China / China

Film festival focuses on country's western area

By Chitralekha Basu In Hong Kong (China Daily) Updated: 2016-08-04 07:40

A monthlong movie festival dedicated to films about western China opened in Hong Kong on Monday. Seven films offer a glimpse into society and folk culture in the region.

A grand opening ceremony was held at the JW Marriott Hotel in Admiralty. High-profile guests were present, including Yang Jian, deputy director of the Liaison Office of the Central People's Government in the HKSAR; Ma Fung-kwok, chairman of the Film Development Council; and Ng See-yuan, president of the Federation of Hong Kong Filmmakers.

The films, free to the public, will be showing at three major venues - Hong Kong Film Archive Theatre, Hong Kong Space Museum Lecture Hall and Hong Kong Design Institute Lecture Hall - until Aug 31.

The seven movies include Tibetan-themed films Roof of the World; Himalaya: Ladder to Paradise; Slavery Abolition; Thangka; Genuine Love, about Xinjiang; The Grass in Wind, about Sichuan; and Song of the Phoenix, which is about the lives of two generations of suona (traditional Chinese wind instrument) players.

Organized by the South China Film Industry Workers Union and co-hosted by SilMetropole Organisation and Southern Film Company, the festival aims at presenting China's diverse cultures, especially those covered by the path marked as part of the Belt and Road Initiative proposed by President Xi Jinping, to Hong Kong audiences.

Roof of the World, the festival's opening film, illustrates how the Tibetan people live in harmony with nature. Himalaya: Ladder to Paradise is the first Chinese documentary about mountaineering shot in 4K resolution. It tells a story about climbing to the world's highest monastery - the Rongbuk Monastery, located near the northern base of Mount Qomolangma (Mount Everest) at 4,980 meters.

The film Thangka, which takes its name from the Tibetan Buddhist paintings done on cotton or silk, is about the relationship between a thangka artist, whose life is rooted in tradition, and his Westernized son. Slavery Abolition depicts the liberation of a Tibetan serf.

Genuine Love, directed by Xirzat Yahup, is adapted from the true story of a Uygur mother who brought up 19 orphans. The Grass in Wind is about the resistance by the people of Sichuan against Japanese aggression in the 1940s.

Song of the Phoenix is the swan song of director Wu Tianming, who died before the movie was released in 2016.

Willa Wu contributed to this story.



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