THE CELINE ARCHIVE

Directed by Celine Parreñas Shimizu

Immediately after the feature, ticket holders can enjoy a pre-recorded bonus Q&A with director Celine Parreñas Shimizu!

How do you tell the history of a ghost? In 1932 Stockton, a young mother named Celine Navarro was killed by her peers. When her body was dug up, they found dirt under her nails. She had been buried alive. Such was the legend that circulated in the Filipino American community and amongst Navarro’s own descendants. And such are the spectral remains of a sister and mother in an immigrant enclave that ghosts women’s stories.

This isn’t the first telling of the Celine tale. Contemporaneous newspaper articles screamed scandal in a “barbaric” Asian cult. Family members have constructed histories out of artifacts and whispers. Students fascinated by true crime have dived into the archive. But what makes THE CELINE ARCHIVE an invaluable reflection is not the truth it uncovers about an enigmatic figure, but the questions it asks about legacies blemished by silence and murder. What does it mean to be descendants of violence? How can women heal and make families whole? Directed uncannily by another Celine–filmmaker-scholar Celine Parreñas Shimizu–this elegant documentary is a séance for the buried history of Filipino Americans and an act of love to generations who have held Celine in the heart. 

Brian Hu

Co-Presented by Council of Philippine American Organizations

Preceded By

Radical Care: The Auntie Sewing Squad

Directed by Valerie Soe

Feeling helpless during the pandemic but armed with sewing machines, a squad bands together to “rage sew” thousands of masks, while forming community in brand new ways in the time of coronavirus.

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