• film

10th Annual Philadelphia Asian American Film Festival

A Time To Swim

82 mins | Documentary | Canada, Malaysia | Directed by Ashley Duong

Mutang is a stay-at-home dad in the suburbs of Montreal, but in Malaysia he was an indigenous activist who voiced resistance for the peoples of Sarawak. When he returns home for the first time since his exile in 1992, Mutang’s remote forest village is not as he remembers it. Contrary to the will of their elders, Mutang’s younger cousins—who once stood with him at the blockades—are now welcoming timber companies into their tribal lands. With the very existence of their community hanging in the balance and despite the threat of a lingering arrest warrant, Mutang can’t resist taking up his old cause.


This film provides an unflinching look at the effects of capitalism on the fabric of traditional communities around the world through the personal story of Mutang’s search for belonging in a place where home and heritage are slipping away.