BUS-STOP Feb 2018: Your Monthly SG Film Calendar

 'One at a Time' by Daniel Yam, part of '15 Shorts' 

The second month of the year in film often bears witness to a clash between Chinese New Year blockbusters and Oscar front runners. This year, Singapore fiercest auntie, Liang Xi Mei, played by none other than Jack Neo will stand up to the likes of Sally Hawkins in The Shape of Water and Saoirse Ronan in Lady Bird. What a cat fight lol! Film producer Daniel Yun's heartwarming project 15 Shorts will finally raise the curtains in February with the launch of the first 5 shorts of out 15. It s a set of authentic Singapore stories to touch your heart this festive season. Here is BUS-STOP February 2018, your Singapore film-watching calendar.

1. Liquid Traces - Visions

What do we look at when we look at the ocean? From where do we look at when we look at the ocean? What shapes the visions of the sea, what are the sources of our personal and collective imaginaries, the references for our impressions, desires, and fears in relation to the sea?

During the past two years, a dispersed community of artists, thinkers, writers, and researchers
was summoned, assembled, and brought together by curator Ute Meta Bauer on a set of three expeditions on board of the Dardanella, TBA21-Academy’s research vessel, which was travelling across various locations in the Pacific Ocean.

The selection of films has been arranged around two programmes, the first focuses on poetic, dreamlike approaches and the second on documentarist portraits of more concrete scenarios and realities. Together, they interrogate the cinematic references that shape our dreamscapes and they offer glimpses of what sort of moving images inform the common gazes of the expeditions participants, their discourses and encounters.

3 Feb 2018, Sat 12:00 PM - 04:00 PM
4 Feb 2018, Sun 12:00 PM - 06:30 PM
The Single Screen, Block 43 Malan Road
Here is the link to the event.
Free Admission

2. 15 Shorts

'The Buddy' by Jason Lee

Brainchild of one of Singapore's most prolific film producers, Daniel Yun, under his company Blue3Asia, and in collaboration with National Volunteer & Philanthropy Centre (NVPC), 15 Shorts is a ground-up film project which tells the largely untold stories on Singaporeans from the 1970s to the 1990s, a period usually known for nation building narrative, where Singaporeans were collectively discussed as a people, on how we strove hard to survive through our bread-and-butter issues.

15 Singaporean directors bring their diverse filmmaking styles to show that a human, giving side has always been a part of us, to inspire acts of giving and volunteerism in Singapore. Each film director has also dedicated his or her film to a charity in Singapore, whose cause is in line with the respective theme(s) of their films.

'Shelter' by Sean Ng

The first batch of 5 short films will be launched in February on YouTube. They are:

Shelter by Sean Ng
Waiting Room by Nicole Midori Woodford
One at a Time by Daniel Yam
Ali Baba by Randy Ang
The Buddy by Jason Lee

About the filmmakers:

Jason Lee

He is an aspiring filmmaker who started pursuing his dream at the age of 17. He shot Closer Apart (2014), which gained traction after it was released online, and screened at film festivals in Hong Kong, Indonesia and Laos. He’s made commissioned pieces for charity foundations through which he hopes to contribute back to society. With these opportunities, Jason has accumulated ground experience to aid his future works.

Daniel Yam

He is an award winning filmmaker who loves to take his audience on a journey to discover the beauty of humanity. Often heart warming and sentimental, his work champions the human spirit. Daniel’s works are seen by more than 500 million viewers worldwide. One of Daniel’s works - short film GIFT has won the hearts of over 30 million viewers world wide on various online platforms. GIFT is now on more than 10 subtitled languages and has traveled the world and won numerous international film festivals.

Nicole Midori Woodford​

She is an alumnus of the 8th Berlinale Talent Campus in 2010 and was selected to join the Asian Film Academy at the Busan International Film Festival (BIFF) 2010. Her short film Kitchen Quartet, was selected for the Singapore International Film Festival in 2010; and For We Are Strangers made its world premiere at the 20th BIFF. Nicole was one of the five selected directors in the inaugural edition of SEAFIC (Southeast Asian Fiction Film Lab) in 2016 and is currently writing her first feature

Randy Ang

He was named one of the top directors and producers by Monocle Magazine in 2009. His short film Ayam Man won Best Motion Picture at the Cathay Movie Awards in 2013. His directed two feature films – his debut crime thriller re:solve (2014) and 1965 (2015). Before directing, he produced feature films The Days and Becoming Royston. He also directs television commercials for United Overseas Bank, Singtel, amongst others.

