Hong Kong Arts Centre, June 22, 2021

Celebrating the unique voices of the world

At its heart, art is about celebrating the unique voice and message that we each possess. Sometimes loud, often quiet, occasionally bold and brash, and perhaps even shy, that singular voice should speak to others and by doing so, help them to better see themselves.

This vision of film as a medium that inspires and challenges - and supporting the filmmakers who create these works - is the mission of the Hong Kong Arthouse Film Festival. Founded in 2015 as an online film festival designed to support filmmakers regardless of their budgets, this prestigious festival celebrates the best of contemporary independent filmmaking. Its works bridge a wide variety of genres - short films, drama, experimental, comedy, horror, slow cinema, sci fi, fantasy, animation, documentary, and more.

Join us at the Hong Kong Arts Centre on June 21 2021.

Hong Kong Arts Centre

The Hong Kong Arthouse Film Festival has evolved to have a physical presence in a premier setting - the Hong Kong Arts Centre (HKAC). As it approaches its fourth decade, the HKAC has become widely recognized as the prime arts and culture incubator in Hong Kong. HKAC strives to engage the community with art, focusing primarily on promoting contemporary art and culture in Hong Kong and abroad through exhibitions, art education and related programs. Add to this the fact that Hong Kong has rapidly become an epicenter in the art world, and it’s apparent that the prestige of the location and the potential of showing work in Asia – with all the distribution opportunities the continent offers – is appealing to a whole new class of filmmakers.



Hong Kong Arthouse Film Festival has announced the award winners for the 2019 edition.

KHAFF wishes to say thanks to all the wonderful filmmakers for submitting their work to our festival. This year we were privileged to receive more than 1500 entries. 30 films made it to the selection.
After a marathon screening session at the Hong Kong Arts Centre the members of the jury awarded the following films as the best of the fest.

This year the jury was made up of Alejandro Rodriguez Gomez, Frederic Lichtenstein, Hillian Siu, Nicolas lesaffre, Charlotte Pang and Max Hattler. 

The prize for the Best Narrative Film went to River of Oedipus (China) by Yu Daxiong. The prize for the Best Documentary Film was for Shooting Crows (Switzerland) by Christine Hürzeler. The Best Animated Film award went to Flood (Germany) by Malte SteinUpgrading Happiness (China) by Kwok yee miu won Best Experimental Film. The Best Underground Film award went to Diva & Astro (United States) by Angel BarroetaBest Music Video award went to Pandemia (Hong Kong) by Yiannis Biliris

Hong Kong Arthouse Film Festival has announced the award winners for the 2018 edition.

The prize for the Best Narrative Film went to A Doll's Hug (Taiwan) by Rob Chihhwen Lo. The Kingdom of Men (Hong Kong) by Sham Kwan Yin received the award for Best Hong Kong Film. The prize for the Best Documentary Film was for The Velvet Underground Played at My High School (United States) by Robert Pietri, Tony Jannelli. The Best Animated Film award went to Scandal (Réunion) by Pablo Mengin-LecreulxA P E X (United Kingdom) by Stuart T Birchall won Best Experimental FilmBest Music Video award went to The Fool You Need (United States) by Jean-Paul Frenay, a music video for Son Lux.

Hong Kong Arthouse Film Festival history

Check out our Facebook page for recent updates and the historical news updates on selections and award winners: www.facebook.com/hongkongarthousefilmfestival/





Location: Hong Kong Arts Centre

2 Harbour Rd, Wan Chai, Hong Kong


Introduction by Jane Ching

Interrogation (United Kingdom)

by Ivo Krankowski

How to get to the bottom of things. An examination of the nature of truth in a tense interview situation.

Duration: 00:01:08

Asian premiere

Festivals: Verona International FF (Italy), AltFF Alternative FF (Canada)

Birth of a Poet (United States) by James Franco, Pedro Gómez Millán, Zachary Kerschberg

Birth of a Poet is a dramatic short film that captures the moment Stephen Dobyns transitions from a disillusioned journalist to an emerging poet. It is adapted from autobiographical poems. TRAILER

Duration: 00:14:23

Asian premiere

Festivals: Toronto Arthouse FF (USA), Brussels Independent FF (BE)

Magic Kingdom (United States)

by Nelson Ng Chak Hei

The story is set in 1997 against the backdrop of the looming handover. Kit, a middle-aged single parent, brings his son from Hong Kong to California under the pretense of visiting Disneyland. The son, Chun, comes to realize the real intention of the trip is for his own adoption.

Duration: 00:15:00

In Passing (Canada)

by Esther Cheung

A portrait of seventies Hong Kong as the director's parents remember it. TRAILER

Duration: 00:04:08

Festivals: BFI London FF (UK)

Forgive and Not to Forgive (Hong Kong)

by Elysa Wendi

Shared dialogues between Chang Yan and Chen Jun about their childhood trauma, contemplating the hatred they feel towards their fathers. Body movements and memories in the intimacy of an unknown space. One chooses to forgive, another one chooses not to.

