EMPTY BY DESIGN

Directed by Andrea A Walter

Cast: Chris Pang, Dante Basco, Madelene Humphries, Osric Chau, Rhian Ramos

Closing Night Film, 2019 Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival

Hey. It’s me, Samantha. I’m not sure if I should be calling you, but I don’t know when I’m coming back. My sister wants me to look at schools out here in the Philippines. Plus, her baby is due next month. My parents would have wanted me to be here for that. Well, I want to be here for that.

It’s been difficult being here. I ran into an old schoolmate of mine — Eric. He also left the Philippines a long time ago, but now he’s back for work. He doesn’t seem to remember any Tagalog, though I find myself speaking English most of the time now too. It’s been nice to have someone to talk to. I really thought coming back here would be easy. But most of the time I just feel so foreign. I don’t know– I feel a little lost.

Okay, well I should go. I miss you.

In Andrea A. Walter’s thoughtful feature debut, feeling lost in a place that is supposed to be home connects two 20-somethings: wealthy, mixed-race Samantha (Rhian Ramos), home under tragic circumstances, and Eric (Osric Chau, Supernatural), an anonymous stuntman working for famous collaborators Jun Jie (Chris Pang, Crazy Rich Asians) and Ash (Dante Basco, The Debut, SDAFF ‘00). After a chance encounter, the two returnees develop a friendship in a home that no longer offers solid connections. Filling time otherwise spent waiting on the sidelines, they help each other get closer to understanding their place in the world despite a shifting sense of home and who they are.

–James Paguyo

Co-Presented by Fil-Am Festival Alumni

Preceded By

Baichi and The Three Blind Rats

Directed by Jeff Fong

A kung fu gang, a garage, and three soon to be sniveling rats.

Dates & Times
Past