This article contains spoilers of “Your Name Engraved Herein.”
MANILA — The hit Taiwanese film “Your Name Engraved Herein” is a reminder that the fight for LGBT rights is far from over.
Set in 1987 after decades under martial law, the film follows the story of two Catholic school boys Jia-han (Edward Chen) and Birdy (Tseng Jing Hua) as they struggle to find their own identity while their school transitions to accept girls.
Their closeness leads them on a journey to self-discovery but this comes with a set of new challenges in life and they have to choose between what society thinks is right or what their heart desires.
Despite being in the lower half of the school pack, Birdy knows what he loves as well as his goals in life are. He is certain that he both loves Jia-han and Ban-ban (Mimi Shao), his other love interest, and was firm about his decision.
Jia-han, on the other hand, was still looking for answers and when he became certain about his feelings for Birdy, they fell apart.
WE JUST LOVE
All three share one thing on common: they were simply in love and they followed their hearts.
Ban-ban, who eventually marries Birdy, knew that the love between her husband and Jia-han can’t be matched. They get divorced but she remained forgiving and understanding to Birdy as she let him go and be free.
There is also Father Oliver (Fabio Grangeon), who provides the voice of reason, as he challenges the religious stand on same-sex relationships, arguing that it is still love.
Jia-han and Birdy drifted apart because of society dictates and it took them decades for them to feel safe and free to express their love.
The film is also a tribute to Chi Chia-wei, a known LGBT activist in Taiwan, who in a protest held a sign that read “Homosexuality is not a disease!”
In 2019, Taiwan finally approved same-sex marriage -- a first in Asia.