(scroll down for english)
踏入第十八年，[ 影像．感動．思索．行動 ] ，透過電影節的影像帶來的感動和思索，把社會上處於邊緣位置的個體或群體，促進理解及拉線連結，締結跨議題行動的可能，仍是我們不變的理念和願景。
18th Hong Kong social movement film festival (smff), like you all, is in the same “new normalcy” of precarity. We don’t know what the future of the epidemic will be like, whether the screenings will be held as scheduled, and whether we will be face to face screenings. Despite this, we are still looking forward to meeting you, continuing our exploration of [movie. moved. musing. movement], and see where it will lead us to…
Before we get going, here are some of our thoughts:
- In the pervious film festivals, we have showcased films around the world about struggles on the ground and social issues in order to make us think about the different possibilities of life and society. However, there are contextual differences between regions, so apart from showing stories of local struggles, we begin to ponder how we could present the needs and struggle of local people?
- Although the festival has collaborated with different marginalized groups in the past, doing screening and even co-designing the screening arrangements, the selection of films is done before the collaboration. How about if we collaborate from the beginning? We know they want to be heard. Shall we try to create something together and let more people hear it through the festival? Perhaps more exchanges of experience will help us understand each other and discover various possibilities?
- Not everyone is a quick thinker, an eloquent talker, and has high agility; what position can be created for people of different qualities, interests and talents who wish to care about social movements and want to participate in them?
- In the wake of the movement and the pandemic, various forms of mutual aid have emerged: community group buying and distributing masks and meal vouchers to those in need, finding jobs for fellow protesters, forming a yellow economic circle… giving care to people. Instead of responding to the immediate needs, can we, through continuous experimentation and collaboration, form a powerful collective, or even change existing social institutional structures (e.g. power imbalance between employers and employees), and build a possible space for each person to imagine his or her own life?
- How do we envision for our communities, or a “more democratic society”?
- Who are “we”?
The organizing committee have gathered films as well as made our own ones, touching upon topics around:
- How people who have been left out by the mainstream respect, accept and support each other;
- A story of a oppressed person, in face of omnipresent oppression, who does not become an oppressor;
- Canadian co-operative and local co-operatives, their discussion and practice of internal democracy, attempts to open up different forms of autonomy, and the possibilities of economic democracy;
- A labor movement which is not just about fighting for rights but touch upon different aspects of people’s lives, including the intersection between geographic mobility, livelihood needs, and emotional ties…etc.
In these confusing thoughts and various films, we collage the following interrogations:
freedom and democracy.
How can we see the multiplicities of a person and their needs in a larger collective/society/movement?
Can we explore and grow together to meet these diverse needs?
Last year’s Hong Kong Social Movement Film Festival coincided with the anti-extradition movement, and there were a number of changes in the tight schedule in those two months. In view of the uncertainty of another wave of outbreak, we decided to accommodate more flexibility and divided the film festival into two: it will be held from October to November (autumn/winter) and from April to May (spring/summer).
In its 18th year, the festival, with our core principle of [movie. moved. musing. movement], is still believing in connecting and bringing understanding to individuals and groups at the margins, and creating possibilities for cross-issue solidarity, through the emotional touch and reflections brought by imageries. In face of our collective precarious future, there are uncertainties as many of you are living at the moment. Nonetheless, the Festival hopes that we can uphold the concept “the poor foster the smff”, (see note) and that through non-monetary exchange, cultural and movements exchanges across borders can happen for those who have no money.
You are welcome to participate in any way you can, be it by making a donation, participating in screenings and post-screening discussions, writing film review, and helping with promotion etc. Please join us in fostering the festival together.
Note: Specific practices of the “the poor foster the smff” include.
Free of charge for all screenings.
“Exchange work” for screening rights:
subtitle translation and production in exchange for the hard work of independent foreign productions.
Never apply for political or major corporate sponsorship.
The only funds available are the funds raised by the audience and supporters, and the little resources that the co-organizers have put in (printing promotion materials and hong kong sign language interpretation).
Organizing Committee of the 18th Hong Kong social movement film festival