In 2022, So Yun Um, a Korean American filmmaker, released her documentary Liquor Store Dreams. The film is an intimate portrait of two Korean American children of liquor store owners who set out to bridge generational divides with their immigrant parents and reckon with the legacy of the LA Uprisings.
Liquor Store Dreams is a personal film about immigrant dreams and generational divides. So explores the stories of “liquor store babies,” kids whose Korean parents made the best of limited opportunities by running liquor stores in Black and Brown communities. She places these stories in the context of Korean-Black relations in Los Angeles.
18 Million Rising partnered with Liquor Store Dreams.to host a discussion panel and created this resource guide to support further discussion and learning after viewing. The LA riots happened 31 years ago this week – on April 29, 1992 there was a historic uprising that called international attention to anti-Black racism, police brutality, and economic violence. At 18MR, we know how important it is for Asian Americans to do the internal work to reflect on our own complicity in economic and racial violence, while fighting for a world without prisons, policing and capitalism.
So Yun Um and Danny Park, owner of Skid Row People’s Market, are taking Liquor Store Dreams. to private screenings, community events, and speaking engagements to change minds, heal from our histories, and build community. Their goals are to hold discussions on topics like combating anti-Blackness in Asian American communities, tackle difficult intergenerational conversations, and address generational divides between first and second generation immigrants.