ACF Asian Cinema Fund

Asian Network of Documentary(AND) Fund

2023 Asian Network of Documentary (AND) Fund

LIST A Thousand Winds*
Category Asian Project
Project A Thousand Winds*
Director MOK Kwan Ling
Country Hong Kong, China
Director's Profile Mok Kwan Ling is a graduate of the Department of Comparative Literature at the University of Hong Kong. She has previously worked as a senior feature and video journalist for Stand News and Ming Pao Weekly. She is currently an independent film director, writer, and artist. Her documentary shorts have received awards such as the Human Rights Press Award and Taiwan Press Photo Contest in 2022. Her short film, Far from Home (2021), was a finalist at the Fresh Wave International Short Film Festival 2021. Her screenplay The Unshakable Destiny (Rex Ren) was shortlisted for Golden Horse Film Project Promotion 2022. Her documentary project A Thousand Winds was selected at Giloo Fest 2023.
In the post-social movement era in Hong Kong, ordinary people live their lives as if nothing happened. However, these young people ponder every day: without this incident, this crime, this unbearable burden weighing on their hearts, what kind of people would they have become?

A young man who was shot by a live round fired by a police officer, skirting death during the 2019 anti-government protest, might now be riding his motorcycle, unfettered and free; an eye-catching YouTuber and travel enthusiast could have emigrated to live freely in another country; a theatre actress might be planning her wedding with her boyfriend... But now, prison sentences have changed an entire generation′s life trajectory.

During the 2019 social movement in Hong Kong, 10,279 people were arrested by the police, with approximately 2,899 of them either having faced or currently undergoing legal proceedings. Around 80% of them were convicted and sentenced to imprisonment or other punishments. This documentary transforms these numbers back into human stories, witnessing how they confront this test of their youth with courage, resilience, and unwavering belief in freedom and democracy.
Director's Note
This project began in 2021 when I filmed K for Stand News. He was shot by the police during the social movement in Hong Kong in 2019. I am interested to explore the traumas of young people in the post-protest stage. On December 28, 2021, I arranged an interview with P and her boyfriend, who was facing riot charges, and planned to film him the following day. However, on December 29, 2021, Stand News shut down due to a national security threat. That day, I lost my camera, my press pass, and my cherished ideals. With no position, should I continue filming? I lived in fear and pain for six months after the company′s closure. Watching one after another of the protestors (P’s boyfriend and K) being sentenced to prison, I felt guilty. In the summer of 2022, I met Y, who was charged with rioting for his rescue operation at PolyU on November 18, 2019. He rekindled my desire to use my camera. Before his conviction, I followed him and his friends as they drank, went surfing and hiked. He was sentenced to over four years in prison. I realized that I just wanted to use my camera to accompany these young people, who had been abandoned by the times. And I, too, was one such individual, one such Hong Konger. I continued to document P, and capture the best and worst of times for Hong Kong youth.