Official Selection, 2019 Slamdance Film Festival
Best North American Documentary, 2019 Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival
On August 3, 1979, in a small fishing town in Texas, a young Vietnamese fisherman named Sau Van Nguyen shot and killed Billy Joe Aplin, a fellow fisherman, spurred by conflicting fishing practices at the height of rising racial tensions between local whites and the newly arrived laboring class of Vietnamese refugees. Now over forty years after the killing, the locals of Seadrift, including Aplin’s daughter and several of Nguyen’s friends, are ready to recount the incident that attracted KKK interference and a series of revenge Vietnamese boat burnings.
A profound and infuriating work of history, SEADRIFT is filled with chillingly honest reflections on the escalating racial tensions that resulted in violence–interrogations not only into the often conflictual connections between labor and race, but also the seemingly endless contradictions of US involvement in Vietnam and the aftermath of refugee resettlement. Filmed during a time of renewed anxiety for the Vietnamese American community due to the current administration’s increasing calls for deportations, SEADRIFT reminds us that history is not always linear and for some of us, the war is never over.
Co-Presented by Asian Culture & Media Alliance