At the most recent Golden Horse Awards, Hong Kong native Wong Chun took home the award for Best New Director. For the 28-year-old filmmaker – who originally had no plans of working in the film industry – it was a major milestone. After high school, Wong planned on majoring in graphic design, but his application was rejected. He ended up studying installation art at the City University of Hong Kong’s School of Creative Media. However, every week, out of his own interest, he started sitting in on a screenwriting course taught by Patrick Tam, a highly acclaimed director who became a tremendous source of inspiration for Wong. In Tam, he saw a visionary, one who understood how to wield the art of filmmaking to its fullest potential. Inspired, Wong decided to switch his major to film arts after the first semester.
Aside from winning the Golden Horse Award, Mad World has been nominated in eight different categories for the upcoming 36th annual Hong Kong Film Awards, including the category for Best Director. Wong laughed and said, “I’m not the kind of person who was born to make films.” But as we talked, his unbridled passion and dedication towards filmmaking became more and more undeniable.
For Wong, the allure of filmmaking lies in its difficulties, in finding ways of steering his vision. For example, when authors or illustrators create, they’re generally working by themselves. Filmmaking is different. It often requires a team of people to work together. “A movie is a chemical reaction involving the imaginations, concepts, and emotions of the team involved – it’s hard to predict the final outcome, but this sense of uncertainty is also the essence of film.” Wong jokingly says that he actually doesn’t enjoy being a director, describing the creation process as painful and excruciating. But every time he finishes a movie, there will be an itch to start on the next one. “For me, making movies is like a drug addiction. You know it’ll be hard, torturous even, but I can’t help myself from wanting to do it again and again. I’m addicted.”
在黃进眼中，电影的迷人之处正在于它很难琢磨和掌控。譬如说写作或者画画，都是个人的创作。但是电影不同，它是需要一群人合作完成的。“一部电影的出现是由很多脑袋、很多想象和情绪夹杂在一起所产生的化学作用， 很难猜测它的结果会是怎样的。 而这种不确定性恰是电影的本质。” 说起创作，黄进还笑说其实一点都不享受做导演，创作的过程是十分痛苦和折磨人的。但每次拍完隔一阵子，却又很心痒想再试一次。“有时拍电影对我来说好像染上毒瘾一样，你明知它很辛苦，会折磨你，却又忍不住要再试，有一种瘾。”
Wong’s debut movie, Mad World, tells the story of a guilt-ridden father and son and how they’re facing the demons of their past. The son, played by famous Hong Kong actor Shawn Yue, suffers from bipolar disorder. The father is played by Eric Tsang, another well-known Hong Kong actor. In the film, the two live together in a tiny ten-square-meter subdivided flat. Wong’s reason for choosing the subject matters explored in the movie is that he sees bipolarism and subdivided flats as embodiments of Hong Kong’s very essence. “These subdivided flats is a result of Hong Kong’s inflated real estate prices,” Wong comments. “It’s a claustrophobic living space, similar to how dense the city itself is. The physical proximity of father and son reflects how tightly crowded the city is. This proximity can cause a lot of friction between people and can compound issues between one another. Bipolarism also represents another side of Hong Kong. The fast-pace of the city leads to people living fast-paced, stimulating lives. As a result, many people are unable to properly process their emotions or manage their interpersonal relationships.” Wong’s intention is for the film to help give voice to the issue of mental illness while also casting a spotlight on the social issues of modern-day Hong Kong.
《一念无明》讲的是一对怀着沉重愧疚的父子如何面对过去的故事。剧中余文乐扮演的是一 位躁郁症患者，他和曾志伟扮演的爸爸同住在一间不到十平米的㓥房中（㓥房是香港出租房的一种，指分间出租的居住单位，极为狭窄，多住户间共用厨房和厕所）。说起为什么会选择这个主题，黄进说㓥房和躁郁症其实都代表着香港这座城市的性格。“㓥房是香港超高地价现象的产物，是非常狭窄的居住环境。而这座城市也一样拥挤，拥挤到人和人的距离仿佛就像剧中的父子一样，进进出出都几乎要摩擦到对方。这种距离放大了人和人之间互相伤害的机会。另外，躁郁症也是这城市的另外一面。香港是一座生活速度非常快的城市，这里的人很多都处于一种快速亢奋的生活状态中。 而这种状态往往会造成人们没办法处理好自己的情绪，处理和周遭人的关系。” 拍摄这部电影，除了为精神病患者发声之外，也在侧面描写这座城市的现状。
Mad World is quite different from traditional Hong Kong films; the plot is decidedly depressing, and it doesn’t have any intentions to entertain, at least not in a traditional sense. But this was the kind of movie that Wong aspired to make, as he believes that movies don’t need happy endings nor a sense of closure. “I want my movies to stick with viewers, to follow them home, and become a part of their lives,” he says. Everyone experiences sadness or difficulties in life, and entertainment is but a form of escapism. So, rather than mindlessly entertain, Wong hopes his movie can instead offer catharsis, guidance, healing, and the courage to face the difficulties of life.