Phetmixay Means Fighter
Directed by Rita Phetmixay
PHETMIXAY MEANS FIGHTER is a short documentary film that explores Lao American refugee resiliency narratives through the life of one daughter’s father, Phoutone Phetmixay. As the central character, Phoutone’s poetic remembrances of his commitment to the Lao Royal Army, displacement from Laos, and resettlement in the United States all serve to consider the complex history of Lao Americans in the geopolitical context of U.S. invention and the socialist Lao government. The film is invested in creating a space to validate a part of one family’s history by way of mourning, healing, and building community amongst other Lao American refugee families.
The opportunity to create Phetmixay Means Fighter, was given to Rita by the EthnoCommunications Center at UCLA. Centering on her family’s transnational history, Rita focused her film on her father, whom she felt had a remarkable refugee journey of survival from Laos all the way to North Carolina. Rita currently serves as the Program Coordinator for the Intergroup Relations and GRIT Peer Coaching programs at UCLA.
Director: Rita Phetmixay
Assistant Director: Gena Hamamoto
Professors: Renee Tajima-Pena, Valerie Matsumoto, Thu-Huong Nguyen-Vo
Instructors: Renee Tajima-Pena, Gena Hamamoto, Tad Nakamura, Sahirr Sethhi
Shorts Programs / 62 minsThe VC Digital Posse rides off into places unknown, and into the void steps a new, uncouth class of ruffians hailing from Visual Communications’ vanguard Armed With a Camera Fellowship and UCLA’s Center for Ethnocommunications. At turns callow and visionary, this collection of short works is poised to inspire, surprise, and delight. — Abraham Ferrer