In answering the question “who am I?” the hand of fate invariably points us in the direction of our parents. For filmmaker Kristy Choi, the history of the woman who gave her birth and raised her was a mystery. As filmmakers do, in unraveling the mystery, Kristy made a movie entitled Herselves.
The short displays Kristy’s desire not just to tell her mother Insun’s history but also give a sense of who she is and how her history shaped Kristy into the person she is today. Who was Kristy’s mother before she was “mother?” It all surrounds a trip to the United States that Insun took with her father before dying of cancer.
“Who was Kristy’s mother before she was ‘mother?‘”
What stands out about Herselves is that Insun’s life is not told in a traditional narrative. Kristy succeeds in telling her mother’s story like a memory with soft images, subtle recreations of karaoke nights, and a trip to Disneyland, using Cindy Choi to play “Herselves.”
Herselves is shot beautifully, lyrically even, and Kristy’s real interactions with her shy and humble mother are incredibly sweet.
"…shot beautifully, lyrically..."