I spent the afternoon at the Lesbian and Gay Film Festival, watching a German-Taiwanese co-production called Ghosted. The publicity had given me the sense that this might have overlaps with some of what we’re doing with The Trilogy - I wasn’t wrong!
Ghosted is about a lesbian affair between a German video artist and a young Taiwanese woman. There’s a lot of exploration of cultural difference - particularly around the importance of family in Chinese culture. Ai-Ling is in Germany to try and discover whether her uncle is really her father. Sophie feels that "where you come from" is less important than "where you are right now". When Ai-Ling’s mother phones her every day, Sophie is very dismissive. She rarely speaks to her parents because "we haven’t got much to talk about." "And you think that’s a good thing?" asks Ai-Ling.
There’s a death too - and the film even ends with a Chinese mourning ritual… Where Ghosted is very different from the Trilogy, however, is in its treatment of the ghosts themselves. In this film, the dead character is manifested as another "real" person, tracking the survivor. I guess this is to do with the physical literalism of film as a form - you can’t make ghosts manifest with the same poetic truth that theatre allows.
I’m not bothered by the similarities. It’s just interesting to know that these things are in the air.