My Father, the Last Communist
Da Nang, Vietnam, was where U.S. army base was located during the Vietnam War. After the war, Da Nang became the biggest commercial and port city in the South Central area of Vietnam. Somewhere on the riverside of Han River crossing this city, there are two old men having conversation sitting on a bench. One of the men is Doan, director’s father. Having Alzheimer’s disease, Doan barely remembers what’s happening but remembers what happened in the past very clearly. The film calmly presents an interview telling us why Doan participated in the army, how he went through the war, and why he still insists on communism. Doan, more accurately Doan’s generation, survived from the war and from foreign power in order to realize communism ideology for their entire life. Still they haven’t given up the dream. However, what they are able to do right now is talking about the past sitting on the riverside. The party substitutes their long life as a party member with a mere sum of money and a badge. Furthermore, reality of Vietnam is far from the ideal image they have dreamt of. In the already changed society and generation, they still have a dream but they don’t even think about suggesting their daughters to join the party in fear of rejection. Is their time really over? Does ideology have no meaning anymore? Does their ideal mean nothing? Doan’s crooked shoulder, aimlessly sitting on a bed out of sleep, throws various concerns and dim emotion to the audience.