A bomb explodes in a park in Taipei. Nobody is hurt, instead the explosion unleashes a downpour of rice onto the grass. One of the spectators is Yang Rumen, known as Ru. This young man comes from a farming family; he has first hand experience of how the situation for farmers in Taiwan has steadily worsened ever since the government eased import regulations for agricultural products in the late eighties. After 2002, when Taiwan joins the World Trade Organisation, local farmers are even told to let their fields lie fallow and transform them into lakes. Politicians continue to look the other way following incidents of village children drowning in these lakes. In the meantime, Ru makes friends who are willing to help him: a rich girl with a pronounced sense of justice and the will to revolt, and a farm boy with a similar background to himself. Ru decides to become the voice of these farmers and remind the government of its obligations. Yang Rumen becomes the ‘rice bomber’. Cho Li’s film tells the true story of this courageous farmer who was to become a hero in his native Taiwan.
by Cho Li
with Huang Chien-wei, Nikki Hsieh, Michael Chang