Money and Honey (2011, Taiwan)

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Director: LEE Ching-hui / Taiwan / 2011 / 95 min

SYNOPSIS

MONEY AND HONEY an Asian epic documentary on migrant workers spanning thirteen years. Director Jasmine Ching-hui LEE first came into contact with Filipino caretakers in the Taipei nursing home, where her grandparents were under care. Living away from their loved ones, both the Filipino caretakers and the elderly residents suffer from homesickness. Stories of joy and sorrow take place between them. The Filipino caretakers are humorous. They comfort themselves by singing a self-mocking song, ‛No money, no honey’. Being a wife, a mother and a migrant worker, these women are smart. They know how to survive. And yet, the road home seems to grow longer and longer. What price do they have to pay for love and livelihood? Can their dreams ever come true? (Official film website)”

“Director Jasmine LEE Ching-hui first came into contact with Filipina caretakers in a Taipei nursing home, where her grandparents were under care. Living away from their loved ones, both the Filipina caretakers and the elderly residents of the nursing home suffer from homesickness. In the flow of life, stories of joy and sorrow take place between them.LEE began shooting in 1998 and spent 13 years documenting their dreams, loves and financial struggles. Over time, she developed a moving and unique friendship with the characters. LEE used the camera not only for the purposes of documentary, but also to convey messages between the migrant workers and their families. In doing so, she gained access to their innermost feelings and thoughts. Her film combines poetry, animation and folk music with documentary footage, focusing intently on the human desires of these women. In their desires, we get a taste of the flavors of Money and Honey…” (IDFA)

“This project covers an often overlooked social topic in today’s global society, and through intimate personal filming over long years, we are naturally drawn to the characters and find empathy. We hope that the filmmaker, upon completion of the film, will reach some kind of greater truth which brings the specific anecdotes to a higher, cohesive level. Migration is a constant phenomenon of human civilization, and with the growth of globalization, this phenomenon is in a stage of rapid development. [Money and Honey] tries to discover the migration of foreign laborers in Asia in relation to the changes in economy, politics, and cultures. Migrant workers are a very important element of Asian modern society. Taiwanese society also has very close connections with numerous migrant workers. The film’s intension is to show life from the perspective of these overworked migrant workers in the hope of finding justice and a world where everyone can respect one another. It also has the potential to influence the changing labor policies in Taiwan, to leave a sort of documentation, and to provide an opportunity for self-reflection.
 
[Money and Honey] will focus mainly on caretakers from The Philippines and other countries. Their marital life has changed due to the circumstances in which they take on the responsibility of the livelihood of their family. The film will attempt to depict the interaction between these foreign laborers and the employer, agent, and the elderly and their family. It also illustrates how migrant workers travel between countries in the trend of globalization. Through their work, marriage, and family status, we have a window into their struggle and their will to survive.” (ACF Pusan)

“An intensely human documentary film that follows the lives of foreign women over 10years. Foreign women workers in a Taiwan hospice for the elderly are there to provide for their families. They comfort themselves by singing a self-mocking song ,‛No money, no honey’. Their greatest source of sadness is being foreign to their families in their own countries. Foreign women workers work for 3 years, the duration of a contract. During the 3 years they work with almost no days off. And what awaits these women is an awkward family reunion. After using all the money they’ve earned, these women head for foreign lands again by spending a fortune. They work for the family’s future but can’t see that future themselves, and can’t share familial love with them. [Money and Honey] chronicles the women’s hard work and family affairs, which are much harder than the work; their strength and unwillingness to give up hope are affecting.” (Trigger Pitch)

TEAM & CONTACTS

Director: Jasmine LEE Ching-Hui
Production: Jasmine LEE Ching-Hui for Money and Honey Film Production Co., Ltd.

With the support of Asian Network of Documentary (AND) Fund for production and IDFA.

World Sales: Swallow Wings Film Co., Ltd., Gene YAO Festival Handling Money and Honey Film Production Co., Ltd., Jasmine LEE Ching-Hui

About the director: Documentarian Jasmine Ching-Hui Lee has been making films since 1996 and she is currently an assistant professor at Dayeh University in Taiwan. Her filmography includes [Where Is My Home?] (1999), [The Ballads of Grandmothers] (2003), and [City of Memories] (2007).

Production: documentary921@hotmail.com.tw   Sales: progra@ms38.hinet.net 

Official film website: http://moneyandhoney.pixnet.net/blog (in chinese and english)

Video trailer on Youtube

Film page on facebook: http://www.facebook.com/Money.and.Honey

and IMDb 

FESTIVALS & AWARDS

• Money and Honey (2011) was awarded grants from the Asian Network of Documentary (AND) Fund for production (2008)
• It was selected to the Wide Angle Competition Section of the 2011 Busan International Film Festival, where it won AND distribution award.
• Money and Honey was the opening Film of 2011 Women Make Waves Film Festival in Taiwan, where it won the Audience Choice Award.

The film was selected by ADN for attenting the first trigger pitch India, in November 2011.

REVIEWS & ARTICLES

. Taiwan cinema shines at Busan film festival

taiwantoday.tw (30/09/2011)

. Money and Honey tells the dream, vivacity of Filipino female workers
 
taipeifilmcommission.org (2011/10/06)

ON ADN WEBSITE

. Promoting Documentary films at IFFK (thehindu.com)

. EADn selects two docs from Mainland and Taiwan for the first Indian triggerpitch  
 

 

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