Skip to main content
Má Sài Gòn film image, woman examining another person's ear

Má Sài Gòn

Mother Saigon

This event has passed

About halfway through Má Sài Gòn we hear a conversation about how filmmakers always get Vietnam’s LBTQ scene wrong, trading on clichés and caricatures. Vietnamese Canadian filmmaker Khoa Lê took the time to immerse himself in the culture and sees that we do too. The movie unfolds as a series of vignettes, portraits of queer and trans folks forging relationships in a conservative but rapidly evolving society.

Director Khoa Lê’s lyrical journey through what’s now known as Ho Chi Minh City paints a portrait of the myriad ways queer and trans love blooms. A trans woman with flowers in her hair talks of her dawn dates with a new beau; a bickering lesbian couple call each other Mommy and Daddy; a surrogate mother to a house of queer and trans young adults chides her many garment-makers into opening savings accounts. The long conversations into inhabitants’ lives are interspersed with colourful poetry, melodies and music to create a rich, shimmering tapestry.

VS Wells, Georgia Straight

A dreaminess that recalls the visionary work of Hong Kong moviemaker Wong Kar-wai.

Maurie Alioff, Northern Stars

Director

Khoa Lê

Credits
Country of Origin

Canada

Year

2022

Language

In Vietnamese with English subtitles

Awards

Colin Low Award for Best Canadian Director, DOXA Film Festival

19+
100 min

Book Tickets

This event has passed.

Credits

Screenwriter

Jonathan Bernier, Khoa Lê

Cinematography

Mathieu Laverdière

Editor

Isabelle Daveau, Ariane Pétel-Despots, Khoa Lê

Original Music

Marie-Hélène L. Delorme

Also Playing

Delikado

Palawan appears to be an idyllic tropical island. Its powder-white beaches and lush forests have made it one of Asia’s hottest new tourist destinations. But for a tiny network of environmental crusaders and vigilantes trying to protect its spectacular natural resources, it is more akin to a battlefield.

VIFF Centre - Vancity Theatre

Rails, Jails & Trolleys

This groundbreaking documentary captures the electric ethos of the Indian farmers’ protest that received international attention and the resounding response by Canadians to the movement.

VIFF Centre - Vancity Theatre

To Kill a Tiger

Ranjit battles guilt, community intimidation, a mounting financial burden, and an uninterested police force, all while attempting to support his daughter through the trauma of her attack and its aftermath.

VIFF Centre - Vancity Theatre
Black History Month: Short Film Showcase
BHM Shorts Program collage

Black History Month: Short Film Showcase

The four short films in this program range from humorous dark comedy to sombre drama. These films explore existential crises, beauty standards and daring ambitions in the lives of the protagonists.

VIFF Centre - Studio Theatre