From the Editor
They fuel your fire;
They lurk in the dark side of your mind;
They seduce you, until you are completely obsessed …
Distilled images heaped upon each other – "dazzling" is the only word I have for that. Editing Collective Memories in Movie Posters was, for me, an experience of emotions out of control.
Out of control because the combined charisma of these several hundred posters is overwhelming. The classical lure with beauty and the beautiful. The action-prone embrace all sorts of body language. The humorous or the haunted provoke by means of colour. Hence the relentless comb for rare and original posters was both massive and massively thrilling.
Out of control because Hong Kong cinema is irresistible. This quaint 366-day calendar spans some 50 years of Hong Kong cinematic history. The sources of our collection may be lop-sided. And due to copyright issues, we may have had to relinquish some of the posters selected. But, from post-war Mandarin and Cantonese films to the kung fu fever of the 1970s, Realism, the New Wave and the golden 80s, each of the 400 or so posters tells the history of Hong Kong cinema.
On top of this, we managed to invite over 20 veterans and friends, all experts in film criticism, filmmaking and culture, to pen pithy textual accompaniments for the posters. Some dissect the images; some voice their thoughts on the film industry; some wax lyrical; some even engage in exchanges that transcend time and space. I would like to thank the authors, translators and editorial staff for their persistence and hard work, as well as film companies, copyright holders and donors who have rendered us their support. And of course, a million thanks to the various HKFA teams for their cooperative assistance. From the Acquisition Section, the Conservation Unit, the Resource Centre, to the Systems Section, the Research Section and the Editorial Section, all have done their bit to make Collective Memories in Movie Posters a possibility