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When a City Rises

2021
Hong Kong
100 minutes
Unclassified 15+
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An urgent and illuminating documentary that tells the story of the Hong Kong pro-democracy protests through the eyes of four main characters. F:act Award, CPH:DOX 2021.
The film follows peaceful protestor (William), teenager (M.J.), law student (Eve) and ‘frontliner’ (Tan). All four are involved in HK’s leaderless movement fighting to maintain democracy in their island city. As the protests escalate and millions take to the streets, each finds a way to contribute. Eve handles the phones and provides legal advice. M.J. joins the throng but he’s fearful of arrest and what that will mean for his future. William struggles with the physical conflict and tries to keep to the sidelines. Tan faces tear gas and water cannons but struggles with family commitments. Across shopping malls and university campuses, the violence escalates as an entire generation juggles defiance, desperation and despair. This prize-winning and courageous film features exceptional access and dynamic footage.
A film which is not only one of the most complete accounts of the Hong Kong pro-democracy protests to date, it’s also, at times, an unbearably tense picture which unfolds with urgency of a thriller.
Wendy Ide, Screen International
Year
2021
Classification
Unclassified 15+
Country
Hong Kong
Language
In English and Cantonese with English subtitles
Director
Iris Kwong, Ip Kar Man, Cathy Chu, Han Yan Yuen, Huang Yuk-kwok, Jenn Lee, Evie Cheung
Producer
Sinead Kirwan, Han Yan Yuen
Cinematographer
Yuling Chow, Amy Ip, Cathy Chu, Sharon Yeung, Han Yan Yuen
Editor
Huang Yuk-kwok, Jenn Lee
Production Company
Enemy Films
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