May is Asian Pacific American Heritage Month. To learn more about how these rich heritages intertwine with American history, we invite UNT patrons to check out some of the films on this list, all of which are available to stream.
In Football We Trust
With unprecedented access and shot over a four-year time period, this feature length documentary intimately portrays four young Polynesian men striving to overcome gang violence and near poverty through American football. Viewed as the “salvation” for their families, these young players reveal the culture clash they experience as they transform out of their adolescence and into the high stakes world of collegiate recruiting and rigors of societal expectations.
Two young Japanese Americans set out to find an obscure place called Manzanar in the California desert, in 1969. This was one of ten sites where over 120,000 people of Japanese ancestry were incarcerated during World War II. This rediscovery then became a ‘pilgrimage’ and the first public event in the U.S. that called attention to the reality of these camps.
You Don’t Know Jack: The Jack Soo Story
A pioneer for Asian American actors, Jack Soo was the first Asian American cast in a lead role of a television series. In this documentary, friends, family, and peers recount stories from his life, from his experience as an internee during World War II, to rising nightclub star, Broadway performer, and eventually television regular.
Videofashion Designers: Alexander Wang
Alexander Wang is a prominent Asian American fashion designer whose designs rose to fame in 2007, attracting the attention of luxury retailers and celebrities. Videofashion Designers takes the time to look into the brand and the popular designer behind it who rose to prominence over the last decade.
How to Be a Writer: Between the Lines, Celest Ng
Celest Ng is the best-selling novelist behind the hits “Everything I Never Told You,” and” Little Fires Everywhere,” which has been adapted into a television series starring Kerry Washington and Reese Witherspoon. Her awards include being the author of a New York Times Notable Book of 2014, and her first novel was named best book of the year by over a dozen publications.
Soh Daiko: Taiko in New York
This is the story of a collective drumming community and an empowering Asian American art form, from it beginnings in the basement of the New York Buddhist Church in 1979, as told by its founders and its former and present members.