Hong Kong Second Wave filmmaker Fruit Chan’s (陳果) The Midnight After (那夜凌晨，我坐上了旺角開往大埔的紅van / 那夜凌晨，我坐上了旺角开往大埔的红van, literally “That midnight, I got on a red public light bus that headed from Mong Kok to Tai Po”) gets its New York premiere as part of BAMcinématek’s Migrating Forms series on Thursday, December 18.
In this film “harrowing and darkly funny two-hour metaphor for all that is troubling Hong Kong” (WSJ), sixteen passengers on a red public light bus (known as a “van仔” in local parlance) discover that the other 7.2 million residents of Hong Kong have disappeared. The motley band of survivors band together to stay alive and hope to figure out what has taken the life out of their city they call home. Executive Producer Winnie Tsang was more blunt: “the film is about the loss of Hong Kong”
Based on the serialized web novel Lost on a Red Mini Bus to Tai Po by a pseudonymous Mr. Pizza, the film premiered at the Berlin International Film Festival in February and has been favorably compared to George Romero’s Night of the Living Dead and Edgar Wright’s Shaun of the Dead and The World’s End for its weaving of social satire into a horror/sci-fi genre film.
Indiewire says the “wry satire” is “entertaining and demands your attention”.
Variety found the ” big-bang finish at once funny, sad, allegorical and provocatively open-ended.”
The Hollywood Reporter says the film is a “suspense- and scare-free horror in this tiresome comic strip of urban cataclysm.”
Love HK Film, in the most Hong Kong-knowledgable review, says the film “never loses steam” and “its Hong Kong metaphor is razor sharp and sublimely affecting” but is disappointed that the source material doesn’t fully explore Hong Kong identity.
Thursday, December 18, 8:30 PM
Peter Jay Sharp Building, BAM Rose Cinemas, 30 Lafayette Street, Brooklyn
$14/General Admission; $9/Cinema Club Members (Movie Moguls free); $10/students under 29 and seniors)