Song of the Exile 客途秋恨
Directed by Ann Hui 許鞍華
1990, 100 mins, Hong Kong/Taiwan
Chinese, Japanese and English, with English subtitles
Directed by Hong Kong’s foremost female independent filmmaker Ann Hui, this is an inter-generational story spanning three decades and crossing the borders of China, Britain, Macau, Hong Kong and Japan, in the aftermath of World War II. Having married into a Cantonese Chinese family after the war, Japanese Aiko tries to live within a Chinese society still scarred from war memories, while dealing with the loss of her cultural homeland. In the process she becomes estranged from her daughter Hueyin (played by the glamorous young Maggie Cheung). Narrated from the perspective of Hueyin, who has her own experiences of cultural dislocation, the film is a journey of memory and reconciliation, as mother and daughter set off together to visit Aiko’s hometown in Japan.
This film is part of Asia and the Pacific Screens Season Four: Roots & Routes, sponsored by the Australian Centre on China in the World.