2019 FILM SELECTIONS
FEATURE FILMS TRAILERS
The Last Male on Earth
HKEFF is delighted to host the Asian premier of The Last Male on Earth, on Friday 15th November.
In March 2018, the last male northern white rhino remaining on earth died. His name was Sudan, and after 42 years on this planet he had lived his - and his species' - life to the very end. THE LAST MALE ON EARTH shows his last years on earth, in which he was not alone. Ever since he was the last one, armed bodyguards protected him, tourists were standing in line to take a photo with him, journalists rushed to Kenya to tell his story and, still now, scientists are determined to find ways to reproduce his species. What is so attractive about the threat of extinction? How does this reflect on us? A difficult topic served in a light and elegant, but serious form. For even though the irony of man's (self) destructive dominance on earth has become clear to most people, Sudan stands heavily and majestically in the midst of it all, like a mirror image of our own megalomania. Floor van der Meulen's debut film testifies to an extraordinary talent for balancing the many parallel narratives of the rhinoceros Sudan's last days and in the human tragicomedy that unfolds around him.
Director: Floor Van der Meulen
WARNING FROM THE OCEAN
The Disappearing Finless Porpoise.
16 Nov 10:00am (85min)
Director: Jeongjoon Lee
The internationally endangered Finless Porpoise lives in the western sea of Korea.
With the Finless Porpoise of the Yangtze River, and the Vaquita whales of Mexico
close to extinction, the western sea of Korea is the only habitat of the porpoise.
Beautiful and mystical, these dolphins are endemic to Korea. The people living by
the sea once called them mermaids, and caught fish by releasing fishing nets
along the sea routes where finless porpoises appeared. This is how fishermen and
finless porpoise coexisted and shared the sea. But, with the arrival of
industrialization, fishing boats were replaced with enormous stow-net ships. The
waters with the highest population of finless porpoise became a sea of death, as
ten thousand porpoise were killed each year as bycatch. It is a horrible reality
where countless porpoise are facing mass deaths, trapped by these
massive stow-nets. People now stand at a crossroad between money and the future
of the sea.
Will fishermen choose the fishing net that could save the finless porpoises?
The disappearing finless porpoises tell their desperate and final stories of the seas.
16 Nov 10:15am (15min)
Lee Quo Wei Room
Two adventurers from Hong Kong set out to climb the coastline of Hong Kong to map the pollution. The unique expedition overcomes unexpected challenges and leads to bigger thoughts on how we interact with our environment.Plastic pollution in particular of our coasts and ocean has received increasing attention. Pictures of turtles caught in plastics and giant pacific rubbish patch have shocked audiences around the globe. Tons of trash is swept up our coasts every day, a lot of it out of plain sight, where it decays and subsequently pollutes our environment. Various initiatives around the globe are pushing to abandon single use plastic and reduce waste in general.
Director: Mike Sakas
16 Nov 1:00pm (85min)
Director: Jeff Orlowski
Chasing Coral taps into the collective will and wisdom of an ad man, a self-proclaimed coral nerd, top-notch camera designers, and renowned marine biologists as they invent the first time-lapse camera to record bleaching events as they happen. Unfortunately, the effort is anything but simple, and the team doggedly battles technical malfunctions and the force of nature in pursuit of their golden fleece: documenting the indisputable and tragic transformation below the waves. With its breathtaking photography, nail-biting suspense, and startling emotion, Chasing Coral is a dramatic revelation that won’t have audiences sitting idle for long.
THE LAST HONEY HUNTER
16 Nov 2:00pm (30min)
Lee Quo Wei Room
Director: Ben Knight
In the mist-shrouded mountains of Nepal’s Hongu River valley, the Kulung people carve their lives out of the land and practice an ancient form of animism structured around the god Rongkemi. There you will find a wiry and unassuming man named Mauli Dhan Rai, who is believed to be chosen by the gods for the perilous rite of honey harvesting. The task, which involves climbing rope ladders up sheer cliffs to cut down combs made by the world’s largest honeybee (before collecting the poisonous honey within), is extraordinarily dangerous. But it’s a spiritual pursuit soaked in myth that the Kulung believe taps directly into the gods. And with roads, technology and market forces, it may not be around for long. This film, a 2016 Mountainfilm Commitment Grant winner directed by Ben Knight, puts a spotlight on a remarkable practice under threat of modernity.
