Working from deep-seated emotion and memory, Portland filmmaker Vu Pham’s films explore climatic levels of passion through characters wrestling with irreconcilable realities of challenging experiences. The Cutting Shadow (2016) focuses on two Vietnamese immigrant brothers cast into the dark seas of American life as they become entangled in a crime ring operating behind closed doors. Love Is Strong (2015) is a cinematic triptych that explores the apogees of passion; a place where the experience and action of “love” can be perilous, tortured, and maddening. Where the Flowers Fell, the first part, looks at the disintegration of self through the eyes of an irretrievably detached actress. The True Color of Hunger follows the mystifying consequences of the dissolution of a cult at the hands of its leader; and Sudden Stars in the Night Zoo delves into the problems of masculinity through the existential crisis of a deeply troubled working-class man.