"After the Snowmelt" is a coming-of-age tale exploring teenagers' first encounter with profound loss. At the age of 20, filmmaker Yi-Shan's best friends, Chun and Yueh, were trapped in a Nepal cave for 47 days due to unseasonal snowfall. Chun died three days before the rescue, leaving Yueh as the sole survivor.
Yueh returns and reveals a promise made between him and Chun: the survivor must share their story. To honor Chun's last wish, Yi-Shan takes up the camera, accompanies Yueh to the mountains, and retraces Chun’s footsteps in Nepal. Gradually, her journey overlaps with Chun’s, blurring the boundary between past and present, and arrives at the same destination. When Yi-Shan reaches the CAVE, she must confront the future alone.
The seed of “After the Snowmelt” was born as I came of age, receiving a letter from my high school best friend, Chun. He wrote before he died: “Yi-Shan, the only thing you have to do is to love."
Chun and I met at a Catholic girl's high school, where his boyish appearance as a trans-man drew criticism. He would weep in front of me, while I comforted him and was moved by his resilience. Alongside his beloved Yueh, they inspired me to explore the world beyond the classroom, and we made a promise to travel abroad together someday.
Since the accident, I relived in my dreams the lonely experience of waiting for their return. The overwhelming desire to reunite and fulfill the broken promise drove me to make this film. Chun's last wishes taught me the essence of love - assuming the role of the survivor and embracing the responsibility of sharing this story.
Through this film, I want to create a journey from trauma to reconciliation. It resonates not only with themes of gender, education, and nature but also serves as a testament to the resilience of life, the potential for growth, and the realization that life is not just about surviving, but about truly living and loving.
Festivals & Awards
2023 TAICCA - TCCF Taiwan Creative Content Fest (TAICCA x CNC Award), Taiwan
2023 DMZ Docs Pitch - Rough Cut Pitch (Excellence Award), South Korea
2023 DD Center - Yamagata Documentary Dojo (Residency), Japan
2021 FFD - ASIADOC Creative Documentary Storytelling Workshop, Indonesia
2020 DMZ Docs Fund - Development Fund, South Korea
2019 National Culture and Art Foundation Documentary Production Fund, Taiwan
2018 CNEX Chinese Documentary Forum (CCDF), Taiwan