Duration: 00:05:46

Asian premiere

Festivals: Dan.cin.Fest (France), Brussels Independent FF (Belgium)

Fifteen (Quince) (United Kingdom)

by Peiman Zekavat

A private video of Maria goes viral during a volleyball class in a school in Lima.

Duration: 00:10:00

Festivals: BFI London FF (UK), HollyShorts FF (USA)

Fracture (United States)

by Cynical Smile (Karl Richter)

A study of discomfort and a focus on the spaces in our mind that are constantly interrupted by in an age distraction.

Duration: 00:03:45

International premiere

On (Australia)

by Jelena Sinik

In our age of attention scarcity, ‘On’ explores just where our gaze is falling. Take a curious and playful glimpse into both the connectedness and enduring loneliness of the modern condition, through this intimate and unexamined lens.

Duration: 00:02:05

Asian premiere

Festivals: Atom Awards (Australia), Byron Bay FF (Australia), Sydney World FF (Australia)

Fragile Machines (United States)

by Derek Johnson, Luke Smithers

Fragile Machines is an independent art film which tells the story of a married couple and the affairs that make their relationship irreparable. 

Duration: 00:06:07

Asian premiere

Festivals: Brussels Independent FF (Belgium)

Pura Vida (Slovakia)

by Martin Gonda

Financial crisis enters the households of a provincial town and people start to lose their jobs. Two adolescent brothers rebel against their father, a factory foreman, who becomes a scapegoat for the frustrated community. TRAILER

Duration: 00:30:00

Asian premiere

Festivals: Cannes FF, Cinéfondation


Location: Hong Kong Arts Centre

2 Harbour Rd, Wan Chai, Hong Kong


Introduction by Jane Ching

Fluorescent (Israel)

by Avner Pinchover

A fluorescent bulb is shot from a cannon at high speed against a wall. At 3,000 frames per second and in its last moment, it can finally shed its inner light.

Duration: 00:02:09

Festivals: Brussels Independent FF (Belgium)

Love (Canada)

by Benoit Ouellet

The friendship between Sam and Mathieu ends.

Duration: 00:04:42

Festivals: Toronto Arthouse FF (Canada)

023_GRETA_S (Germany)

by Annika Birgel

A young actress' audition quickly spirals out of control, turning into an intimate and manipulative interrogation. As she fights to stand her ground, one pressing question will remain: how far will she go to get the role? 023_GRETA_S is a disquieting drama about the abuse of power in the film industry. TRAILER

Asian premiere

Festivals: Slamdance FF (USA), FEST New Directors, New Films (Portugal), Boston Short FF (USA)

Petty Thing (China)

by Li zexi

The summer afternoon was no special, until the kids, also gun fight lovers, hung around in the village and found a replica pistol. As the trigger was pulled, the whole wood was awakened. TRAILER

Duration: 00:03:46

Festivals: Super Shorts London FF (UK)

Field of Infinity (United Kingdom)

by Guli Silberstein

Inspired by Renaissance paintings and contemporary news broadcasts from Gaza protests - the work processes human gestures and figures in landscape into a dark and colourful scramble. An array of reflections, including concerns about the political image, image of the political, the politics of the image, and the image of image.

Duration: 00:05:22

Festivals: Super Shorts London FF (UK), Venice Film Week (Italy)

Matter Out of Place (United States)

by Oona Taper

Intimate portrait. Blurred line. Exploration of presence and absence. An experimental animation.

Duration: 00:02:28

Festivals: Anthens Animfest (Greece)

Under the Flag (United States)

by Jiawei Cheng

A driven and conscientious girl at China's premier dance school gets the lead position in a prestigious performance but struggles to accept it after she learns that her mother has bribed the teacher to buy her the part. TRAILER

Duration: 00:14:59


Festivals: AFI Fest (USA)

Survival HK (Hong Kong)

by Louise Pau

An english listening test takes place inside a small classroom while a typhoon brews outside. The students struggle to focus between the test recording and what happens beyond the test.

Duration: 00:07:06

Festivals: Zagreb FF (Croatia), GLAS Animation Festival (USA), IFVA Festival (Hong Kong)

Drifting (United States)

by Hanxiong Bo

Disguised as a girl growing up during the time of one-child policy in China, Yan is confused about his gender identity and struggles with the conservative world around him. Drifting in his dad's old taxi becomes a way of expressing feelings. Tonight, he gets on a dreamy journey to find his missing sister. TRAILER

Duration: 00:16:25

Festivals: San Sebastian FF (Spain), Busan International FF (Korea), Atlanta FF (USA)

The Manila Lover (Norway)

by Johanna Pyykkö

During a trip to the Philippines, middle-aged, Norwegian Lars has met Abigail - the Filipina he wants to share his life with. But does she share his plans?  TRAILER

Duration: 00:26:27

Asian premiere

Festivals: Cannes Film Festival, Critics Week (France), Helsinki International FF (Finland)


Submit your film on Film Freeway - Hong Kong Arthouse Film Festival

The Hong Kong Arthouse Film Festival accepts all forms and genres: short films, medium length films, feature films, drama, experimental, comedy, horror, slow cinema, sci fi, fantasy, animation, documentary,... Go to our Filmfreeway listing to enter your film.


