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TO OCT. 20
From Laos and the Philippines to Kansas and hiphop (with a side trip to gay L.A.), this year’s Asian Pacific American Film Festival covers a lot of territory. Writer-director Abraham Lim’s Roads and Bridges is a semiautobiographical tale of the racism of a Kansas road crew toward its minority members, an African-American and a Chinese-American (the latter played by Lim himself). The screening of two documentaries, No Hop Sing, No Bruce Lee: What Do You Do When None of Your Heroes Look Like You and Yellow Apparel: When the Coolie Becomes Cool, will be followed by a panel discussion on Asian stereotypes and a program of five shorts by Asian-American women directors. In association with Reel Affirmations XI, the fest will show two movies by gay filmmaker Quentin Lee, Drift and Shopping for Fangs (pictured). The festival closes with two of its strongest entries: Taggart Siegel’s The Split Horn: Life of Hmong Shaman in America is a moving documentary about a Laotian family trying to retain its traditions in the incompatible surroundings of Appleton, Wis. And Gene Cajayon’s The Debut is a classic coming-of-age tale about a teenager who doesn’t want to follow the path his father has chosen for him, but it’s also a sampler of Filipino-American culture, from traditional dances to hiphop. The festival runs to Saturday, Oct. 20, at various local theaters; see Showtimes for details. (Mark Jenkins)