Confessions charged with political urgency reveal some of the darkest imaginations of directors from Japan, Hong Kong, and Canada. With razor-edged wit and stunning shots that both enthrall and offend, these films rebels against institutionalized misconceptions of sex, violence, and the human psyche.
–Serena Lee and Heather Keung
Dir: Hiraoka Kasumi | Japan 2007 | Toronto Premiere | 28:26 | MiniDV
With neon kimonos and laser-hot stares, girls take back the streets in Red Light Graffiti District. This lusciously lurid tour of an imaginary quarter leads us on our hands and knees through a world of sidewalk chalk graffiti and strange tongues.
Hiraoka Kasumi is a director, musician, and playwright who graduated from the Doshisha University (Japan) in literature.
Dir: David Frankovich | Canada 2007 | 16:50 | MiniDV | Director In Attendance
Written by Reel Asian 2007 Spotlight artist Lesley Loksi Chan, this tribute to cult films and Dada play has kitten pornstars salivate over each other, and a Japanese Diana Ross joyriding in a paper car. Saturated with bizarre wit and bright hues, this tone-deaf musical turns itself inside out.
David Frankovich is a Toronto-based filmmaker and graduate of York University.
Castle In The Sky
Dir: Lena Lee, Dean Vargas | Canada 2008 | World Premiere | 17:30 | Digibeta | Directors In Attendance
At the onset of her brother William’s schizophrenia, Kate feels the pressure to live up to her parents’ heavy-handed expectations. Castle In The Sky is inspired by life experiences and adapted from Lena Lee’s theatrical play.
Lena Lee and Dean Vargas are Toronto-based filmmakers. Lee’s practice is driven by concepts of the human psyche. Lee and Vargas were winners of the Hear Me, See Me, Pitch Me competition jointly held by Charles Street Video and Reel Asian in 2007.
Dir: Erkka Nissinen | Hong Kong 2008 | Canadian Premiere | 13:00 | MiniDV
Night School features domineering doctors, insane patients in orange jumpsuits, and a blonde seeking ‘re-education’. An absurdist analysis of social and institutional construction of individuals, inspired by Dada play mixed with Asian pop culture, Nissinen’s film will not only question your morals, but your existence.
Erkka Nissinen was born in 1975 in Finland and is currently based in Hong Kong, Helsinki, and Amsterdam.
Dir: Project Big Bang | Hong Kong 2007 | North American Premiere | 4:30 | MiniDV
“Please save us, President…leader of the Arab Nation!” joke Asian hostages being held at gunpoint by ‘terrorists’. Nine screens display re-enactments of real hostage situations. Project Big Bang examines how intense international politics and ultraviolent images have become sold as spectacle.
Project Big Bang is a collaborative group including Bo Zheng, Amy Cheung, Erkka Nissinen, Joseph Chan, Kwan Ng, and Mark Fell.
Watch Porn Learn English
Dir: Zheng Bo | Hong Kong 2006 | Canadian Premiere | 17:00 | DVcam | Director In Attendance
Watch Porn Learn English is an experimental video that teaches us English through the cult classic porno Deep Throat. Playfully dubbed, the video examines gender roles and converts heterosexual acts into homosexual flirtations. Two lovers run out of gasoline, but realize they don’t really need to go to the station to fill up.
Zheng Bo grew up in Beijing. His art projects discuss issues of freedom and equality from the perspective of sexual and ethnic minorities. He is currently pursuing a PhD in Rochester, NY.