The Homecoming Pilgrimage of Dajia Mazu 大甲媽祖回娘家 (1975)
Viewers are transported back in time to 1974 to see the annual Taoist celebration of the Dajia Mazu Pilgrimage. Thousands of participants accompany a statue of the goddess Mazu, who protects seafarers, on a 9-day, 8-night procession, stopping at several prominent temples along the way. The religious pilgrimage is a round-way journey from the Zhenlan Temple in Dajia, Taichung City to Fengtian Temple in Xingang of Chiayi County on the Western plains of Taiwan. The mesmerising festival takes place every year during the third lunar month and still attracts large masses to this day. The audio track of the film was once banned under the Kuomintang (KMT) due to the film’s inclusion of spoken Hokkien (Taiwanese), giving viewers at the time an altered and suppressed understanding of the event and its cultural significance in Taiwan. Viewers now can revel in the beauty of the Taiwanese language and see the film for the true spirit that it captures.
China Television, Taiwan Film and Audiovisual Institute