Southeast Asian Americans are an artistic force to be reckoned with in this collection of narrative and documentary shorts. Tales of perseverance, grit and forgiveness show us the diversity of what the road of recovery from imperialism can look like.
Ninlawan Pinyo is the matriarch of a Thai American family, who hustled for her fortune by founding a naem (pork sausage) factory in Chiang Mai, Thailand.
The impact of warfare and trauma is diffused through the generations, as a Cambodian family’s papaya salad recipe is passed down the line. Papaya reveals how connection is the most vital ingredient for healing a specifically Southeast Asian experience.
Sophia is a line cook who recognizes the power of a family recipe. The vital connection she has to her Cambodian heritage also brings about pain as she processes an estranged relationship with her parents and forges new bonds.
Ko Chandetka’s family fled Laos in 1975 to seek asylum in Elgin, Illinois. Bodybuilding becomes an escape from his bullies and his family’s expectations until untreated trauma finds a way to express itself through drug and alcohol abuse.