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Portuguese Film Museum plays Taiwanese movies for the first time ever

  • Date:2023-03-01~2023-03-16
Portuguese Film Museum plays Taiwanese movies for the first time ever

Taiwan is slated to hold "King Hu & Taiwanese Martial Arts Film Festival" in the Cinemateca Portuguesa (Portuguese Film Museum) for the first time! "Dragon Inn (龍門客棧)" by Director King Hu (胡金銓) will premiere on March 1, together with 11 must-watch films including "A Touch of Zen (俠女)," "Raining in the Mountain (空山靈雨)," "The Swordsman of All Swordsmen (一代劍王)," "The Bravest Revenge (武林龍虎鬥)," and the Taiwanese language martial arts film "Vengeance of the Phoenix Sisters (三鳳震武林)" featuring the Queen of Taiwanese Opera, Yang Li-hua (楊麗花), leading the locals to the martial arts world.

The Ministry of Culture (Taiwan), Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in Spain and Taipei Economic and Cultural Center, Lisbon, Portugal have a special collaboration with the Cinemateca Portuguesa (Portuguese Film Museum) this year. Under the aegis of Taiwan Film and Audiovisual Institute and the Taiwan Cinema Toolkit Project, the festival will take place from March 1 to 16, playing 11 classic films produced or shot in Taiwan, with each film screening twice, along with the seminars aimed to introduce the development of Taiwanese martial arts films to the European audience.

The Cinemateca Portuguesa indicated that they have continued to plan and arrange film programs since 1958, and it is the first time that the museum introduces Taiwanese films, including the works by one of the greatest martial arts directors, King Hu. This collaboration is the most important film festival for the museum this year, and it is expected to let the Portuguese film audience discover the golden age of Taiwanese films, one of the most spectacular ages of Asian films up to now. The Cinemateca Portuguesa even hopes it is the onset of film-related collaboration with Taiwan, and it will introduce and play more unique Taiwanese movies in the future if an opportunity arises.

MOC stated that martial arts films are a unique genre in the Chinese film industry, and from "Dragon Inn" by the Golden Horse Award-winning director, King Hu, in 1967, the martial arts film craze was triggered in the 1960s, and the films took Taiwan, Korea and Southeast Asia, etc. by storm once; a variety of martial arts films remade from the novels by Jin Yong (金庸) and Gu Long (古龍) made quite a splash in the 1970s, but they declined gradually after the 1980s. MOC also pointed out that it is the first collaboration between Taiwan and the Cinemateca Portuguesa, as well as the first time to play Taiwanese martial arts films in Portugal. Considering the local professional movie audience and the public's unfamiliarity with Taiwanese martial arts films, MOC has specially invited the professional Taiwanese film scholar, Professor Ru-Shou Robert Chen from the College of Communication, National Chengchi University, to hold two seminars in Portugal, hoping to give the locals an idea of Taiwanese martial arts films.

Professor Ru-Shou Robert Chen said that apart from introducing the works by Director King Hu to the Portuguese audience, through other different themes and genres, this film festival will lead the local audience to experience the various excellent martial arts performances of audiovisual effects, sounds, techniques, settings, actors, etc., and let them further admire the beauty of Taiwanese films. Being able to witness the audience's love for Taiwanese films from the other side of the world is touching.

The Cinemateca Portuguesa (Portuguese Film Museum) is a national organization, established by one of the pioneers of the European Film Archive, Manuel Félix Ribeiro, in the beginning of the 1950s, becoming an autonomous organization in 1980 with administrative and financial autonomy, supervised by the Portuguese Ministry of Culture. Situated in downtown Lisbon, aiming to collect, protect, conserve and promote motion picture heritage, and help the public to understand the history of cinema and develop audiovisual culture. The museum is the most important national film archive in Portugal.