Hong Kong Cinema - Essay Example

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Hong Kong, a part of the People's Republic of China, had existed as a colonial holdover up to the middle of the 1990s. A global city-state, a polis and a mini-cosmos - there are not enough metaphors to describe its national peculiarities in cultural, political and social senses…
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Hong Kong Cinema
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Download file to see previous pages Many cinema critics attribute (Abbas, 1997; Li, 2001) this miracle to European influences and those of Hollywood, principally, comparing to China, which had been running the policy of mystification and cultural isolation between the 1950s and 1990s. Hong Kong is usually depicted as a capitalist city, which growth over Communist China and to great extent assimilates to Western postmodernism and realism.
The theoretical framework for Hong Kong cinema analysis was provided by A.Abbas (1997), who draws and synthesizes the concept of dis-appearance. modern Hong Kong cinema is close-knit to the 1997 integration into China, as the Communist rule was always perceived as the power limiting cultural and contextual peculiarities and eliminating all national allegories and allusions. The sense of dis-appearance is very specific and refers to a purloined or secreted reality which is ignored because of the common tendency to standardization (Abbas, 1997). Furthermore the representation of dis-appearance employs dichotomies, especially one between dj vu (or a feeling of clich action or behavior) and deja disparu, or a feeling that points to the uniqueness of the situation, which has already happened and leads a viewer to hyperreality of interrelations between the facts and the events which have never happened. The concept of dis-apperance is particularly relevant to Diaspora members and those who observe Hong Kong with foreigner's eyes, so I would like to discuss the film 'City of Glass' (by M.Cheung) in terms of Hong Kong cinema trends.
Deja disparu is masterly shown in the film, as the plot itself contains underlying redline of dis-appearance as the characters' state of mind. The movie narrates about the fates of two persons, whose parents die in car accident just before the integration of Hong Kong into China. The catastrophe unfolds a romantic story between Rafael and Vivian, "that was seeded in the flamboyant 1970s at the University of Hong Kong, yet disrupted by the fervent political movement and social unrest. Their participation in the movement resulted in their separation when Rafael was put in prison and expelled from the university, a separation that would be overcome only 20 years later when Hong Kong is on the verge of turning "Chinese" again" (Hao and Chen, 2000, p.37). In spite of the separation of their fates, Rafael's son, David, and Vivian's daughter, Suzie, meet and begin to discover their parents' past. The young people gradually realize that Hong Kong is not merely a city of glass, but a huge store of memories and anticipation as well as the time-space reverses (ibid), allowing everyone create a number of models and in conditional tense('if..then'). Psychological life of both Hong Kong residents and foreigners is described as deja disparu, or a re-consideration of past events, including the search for inimitable and unique aspects in fates and fortunes. The idea of dis-appearance runs freely through the movie and reaches its culmination at the very end, when the young couple decide to put their parents' bone ashes blasted up in Hong Kongas the event signifies the complete physical disappearance and the return to the country at the same time, or deja disparu, a renovation of the old story.
The ending could be interpreted in other ways, but all of them to certain degree point to the concept of dis-appearance: for instance, Rafael and Vivian 'withdraw' just after Hong Kong's transition to China, or after Hong Kong ceases ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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