Directed by Doris Yeung
Official Selection, 2017 Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival
Official Selection, 2017 Vancouver Queer Film Festival
When a closeted provincial taxi driver in Beijing sexually propositions his rich urbane client, TAXI STORIES opens with a fantastic setup that touches an electric nerve. A gulf simultaneously inverts, widens, and collapses between migrant labor and the poshest class of a glittering city, all within the cramped confines of a taxi ride at night. Desire, labor, transnational inequalities – these themes drive TAXI STORIES, Doris Yeung’s newest feature which was inspired by a friend’s Facebook post about a similar encounter.
Sweeping and personal, ambitious and nuanced, TAXI STORIES interweaves three intimate stories loosely connected by taxis across Beijing, Jakarta, and Hong Kong. Along with the taxi encounter, an Indonesian nanny befriends a lonely Hong Kong wife unable to conceive, an Indonesian child bajaj driver falls in love with a white tourist and meets the grown Hong Kong man his deceased mother parented.
Wearing multiple hats as writer, director, and executive producer, Yeung worked with shining Asian talent – Hong Kong legend Petrina Fung Bobo, Indonesian singer-actress Shanty, and Cora Cao in a riveting performance, along with a host of non-actors developed through a series of improvisation workshops. The results are lush one-on-one narratives which swell with rivers of desire and distance, and dives deeply into the inextricable emotional flashpoints produced by globalization and capitalism’s aching empty nest syndrome. –Christina Ree