Straw Man (Taiwanese-language Version)

P, 6+
Straw Man (Taiwanese-language Version)

Program Introduction







王童 WANG Toon|臺灣 Taiwan|1987|DCP|Color|97min

1987 第24屆金馬獎最佳劇情片、最佳導演、最佳原著劇本 Best Feature Film, Best Director & Best Original Screenplay, Golden Horse Awards



Towards the end of WWII, Japan was under huge pressure. At times, colonial Taiwan was not only bombed by the US but also exploited by its metropolitan state. The Japanese government conscripted Taiwanese to fight in Southeast Asia in the service of the emperor. Locals are asked to hand in iron tools and cattle to fulfill military supplies. The story focuses on two brothers who are tenant farmers. They are concerned with feeding their families because the landlord is going to sell the farmland. One day, a bomb falls onto the field and lies unexploded. Thinking the bomb is a gift from God, they carry it excitedly into town. They wish that bringing the bomb could be rewarded by Japanese officers.

The film is the first piece in Wang's trilogy of Taiwan history. He forges the slapstick comedy with humanitarian concerns; he illustrates the simple and honest nature of the Taiwanese that they grin and bear difficult situations, which would make viewers laugh in tears. The film scouts locations in Yilan, where the watercolor artist Lan Yin-ding was born. Wang refers to Lan's work in the Shōwa era to build up visual images of the times.