The University of Michigan, along with the Michigan Taiwanese Student Association (MTSA), co-sponsored by Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in Chicago (TECO) and Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) worked hard to make the screening of the Taiwanese movie, “Hear Me” (聽說), happen; thanks to the effort of the above organizations, a taste of Taiwanese culture was broadcast through a Taiwanese movie screening that was held at the University. Having attracted students from different cultural backgrounds to the screening, this event was an achievement in promoting Taiwanese culture to students around the world.
The movie “Hear Me” is a touching story that portrays the difficulties and realities of a deaf and mute family. It described how the younger sister, a street artist, vowed to support her older sister while she trains for the Deaflympics as a swimmer; both siblings are hearing impaired. During this time, the younger sister meets a guy whom she falls in love with, but at the same time has to fight the dilemma of seeing him and taking care of her sister. The thoughtfulness and love between families, teammates, and friends are demonstrated intricately throughout the film. Sign language, which most of us is not familiar with, is heavily used as the main form of communication in the movie; yet, the director did a great job of keeping the audience attentive through the script and emotions displayed.
“Hear Me” (聽說) was released in 2009, a week prior to the opening of the 21st Summer Deaflympics, which was held in Taipei the very same year. Within two months of its release, it earned 24 million $NTD. The film was nominated for the Best New Performer in the Golden Horse Film Festival in 2009, and won the “The Most Popular Film” at the 2010 Osaka Asian Film Festival in Japan.
The University of Michigan was very kind in allowing this opportunity to screen the Taiwanese film, which was also accompanied by delicious Taiwanese cuisine on the side. It is through these types of events that Taiwanese culture can be shared with people all over the world, showing the beauty of Taiwan. We definitely hope for more opportunities like this in the future; and we also hope that events like this can be duplicated in all the universities in the U.S.