MOTHER OF CORAL SEA
16 Nov 2:15 + 4pm (15min)
Lee Quo Wei Room
“New Caledonia: Mother of the Coral Sea” features the incredible diversity of the Coral Sea in New Caledonia and how it provides for the people of New Caledonia — where nature and people are inextricably linked. The film features the different sides of New Caledonia — from Noumea, its capital city, to the magnificent Ouvea, referred to as “the closest island from Paradise”, and the bountiful life — turtles, sharks, manta rays, and large schools of fish — that blossoms in these waters, and are respected as culturally-significant totems. Local community members, Marie-Lucette Taoupoulou, Pierre Kaouma, Marjorie Tiaou, and Marino Tiaou take us through their world and their way of life. They share their bond with nature and their aspirations of preserving this bond for generations to come. Conservation International and the Manta Initiative are working with partners to conserve the Coral Sea and its diversity — before it becomes endangered.
THE BEEKEEPER AND HIS SON
16 Nov 3:00pm (85min)
Director: Diedie Weng
Disillusioned from his experiences as a migration worker, Maofu returns from the city back to the village in northern China, where his family lives. His father, an ageing beekeeper, hopes that his son will learn the handcraft of beekeeping from him. As they collaborate two different life plans run into each other, which leads to tensions and wearing, mostly speechless argued out conflicts. Even the animals on the farm react on this atmosphere and comment the behaviour of the human protagonists in a partly bizarre and funny way. THE BEEKEEPER AND HIS SON reveals the inner sight of a family in the country in today's China, where millions of other families experience breaks between the generations and try to overcome the deep gap between tradition and modernity
OPERATION SUMATRAN RHINO
16 Nov 5:00pm (45min)
Director: Chris Annadoral
Operation Sumatran Rhino is a wildlife conservation documentary which showcases the Borneo Rhino Alliance (BORA) in their do or die mission to save Malaysia's critically endangered Sumatran rhino - there are less than 100 of them remaining in the world, with just a few left in Malaysia. This show documents BORA’s incredible quest to find all the remaining Sumatran rhinos in the rainforests of Sabah and breed them before it’s too late.
17 Nov 10:00am (85min)
Director: Andrew Morgan
This is a story about clothing. It’s about the clothes we wear, the people who make them, and the impact the industry is having on our world. The price of clothing has been decreasing for decades, while the human and environmental costs have grown dramatically. The True Cost is a groundbreaking documentary film that pulls back the curtain on the untold story and asks us to consider, who really pays the price for our clothing?
Filmed in countries all over the world, from the brightest runways to the darkest slums, and featuring interviews with the world’s leading influencers including Stella McCartney, Livia Firth and Vandana Shiva, The True Cost is an unprecedented project that invites us on an eye opening journey around the world and into the lives of the many people and places behind our clothes.
27 Oct 3:00pm (85min)
Director: Laura Nix
Meet passionate teenage innovators from around the globe who are creating cutting-edge solutions to confront the world’s environmental threats – found right in their own backyards – while navigating the doubts and insecurities that mark adolescence. Take a journey with these inspiring teens as they prepare their projects for the largest convening of high school scientists in the world, the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF).
FRONTLINE FASHION 3
17 Nov 1:15pm (50min)
Director: Lindsay Robertson
Hosted by Cara G, Frontline Fashion 3 is a documentary following emerging designers from across the globe who are determined to change the future of fashion - one of the most polluting industries imaginable.
Join them as they take their final steps in the Redress Design Award, the world's largest sustainable design competition, arriving in Hong Kong - the epicentre of Asia's fashion scene - to showcase their collections, together with their hopes and dreams in a live Grand Final. All eyes are on the first prize - the chance to create an up-cycled retail collection for bold new sustainable brand, The R Collective.... but before they hit the runway the designers have to prove to the judges that they have what it takes to transform fashion.
There can only be one winner…
OCEANS WITHOUT LIMITS
27 Oct 5:00pm (85min)
Director: Mark Van Wijk
Embark on a voyage of discovery into the Western Indian Ocean and find out how plastic pollution is impacting this tropical paradise. "Oceans Without Limits" is an epic and cinematic oceanic adventure with an element of science. A crew, made up of a Skipper, a Pro Diver, a Marine Biologist and a Filmmaker, go way off the beaten track to document their findings. They travel from South Africa to Madagascar, Seychelles, Maldives and a distant Archipelago called Chagos. Their discoveries are both unexpected and shocking!