Starting next week San Francisco bay area residents are in for an unusual treat of films, food and music from different parts of the world with an Asian American theme. It is time for the annual CAAMFest the oldest Asian American film festival in the US. This year the festival runs from March 12-22, 2015 in San Francisco, Oakland and Berkeley.
Over the past couple of years CAAMFest has morphed into a celebration of films, food and music – three things that Asian Americans love to celebrate. The festival has expanded its footprint to include the cities of Berkeley and Oakland.
Destination CAAMFest is the theme for this year’s celebration. There will be features, documentaries, shorts, narratives films from around the world at the festival. There are a dozen films/features that have their world premiere at this year’s festival. Besides established and emerging filmmakers, the festival is turning its attention to young filmmakers via two programs – Muslim Youth Voices and 1900 Institute Youth Voices on China.
The opening night film is “Seoul Searching,” a South Korean film that pays homage to 1980s films and music. And the closing night film is “Lucky Chow,” a foodie show that is premiering at the festival. “Lucky Chow” was co-produced by CAAM with PBS, and will air on PBS stations later this year.
The center piece film is Shonali Bose’s “Margarita with a Straw,” a coming-of-age film set in India and the US. The film is loosely inspired by Bose’s cousin Malini, who has cerebral palsy. The story centers around a differently abled girl’s search for love. The film is “actually rather sweet, and not anywhere near as issue-driven and preachy as it might sound on paper,” says Variety. This is Bose’s second feature film.
There are several foodie-themed features like “Off The Menu,” “Super Club” and” Lucky Chow”. The festival is featuring the Matsumoto family, peach farmers from Central Valley in California. They will screen “Changing Season: The Matsumoto Family Farm” at Oakland Museum.
CAAMFest’s Directions in Sound segment showcases music from Asian Asian community. This year they are featuring two musicians – Awkwafina, a Queens-based hip-hop artist and Suboi, “Queen of Hip-Hop” from Vietnam.
San Francisco-based filmmaker Arthur Dong is the featured guest for the Spotlight segment of the festival. Dong is an Oscar-nominated and Sundance award winner.
For tickets and information please visit CAAMFest website.