In 1842, when Hong Kong became a British colony, The Kowloon Walled City, a military fort, was abandoned by the Chinese, but never officially handed over to the British, creating a political black hole. It was a haven to Triads and other illegal activities, since the colonial government technically could not administer what was still designated as Chinese territory. It was also a refuge for a hard working people that called it simply, home. After the eviction of its 33,0000 residents, the Kowloon Walled City was demolished in 1994.
The Walled City is an animation that seeks to capture the spirit of the Kowloon Walled City. It is not an attempt to document or nostalgically memorialize the city in a historical manner, but to rather inspire interest in the Kowloon Walled City as a community that endured against all odds. In a series of surrealistic events, the two characters of the film emerge from their paintings of one another. The paintings offer a window to memories and experiences. The film suggests these paintings are not exclusively made by the characters, but perhaps are apparitions in the memories of a lost city awaiting demolition.The relationship between the Kowloon Walled City and Hong Kong was by no means a binary one: slum vs. glittering metropolis. Rather, the two entities shaped each other’s development, transforming one another into something uniquely other. Just as the Walled City’s relationship with Hong Kong is not binary, the relationship between the characters and the city is one of “becoming” their counterpart