First Morning is a powerful and emotional drama about the Vietnamese “boat people” who fled their homeland in 1975 after the fall of Saigon. Rather than taking a strict socio-political approach, director Victor Vu chooses instead to focus on the pain and psychological scars endured by some of the nearly one million Vietnamese who took to the sea in rickety boats almost 20 years ago. This touching story unfolds through the eyes and memories of the Nguyen family, now living in Southern California.
During the fall of Saigon, young Tuan and his father were forced to flee Vietnam, leaving behind Tuan’s mother and sister Linh. While father and son settled into their new lives in America, years passed as mother and daughter transferred from one refu- gee camp to another across Southeast Asia. What happened during this time remains unspoken.
Years later, a chance encounter between Tuan and his mother reunites the family. But no one will talk about the family’s traumatic past or what has become of the missing sister he barely remembers. Gradually, the layers of silence accumulated over the years begin peeling away to reveal untold tragedies and pain.
Director in attendance
On The Day…
Director Sujin Jo | South Korea | 2003 | Video | 6:00 | Color | Canadian Premiere
A beautifully-crafted animation piece about familial love, from a mother to her young child.
Director Jennie Na | USA | 2003 | Video | 5:00 | Color | Canadian Premiere
A lonely and troubled young boy takes matters into his own hands when his parents keep on screaming at each other and ignoring him.
Victor Vu was born and raised in America. His parents left Vietnam in 1975, just days before the fall of Saigon. In 1997, he received his Bachelor of Arts degree from Loyola Marymount University, where he studied production. “First Morning” is his first feature film.