All selected filmmakers will receive The Tarkovski Grant, a film festival submission fee waiver package with an average value of about $250. This not only saves you a lot of money, but it also recognizes your work as something to watch for during the selection procedure, making a selection with another partner film festival more likely - but of course, never guaranteed. The Tarkovski Grant supports hundreds of filmmakers each year in their challenging journeys as independent filmmakers, by promoting existing films, no matter the genre, style or length. The Tarkovski Grant is supported by film festivals from all over the world. Find out more here: https://www.tarkovski.net/thetarkovskigrant

​All selected films are also automatically in the running for Producer's Night. Producer's Night is an opportunity for independent filmmakers to have their work screened to a private group of elite Hollywood producers. For many directors, it could mean their ticket to the mainstream. The exclusive screening presented by Cinematory, Tarkovski, and Hollywood producer Bhavani Rao, member of the PGA, will show the best of independent cinema from the past year's film festivals at the Lee Strasberg Theatre and Film Institute in West Hollywood. The only way to be considered for this by being selected at one of the partner film festivals. Hong Kong Arthouse Film Festival is a proud partner film festival of Producer's Night. More information: www.producersnight.com

In an added effort to support new and emerging filmmakers, Hong Kong Arthouse Film Festival will offer a free year of access to Videomaker's digital magazine to all filmmakers submitting their work to the 2021 edition. Videomaker Magazine is dedicated to video production, features tips and tricks for shooting and editing, buyer's guides for equipment, and editorial content on the industry of film. More information: https://www.videomaker.com



Best Narrative Short Film 
Best Documentary Short Film 
Best Animated Short Film 
Best Experimental Short Film 
Best Hong Kong Short Film



The Hong Kong Arthouse Film Festival accept all forms and genres. All non-English language films must be subtitled in English. Entry does not guarantee acceptance into the festival. Submissions WILL NOT be returned. We also accept submissions that have premiered elsewhere and that may have distribution agreements already in place. Rough cuts and incomplete projects are not accepted. Multiple entries are allowed, however a separate entry form must be submitted for each. The festival has the capability to screen MP4.

Screenings are scheduled during the Festival at the discretion of the Hong Kong Arthouse Film Festival. Whilst every effort will be made to adhere to the published schedule, Hong Kong Arthouse Film Festival reserves the right to make changes at any time for any reason. Hong Kong Arthouse Film Festival will not be liable for any costs claimed as a result of a change in scheduling. No film may be withdrawn from the festival program after its selection. If chosen as an official selection, Hong Kong Arthouse Film Festival is granted the permission to exhibit the film at the Hong Kong Arthouse Film Festival and all associated screenings. Location and timing of any screenings of the film shall be the sole decision of the organizers of the Hong Kong Arthouse Film Week. Filmmakers will be solely responsible for all costs resulting from the submission of the film to the Festival including but not limited to postage or insurance of the film, and expenses of your staff or any representatives of the film. Producer will indemnify the organisers of the Festival against all claims, demands, costs, damages, expenses (including legal fees), proceedings and losses resulting from the screening of the film at the Festival or from claims by any third parties.

Although every precaution will be taken to prevent loss or damage to materials while in the possession of the festival, The Hong Kong Arthouse Film Festival is not responsible should any materials be damaged while in transit to or from, or while in the possession of the festival.

The filmmaker holds the Hong Kong Arthouse Film Festival, its management, juries, subsidiaries, agents, sponsors, affiliates, and etc. harmless from any and all claims of liability resulting from entry. The filmmaker certifies to have full rights. Producer will indemnify the organisers of the Festival against all claims, demands, costs, damages, expenses (including legal fees), proceedings and losses resulting from the screening of the film at the Festival or from claims by any third parties.

The festival does not offer screening fees for its films. By submitting through FilmFreeway you are agreeing to NOT request a screening fee as a requirement for your film's participation in the festival, should your film get selected for the program.

Since the festival only requires a nominal entry fee, we will NOT accept requests for other entry fee waivers.



Producer's Night Logo 2.png
Tarkovski logo black.png
The Tarkovski Grant Logo
ZuperbrandZ logo



Screenings at Hong Kong Arts Centre:

2 Harbour Road,

Wan Chai,

Hong Kong

Contact us:




© 2020 by Hong Kong Arthouse Film Festival. A Tarkovski Project.