Aspirasians: Asia Society Summer Film Series 2010

The "Aspirasians" trailer highlights films in this year's Summer Film Series. (4 min., 47 sec.)

July 10 – 24, 2010

Asia’s remarkable growth in recent decades has been marred by rising inequality. Millions of people have failed to benefit from the rapid development enjoyed by small elite. In its eighth year, the Asia Society Summer Film Series draws attention to the plight of the region’s people and their remarkable valor in the face of adversity. Aspirasians is a poignant reminder of how those in less than ideal situations can rise above their given circumstances.

Screening Venue
The Grand Cinema, 2/F, Elements, 1 Austin Road West, Kowloon (Kowloon Station, MTR)

General: HK$60
Asia Society members, students, seniors: $HK50

Tickets are available through The Grand Cinema and HK Ticketing’s box offices located at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Center, The Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts, Fringe Club, Hong Kong International Trade & Exhibition Centre, AsiaWorld-Expo, and The Academy’s Landmark Heritage Campus – Bethanie, as well as Tom Lee Music Stores.

Telephone Reservation:
(852) 31 288 288

Internet Reservation:

The Grand Cinema and HK Ticketing apply a customer service fee to all tickets purchased via their networks. This fee is additional to the face value of the ticket and is payable upon purchase of tickets.

Ticket sales for each screening close at HK Ticketing box offices at 8:00 pm on the day before each screening. Door tickets are available online through The Grand Cinema, at its box office and auto-ticketing machines on the day of each screening.



Thanks Maa
Irfan Kamal
2009 | India | 120 minutes
In Hindi with English subtitles
Saturday, July 10, 7:30pm | Thursday, July 22, 7:30pm

In the urban sprawl of Mumbai, 12 year-old street kid Municipality escapes the reformatory and rescues a two day-old baby from a ferocious street dog. He begins a relentless journey to locate the baby’s mother. With both interference and help from fellow street kids, Municipality traces the mother and learns a bitter truth about life, destroying his flawless image of a mother, and his dream of one day finding his own mother who abandoned him as a baby.


Noriben – The Recipe for Fortune
Akira Ogata
2009 | Japan | 107 minutes
In Japanese with English subtitles
Sunday, July 11, 4:30pm | Friday, July 23, 7:30pm

31 year-old Komaki’s life changes dramatically. After a divorce, she moves back to her hometown with her young daughter, Non-chan. Faced with the hardships of being a single mother, with no qualifications or work experience, she decides to strike out on her own and opens a bento shop. Matters are complicated by an old childhood flame, persistent ex-husband and a reluctant culinary mentor, clouding Komaki's dreams of independence and financial stability.



Beijing Taxi
Miao Wang
2010 | USA/China | 78 minutes
In Putonghua with English subtitles
Thursday, July 15, 7:30pm | Saturday, July 17, 7:30pm (with post-screening Q&A with director)

The lives of three Beijing taxi drivers as they navigate a quickly morphing city in preparation for the 2008 Olympics. They radiate a warm sense of humanity despite the struggles adapting to the new realities of life. Bai Jiwen belongs to the lost generation who came of age during the Cultural Revolution; Wei Caixia has aspirations of a free-spirited life and entrepreneurial success; and Yi Zhou, an affable and content man, holds on to the less ambitious, more traditional Beijinger’s lifestyle of the past.



A Matter of Size
Sharon Maymon, Erez Tadmor
2009 | Israel | 90 minutes
In Hebrew & Japanese with English subtitles
Friday, July 16, 7:30pm

Newly unemployed, living at home with his mother in the Israeli city of Ramla and banished from his weight-loss program, Herzl eventually finds himself washing dishes in a Japanese restaurant. There, through his boss who used to coach sumos in Japan, he discovers the contact sport - one in which large people are honored and appreciated. Together with a few overweight friends, they pursue a newfound passion which gives them an entirely new perspective on life.



If I Knew What You Said
Mike Sandejas
2009 | Philippines | 88 minutes
In Tagalog with English subtitles
Sunday, July 18, 4:30pm | Saturday, July 24, 7:30pm

Talented musician Nina has difficulty controlling her anger. Following a physical altercation at school, she is forced to attend a camp working with deaf teens, where she meets Kiko. Despite a rocky first meeting, Kiko's gentle and patient manner soon wins her over. When Nina learns that Kiko has a passion for dancing, their love of music creates a strong bond between them. While their friendship thrives in the camp, things are difficult in the world outside and they must find ways to adapt to each other's world.



*English subtitles are only available when the spoken language is not English


Program Enquiries
Asia Society Hong Kong Center
Tel: (852) 2103 9508/ (852) 2103 9504

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