Four stellar documentaries from recent editions of the New Taipei City Documentary Film Festival were screened in Hong Kong from Aug. 13 through Sept. 8 to bring attention to lesser-known stories about Taiwan.
"After Crossing (翻越之後)" explores the precarious environmental status of Nan'ao River Basin in Yilan County from the perspective of Chang Hao-chuan (張皓荃), an avid river trekker. The documentary also delves into the philosophy and environmental approach of the indigenous Atayal people, identifying potentially new tactics derived from centuries-old aboriginal wisdom.
"The Farthest (遙遠之地)" takes its title from the farthest distance in the world ― a family separated by geographical and financial constraints. An overseas compatriot lives in Myanmar with one child, while his Burmese wife works in Taiwan to provide a better education for the family's second child. The documentary also looks at the state of women's rights in the work place.
"1/3 Millions (三百萬分之一)" starts with the unexpected discovery of 75 baby tiger sharks in the womb of two adult sharks caught by Taiwanese fishermen. The miraculous resuscitation of 30 pups stands in stark juxtaposition to the estimated 100 million sharks that die from commercial fishing, and trackers are affixed to the rescued sharks to learn more about their watery world.
"Miracle (神明事務所)" follows a delivery driver who exchanges his dirty work clothes for a mottled apron imprinted with a delicate yellow dragon on dates that end on 3, 6, or 9. A-Yun is a psychic, a position inherited from his father, and the people who come to him are tormented by joy, sadness, sickness, and even death.
The screenings were offered for free at the Kwang Hwa Information and Culture Center.