One of Sylvia Chang’s best films, Xiao Yu centers upon a young garment worker who’s come to New York from China to be with her boyfriend. As the threat of the INS looms, she enters into a green card marriage with an alcoholic, down-on-his-luck writer trying to get out from under his gambling debts, and what follows is a moving and sensitive treatment of the unlikely bonds that form between them. Preceded by Williamsburg, Brooklyn, from the Lithuanian-born Jonas Mekas. After arriving in New York in 1949, Mekas would radically reshape film culture as a critic, editor, programmer, and experimental filmmaker. Williamsburg, Brooklyn, though completed much later in his career, is composed of some of the very first images he shot in America, poignantly conjuring the atmospheres of his newfound immigrant milieu.
Xiao Yu + Williamsburg, Brooklyn
Sylvia Chang, Taiwan, 1995, 104m
Jonas Mekas, USA, 2003, 16mm, 15m
English, Mandarin, and Cantonese with English subtitles