Starting with the first "Western shadow plays" shown in the late 1890s, motion pictures have played a significant role in China's cultural existence for more than a century. Initially centered in Shanghai, Chinese cinema boomed in Hong Kong in the 1930s, aided by the advent of talkies and the influx of talent and investment from mainland China, Southeast Asia, and America. From the late 1940s, the territory supplanted Shanghai as the "Hollywood of China." In Hong Kong Cinema: A Cross-Cultural View, authors Law Kar and Frank Bren follow the story from Hong Kong's early silent, Chuang Tsi Tests His Wife, through the martial arts craze of the 1970s, to the medium's continued appeal to contemporary international audiences. Rather than provide a sweeping history, the authors focus on the impact of individual personalities, particularly local filmmakers and movie stars. They also consider Eastern and Western influences and examine major developments, including the changing role of women. By profiling key figures and events of the 20th century, this overview is the perfect introduction for anyone interested in Hong Kong's contribution to world cinema. Illustrated with photos.
...a readable and informative collaboration that explores Eastern and Western influences on Hong Kong cinema and Hong Kong's interaction with its markets in China and Southeast Asia....Recommended. Lower-division undergraduates through faculty and professionals.--CHOICE