion code. Please make sure to submit your registration in advance as some movies will have limited capacity. Only those currently located in the United States will be able to watch the films. There are no geographic restrictions for the Q&A sessions with film directors.

The film festival will be accessible via Vimeo On Demand, a video sharing and streaming platform, starting on Wednesday, October 21, 2020. Each day, one film will be accessible for 24 hours (please see the schedule below). Participants will need to create a Vimeo On Demand account and register in order to access and watch individual films. For any questions pertaining to online registration, please first refer to the instructions and FAQs below. If you have any further questions, please contact us at gtifilm@globaltaiwan.org.

In addition, GTI will host two Q&A sessions following the film screenings. For the first one, on October 23, we have invited director Heather Tsui to discuss her film Long Time No Sea. The second session, on October 29, will feature Small Talk director Hui-chen Huang. We will be taking questions from the audience. You may send your questions during or before the Q&A sessions with directors. Please email your questions either to gtifilm@globaltaiwan.org or via the chat function on the YouTube page.

Film Program

Access to each film will open from 2 pm-8 pm (EST) via Vimeo On Demand on the date indicated below. Please access each film by clicking on the URL link included in your confirmation email, which will automatically provide you with a 100% discount. The film will then be available on your Vimeo account for 24 hours.

Wednesday, October 21: Long Time No Sea (只有大海知道, 2019), an uplifting drama set among the indigenous Tao community from Orchid Island in Taiwan. Based on the life experiences of first-time feature writer-director Heather Tsui (also known as Tsui Yung-hui, 崔永徽), this tale of a newbie teacher from the city who prepares students for a dance competition sends strong but never didactic messages about the need to preserve traditional cultures and languages.

RSVP by 10/20 11:59 pm EST (viewership capacity: 350)

Thursday, October 22: Detention (返校, 2019), a Taiwanese psychological horror film set during the era of White Terror in Taiwan. In 1962, the Taiwanese government declared martial law. Longing for freedom, Zhang organises an underground book club with his fellow teachers and students, who all put their lives at risk. One night, two students, Fang and Wei, wake up in a storm and find themselves trapped in the school. While struggling to look for the way out, they unveil mysteries, which slowly reveal the dark past of the school.

RSVP by 10/21 11:59 pm EST (viewership capacity: 350)

Friday, October 23: The Great Buddha+ (大佛普拉斯, 2017), a Taiwanese dark comedy which tells the story of Pickle, a night security guard at a statue factory. One day, when the television in the control room is broken, Pickle and his colleague Belly Button watch the footage recorded on their boss’ dashcam and accidentally discover the boss’ secret. It triggers a ridiculous chain reaction, in which a statue of Buddha plays a key role.

RSVP by 10/22 11:59 pm EST (viewership capacity: 120)

Saturday, October 24: The Silent Teacher (那個靜默的陽光午後, 2017), a Taiwanese documentary. This documentary profiles Mrs. Lin, a dying woman who, upon passing, has donated her body to medical students for dissection. In Taiwanese medical schools, these corpses are known as “silent teachers.” Following Lin’s final year, this documentary explores the mysteries of these teachers and their truths.

RSVP by 10/23 11:59 pm EST (no viewership limit)

Sunday, October 25: The Bold, the Corrupt, and the Beautiful (血觀音, 2017), a Taiwanese crime thriller. The film centres on Madame Tang, who colludes and mediates between the government and private businesses for the benefit of her family. When one such case does not go according to plan, the entire family close to Madame Tang falls victim to a gruesome murder. Ambition, desire, and lust eventually change Tang’s relationships with her family.

RSVP by 10/24 11:59 pm EST (viewership capacity: 350)

Monday, October 26: Wansei Back Home (灣生回家, 2015), a Taiwanese documentary. Wansei refers to Japanese who were born in Taiwan during the colonial period. After WWII, Wansei were repatriated to Japan. Since then, painful separation stories have arisen throughout Taiwan and Japan. Wansei Back Home took 12 years of field interviews and five years of filming production. It not only tells the stories of Wansei, but also tells stories of friendships and family ties, life’s true meaning, and bravery when facing harsh adversity.

