Switch onto movie action with HKU online course

Local | Amy Nip 7 Feb 2017

Hong Kong movies about kung fu, police-triad face-offs and romance have been produced over decades, and now a free course designed by the University of Hong Kong will examine how the films have gone on to form part of global popular culture.

Hong Kong Cinema Through a Global Lens commences today for a six- week run of four to six hours a week available on internet learning platforms edX and Coursera.

Students will be told to watch various movies, including some starring Jackie Chan Kong-sang and Bruce Lee, migration melodrama An Autumn's Tale, thriller The Killer by John Woo, cop story Infernal Affairs and In the Mood for Love by Wong Kar-wai.

Hong Kong directors Mabel Cheung Yuen-ting and Andrew Lau Wai-keung will be among guests sharing their insights.

There will also be demonstrations of martial arts choreography, analysis of film techniques and a look into issues explored in the movies such as gender, race and migration. There will also be looks at how some films connect Hong Kong to the world - an example of globalization, says the university.

"Perhaps you know the films of martial arts icons Bruce Lee and Jackie Chan or the heroic bloodshed films of John Woo," reads an introduction.

"Perhaps you are a fan of stars such as Maggie Cheung or Chow Yun-fat. Maybe you admire works by directors such as Wong Kar Wai.

"Whatever you know and wherever you are we invite you to join us on a journey to consider how the local and the global intersect to make Hong Kong cinema an integral part of popular culture around the world."

Gina Marchettid, a professor in the university's department of comparative literature, will also talk about how Hong Kong has been portrayed in Hollywood productions. Examples include James Bond action in Die Another Day, Lara Croft Tomb Raider: The Cradle of Life, and Batman-based The Dark Knight.

The same online platforms see the university launching a free online course about dinosaurs on February 8. Dinosaur Ecosystems runs for six weeks with two to three hours of content a week.

Dinosaurs "have captivated us in movies and newspaper headlines," said Michael Pittman, a vertebrate paleontologist in HKU's department of earth sciences.

"However, popular depictions of dinosaurs in their environments often don't incorporate the scientific evidence available."

More information on registration for the courses can be found at http:/ /tl.hku.hk/hkuonline/

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