WATARIDORI: BIRDS OF PASSAGEDirected by Robert Nakamura
Completed in late 1975 as his Master’s Thesis project from the UCLA Film School, Robert Nakamura’s WATARIDORI: BIRDS OF PASSAGE stands as one of the quintessential documentary portraits celebrating the legacy of the issei, or first-generation Japanese Americans. It had the distinction of being presented at The White House in 1976 as part of America’s Bicentennial festivities, and is still an unequalled study of early Asian American community-building. This excerpt from the 38 minute film couples the perspectives of three issei elders with copious images from Visual Communications’ Asian Pacific American Photographic Archive and additionally bridges generations as depicted in scenes from the Manzanar Pilgrimages and the Asian American Wildflower tour.
Director: Robert Nakamura