Jointly organised by the Singapore Film Society (SFS) and Centre for Chinese Studies, Singapore University of Social Sciences (CCS@SUSS), the sixth edition of the Singapore Chinese Film Festival returns for 10 days from 27th April – 6th May!
Featuring a diverse and wide-ranging selection of 58 Chinese films, where a total of 44 will be making their Singaporean premieres, the team has decided to make their sixth year especially different, with six all new experiences and features:
One: For the first time, the opening film of the SCFF will be a documentary. Specifically, that documentary is En Chen’s Manfei, about the life and times of late Taiwanese dancer and choreographer Lo Manfei, and the legacy and impact she left on the world around her. The film will also feature a reenaction of her choreography specially performed for this film, and director En Chen will be present at both screenings of the film, as well as speaking at a talk about the bio-documentary on 28th April.
Two: This edition of the festival marks the first time a five-hour long film will be shown, Ma Li’s Golden Horse Award winning documentary Inmates. Clocking in at 287 minutes, the documentary takes place in a confined section of a psychiatric ward in Northeast China, where schizophrenics, the depressed, the manic and more receive mandatory treatment. In the brief moments they manage to find clarity of thought, they attempt to break free and fail, and in their drugged out states, find space to reflect upon their own desires and inner demons. Director Ma Li will be present at the screening on 4th May for a Q&A after the film, which thankfully, comes with a 10 minute intermission.
Three: Not only will the SCFF screen feature length films, you can also expect a veritable selection of shorts as well. And of those shorts, this year’s edition will mark the first time the team has curated an Animation Shorts showcase, featuring 8 films culled from China, Hong Kong, Taiwan and Singapore. These films include the Golden Harvest and Taipei Film Festival winning short Stories About Him, Golden Horse winner Losing Sight of A Longed Place, the SGIFF Best Singapore Short Film Between Us Two by Tan Wei Keong, and Singlit Adaptations Loop by Chong Jia En, Tiger Baby by Sarah Cheok, and The Giant by the Zhuang brothers.
Four: But of course, expect plenty of action and drama from the 25 narrative features as well. Of these, look out for 2017 Golden Horse Best Action Choreography winner Brotherhood of Blades 2: The Infernal Battle, marking the first time inclusion of a new Wuxia feature film at the festival. The SCFF will also be re-screening Malaysian director Saw Teong Hin’s acclaimed auto biographical family drama You Mean The World To Me for the first time in its Penang Hokkien dialogue in Singapore. Starring local actors Neo Swee Lin and Yeo Yann Yann, the film was shot by renowned cinematographer Christopher Doyle, and won Best Screenplay at the 29th Malaysian Film Festival. Director Saw will also be present at a talk discussing the importance of presenting original dialogue and local dialects in film on 1st May.
Five & Six: In addition, this will also be the first time the festival introduces ticketing packages, and the very first time screenings will be held at the iconic Projector and Capitol Theatre. Other venues screenings will be held are Golden Village Suntec City, Golden Village Vivo City, LASALLE College of the Arts and the National Museum of Singapore.
Besides these firsts, the SCFF will also be celebrating the life of Hong Kong cinema legend Leslie Cheung, whose 15th death anniversary was commemorated on 1st April, with countless fans remembering him for his iconic roles and flamboyant, confident personality. Cheung has worked with some of the biggest figures in Hong Kong’s film industry, and the SCFF will be presenting some his best work, from Stanley Kwan’s Rouge to Wong Kar Wai’s Happy Together, the latter of which will serve as the festival’s closing film at the the Capitol Theatre.
Whether it’s your first time or you’re a devout regular to the festival, you’ll find fresh experiences and insights aplenty with the sheer variety of fantastic films available at the 2018 Chinese Film Festival, with films for any occasion or audience member. Experience it this April/May, and find yourself fully immersed in the full extent of the collective Chinese imagination.
The 2018 Singapore Chinese Film Festival runs from 27th April to 6th May. Tickets and more information available here