Festivals & Events
KAU KA HŌKŪ AWARD | Presented by Hawaiian Airlines
HIFF was an annual stop for the Pulitzer winning film critic Roger Ebert, who hailed the festival as “a showcase for emerging filmmakers from the Asia and Pacific Rim.” The KAU KA HŌKŪ will be awarded to an emerging filmmaker (first or second feature film). Both fiction and non-fiction feature films will be nominated by the festival programmers and adjudicated by an international jury.
2019 KAU KA HŌKŪ FILMMAKER AWARD NOMINEES
Yuma is a talented adult manga artist with cerebral palsy. When a publisher tells her she must first gain more “experience,” Yuma sets out on a journey to explore her physical, creative, and sexual autonomy.
DIRECTOR: KIM YOON-SEOK
High school student Joo-ri discovers that her father has been having an affair with the mother of her schoolmate, Yoon-ah. Joo-ri and Yoon-ah must begrudgingly learn together what it means to be a family.
DIRECTOR: HAMISH BENNETT
A humble Northland dairy farm in New Zealand, a rural community help one of their own deal with grief after the loss of a loved one.
NORTH AMERICAN PREMIERE
DIRECTOR: DINH LE MINH TRINH
A young man returns home to discover his family is unraveling. His mother hopes he will stay, but she wonders about the handsome overseas man he brought home with him.
HEARTS + BONES
DIRECTOR: BEN LAWRENCE
When a famed war photographer prepares for an upcoming photo retrospective of his work, a South Sudanese refugee finds Daniel and appeals to him to exclude a photograph that may destroy them both.
DIRECTOR: HSIEH PEI-JU
Jiang Ying-Juan is a plus-size woman who loves to cook, but everyone pressures her to lose weight. After meeting a deliveryman who rescues her from harassment, she embarks on her quest to fit in.
THE LONG WALK
DIRECTOR: MATTIE DO
An old hermit walks the dusty country roads in Laos in the company of a silent ghost, who perished in an accident years before, and is forever stuck in the limbo of the real world.
DIRECTOR: KERWIN GO
When three tons of cocaine wash ashore in a peaceful seaside community in the Philippines, two down-on-their-luck surfers are faced with a dilemma: turn it over to the authorities or get lured by easy money?
THEY SAY NOTHING STAYS THE SAME
DIRECTOR: JOE ODAGIRI
An elderly boatman ferries people between villages, but his job is threatened with the construction of a bridge. Desolate and alone, he befriends a girl he found floating mysteriously in the river.
TO LIVE TO SING
UNITED STATES PREMIERE
DIRECTOR: JOHNNY MA
A Sichuan opera troupe discovers that their home is scheduled for demolition. Struggling to find a new home, the troupe copes by blending their beautiful stories with their challenged reality.
DIRECTOR: DIANE PARAGAS
An undocumented Filipina dreams of leaving her Texas town to pursue country music, but, this changes when her mom is suddenly captured by ICE agents. Terrified, she flees to Austin and embarks on a musical journey of self-discovery.