2020 Taiwan Film Festival in Sydney was launched on a streaming on-demand format from July 6 through July 30, offering viewers around Australia a chance to enjoy Taiwan films from the comforts of their own home. With the theme "forgotten," the program will be focusing on topics that touch on often overlooked or forgotten aspects of society, ranging from new immigrants, night shift workers, shop owners, and Taiwan's martial law era.
This year's line-up offered 19 sensational films, including 11 full-length films and eight short films. The new Filmmaker in Focus program featured three works of director Hsiao Ya-Chuan (蕭雅全), "Mirror Image (命帶追逐)," "Taipei Exchanges (第三十六個故事)," and "Father to Son (范保德)." The Golden Horse Film Academy Short Films program featured "Rootless in the City (寄居)," and "Speedy Recovery (理賠時光)."
Additional notable titles offered during the festival included the cult classic "The Gangs, The Oscars, and The Walking Dead (江湖無難事,)," award-winning film John Hsu's "Detention (返校)," and the opening film for 2019 Golden Horse Film Festival in Taiwan – Chang Tso-chi's "Synapses (那個我最親愛的陌生人 )," a visually stunning family drama exploring dementia.
"Boluomi(菠蘿蜜)," and "The Good Daughter(阿紫)" feature Taiwan's working class and new immigrants. "GF*BF (女朋友 男朋友)" by Yang Ya-Che, traces the friendship of three childhood friends across a tumultuous time in Taiwan's history and features LGBTIQ themes.
Documentary film selections included "Run for Dream (出發)," an extraordinarily inspiring film about ultramarathon athlete Tommy Chen's journey to winning the four Deserts Race Series, and "Closing Time (打烊時刻)," filmed in super 16mm by Swedish director Nicole Voögele of a kaleidoscope of Taipei night scenes.
The Short Film Competition returned this year with the objective to develop and bring up the Taiwanese and Australian new talents. With an esteemed judge panel, four finalists were selected to be screened during the film festival, and the winner announced on the opening night of the festival. The four finalists included "Lipstick (口紅)," "Be **** or Not To Be (洛西・布拉西)," "A-Tien (阿添)," "Unnamed (未命名)," with "Unnamed" receiving Best Short Film Winner.
Taiwan Film Festival in Australia is supported by the Taiwanese Government in association with Spotlight Taiwan, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in Sydney, in addition to the generosity of sponsors including the NSW Government in association with Multicultural NSW and Screen NSW, Ettason Ltd Pty, Taiwanese Chamber of Commerce in Australia, Australian Taiwanese Friendship Association and Citihub.