Based on diaries that detail 30 years of service abroad of a Canadian Immigration Officer, The Dependents is an intimate audiovisual exploration of nomadic existences. Home and belonging must to be reconstructed between the past and present as a direct result of travel, displacement, globalization, and the effects of multicultural immigration around the world.
I focus on the reconstruction of memories and events, understanding that like cinema, we as subjects that are constantly in flux. Our memories are not in fixed forms. My aim has been to create a series of spatial and temporal juxtapositions between personal experiences that touch upon broader sociopolitical relations which are non-chronological and multilingual.
As images of Argentina, Canada and beyond enter the frame, the film is laden with voices: My father’s journal readings depict events relating to immigrant cases, love, and repatriation. A Korean radio show conducted in the 90s tells the story of my family living in Seoul, Korea, serving as a narrative device for the film. It describes our travel, my father’s employment, and my mother’s role as an immigrant spouse. These audiovisual transitions mark the political complexities between East and West, North and South, Men and Women.
The home in present day Argentina leads to an asylum request in Guatemala during the dictatorship in the 80s, as conversations in Korean and Spanish are woven within the same sequence. I dig through fragments of our lives as we are confronted with feelings of both belonging and exile, to which we react in radically different manners.