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DIFF announces Making Waves Hong Kong Season
15 Nov 2023 : News Desk
DIFF has announced the lineup for Making Waves Hong Kong Season, a three-day festival in the Light House Cinema cinema running from December 1st to 3rd.

Dublin International Film Festival will showcase the cinema of Hong Kong this December with a special season of films: Making Waves Hong Kong Season, presented in association with Hong Kong International Film Festival. Screening in Light House Cinema from 1-3 December, audiences will have the opportunity to explore the work of contemporary Hong Kong filmmakers, as well as a screening of Patrick Tam’s classic Hong Kong New Wave film Nomad.

Speaking about the pre-Christmas season, Festival Director Gráinne Humphreys said: “Dublin International Film Festival is proud to announce the Making Waves season of Hong Kong cinema, in partnership with Hong Kong International Film Festival. Our line up showcases the best of contemporary films from Hong Kong right now, and celebrates the city’s cinematic heritage. We hope to bring something fresh to the Dublin film scene and platform a cinema culture that is under-represented in Ireland, for both seasoned cinema goers and new viewers alike.”

As a special added draw to this unique programme, many of the screenings will be attended by filmmakers for post screening Q&As, including the Opening Gala screening of Hing Fan Wing’s tech thriller Cyber Heist, which will be attended by the director; novelist Nate Ki will present his debut feature, the horror Back Home starring Cantopop star Anson Kong; and actor Neo Yau Hawk-sau will talk to audiences after the screening of Cheuk Wan-chi’s comedy drama Vital Sign in which he stars alongside Louis Koo. 

Other subjects tackled throughout the season include Wai-Lun Ng’s legal drama A Guilty Conscience and the real-life story of a care home abuse scandal which gets explored in Lawrence Kwan Chun Kan’s drama In Broad Daylight.

Cyber Heist 
18:15, Friday 1 December
Director: Hing Fan Wong
Cast: Aaron Kwok, Simon Yam, Ka-Tung Lam

The enigmatic labyrinth of cyber space is thrown into disarray by the injection of a malicious virus threatening the security of innumerable financial assets and holdings. Computer genius Kelvin Cheuk (Aaron Kwok) steps in to save the day with his clever invention, unsuspecting of the deadly cyber-war waiting to unleash between him and his superior, Kenneth Chan (Gordon Lam). In Wong’s internet-crime thriller, the virtual world is as real as the real world is virtual, and the two are constantly colluding and colliding, amidst a clash of moralities, ambitions and the desperation to survive. 

A Guilty Conscience
13:00, Sat 2 December
Director: Wai-Lun Ng
Cast: Chi-Wah Wong, Louise Wong, Kai-Wa Ho

“Everything is wrong”, magistrate Adrian Lam (Dayo Wong) powerfully proclaims in court and his accusing finger condemns the very institution of justice for its systemic preferentialism. He defends the innocent Jolene Tsang (Louise Wong) against the wealthy and corrupt tycoon family of the Chungs in a case of child abuse, not only righting his own irresponsible mistake but also the wrongs polluting society. This fearless drama documents a challenge to the prejudiced legal apparatus, and with its brilliant performances and sharp writing became the highest grossing Chinese film in Hong Kong. Wong as Lam especially shines in the courtroom, which, in his presence, pulsates with an unrivalled urgency.

In Broad Daylight
15:30, Sat 2 December
Director: Lawrence Kwan Chun Kan
Cast: David Chiang, Pak Hon Chu, Bowie Lam

Investigative journalist Kay (Jennifer Yu) goes undercover at a care home for disabled people after receiving tips about its residents being abused. Based on real events that took place in 2016, when the private nursing home Bridge of Rehabilitation repeatedly found itself in the headlines, this film focuses on the people who fight to expose cruelties hidden in plain but perilous sight, and lay bare the darkness lurking in broad daylight. Sensitive framing and visceral sound work impregnate its sombre narrative with an imperishable tension, allowing it to unflinchingly ask: what is the price of truth? 

Back Home
20:30, Sat 2 December
Director: Nate Ki
Cast: Anson Ip-Sang Kong, Bai Ling, Wing-Sze Ng

Heung Wing (Anson Kong of Cantopop boy band Mirror) can see ghosts. When he returns to Hong Kong after his mother’s suicide attempt, he is assaulted by a torrent of distressing childhood memories and menacing phantoms. His homecoming proves more and more sinister as the living and the dead penetrate each other’s realms, making him question his sanity and suspect something even more ominous at play. Nate Ki’s memorably impressive blood-red debut redefines cinematic terror by marrying it to Chinese mythology, and the result is a grotesque melting pot of horror satiated with black magic and eerie children.

15:30, Sun 3 December
Director: Patrick Tam
Cast: Leslie Cheung, Pat Ha, Kent Tong, Cecilia Yip

In 1982, Patrick Tam’s audacious tale of four sun-kissed, dangerously attractive young people raised eyebrows for its genre-defying meditations on youth. Written by some of the greatest screenwriters of its time – including Joyce Chan, author John Chan and Chiu Kang-Chien – and featuring eye-catching art direction from William Chang, this restless and thrilling romance courted controversy with its depiction of unbridled sexuality and the messy political climate of its era. Forty-one years after its release, this must-see Hong Kong New Wave masterpiece returns to the big screen with a brand-new 4K restoration that features a new director’s cut. 

Vital Sign
18:15, Sun 3 December
Director: Cheuk Wan-chi
Cast: Louis Koo, Neo Yau Hawk-sau, Angela Yuen

Veteran actor Louis Koo stars as the veteran ambulance man Ma Chi-yip, in Cheuk Wan-chi’s thoughtful drama about Hong Kong and its people, those who stay and those who leave. Ma’s unconventional, no-nonsense approach to work clashes with the rule-abiding ethics of young paramedic Wong Wai (Yau Hawk-sau), when they are put together on a team. In resolving their conflict, the plot addresses issues of the civil service culture, property crisis and emigration. Creating a fine balance between the personal and romantic, and the public and social, this localised rookie trope film packs a little something for everyone.

Tickets are available here.

Making Waves is a touring initiative presented by the Hong Kong International Film Festival Society and financially supported by Create Hong Kong. First launched in 2022, Making Waves has already travelled to 15 international cities, showcasing Hong Kong filmmakers whose works transformed film aesthetics and heralded unprecedented awareness of socio-political issues. In Dublin, Making Waves is curated and co-presented by Dublin International Film Festival (DIFF) and Hong Kong International Film Festival, and principally supported by Create HK. 

Dublin International Film Festival (DIFF) is Ireland's premier film event, dedicated to presenting the best in contemporary and classic world cinema. It brings the world to Ireland and showcases Ireland to the world. With a rich history spanning several decades, DIFF showcases a diverse selection of films, hosts industry events, and fosters a vibrant film culture in Dublin.

Over the past 22 years, it has screened more than 1,600 international films from over 52 countries. The Festival has hosted over 600 high profile guests, including Al Pacino, Angela Lansbury, Brendan Gleeson, Daniel Day-Lewis, Danny DeVito, Ennio Morricone, Joss Whedon, Julie Andrews, Kristin Scott Thomas, Stanley Tucci, and Stellan Skarsgård.

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