20th Century Women
The ambitious and determined Lianqing is one of millions of Burmese fleeing their homeland looking for a better life. Traveling with the aid of human traffickers by boat, motorbike and truck to Bangkok, she soon finds a job, a home and a partner: the helpful Guo, who accompanies her on the harsh journey across the border to Thailand. Without papers however, their life is very insecure: there are no well-paid jobs for illegal immigrants and there’s a good chance they’ll be arrested and deported. As far as Lianqing is concerned, the final destination she dreams of is not Bangkok but Taiwan. And she will do virtually anything to make this dream come true.
In The Road to Mandalay, Midi Z, who himself grew up in Myanmar (then still Burma) but emigrated to Taiwan at the age of sixteen, sketches a gruesome, alarming and topical portrait of his compatriots. He also tells a universal story: a tragic love story that will not leave the heart unmoved.