City of Small Blessings

by Wong Chen-Hsi
Singapore

Produced by Fran Borgia (Akanga Film Asia), Gary Goh (mm2 Entertainment), Teh Su Ching (Purple Tree Pictures)

With a new subway line planned to cut through his city, Prakesh, a retired civil servant must vacate his home with his beloved wife. A small error in state planning has included his home for demolition, and he appeals to government officials and people of influence with increased desperation. The retiree cannot afford to live elsewhere. He must save his house and garden at all costs. No one responds. His streams of e-mails become oneway conversations. Construction advances. Prakesh becomes a national cause celebrity, even as his wife secretly makes her own plans, and his estranged son returns home. Then, he receives an invitation to meet the Prime Minister on National Day, but falls mute at the critical moment. Leaving the ceremony, an accident befalls him in the glass and metal city he no longer recognizes. He falls into a coma as he is taken to the hospital. He dreams of the city he had dedicated his life to. Perhaps he wakes, perhaps he does not.

Based on the novel of the same name by Simon Tay winner of the Singapore Literature Prize in 2010.




Mark

Tomorrow is a Long Time

by Jow Zhi Wei
Singapore, Taiwan, France

Produced by Fran Borgia (Akanga Film Asia), Jeremy Chua (Potocol - Singapore), Stefano Centini (Volos Films - Taiwan), Xavier Rocher (La Fabrica Nocturna - France)


Chua, a middle-aged widower does not seem to have much of a connection with anyone, except for his teenage son, Meng, to whom he returns home every morning after his night shift at the shipyard. The long hours meld into an endless draining cycle of labour and overwork, just to survive. Chua hides his increasing vulnerabilities beneath his powerful appearance, while Meng, a deeply sensitive boy, and unable to measure up to his father, acutely feels their difference in stature. In the dense, confined spaces of contemporary Singapore, this relationship between father and son - created by a sense of dependency and tension from the outside world - becomes slowly unbearable... Chua, in a bid to free themselves from this vicious cycle, performs a 'mercy release', freeing a captive animal into the wild. Believing this ritual will create good karma for the person and their child, in this life and the next, Chua lays down an unexpected path for his son.




Mark

Yuni

by Kamila Andini
Indonesia, Singapore, France

Produced by Ifa Isfansyah (Fourcolours Films - Indonesia), Fran Borgia (Akanga Film Asia), Birgit Kemner (Manny Films - France)


Yuni is a smart teenage girl with big dreams. She thinks everything is possible until one day she gets proposed by a man she barely knows. She rejects the proposal and it becomes the talk of her town. The second proposal comes but Yuni still believes in her dreams, so does her family. But something bigger comes up this time. A myth that you cannot reject more than two proposals otherwise you will never get married. Facing the pressure, there are two things that Yuni can choose to: a relationship with Yoga, a younger boy from her school; and poetry reading from the literature class her favorite lecturer, Pak Damar, teaches. With poetry, Yuni feels she can disappear and hide from the world. Until Pak Damar comes to her house and becomes the third person that proposes to her. Yuni still has two options: to run away with Yoga, or to get married to Pak Damar. Both of the options sound like a good deal. But does marriage always have to be a “deal”?




Mark

Tiger Stripes

by Amanda Nell Eu
Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, Germany

Produced by Foo Fei Ling (Ghost Grrrl Pictures - Malaysia), Fran Borgia (Akanga Film Asia), Yulia Evina Bhara (KawanKawan Media - Indonesia), Jonas Weydemann (Weydemann Bros - Germany)


An 11-year-old girl reaches puberty when her body begins to morph at an alarming and horrifying rate. In fear of being labeled as a demon, she struggles to maintain being normal at school by trying to conceal her grotesque self... that is until she decides that she no longer wants to hide from the world.










Mark

The Thonglor Kids

by Aditya Assarat
Singapore, Thailand

Produced by Fran Borgia (Akanga Film Asia), Aditya Assarat (Pop Pictures - Thailand)


Beat and Ong have been best friends since high school. Even though they are now 30, they still go on pretty much the same way they did fifteen years ago – playing tennis twice a week, going out at night, and living La Dolce Vita. One day, Beat meets Pat, a confident young woman who runs a theater company in the neighborhood. The group is in rehearsals for a Thai version of the Harold Pinter play One for the Road, which is a critique of the current dictatorship. He is intrigued by her sincerity and commitment to a political activism that he feels a stranger to, having gone to university abroad for many years. Meanwhile, Ong is in the midst of a fling with Prang, an intern in his fatherʼs office. Knowing that he is already engaged to be married, she hopes to prolong the inevitable for as long as possible. As time passes, Beat begins spending more time with Pat, which angers Singha, her ex-boyfriend and partner at the theater company. They begin to disagree on the direction of the play and finally, a week before the opening, she withdraws from the production and takes a trip to the countryside with Beat, Ong, and Prang. But on opening night, the play is closed down by the military and Singha is taken in for questioning. The news is all over the TV. Arriving back in Bangkok, Pat decides to return to Singha, realizing that her activism is fueled by their relationship and without him, she is lost. At the same time, Ong has his own problems as his fiancé has come back for a visit from the US and found out about his fling with Prang. For the first time, they are left to face the consequences of their carefree lives.




Mark
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