The 46th Hong Kong International Film Festival (HKIFF46) will showcase eight restored classics by master filmmakers across three continents. From horror, musical, fantasy, and political allegory to social dramas, these visionary works take on new dimensions as seen today, reigniting appreciation from new generations of audiences.
Regarded as one of cinema’s most haunting nightmares, Carl Theodor DREYER’s 1932 masterpiece Vampyr is a radical experiment in narrative language and cinematic form, distinctive in its mesmerising mood and surrealist imagery. Contrasting it is Vittorio DE SICA’s Shoeshine (1946), a cornerstone of Italian neorealism that paints a vivid portrait of post-war Italy through the tragic destinies of two underprivileged children.
The story of plucky young orphans in Charles DICKENS’ literary classics is brought brilliantly to the screen by Carol REED in Oliver! (1968), a musical extravaganza that swept six Academy Awards, including Best Picture and Best Director. Multi-award-winning American director Francis Ford COPPOLA introduced a stunning ensemble of up-and-coming talents in his The Outsiders: The Complete Novel (1983), perfectly capturing the adolescent frustrations of sixties America.
The first female director to win the Berlinale Golden Bear, Márta MÉSZÁROS brought home the Grand Prize at Cannes with Diary for My Children (1984), an autobiographical story of struggle that reflects the reigning terror in Hungary. Immersing in the colonial history of 18th century Cuba, Tomás GUTIÉRREZ ALEA continues his socio-political parable in The Last Supper (1976), a brutal satire built on a tale of slave revolt ignited by a hypocritical landowner.
The creative power of Asian filmmakers is showcased in two restored classics. The Rites of May (1976), the directorial debut of Filipino director Mike de LEON takes a deep dive into the oppressive realities through a ghost story shaped with esoteric contours; whereas in Kummatty (1979), pioneering Indian filmmaker Govindan ARAVINDAN champions a part magical realist folk tale, part experimental landscape film.
Taking place from 15 to 31 August for 17 days, HKIFF46 will again adopt a hybrid format, featuring screenings and audience-engagement events in theatres and online. The festival will reveal this year’s complete programme on 27 July.
Eight Restored Classics:
1932 Vampyr by Carl Theodor DREYER
1946 Shoeshine by Vittorio DE SICA
1968 Oliver! by Carol REED
1976 The Rites of May by Mike de LEON
1976 The Last Supper by Tomás GUTIÉRREZ ALEA
1979 Kummatty by Govindan ARAVINDAN
1983 The Outsiders: The Complete Novel by Francis Ford COPPOLA
1984 Diary for My Children by Márta MÉSZÁROS