Course/ Beyond The Golden Age: Hong Kong Cinema 1997 – 2017

Despite anxieties brought on by the handover to China in 1997, Hong Kong remains one of East Asia’s most vibrant film industries, offering everything from genre productions to piercing social commentaries.

This course supplies an overview of the last 20 years of Hong Kong cinema, showing an industry persisting through uncertain political times. Coinciding with the ‘Creative Visions’ season of films, this course will discuss the work of renowned filmmakers and their lesser known counterparts within the changing political and industrial climate of the former British colony.

Using various clips, case studies, and plenty of discussion we will explore the industry’s changes from 1997 to the present day. We’ll be looking at numerous examples, from the rise of co-productions with Mainland China’s studios and acting talent, to the young local independent scene, its directors, and its ties to the politics of the “Umbrella Revolution”.

We will also look at the work of established directors like Herman Yau, Ann Hui, and Johnnie To over the 20 years in question. Though this will include their well-known social dramas and thrillers, there will also be plenty of clips and discussions of their lesser-known films: from Chinese New Year films to ghost stories, kung-fu high school dramas and supernatural rom-coms!

Beginners’ level, no prior knowledge necessary.

Six sessions plus two course screenings to coincide with Creative Visions: Hong Kong Cinema 1997 – 2017.

Led by Fraser Elliott, PhD researcher of Chinese-language film and member of the Chinese Film Forum UK.