Life Sinks Three Times, Rises Seven and Nine Times Floats Adrift

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La Vie sombre 3 fois

Life Sinks Three Times, Rises Seven and Nine Times Floats Adrift

by Xuân-Lan Guyot

Vietnam, France

La Vie sombre 3 fois

Director: Xuân-Lan Guyot

Cinematographer: Xuân-Lan Guyot

Editor: Xuân-Lan Guyot, Sylvie Gadmer


Year: 2009

Beta SP, Colour, 48 min, 
OV French & Vietnamese with French Subtitles

Director Xuân-Lan was a seven-year old girl living in Strasbourg when she met her grand-mother from Vietnam. She soon forgot this grand-mother who could only express in Vietnamese, a language she balked at speaking. In 1998, she went to Vietnam for the first time and met her again. Born in 1917, her grand-mother who was fair-skinned had married into money, but was later repudiated by her husband who took their daughter away, Xuân-Lan’s mother. Caught in the turmoil of history, she remained alone her whole life. Xuân-Lan went to Vietnam a second time in 2000 to film and keep a trace of her grandmother, and also ask her mother to translate what she could not understand. The grand-mother died three years ago. As required by tradition, instead of leaving her body in a defiled environment, her bones were dug up to be cleaned and sent to her village. Xuân-Lan has filmed this last voyage.

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