Running Time: 90 minutes
Country: Viet Nam
Director: Trinh T. Minh-ha [in person]
Vietnam in ancient times was named đất nứớc vạn xuân – the land of ten thousand springs. One of the myths surrounding the creation of Vietnam involves a fight between two dragons whose intertwined bodies fell into the South China Sea and formed Vietnam’s curving ‘S’ shaped coastline.
Legend also has it that Vietnam’s ancestors were born from the union of a Dragon King, Lạc Long Quân and a fairy, Âu Cơ. Âu Cơ was a mythical bird that swallowed a handful of earthly soil and consequently lost the power to return to the 36th Heaven. Her tears formed Vietnam’s myriad rivers and the country’s recurring floods are the land’s way of remembering her.
In her geopolitical situation, Vietnam thrives on a fragile equilibrium between land and water management. A life-sustaining power, water is evoked in every aspect of the culture.