Charlie Yeung, Bai Run-Yin, Lu Hsueh-Feng, Lee Lee-Zen
People in Taiwanese fishing villages live in close contact with nature. They leave their homes to spend long periods of time on fishing boats where they are exposed to the forces of nature. This becomes all too evident to Ah Keat whose father does not return from such a trip one day. What happened to him? The boy’s family give no answers and start avoiding the issue. He is still just a boy and cannot understand, anyway. But his father once told him a story about a magical tapir he had seen in the wild as a boy – a creature with the body of a pig, nose of an elephant, the ears of a horse and feet like a rhinoceros. Perhaps this mythical creature can help Ah Keat solve the mystery. Afterall, legend says it can devour nightmares. Hello! Tapir by young director Kethsvin Chee not only uniquely combines a live-action film and animation, but it subtly depicts a world of a boy grieving and his thirst for knowledge. It sensibly brings together comic and touching moments and conveys to the audience the creative mind of a child. It stands somewhere between family dramas of Hirokazu Koreeda and adventure trips of The Rapid Arrows.