Má Sài Gòn

Khoa Lê
Canada | 2023 | 100 min
World premiere
Language : Vietnamese
Subtitles : English, French

In Saigon, a vibrant city that never sleeps, family ties endure even when blood ties are broken. Despite feeling restricted by the city, members of the LGBTQIA+ community who live there love it all the same. Via a series of intimate and sparkling portraits, Khoa Lê explores the love, desire and flamboyant pride that run through the city’s queer community.

Ho Chi Minh City – also known as Saigon – is a vibrant, modern city that never sleeps. Its culture of family ties has endured for centuries, even when blood ties are broken. At night, Vietnamese-born Canadian filmmaker Khoa Lê (Ba Noi, VdR 2013) takes to its bustling, neon-bathed streets, seeking out members of the LGBTQIA+ community and their chosen families, backstage in cabarets or in the sweltering heat of the city’s parks. They yearn to be the children of Saigon, mother of all, who raised and took them in. But sometimes Mother Saigon provides little comfort. This mosaic of intimate portraits explores the desires of a young generation that has summoned all of its strength to emancipate itself and live freely, on a mission to reclaim the streets, armed with their love and their bodies. In this love letter to Saigon, Khoa Lê composes an ode to the queer souls who live there, a moving ballad for these radiant beings who will take up the space they deserve some day.


Aurélien Marsais

Má Sài Gòn (Mother Saigon), 2023
Grandma, 2013

Nuits nouvelles, 2011

Anna, 2010

My Name Is Denis Gagnon, 2010

Lan et Léa, 2008

Souvenirs de lien, 2007

Lan et mai, 2006


Jonathan BernierKhoa Lê
Mathieu Laverdière
Simon GervaisBruno BélangerLynne TrépanierNgọc Tân Nguyễn
Isabelle DaveauAriane Pétel-DespotsKhoa Lê
Marie-Hélène L. Delorme
Khoa LêLes Films de l'Autre
Sales contact
Benjamin HogueLes Films du 3 Marsdirection@f3m.ca+15145238530

Burning Lights Competition

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