"Exciting and full of genuine feelings", Hou Hsiao Hsien on Absent Without Leave
In Malaysian filmmaker Lau Kek-Huat’s debut feature documentary Absent Without Leave 不即不离, the tracing of personal anecdotes becomes an act of mining collective history. In trying to reconnect with his absent father, his grandfather’s forgotten story is slowly unravelled: an absent father to the filmmaker’s own absent father, but also a guerrilla Communist soldier, a protector, a martyr of Malaya during WWII.
Intensely heartfelt without being overly sentimental, Absent Without Leave navigates the murky waters of Malayan history that appears far removed from the present. It reminds us not only of Malaya’s tragic past, but also our collective amnesia, of how quickly and seamlessly these narratives are thrown into physical and psychological exile. In this journey into forgotten consciousness, we are offered a glimpse of reconciliation and a possible redemption for those who have been absent.
The film was screened at the 2016 Singapore International Film Festival and received an Audience Choice Award. However, it has been banned completely during a review by the Malaysian Censorship Board. The reason given for the ban was its dealing with the Malaysian Communist Party (MCP) - a sensitive of part of Malaysian history.
Lau, whose grandfather was a member of the MCP, released the film in Taiwan but had hoped to bring back to Malaysia to be screened at the first ever Malaysian International Film Festival as the opening film.
Following the ban, Lau has decided to share his documentary for free with Malaysian audiences through the web. The documentary will be available on the Facebook fan page of Lau's Taiwan-based production company, Hummingbird Production starting from February 28th and up to March 5th. The links to view the documentary on Malaysian territory will be posted through several website and announced on Hummingbird's Facebook Page. To know more about this event, please visit Hummingbird Production's Facebook page.
大马导演廖克发的拍摄的纪录片《不即不离》，因为内容涉及马共题材，本月确 定電檢未過，在马來西亞全面禁映。廖克发今决定提供在线连结，让大马观众免 费看片。
《不即不离》从导演家庭出发，自追溯祖父因参加共产党后消失的故事，一步步 带出马共的历史，這段历史是对于多数的马来西亚人来说是陌生的，也是一个禁 忌的话题。本片 2016 年在台湾上映，并入围台北电影节、釜山电影节、新加坡 电影节观众票选奖，廖克发也因本片获选 2017 年第 15 届柏林影展新锐营。原本 《第一届马来西亚国际电影节》也计划以本片作开幕影片，如今因送审未过，让 观众错失看片机会!导演也难掩失望。
廖克发最大的心愿还是能在大馬放映这部影片，因此他决定在 2/28 日-3/5 日期 间，免费提供在线连结，给大马地区的观众看片。有兴趣的观众可到 Facebook 搜寻《不即不离》大马首映活动网页，按“参加活动”，主办方蜂鸟影像有限公 司将会于 2 月 28 日主动寄送影片连结。影片连结也会于 2 月 28 日同步在蜂鸟影 像脸书粉丝页发布。
如果在新加坡地區的觀眾，渴望於 3 月中下旬後，在付費頻道觀賞本片。
Absent Without Leave Online Malaysian Premiere
Dates: Feb 28th to March 5th
Free screening on Malaysian territory
The screening link will be posted on the Event Page on 28 Feb 2017.
About Lau Kek-Huat
Lau was born in Malaysia, worked as a primary school teacher in Singapore for four years. He enrolled at the National Taiwan University in 2006. He was awarded the Best Short Film Award twice (2009 and 2013) as well as the Best Director Award (2009) by the Taiwan Golden Harvest Festival. He has directed a few short films and is currently developing his first feature film.
Written by Sindie