Sean Ng

He started AMOK, a creative film company in 2014. He’d worked on brands such as Louis Vuitton, Coca-Cola, Chevrolet, Audi, Sony. His short films have screened and competed at international film festivals. In 2015, Sean’s short film, You, Me clinched the Best Film award at the inaugural Movie Makers Competition by MM2 Entertainment. Sean is currently directing Zi Char, a 90 minute telemovie commissioned by Starhub’s E-City Channel.

3. Singapore Film Society Screenings

For ticketing details, please visit Singapore Film Society's website

The Shape of Water
7 Feb, 9 pm, GV Paya Lebar, SingPost Centre

From master storyteller Guillermo del Toro, comes blood-curdling fairytale The Shape of Water. Elisa is a mute, isolated woman who works as a cleaning lady in a hidden, high-security government laboratory in 1962 Baltimore. Her life changes forever when she discovers the lab's classified secret -- a mysterious, scaled creature from South America that lives in a water tank. As Elisa develops a unique bond with her new friend, she soon learns that its fate and very survival lies in the hands of a hostile government agent and a marine biologist. Many critics declared The Shape of Water Del Toro's best film since Pan's Labyrinth, praising in particular Hawkins's performance. The film leads the Oscar nominations with 13 nominations. Trailer

Lady Bird
10 Feb, 1 pm, GV Suntec City

Writer/director Greta Gerwig reveals herself to be a bold new cinematic voice with her directorial debut, excavating both the humor and pathos in the turbulent bond between a mother and her teenage daughter. Christine “Lady Bird” McPherson (Saoirse Ronan) fights against but is exactly like her wildly loving, deeply opinionated and strong-willed mom (Laurie Metcalf), a nurse working tirelessly to keep her family afloat after Lady Bird's father (Tracy Letts) loses his job. Set in Sacramento, California in 2002, amidst a rapidly shifting American economic landscape, Lady Bird is an affecting look at the relationships that shape us, the beliefs that define us, and the unmatched beauty of a place called home. Trailer

There will also be a post-screening dialogue after Lady Bird with local female filmmakers Eva Tang and Wee Li. The dialogue, titled “Breaking The Glass Ceiling: Women Who Make Films”, will centre around the challenges and opportunities faced by women in the film industry from a local perspective.

Actress-director Greta Gerwig is only the fifth woman ever in the 90-year history of the Academy Awards to have been nominated in that prestigious category, and on that significant note, we feel that it is very timely to have a post screening conversation with some of Singapore's very own women in film, as we hear their thoughts and personal experiences on ‘Breaking the Glass Ceiling' in the film and media industry.
City of Ghosts
21 Feb, 9 pm, GV Paya Lebar, SingPost Centre

A documentary that follows the efforts of "Raqqa Is Being Slaughtered Silently," a handful of anonymous activists who banded together after their homeland was taken over by ISIS in 2014. With deeply personal access, this is the story of a brave group of citizen journalists as they face the realities of life undercover, on the run, and in exile, risking their lives to stand up against one of the greatest evils in the world today. Trailer

Have a Nice Day
Feb 24, GV Suntec, more details to follow
The Singapore premiere of this film is in partnership with Anticipate Pictures

Have a Nice Day is a 2017 Chinese animated dark comedy film directed by Liu Jian. It premiered in the main competition for the Golden Bear at the 67th Berlin International Film Festival in February 2017. It is Liu Jian’s second feature film, following his debut Piercing I. The film, mostly done by Liu himself, took three years to complete.

Its plot revolves around the journey of Xiao Zhang, a young driver working for a gang, who steals a bag from his boss containing a million Renminbi to fund a trip to South Korea for his girlfriend to save her failed plastic surgery in Nanjing, Jiangsu. Trailer

4. Wonderful Liang Xi Mei The Movie

Everyone’s favourite tiger mum is back! With the same garish greenish-maroon blouse (that looks like a cheap Versace imitation) she has been wearing since the 90s, Jack Neo is back in another cross-dressing role as Liang Xi Mei, with her signature head-patting tagline 伤脑筋 (What a headache!), Xi Mei is now retired and spends her time looking after two obedient grandsons. Life is still exciting for her thanks to her friends Guang Dong Po, whose absent mind tends to muddle things up a lot, and Lion King, whose mild Alzheimer`s disease causes confusion and frustration for everyone. She puts her hopes on her youngest son Albert because he is more reliable compared to his older brother Robert, who is always scheming to get rich fast. This makes Robert jealous and he ends up getting the help of the God of Fortune to win back his mother`s approval. With a comedy tour-de-force that includes Mark Lee, Henry Thia, Wang Lei and a few other familiar faces, this is one CNY movie that is louder than the lion dance that goes around your neighbourhood.

Out on general release in cinemas islandwide from 15 Feb. Trailer
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