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  • Mimi Nguyen

First Morning (2003) - Victor Vu

Updated: Mar 25, 2019

First morning (2003), original title, Buổi sắng đầu năm, literal translation: "the morning of the beginning of the year" - was one of those transformational films that has stuck with me through all of these years. It came during a time when I was deprived of films - movie nights shared (not age appropriate - my parents didn't find any problem with me watching anything unless there was nudity) - either because they didn't understand content or genuinely felt - nothing too explicitly obscene.

Before high speed internet, when we traded landline over dial up, and TV was the centre of our pastimes, my family spent our evenings binge watching Vietnamese dubbed HK/Chinese dramas.

- we didn't watch American films, only glimpse of cable TV guide - only catching up later on in adulthood

- Instead of talking about ourselves, we talked about the characters and commented on their trivials (events); why did they act this way? How will they overcome ....

Film that I understood - childhood, family trauma. Most importantly, the first film to speak on new layer of - cannibalism - resulting to death, decease. My parents, mother, saved the night before ritual. Father - who learned, contrary to what some may say, you must eat before the body completely rotting

Never leaving the refugee camps; not right in the head. Hurt "to what cost".

but dead while body still lives. dark reality of boat journey. As a young girl, I knew rape was a different form of human violation, disrespect body and soul another living being, broken. First learned about Thai Pirates


A young man walks through

only catching up through adulthood

Talking about ourselves, we commented on the characters.

open communications and TV was the centre of our pastimes/family activities,

Dial up high speed internet

transformative film

unsuspecting, film when I was 8 years old.

Buổi sắng đầu năm signified a new era, DVD and

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