【10th CDF】Visible Record announces The 10th Chinese Documentary Festival

Visible Record announces The 10th Chinese Documentary Festival

To mark the 10th anniversary of the Chinese Documentary Festival, Visible Record announces a compelling lineup of film screenings and public events. The Festival will open on 9 September, 2017. Festival Prelude took place in July and August.

The first Prelude programme was "The Future of Hong Kong Documentary" seminar held on 21 July. Four fresh and distinct voices of local documentary filmmaking, including directors Ma Chi Hang, Chan Hau Chun, Chui Chi Yin, and Wong Siu Pong had an engaging conversation about the joys and travails of the artistic process. They also shared with the audience candid thoughts on future challenges in the field.

The second Prelude programme was "Shen Ko-shang's Journey of Sight and Sound", held on 6 August. The director's critically acclaimed documentary A Rolling Stone and feature film End of A Century: Miea's Story were screened. After the screenings, Shen gave a talk on his creative life, in which he presented his commercials, to demonstrate his multi-faceted cinematic skills.

The Chinese Documentary Film Festival will open on 9 September. The programmes include Competition (Shorts and Features); Hong Kong Selection, The New Taipei City Documentary Awards Selection, International Selection, and Retrospective of films from the previous Festivals.

The Shorts and Features Competition includes 13 films from China, Hong Kong, and Taiwan. Local productions in the Shorts Competition include Call Me Mrs Chan, co-directed by Chan Hau Chun and Chui Chi Yin about the endless toil of a cleaning lady, and This is The Man Fu directed by Tse Nga In, in which the filmmaker tries to get to know her estranged father by filming his life. Other shortlisted entries include four works from Taiwan: Happy Birthday advocates the benefits of natural childbirth; About the maritime drifters records the struggles of foreign fishermen; Cheng Hsing Tse's 48 hours chronicles a death row prisoner's release after a decade-long struggle for freedom, and BRIGADE27 portrays a Taichung voluntary brigade that resisted the Kuomintang army after the 2.28 Massacre. Craftsmen of Coffin is an entry from Gansu, China that shows the increasingly obsolete craft of coffin-making.

The Features Competition includes six titles, of which two are from Taiwan and four from China. Taiwan entries include Small Talk, a mother-daughter dialogue on mum's sexual orientation, and Boys in Pixelation, a moving story about juvenile delinquents from Taoyuan's Halfway House. Competing Mainland titles include We the Workers, an investigation of union struggles in a wharf; Old Couple and Old House, a tale of an old villager's effort to save his village from demolition orders; Factory Youth, an examination of the everyday lives of factory workers in Shenzhen, and Songs from Maidichong, a testimony of the Miao ethnic group's strong Christian faith under brutal repression.

This year, the Festival continues our collaboration with The New Taipei City Documentary Awards and will screen four of their award-winning films. The presence of these filmmakers at the Festival will continue to foster cultural exchange between the two cities.

Continuing the Festival's 10th anniversary celebrations are the new Festival programmes, International Selection and Retrospective. The International Selection will be the Hong Kong premiere of five documentaries from Europe, India, Myanmar and Thailand. These films are of diverse styles and contents: A Family Affair is a story about complicated and tragic family history; We Come as Friends depicts how the African continent is exploited by rich foreign countries; Cities of Sleep portrays the survival tactics of the destitute homeless in India; Sinmalin follows a Myanmarese migrant family working in Thailand, and My Leg documents a group of disabled army veterans turned prosthesis makers in Myanmar.

The Retrospective programme presents seven outstanding and popular shortlisted titles from previous Festivals, including four films from China: Though I Am Gone, Survival Song, Emergency Room China as well as Farewell, Beijing and three from Taiwan: Someday, My Fancy High Heels and The Moment.

During the Festival, three seminars will be held. On 10 September, "The Craft of Storytelling" welcomes Taiwanese veteran producer Gary Shih and winners of The New Taipei City Documentary Awards as guest speakers. On 12 October, "The Future of Chinese Independent Documentary" will invite Mainland directors in competition to discuss the prospects of documentary under the influence of state politics and the market economy. On 15 October, "On the Road with Taiwanese Documentary" will feature directors in a dialogue about the relationship between the commercial market and artistic creation in Taiwan, which has a developed commercial distribution network in place.

Winners of the Shorts and Features Competition will be announced at the Festival Awards Ceremony on 14 October.