The Constructing and Changing of Cinematic Hong Kong through the Taiwanese Cult Followings’ Eyes
|Keywords:||電影城市;閱聽人;香港電影;全球城市;迷文化;cinematic city;audience;Hong Kong film;global city;fan cultures||Issue Date:||2011||Abstract:||
The biggest producer of Chinese films has traditionally been Hong Kong, and such films project the image of the city to audiences all over the world. In Taiwan, due to a similar language and culture, audiences have had many opportunities to see these Hong Kong movies. As a result, images from these movies have accumulated in the collective consciousness of the Taiwanese people over time. For this paper, twenty-six Taiwanese fans of Hong Kong cinema have been interviewed in order to extract the street images of Hong Kong (using street as a city space element limits the scope of the work) that they have derived from these films.
Most of the interviewees first began watching Hong Kong films during the explosion of Hong Kong cinema in the 1980s, but they cannot be lumped with the mass Taiwanese audiences who enjoyed the films at that time. Many of the interviewees have developed a specific taste for Hong Kong cinema that goes beyond following a trend, differentiating Hong Kong film from Chinese film and treating their favorite movies as cult classics. In fact, it wasn’t until the Taiwanese fever for Hong Kong film began to cool in the late 1990s that the majority of interviewees began to understand their preference for Hong Kong movies more deeply, leading some to make actual pilgrimages to the city in order to find the “real” Hong Kong of their imaginations. This sample set, then, is particularly suitable for this study.
After extracting street images from the interviewees and associating them with specific films, it became clear that there are three distinct eras of Hong Kong cinema, each with its own set of street images. They are: the streets for everyday lives of the local people in 1980s; the streets as the model of a “globalized” city in late 1990s; and the streets in the post-CEPA period representing either a highly “localized” Hong Kong or the transformation of Hong Kong into another large, faceless Chinese city in which to tell a story. Three dimensions of global cultural flow from Arjun Appadurai’s theory about social imaginary – finanscapes, ideoscapes, and mediascapes – are used to explain these different perceptions of Hong Kong city over time, allowing for a deeper understanding of how audiences imagine cinematic cityscapes. A discussion of fan preferences and the origin of these preferences reveals much about the interaction between film and audiences, and ultimately about the interaction between Taiwan and Hong Kong on a multitude of levels: cultural, financial, and political.
More and more global cities are using film to project positive images in order to attract tourists. Understanding how audiences construct a cinematic city in their collective imaginations is becoming a topic of import in the information age. Using Hong Kong cinema in Taiwan as an example, this paper deconstructs this process into its bare elements.
|Appears in Collections:||建築與城鄉研究所|
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