“I Am Another You”
As Chinese filmmaker Nanfu Wang travels in the United States from one city to another, she eventually meets a charismatic young drifter named Dylan. She is fascinated by his rejection of society’s rules and she decides to follow him with her camera on a journey that takes years and takes her across America and explores the meaning of freedom. But as Nanfu goes deeper into Dylan’s world, she discovers something that makes her question her entire worldview. This is a profound, inquisitive, sensitive film that explores experience with all of its complexities and misunderstandings.
This film made me question my own perception of reality. For about three-fourths of the film, I thought tht we were meeting a privileged white kid who chose to live on the streets and I was amazed at how well he is treated by strangers. He seemed to be escaping from the dogma of the Mormon church and the closed-mindedness he grew up with. I understood his need and desire to escape that. But what I did not know was that the way he was living was not by choice. We, unfortunately, tend to judge others by their appearance and I realized that this is what I was doing with Dylan. He is actually making the best of what he has to live with. He is sincere and completely disarming; a human being who just happens to different. He is a non-conformist with a powerful personality who gives us a fascinating glimpse into his intentional transient lifestyle. He makes us aware of the ways that sex, race, cultural experience/expectation, socio-economic and familial support origin impact an individual.