Fish Bones

Director: Joanne Mony Park
2018 | USA | 82m
GENRE: Bisexual | Drama | Immigration/Exile | Lesbian | Relationships | Romance
Expected Guests: Director, Joanne Mony Park, Actor, Cris Gris


College student Hana is beautiful, brainy, and conflicted. A Korean immigrant on winter break in New York City, she’s drawn to music producer Nico but finds herself torn between her family’s expectations and her own dreams and desires. Should she pursue a modeling career (despite her mother’s belief that modeling equals sex work), or continue her studies while moonlighting as a waitress? Her growing attraction to Nico only adds to her guilt and confusion. Unlike Nico, who is accepted by her family and comfortable in her skin, Hana must live a double life, keeping both her modeling aspirations and her budding relationship a tightly held secret.

Director Joanne Mony Park’s first feature is a kaleidoscope of non-linear moments that reflect Hana’s inner mindscape, weaving color-drenched images with an equally evocative soundtrack, which features Hercules & Love Affair and Nicolas Jaar. Real-life fashion model Joony Kim plays Hana with self-absorbed cool, losing herself in dancing to K-Pop or in gazing at her own reflection. In contrast, Cris Gris as Nico projects honesty and warmth, disarming Hana’s natural reserve. Although the two women are polar opposites, their natural chemistry heats up the wintry landscape. Will their attraction be strong enough to break down their cultural and social differences? Will Hana be able to work through her fears and find happiness with Nico? Or will she continue living for others, even though, as Nico puts it, “no one’s gonna win like that?”



Center for Asian American Media

  • Language: In English and Korean with English subtitles
  • Premiere Status: Bay Area