Expired March 20, 2023 6:59 AM
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This program has 8 films. Toggle between film descriptions by clicking on the buttons at the top right.

A struggling nature photographer is forced to confront the pain his family has carried for generations.

Director Erin Lau

Growing up in Hilo, Hawaiʻi, I spent my high school years carrying my father’s camera equipment across barren lava fields. I sat on the jagged cliffs that formed the furthest edge of the island and watched him photograph the flow until dawn arrived. It was a dangerous task, filled with cuts, bruises, and adrenaline. After sunrise, we would set up a tent on the side of the road to sell these photos to passing tourists.

Five generations ago, my ancestors emigrated from Japan to Hawaiʻi to work in sugarcane fields owned by large Western companies. These companies utilized predatory business practices to withhold earnings and ensure their workers remained in poverty. Now, here I was, arguing with their descendants over a $5 photo that we risked our lives to capture.

I turned to writing as a way to process these frustrations, and in doing so, it became a bridge to reconnect with my family’s past. Through this project, we hope to explore the past, the present, and the idea that our ancestors and their experiences remain closer to us than we think.

  • Year
  • Runtime
    18 minutes
  • Language
  • Country
    United States
  • Premiere
  • Director
    Erin Lau
  • Screenwriter
    Justin Omori
  • Producer
    Zoë Eisenberg
  • Cast
    Aoi Takeya, Dann Seki, Jaden Murakami