e many cinematic elements from early Asian American films, but also include “souped-up mise-en-scenes, techno soundtracks and ultra-hip young characters...the stories are ultimately about identity, cultural confusion and finding ones own voice and desires, all of which have been recurrent themes in Asian American films past and present.” (Soe, 1997, p.3) Thesis: In the case of Wo Ai Ni Mommy, we witness some of these cinematic elements, along with unique filmmaking style of the director Stephanie Wang-Breal.
Complex issues of loss, memory, family anomie and alienation are all integral parts of the Asian American film genre. In recent years though, Asian American filmmakers have produced an interesting body of work which are largely documentaries or experimental work. The new tribe of young directors, “linked by youth and their impressive technical skills, explores themes and issues common to Asian American films and videos from years past.” (Soe, 1997, p.3) And the movie titled Wo Ai Ni Mommy by Stephanie Wang-Breal should be studied in this backdrop. This 2010 documentary film narrates the experience of an American couple (Donna and Jeff Sadowsky) as they apply and adopt an orphaned Chinese child, who is given the name of Faith Sadowsky by her new parents. The film captures the intricacies, challenges, losses and gains of adopting an older child from across continents. (Soe, 2010, p.37)
Film-maker Stephanie Wang-Breal is the mastermind behind the project, as she plays an active role in the unfolding narrative. For example, Wang-Breal also doubles up as a translator between Faith and her new parents, as the former struggles to get acclimatized with new socio-cultural norms. Usually documentary filmmakers take a passive role in the process of film-making, in that they do not affect the audio/visual information being captured. But in the case of Wang-Breal, by virtue of being the only remaining link to Faith’s Chinese heritage, also assumes the