Made in Taiwan

Documentary, Germany/Taiwan 2005, 30 min, color, Digi Beta
Airdate: Sept. 29, 2005, 9 pm, 3sat / German TV, Oct. 2005 PTS Taiwan

Synopsis

Yi-chun from Taipei is a slender girl and she loves to eat. That’s a problem for the 17-year-old dance student, since she is supposed to be on a strict diet. Her family and her teachers are watching her closely. There is not much laissez-faire for teenagers in Taiwan, the over-achieving country. Good grades in school are mandatory. Used to 12 hours school days, kids and teenagers are thrown under the harsh regime of competition in school, Yi-chun also takes extra lessons in math and teaches at the dance school where her mother works. To be an teenager in Taiwan is not about sex, drugs and rock ‘n roll but about discipline, good grades and the struggle for the best possible start to professional life.Taiwan is perhaps the most advanced and developed country in South-east Asia. For the last 5 years it has enjoyed a fully fledged democracy, which stands up against the threats of the superpower China. The film follows Yi-chun in her everyday life in school, where we still find remnants of the military dictatorship like raising the flag and target shooting. We also witness Yi-chun’s little escapes to the night markets and her soft rebellion against the always critical older sister.

Cast

Yi-chun, her family and the dance class of Chiang-Kai-shek High-School, Taipei

Crew

Written, directed and produced by Monika Treut

Camera: Elfi Mikesch // Sound: Yang Chia Hao // AD: Wen Cheng // Editor: Angela Christlieb // A Co-Production of Hyena Films with PTS-Taiwan for ZDF/3sat // Commissioning editors: Nicole Baum and Jessie Shih

Festivals

Biarritz, France // Women Make Waves, Taiwan // Womens Film Festival, Korea // Doc Fest, Nyon, Switzerland.

Reviews

Filmmaker Monika Treut observes the youthful activity without casting judgement, remaining protectively close to her protagonsist’s face. Her dynamic handheld camera immerses us into the feverish hustle and bustle of Taipei with its giant illuminated adverstising boards, huge shopping malls open 24 hours a day, and crowds of people everywhere. IDF Nyon

Rights Taiwan: PTS TV Taiwan: www.pts.org.tw
Rights Asia (except Taiwan): Hyena Films; all other territories: ZDF Enterprise