Sat, Nov 09, 2019 - Page 4 News List

Film about mother’s love takes prize

Staff writer, with CNA

Henry Chen, left, director-general of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ Department of International Information Services, awards filmmaker Max Tseng the grand prize at the awards ceremony for the Trending Taiwan short film competition at Eslite Xinyi Store in Taipei on Wednesday.

Photo: Wu Shu-wei, Taipei Times

A film that portrays a mother’s love from the perspective of three women has won the “Trending Taiwan” short film competition, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced on Wednesday.

Mom’s Way, by 37-year-old civil servant Max Tseng (曾國安), tells the stories of three mothers in rural areas of Taiwan who find ways to stay connected to their children, who are either working or studying in other parts of the country.

“There is always an image of a mother that we keep in our hearts,” Tseng said at the awards ceremony. “We think of her whenever we are under pressure and that gives us the strength to go on.”

Featuring the way of life and scenery of rural Taiwan, the three-minute film won from a field of 115 entries in the fifth edition of the short film competition, which the ministry hosts as a way to promote the nation’s soft power.

In Mom’s Way, a woman in a farming community cooks for her son whenever he returns on vacation to show her love.

In a fishing village that is home to an Amis community, another mother campaigns to protect the environment as a way of creating a sustainable world for her children.

The third mother, a Vietnamese immigrant, lives on a farm in a remote area with her Taiwanese husband, while her children study far away in northern Taiwan, but she stays connected with them by keeping them in her thoughts all day.

At the end of the film, Tseng gives a brief narration, urging viewers to visit, or at least call, their mothers once in a while.

“Remember, someone far away is always thinking of you,” the narration says.

At the awards ceremony, he was presented with a certificate and a check for NT$200,000 for winning the competition.

Among the 20 finalists, two participants placed second, three placed third and six received honorable mentions.

Trending Taiwan was launched by the ministry in 2015 to encourage the production of films that portray various aspects of Taiwan by weaving together scenes from everyday life.

The short films are judged on creativity, theme, narrative technique and technical quality, such as camerawork and editing techniques, the ministry said.

The winning entries are subtitled in various languages and uploaded to ministry’s Web site and social media pages so that international audiences can watch them and learn more about life in Taiwan, the ministry said.

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