Director/producer/independent reporter Kempton Lam has made three full-length documentaries from 2004 – 2015. Kempton’s debut documentary Long Hair Revolution 「長毛革命」 has been collected by the Canadian National Archive since 2009. The three documentaries are collectively known as “Revolution Trilogy” 「革命三部曲」 and are in Cantonese with English subtitles (廣東話、英文字幕). You can watch the three films at this YouTube Playlist (beautifully projected on your big screen HDTV or on your computer). Enjoy!
As a documentarian that has made a film about Umbrella Revolution (see my director’s statement), I want to do my small part in documenting the events in Umbrella Revolution. Tonight, I came across a few great films made by the filmmakers at Lianain Films (website). I want to share these films with you so more people may find and watch them. I consider this a “part 1” as I hope to add more in the future.
Note: These films are all made by the filmmakers at Lianain Films and NOT by me.
Today I came across YouTube user Ms. Alice Tong’s wonderful English translation of the Umbrella Revolution de facto theme song 撐起雨傘. I know I need to translate the song into English some how so it was “lucky” for me to come across Alice’s version. And I’ve put some time to build upon it and made a few words adjustments to fit my needs. As Alice wrote in the YouTube description, she translated the whole song within a day and don’t see the translation as “perfect”. So I hope Alice and other readers will see my changes as trying to share my insights and give my own take to the translation. Ultimately, I don’t believe there is a “perfect” translation just different translations.
I expect there will be many documentaries made about Umbrella Revolution (UR) and I’m not “worried”. In fact, it is a good thing to see many documentaries made about UR because it is important and we need more perspectives and eyes on UR. Different documentary filmmakers will see and choose to tell different stories through their creative minds. Now we work with very limited resources here but I’ve promised to make the best film I can. And I will try my best to make as good a film I can given the limited resources and time we have. Will see.
In the mean time, I welcome different documentary filmmakers’ takes and I’m going to share a few particularly good ones I’ve seen so far here with you.
1a) VICE News is making a piece about Umbrella Revolution. Worth watching the trailer and checking out the video when it is out. [HT @Warmwaterfrog for sharing]
(1b) The short documentary series “Clearing Mong Kok” (16:17) (part 3/3) by freelance videographer Nathan Mauger is just breathtakingly awesome! Highly recommended. [HT Kam for sharing]
The above is third (3/3) in a series about the clashes in Mong Kok during Hong Kong’s Umbrella Movement. The following are part 1 & 2.
Note: VICE Network is one of the new media companies that gets a lot of my respect. In 2013 at Banff, I had the pleasure of meeting VICE co-founders Suroosh Alvi & Shane Smith. And interviewing Shane Smith was a cool experience. Imagine they started VICE, originally a punk magazine, out of Montreal, Canada! #GoCanadaGo
I am still going through the long list of songs and may decide to use fragments of a bunch of songs. For now, I just want to say I like/love “08 This is Mongkok＠革命中的廿四小時” by 旺角街坊Melissa very much. Melissa has a very sweet voice and the lyrics are very meaningful and evocative in telling a bit of the Mongkok story.
P.S. A few general comments about music. A dear friend of mine is an expert soprano singer in her youth and she is disliking some of the music I like/love. I see her point that some of the singing may be off-key or not “professional” enough for her taste (plus some songs have the f-word) but all these factors are emblematic of the raw feelings of Umbrella Revolution!
For example, imagine some of these songs were re-recorded and sang in a professional studio and then highly produced and tuned/”fixed”/”modified” word-by-word using tools like Avid Pro Tools, which would be a disaster to me! You might as well kill the spirit of these songs and suck all the blood out of their veins!
I often mention”Long Hair Revolution (長毛革命)” and sometimes the National Archive connection (like today) when arranging face-to-face or Skype video interviews, requesting copyright owners’ permissions to use their works (photos, artworks, video clips, etc) to help give myself instant “credibility” and hopefully smooth things out. Opening these windows and doors are crucial to my ability to try to make (HKtv+Umbrella)Revolution (香港電視+雨傘)革命 a reasonably “good” documentary since part 2 my documentaries (namely the “Umbrella Revolution” part) is heavily (or almost totally) “crowd sourced”.
P.S. To my friends and supporters: Yes, I am trying to fix the giant 10 years gap between my first documentary and my second film! I guess which is why I am making my 2nd and 3rd film together! Will see what happen.