Fantasia Fest 2021 is underway with films of all genres to be seen for the very first time by audiences all around the world thanks to virtual screening, and one of the films making their debut is Baby, Don’t Cry, directed by Jesse Dvorak. Written by and starring Zita Bai, Baby’ Don’t Cry, is a surrealistic coming of age film about Baby, a 17-year-old Chinese immigrant grappling with the disconnect she feels towards her parents and heritage while falling in love with a Vas, a young man who she sees as an enigma.
For Carolyn Talks…, I spoke with Bai, lead actor Vas Provatakis who plays Fox, Baby’s Love interest, and producers Zeron Zhao, and Qiyou Zhou, about crafting a story about a teenage girl who trying to navigate the various people she encounters in the small Seattle town her family immigrated to from China. Her curiosity about the world around her causes her to see everything through a literal and figurative lens that represents to identity crisis many new immigrants experiences. In her relationship with Fox, Baby sees someone who sees her for the first time and allows her to step out side the world of fantasy she’s created within her own home. Even if he may not be the best influence on her.
During out conversation we discussed the various motifs and symbols representative of Chinese culture, familial relationships, love, and the roles each person played in bringing this story to life in their own unique way.
Baby, Don’t Cry has it’s world premiere in the Underground lineup of the Fantasia International Film Festival on August 11, 2021. It stars Zita Bai, Vas Provatakis, Helen Sun and Boni Mata.
Carolyn is a Freelance Film Critic, Journalist, and Podcaster – and avid live tweeter. Member of the African American Film Critics Association (AAFCA), her published work can be found on But Why Tho, The Beat, Observer, and many other sites. As a critic, she believes her personal experiences and outlook on life, give readers and listeners a different perspective they can appreciate.