7th Asian Film Festival now in full force in Jeddah
Showcasing different Asian cultures, traditions, art and their diversity, the 7th Asian Film Festival, an annual event of ACG club, was officially inaugurated on Monday at the Garden Residence of Matahiro Yamaguchi, Consul-General of Japan, in Jeddah.
The festival organized by the Asian Consuls General Club (ACGC) will be held during March 10-31 and will feature 11 movies from Japan, Brunei, Korea, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, Philippines, India, China, Singapore, Bangladesh, Pakistan and Indonesia.
Movies will be screened at eight different venues comprising the residences of the Korean, Japanese and Indonesian Consuls General and the Consulates of Brunei, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, Philippines and India. The Consuls-General of the ACGC unveiled the film festival logo, then Anwar Habibullah, Consul-General of China and coordinator of the ACGC for this year, welcomed the guests and thanked them for attending this cultural festival.
He said: "Film is art. It is also the bridge of friendship and culture between country-to-country and people-to-people. The purpose we (ACGC) hold this film festival is to show our culture, custom, tradition and each country`s development, people’s pursuit in life and dream, to enhance mutual understanding and friendship between each other through the camera.
"Tonight, a Japanese film will start the ACGC Film Festival 2014. Different types of films from 12 membership countries will be shown during the festival. We hope to share the charm of oriental film culture with our guests and friends. We would like to contribute to friendly people-to-people and culture exchanges between Kingdom and us," said Habibullah.
Yamaguchi too thanked the guests for "being there at the start of the festival." He spoke about the importance of cultural relations between Asian countries and asserted the need of holding such events that represent a gate of mutual understanding between Asians and Saudi friendly peoples.
He also gave a synopsis of the Japanese movie (Fireworks from the Heart) that was to be screened. "The movie concentrates on family bonds which is a common value in both Arab and Japanese culture," he stressed. In the following days, all the participating countries of the festival will present their cultures through a series of documentaries and movies spanning several genres. Before unveiling the film festival logo a brief synopsis of the festival’s 11 movies were presented.
Around 300 guests including Saudi dignitaries, diplomats and movies lovers attended. They were given a taste of Japanese food before the opening ceremony.
The film (Fireworks from the Heart) is directed by ‘Kunimoto Masahiro’. The movie, a heart-warming and emotional tragedy, is about a girl named Hana, who leaves hospital after fighting Leukemia. When she returns home though, she realizes that her brother, Taro, has become a "social recluse". She decides to bring her brother back into the family fold.
The village that they live in, has a fireworks festival every year, where the 20-year-olds create firework displays. Hana tries to get Taro to join the 20-year-olds, but they do not accept him initially, but soon joins them. Tragedy strikes the family with Hana passing away. He, however, receives a video message from Hana recorded before her death, saying that she hopes to see his fireworks. He starts to save money to make Hana a fireworks display on his own. It is an emotional moment when the fireworks of Taro is displayed.
Apart from Indonesian documentary film "Wonderful of Indonesia" and a feature film "Habibie & Ainun" the Indonesian consulate will host the screenings of Pakistani documentary film "Vibrant Pakistan" and a feature film "Ramchand Pakistani" on March 29, the Bangladeshi documentary film "Chittagong your ideal business destination" and a feature film "Amar Bondhu Rashed" is set for March 27, the Singapore documentary film "A New Singapore and All Work+All Play" and a feature film "Ah Boys to Men" on March 27, Chinese documentary film "China during spring festival" and feature film "Chinese Zodiac" on March 25.
On March 12, Brunei Consulate General will host a feature film ‘Ada Apa Dengan Rina’ (What’s So Special About Rina) and on March 13 a Korean documentary "History of Korea development" and a feature film "Architecture 101"will screened at the residence of the CG of Korea.
On Friday March 14, the Malaysian documentary film "Malaysia your gateway to health & wellness" and a feature film "Tanda Putera" will screen at the Consulate General of Malaysia, the Sri Lankan documentary film "Wonder of Asia" and a feature film "Asai Man Piyabanna" will be screened on March 19 at Consulate General of Sri Lanka and the Philippines documentary film ‘Phong from the Philippines" and feature film "The Womb" will screen on March 20 at the Philippines Consulate General. The Indian documentary film ‘Timeless India" and feature film "Bhag Milkha Bhag" will screen March 21at the Consulate General of India.
Indonesian film night will conclude the festival on March 31, followed by a festival for Asian food on the same night where each country will present its famous dishes and cuisines. Attendance for the film and food festival will be through invitation cards only.
By Syeda Amtul