Two young Hong Kong activists reflect on their resistance against China, are forced to decide between long-term imprisonment and refugee camps for a life in exile, while their movement inspires mass protests in the city they love.
Black Bauhinia 香港本色 is the first feature-length documentary film on Hong Kong localism and the independence movement, which fundamentally transformed Hong Kong’s domestic and international relations.
The debut film by director and co-producer Dr Malte Kaeding offers a balanced and critical assessment of a subject so complex and sensitive that local filmmakers have shied away from it. Based on Malte’s decade-long research on localism, he follows two young localist leaders’ emotional journey from electoral successes into prison and exile. The collaborative style of filmmaking allows for intimate reflections on the costs of resistance, self-sacrifices, and the meaning of home.
Throughout Black Bauhinia’s three-year production period, localism inspired the 2019 Hong Kong protests, while the ensuing government crackdown rendered the documentary into an outlawed element of resistance.
Black Bauhinia captures the ideas of a young generation that dared to challenge an authoritarian China.