RSVP by 10/25 11:59 pm EST (no viewership limit)

Tuesday, October 27: The Receptionist (接線員, 2016), a Taiwanese drama set in London, which tells the story of an unemployed Taiwanese graduate who takes a job as a receptionist in an illegal massage parlour and learns how the women struggle to make their lives work in a world where danger and violence are always near. Please note: this film contains mature themes.

RSVP by 10/26 11:59 pm EST (no viewership limit)

Wednesday, October 28: Small Talk (日常對話, 2017), a Taiwanese documentary about a family of a very special kind. The film follows the director’s efforts to understand her mother, a lesbian, Taoist spirit guide. Both extremely intimate and culturally revealing, the documentary explores themes of love, family, and faith. The mother earns a living as a spirit guide for the deceased at their funerals: she was never at home, always out and about with her girlfriends instead. The daughter now goes to great lengths to attempt to understand her mother. By exploring this complex relationship, the film manages to be of universal cultural significance and extremely intimate at the same time.

RSVP by 10/27 11:59 pm EST (no viewership limit)

Q&A Sessions with Directors

No registration is required, the Q&A will be livestreamed on Youtube. The recording of the Q&A will also be accessible on Youtube after the live stream.

Thursday, October 22, 9 pm-10 pm (EST): Conversation with Heather Tsui, director of Long Time No Sea

Heather Tsui (崔永徽) graduated from Fu Jen Catholic University. Bearing a wealth of experience in choreographing and directing, Tsui’s film The Life Coach has been screened on over 300 occasions worldwide, and her script for Long Time No Sea earned the GIO Excellent Screenplay Award in 2011, along with the Domestic Feature Film Assistance Grant in 2014.

Watch the Q&A here.

Thursday, October 29, 9 pm-10 pm (EST): Conversation with Huang Hui-Chen, director of Small Talk

Huang Hui-Chen (黃惠偵) is a documentary filmmaker, survivor, activist, and a full-time single mom. Prior to her first feature documentary, Huang worked for multiple NGOs, such as the Taiwan International Workers Association, China Time’s Trade Union, and the Taipei Documentary worker’s Union. Huang is an advocate for labor rights and social justice. She began documenting the plight of the disadvantaged and the voiceless during her time working for NGOs. Her intimate profiles of the less fortunate and the exploited have become tools used for social change in Taiwan.

Watch the Q&A here.

Instructions for Film Registration

  1. Create a Vimeo account.
    — You can create your Vimeo account ahead of the film festival. You will need an active Vimeo account in order to gain access to each film.
  2. Register for each individual film via Eventbrite by midnight on the day before each screening. To see the exact date and time to register for each film, please refer to the film schedule above. Use the link below each film to register.
    — Please note that it is necessary to register for each individual film separately.
    — Make sure you’ve received a confirmation email for each registration. Further instructions will be included in your confirmation email. If you do not receive a confirmation of your registration, please reach out to us at gtifilm@globaltaiwan.org.
  3. On the day of the screening, access the film between 2 pm-8 pm by clicking on the link attached in your email.
  4. From the moment you gain access to the film, you will be granted 24 hours to view it. You may view the film repeatedly within the given 24-hour window.


Do I have to register for each film separately?
— Yes (for instructions, see above).

How to access the film?
— After you have registered via Eventbrite for a given film, you will receive a confirmation email with a link and a promotion code with a 100% discount.

Is the screening free?
— Yes. While there is a fee indicated on the Vimeo On Demand website, once you have registered via our Eventbrite page, you will receive a promotion code with a 100% discount.

Do the films have viewership limitations?
— Some do. Long Time No Sea, Detention, The Great Buddha+, and The Bold, the Corrupt, and the Beautiful have viewership limitations. Once the capacity for a certain film has been reached, we will no longer be able to provide promotion codes. To secure your reservation, please register as soon as possible.

Where can I watch the Q&A session with both directors?
— The time and date of both Q&A sessions can be found above. For the livestream page of both Q&A sessions, please see the Q&A section above. The recording of the Q&A will also be accessible on Youtube after the live stream.

For other questions that are not listed above, please feel free to reach out to us at gtifilm@globaltaiwan.org

We are grateful to the Taiwan Academy, Ministry of Culture, Taiwan for providing resources to the GTI cultural programs series.