A culmination of the 2024 Objectifs x Asian Film Archive Film Programmers' Lab, programmed by Daryl Cheong and Jolie Fan

Held in conjunction with the Objectifs x Momo Film Co Short Film Incubator and FreshTake! 2024 Main Programme

Chapel Gallery, Objectifs
24 Aug 2024

Ticket prices (per screening programme)
Concession ticket (student) – $5 (please note that ID may be verified at the door)
General ticket – $8


This year, FreshTake! will include a Special Programme – Up/Down Singapore Hill: Un-Mapping Our Perspectives of the Region on Screen. This screening is one of the culminating outcomes of the 2024 Objectifs x Asian Film Archive Film Programmers’ Lab, and was programmed by Daryl Cheong and Jolie Fan.

Click here to find out more information about FreshTake! 2024 – Main Programme.

Overall Screening Schedule

I. Around the Bend (Wed 21 Aug, 7.30pm – 8.30pm)

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II. Familial Grounds (Thu 22 Aug, 7.30pm – 9pm)

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III. From Margin to Centre (Fri 23 Aug, 7.30pm – 9pm)

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IV. Special Programme – Up/Down Singapore Hill: Un-Mapping Our Perspectives of the Region on Screen (Sat 24 Aug, 4.30pm – 6.30pm)

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Find out more information about the Special Programme below.


SPECIAL PROGRAMME – UP/DOWN SINGAPORE HILL: UN-MAPPING OUR PERSPECTIVES OF THE REGION ON SCREEN | 24 AUG 2024, 4.30PM to 6.30PM

Singapore has long been viewed as a dynamic nexus in the context of our larger region and especially Southeast Asia (SEA), often perceived as both a central hub and an observer of its neighbouring peripheries. This short-film programme, ‘Up/Down Singapore Hill: Un-mapping Our Perspectives of the Region on Screen’ invites audiences to transcend conventional narratives and explore viewpoints that challenge how Singapore and SEA are interconnected yet distinct, delineated by our national narratives.

The metaphorical reference to “Singapore Hill” in the title evokes the historical and colonial legacy of Fort Canning, a strategic military site during the colonial era, and aims to challenge and reframe traditional, often colonial-influenced worldviews outward to and of SEA. By invoking a site associated with war and conquest, the programme highlights the need to critically examine and transcend these imposed perspectives, fostering a deeper understanding of the region’s diverse and interconnected identities, serving a powerful reminder of the historical contexts that have shaped current viewpoints, inviting audiences to explore new, more inclusive narratives that honour the plurality of voices within SEA.

The films in this programme explore the localised vantage points with which we view the region and the world, mediated and governed through the perspectives of Land, State, and Body. The focus on Singaporean works is an opportune lens with which we can consider our standpoints and biases. Each film is a narrative thread, woven from the fabric of lived experiences and oral literacies, demonstrating the complexities and richness that make up our region, challenging any monolithic or colonial perspectives on ‘Southeast Asia’.

This theme explores the relationship between geography and identity, and how landscapes are intertwined with personal and collective histories. The films also consider the politics and imperialism associated with land and land use, and how these govern the ways we extend into the world.
Second Chance by Robert Zhao / Rating TBC / 8 mins / 2022
An overlooked feature of Singapore’s landscape, secondary forests are forests that have sprung up over previously disturbed land. They make up the bulk of Singapore’s spontaneous vegetation, which covers more than half of Singapore’s existing greenery. However, they are often undervalued ecologically, although researchers are looking into how secondary forests can help with climate change and biodiversity loss.
Blueprints for Volition City by Toh Hun Ping / PG / 8 mins / 2006
A dirge for Singapore and a prophecy for its demise. A prevision of its build-up of mouth-gagging noise, cracking facades, exposed flesh and percolating wastes. A visceral assault of distorted guitars and found sounds, juxtaposed with blistering found footage, Blueprints for Volition City was created entirely via stop-motion with hand-manipulated photographic prints. Featuring guitar work by Kelvin Tan of The Oddfellows.
Wormhole by Yeo Siew Hua & Nelson Yeo / PG / 4 mins / 2012
The earthworm is a tunnel with openings on each end where the Earth is consumed and excreted. Shot in the tunnel of the now defunct KTM railway – the tracks that once connected Singapore and Malaysia, Wormhole is a penetrating meditation on Man and orifices.

 

Films under this theme investigate the interactions between individuals and state mechanisms, highlighting how political landscapes influence personal lives and community dynamics.
Dahdi by Kirsten Tan / PG / 18 mins / 2014
A tale of moral versus legal responsibility, an elderly granny finds an unexpected visitor, a young asylum-seeking girl, in her home during dinner. Inspired by a 2012 incident, where 40 Rohingya refugees arrived by boat into the port of Singapore.
Wallflowers in the Parade by Tan Jit Jenn / Rating TBC / 18 mins / 2021
A filmic prayer from a Jehovah’s Witness couple to their only son, about his move into prison in a few day’s time as he defers conscription. The film also touches on photographs and interviews with past Jehovah’s Witness men who were imprisoned.

 

This theme focuses on the human body as a site of political, social, and cultural contestation. It explores how bodies are mapped, controlled, and liberated within the larger societal context. Singapore’s socio-political models influence the physical and psychological experiences of individuals within the region, highlighting issues of autonomy and resistance.
Visions From My Scalp by Mark Chua & Lam Li Shuen / Rating exemptible / 5 mins / 2023
Streaks of hair and colours weave together furiously, imploding into a frantic vision drawn between exuberance and anxiety. The filmmakers glued their hair to 16mm and Super 8 film leader loops that were played in overlay and modified with ink during projection in this textural expression of a manic feeling of being.
Hampshire Road by Ting Min-Wei / G / 8 mins / 2019
With one take, the camera traverses the exterior of a single structure in Singapore, to see how space is constructed and used to monitor and channel migrant workers onto buses back to dormitories.
Jiran Sekampung (Village Neighbours) by Toh Hun Ping / PG / 6 mins / 2020
Singapore and its evolving village neighbours, in strings of place names spoken or sung on film, spanning seven decades of the 20th century. This found footage film is named after a similarly-titled 1966 Malay-language Cathay-Keris feature movie produced in Singapore and directed by Hussain Haniff.

 


About Daryl Cheong

Daryl Cheong is a third-year student at Nanyang Technological University (NTU) majoring in English Literature and minoring in Entrepreneurship. He is also an inaugural recipient of the NTU Talent Scholarship.

He last programmed at the Singapore International Film Festival, where he focused on world premiere feature films and Singaporean short films. He has also programmed for Singapore Film Society, Perspectives Film Festival, National Youth Film Awards, Short Circuit, and Close-Up @ The Coup. He is also the President of the NTU Film Society, and runs the *SCAPE x fff Film Club.

About Jolie Fan

Jolie Fan is a writer and researcher working at the intersection of criticism, journalism and image-making. Multitudinal and a lover of the peripheral, her practice investigates Southeast Asian moving images shaped by political, economic and cultural superstructures of production. She was a youth film critic at the Far East Film Festival 2022 and the Singapore International Film Festival 2022. She was the festival director of the Perspectives Film Festival in 2022, programming executive in 2021’s edition and a programmes intern at the Asian Film Archive in 2021. Currently, she is a mentor and editor with *SCAPE Singapore’s Film Critics Lab.


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