The awaited Hong Kong film ‘Anita’ will open the ASFF

In a press conference the ASFF announced the first films selected for the 19th edition, which can be seen between July 19 and 24 in Vic. All of them are premieres from different origins. Among them, the one in charge of opening the festival. Anita, by Longman Leung, the long-awaited biographical work of Anita Mui, cantopop star (Cantonese pop) and mythical actress of the golden years of Hong Kong cinema.

It is a vivid and nostalgic account of her life from her debut as a child performer to becoming one of the icons of contemporary culture. Anita is one of the biggest Hong Kong film titles of the year, with twelve nominations for the country's Film Academy Awards. The festival will also screen two Anita Mui films in retrospective sessions with restored prints, one of them as part of the Més Nits! program.

Also part of the Official Section of the Festival Nits will be Dostojee, a film selected at festivals such as the BFI London or Göteborg about the friendship between two children and childhood as a refuge from adult conflicts, background noise in this summer film set in Bangladesh in the 90s of the last century in which the protagonists await the arrival of the new film by the well-known Indian actor Amitabh Bachchan.

From India and Bangladesh we move to Indonesia, where Preman is from, a title that combines action and social criticism with rapturous moments of magical realism and a powerful mise-en-scène. A preman, in Indonesia, is someone who commits crimes to survive, people at risk of social exclusion who find themselves involved in a criminal world.

The protagonist of Randolph Zaini's surprising debut is one of them, a deaf man with a shady past, who will have to flee the small village where he and his son live, pursued by a dangerous gangster.

Action cinema will also have a representative in the form of a comedy with Junretsuger, a crazy Japanese film about some very special heroes: the Junretsuger of Sento —the bathhouse—, who will have to deal with the mysterious disappearance of several handsome men from public baths all over Japan.

With the authorities totally disoriented, the protagonists will try to solve the case by transforming themselves using special karaoke microphones. The most irresistible tokusatsu of the season has it all: martial arts, heroes in tight dresses, melodic music, a badass and ingenious special effects.

From China comes an artistically imposing film that was part of the Official Selection of the Tokyo Festival: The Coffin Painter, a film that delves into the traditions of the country talking about Jia, a man who paints coffins and tries to overcome a hard blow from the past by devoting himself to his art. One day, a mother and her teenage daughter arrive in the village and become his neighbors.

A world subjected to indifference welcomes three lonely souls in this austere film, full of kindness and learning.