Raise the Umbrellas

Special Preview with Director Evans Chan
(USA/HD/color/117 min/2016; in Chinese and English, with English and Chinese subtitles)
Monday, April 3, 4:00pm
Henry R. Luce Hall, Auditorium,
34 Hillhouse Avenue, New Haven, CT
Hailed as “the most comprehensive documentary”* about Hong Kong’s 2014 Umbrella Movement, Raise the Umbrellas explores the Occupy protest’s origin and impact through the inter-generational lenses of three post-Tiananmen democratic activists – Martin Lee, founder of the Hong Kong Democratic party; Benny Tai, Occupy Central initiator; and Joshua Wong, the sprightly student leader  – along with voices from “umbrella mothers,” student occupiers, star politicians, prominent media professionals, international scholars, and activist LGBT Canton-pop icons. Incisive and intimate, driven by stirring on-site footage in a major Asian metropolis riven by protest, Umbrellas reveals the Movement’s eco-awareness, gay activism, and burgeoning localism. Various anti-Occupy views, underscored by an interview with the pro-Beijing heavyweight Jasper Tsang, lays bare the sheer political risk for post-colonial Hong Kong’s universal-suffragist striving to define its autonomy within China.
Evans Chan is a critic, playwright, librettist and an independent filmmaker.  Chan’s four narrative features and eight documentaries include The Map of Sex and Love (2001), Sorceress of the New Piano (2004), and Journey to Beijing (1999).  Chan’s award-winning films have been shown at the Berlin, Rotterdam, London, Moscow, Vancouver, San Francisco and Taiwan Golden Horse film festivals, among others. A critical anthology about his work, Postcolonalism, Diaspora, and Alternative Histories: The Cinema of Evans Chan was published by the Hong Kong University Press in 2015.