Panel Discussion on New Hong Kong Cinema Held

Thiruvananthapuram: The current day Hong Kong cinema was the topic of
discussion at one of the sessions on Monday, at the 22 nd International Film Festival
of Kerala. The panel discussion on‘New Hong Kong Cinema’ was moderated by
IFFK Artistic Director Beena Paul, and comprised panelists from the Hong Kong
film industry.
Lo Yiu Fai, director of ‘Happiness’ shared his views on independent film making in
Hong Kong. Asian Film Awards Academy member Jacqueline Tong and Hong Kong-
based journalist Vivienne Manchi Chow were the other panelists.
Panelists spoke of the influence that China and Chinese cinema has on
Hong Kong’s film industry. Reprising the socio-cultural aesthetics in Hong Kong
cinema comes about as a great challenge for young and upcoming directors, they
noted. The change in the economic status of China has negatively impacted the
film industry, they felt.
Vivienne Chow, replying to a comment by Beena Paul about the “end of Hong
Kong cinema”, presented a few facts about the revolution that had made a
change in the perspective of people in Hong Kong. Chow observed that the Hong
Kong movie industry was going through a positive change after the 2014 Umbrella
protest. Talking of the ‘fifth generation directors’ of Hong Kong and their hard
work to stay afloat in the film industry, she regarded the British invasion as an
intellectual movement that widened the people’s perspective about Hong Kong.
Representing the Asian Film Awards Academy, Jacqueline Tong spoke at length
about the huge opportunities available in China, and wondered why that was not
the case with Hong Kong.Pointing out that India is vibrant in terms of film making,
Tong said that India has films that are both commercially and critically successful.
The system of certification is another concern that the movie makers of Hong
Kong face, Tong added. “Mainland China and Hong Kong have two separate
systems of certification and this has forced the audience of Hong Kong to watch
movies that are only certified for them,” Tong added.

The Asian Cinerama section at the International Film Festival of Kerala is an
example of this awakening of the identity struggle in Hong Kong movies. As many
as three of the six films in this category are from Hong Kong. These films are being
screened by the Asian Film Awards Academy, which aims to secure more venues
for Asian regional films.

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