The Journey of Vaan Nguyen

Event time: 
Friday, May 17, 2024 - 2:00pm to 4:00pm
Location: 
New Haven Free Public Library - Ives Main Library (NHFPL-IVES) See map
133 Elm Street
New Haven, CT 06510
Event description: 

May’s Free Friday Films selections are complimentary to the NEA Big Read Program’s 2024 selection, “The Best We Could Do” by Thi Bui. The book chronicles Thi Bui’s parents’ life before and during the Vietnam War, their escape from Vietnam when Bui was a child, and their eventual migration to the United States as refugees. Our film selections tell diverse stories about migration and immigration all over the world and the scope of experiences this brings, from hardships and pain to love and unexpected kinship.

Hoiami Nguyen never imagined that he will end up so far from his home village of Bong Son in central Vietnam. Political circumstances and the roulette of life have washed him to the shores of Israel. The penniless Vietnamese refugee became a father of 5 Hebrew speaking Israeli daughters. His daughter - Vaan, describes her parents’ ordeal using a razor sharp language in her blog. She feels trapped in circles of identity which will never meet. Caught between her wild and stormy Israeli spirit and the expectations to be modest and obedient Vietnamese at home, there is unbridgeable abyss. When her father returns to his family in Vietnam, Van finds herself absorbed into his tragic story - a cruel tale of loss and survival. Hoimai’s dream of return sends Vaan to look for a brighter future in the new-old country. She joins him in trying to reclaim the lands of the family, in the remote village at the heart of the Vietnamese jungle.

(Documentary, 2005, No Rating, 84 min)

(Documentary, 2014, No Rating, 2h 42m)

Admission: 
Free

888-278-4332 (information) or 888-736-2663 (tickets)