Diary of a trip

Hong Kong

by

Evergreen Film

COORDINATES:
22°17′07″ N 114°09′27″ E

Hong Kong, whose name means “fragrant port”, is dynamic and alive. Sounds and smells mingle and give to this island a unique character. Let’s talk about this wonderful destination together with evergreen film.

Who is Evergreen film?

We are Luigia and Giuseppe, destination wedding filmmakers. We are based in Italy but we travel the world telling fascinating love stories. We love the travel experience, getting lost in a place we never visited before. Travel is a fundamental part of our work, every journey enriches us and leaves us memories for the future.

WHEN DID YOU VISIT HONG KONG? IT WAS FOR A WEDDING RIGHT?

We went to Hong Kong last September to film a wedding. We spent 10 unforgettable days, with the promise that we would be back soon in the future.

HOW WAS YOUR TRIP? AND WHAT WAS YOUR FIRST IMPRESSIONs ONCE YOU LANDED?

The trip was very quiet, 12 hours non-stop flight from Rome to Hong Kong. The airline is well aware of how you can spend your time on such long flights, for the majority of the time we watched movies. But we could not sleep, we were too excited to reach Hong Kong.

As soon as we landed, we went looking for a espresso (as good Italians). We were a bit dazed from the trip and 8 hours of time zone difference. We took a few steps towards the exit door and our attention was captured by an endless expanse of red taxis. I had never seen so many taxis, I could not see the end of the line.

The first step out of the airport was shattering, you know, the hottest summer in southern Italy is nothing compared to the 32° and 95% of humidity of Hong Kong. The humidity was a violent punch in my face.

Did you plan your trip before you left? Anything that you would recommend to keep in mind?

We are very meticulous people, before the trip we looked for all possible information about our destination. It is not necessary for us Italians to have a Visa, it is only required if we exceed the 90 days of stay on the island. Before leaving, we also try to identify interesting places to visit, for this purpose I use a lot of google map and Instagram, it often happens that all the programs made before departure go up in smoke, but this is part of the experience.

WHAT DO YOU SUGGEST TO PACK? Did you bring any medications or something out of the normal?

When you arrivein Hong Kong, you can  forget about having perfect hair and an enviable look. The humidity will not give you any mercy, neither by day nor at night.

We have been there between September and October, the weather was very warm and a little rainy. Pack light clothing and comfortable shoes in your suitcase. I would avoid sandals and flip-flops because the streets are not very clean. The locals of Hong Kong love colorful sneakers, so get yourself a pair while you’re here — the louder and more colorful, the better.

Bring lots of layers,  the air conditioning inside the shopping centers and restaurants is very cold and you risk getting sick due to the difference in temperature between inside and outside.

Always carry an umbrella or a keeway with you, during the rainy season its essential, but also during the rest of the year can be useful.

You can not import antibiotics but it’s easy to find everything you need in the city shops.

MOVING AROUND THE CITY REQUIRES SPECIAL Considerations?? WHAT MEANS OF TRANSPORT DID YOU USE (TAXI, TRAM, PUBLIC)?

Moving around Hong Kong is really simple and cheap. There are several alternatives: I suggest the taxi and the traditional Tram, but also the underground is an experience you have to try once.

Taxis are everywhere, rivers of red taxis. It’s really cheap to get around by taxi, for a half hour ride we paid € 5 (500HKD); however, the the taxis sees a “changeover” hour, when drivers switch shifts, from roughly 3 to 4 p.m. daily—an impossible time to hail a cab. The only flaw is that taxi drivers do not speak perfect English; so it can be a bit complicated to make yourselves understood.

LET’S TALK ABOUT THE LANGUAGE: WAS IT WAS EASY TO COMMUNICATE IN ENGLISH?

In hong kong almost everyone speaks English, it has been an English colony for a long time, English is the second language. The only obstacle we encountered with the language was communicating with the taxi drivers. We often asked for help from our hotel to act as an intermediary in order to reach our destination.

Do you have any SUGGESTIONs and considerations when interacting with the locals? what should and shouldn't you do?

What fascinates us most is the education and friendliness of the people. You can’t imagine such a large number of people on an island that moves in a coordinated way without generating files or confusion.

One night we went up the peak to watch the fireworks, it was really full of people, we wanted to shoot some fireworks but there was not enough space to film them.

I asked to be able to get closer to the railing in order to have a better vision and the people allowed me to pass and gave up their place, literally, just for me. This is a rare event, especially in Italy, nobody would give you the best place. Not a chance!

MUST see places

Amazing cityskape / Hong Kong Monetary Authority & Museum

55 / F, Two International Finance Center, 8 Finance Street, Central

Nathan Road for neon signs

Nathan Rd, Tsim Sha Tsui, Hong Kong

Choi Hung Estate

 Wong Tai Sin District of Kowloon

Montane Mansion / block of five densely-packed residential buildings

1028 King’s Rd, Quarry Bay

Alex Croft’s mural

Graham Street

Temple Street Night Market

Temple St, Jordan, Hong Kong  

What equipment did you bring with you? Do you have any special advice on equipment here?

Our equipment bag was very light and basic, we walked a lot of time on foot to explore Hong Kong and it would have been impossible to move easily with heavy backpacks. We suggest you bring a gimbal with you, you will be able to make many shots on the move between the crowd and the street markets.

 

We had 2 Sony alpha 7 s II / Zhiyun Crane gimbal / Mavic Pro Drone

Lenses:
– 50mm Zaiss Loxia
– 35 mm Zaiss Loxia
– 25mm Zaiss Batis

Do you know if there are any special regulations regarding the use of the Drone in the area you have visited?

The Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) approach to drone usage is less restrictive than many other nations. The regulation foresees that all drones below 7 kilograms of weight can be freely driven, provided they do not fly over densely populated areas or areas of strategic importance. We flew over sparsely populated areas, accompanied by a local photographer who has shown us the most suitable locations for shooting. You can get up in the air with a drone from a rooftop or from the beach.

Do you have a story to tell us about your experience?

Little gem of the first day. Giuseppe and I are on the escalators passing through city central.  A girl looks at me and starts screaming in Cantonese. I do not understand what she is saying to me. She is there waiting for me at the end of the escalator: she kicks my ass and keeps shouting at me. Giuseppe was reached by the girl’s mother, she tries to explain to him by gestures that she has mental problems. This was the only time I felt vulnerable in this City.



What is the memory of this journey that you will keep forever?

I like to define Hong Kong the Old City of the future. It reminded us of films that have left a mark on our memory. First of all Blade Runner, the colored neon, the giant signs, the skyscrapers that mark the night landscape. But also Wong Kar-wai and the feeling of sweet melancholy, the Tea ritual and the grace of oriental gestures. Dziga Vertov documenting the post-war evolution of a moving city in the film “Man with a movie camera”. Hong Kong reminds us of Goffri Reggio and the planetary frescoes of his trilogy of the eternal movement: “Qatsi”.

We will never forget this city, our desire is to return again, because we are too small to embrace all of its vastness with a single glance.

Helpful links

inspirations

FILMS  

– Man with a movie camera, 1929 – Dziga Vertov

– Blade Runner, 1982 – Ridley Scott

– Koyaanisqatsi: Life out of balance, 1982 – Goffri Reggio

– Powaqqatsi: Life in transformation, 1988 – Goffri Reggio

– Naqoyqatsi: Life as war , 2002 – Goffri Reggio

– In the mood for love, 2000 Wong Kar-wai