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Melina Kiyomi Coumas is an award-winning filmmaker from the island of O'ahu, now based in the Pacific Northwest. With a BA in Film Studies, her focus is in experimental filmmaking. She shoots primarily on celluloid film formats, exploring themes surrounding memory, identity and perception. Melina works for film festivals and arts organizations and is currently the Programming Manager at the Hawai'i International Film Festival (HIFF). 

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Ocean Moon, Water Mother 海月 水母 (2024)

16mm, Color, Sound

Narrative short currently in pre-production.

Spit it Out (2023)

Super 8mm, Color, Sound

A personal, intimate short detailing what growing up with a speech

impediment was like for the filmmaker and how it continues to affect her 

to this day.

$hithole Paradise  (2020)

Super 8mm, Color, Sound

A comment on over-tourism in Hawaii, particularly along the historic Waikiki strip in Honolulu. An advertised “Paradise,” Waikiki has become an epicenter for drugs and crime. Once a powerful sacred place for Native Hawaiians, now a dirty playground for tourists.

Call Me Back  (2020)

Super 8mm, Color, Sound
Using the last voicemail Melina's Grandmother left on her phone, the

short becomes a mediation on loss and haunted spaces. Originally made

just for family.

Aquí (2019)

16mm, Color, Sound

An exploration of what home means to a multicultural young woman.

In Spanish with English subtitles.

Day Off Vibes (2018)

16mm, Color, Sound

A rumination on the pressures of being productive.

Obsidian Glaze (2016)

Super 8mm, Color, Sound

A mysterious entity attempts to communicate with strange images

Reverie At Noon (2016)

16mm, Color, Sound
Inspired by the summer heat and a newfound obsession with ASMR

A Ritual Phantasm (2015)

Super 8mm & 16mm, Color, Sound
Super 8mm footage was
an experiment shot in 2015 with 16mm hand painted segments made during a 2016 workshop with Japanese experimental filmmaker Makino Takashi


Kaigan (2015)

Super 8mm, Color, Sound

An attempt to remove tourists from a tropical landscape, returning it to its pure and natural state

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Recent and

Seattle Asian American Film Festival

VASTLAB Experimental Film Festival

South Sound Experimental Film Festival

'Ohina Filmmaker Lab Fellow

Local Sightings Film Festival

RACC Grant Recipient

WAVE Grant Recipient

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