The University of Hong Kong announces the February 7 premiere of Hong Kong Cinema Through a Global Lens, the first MOOC (Massive Open Online Course) on Hong Kong cinema to be produced anywhere in the world. This pioneering online experience launches under the direction of internationally recognized film studies scholars Professor Gina Marchetti and Dr. Aaron Han Joon Magnan-Park from the HKU Department of Comparative Literature and Dr. Stacilee Ford from the HKU Department of History and American Studies Program with the creative assistance of HKU TELI (Technology-Enriched Learning Initiative).
The EdEx platform hosts Hong Kong Cinema Through a Global Lens, which is free of charge on the internet. Lively and student-centered, this MOOC is appropriate for secondary, tertiary, and lifelong learners from all corners of the globe, who have a good command of the English language. Teachers are welcome and encouraged to adapt various modules and materials for their own classroom or e-learning needs. The course explores globalization through Hong Kong cinema featuring crisp analyses of the actors and filmmakers whose lives and films connect the local Hong Kong scene to global histories, events, and trends. Throughout the six-week course, students will encounter stars including Bruce Lee, Jackie Chan, and Maggie Cheung as well as award-winning directors such as John Woo, Mabel Cheung, Andrew Lau, and Wong Kar-Wai.
Each week a new film showcases talents, themes, and local-global connections. The cinematic canvas ranges from martial arts and heroic bloodshed films to romantic comedies and migration melodramas. Covering a range of topics, genres, and films, the course features demonstrations of swordplay and action choreography, tutors students in the close analysis of film techniques, uncovers the reasons for the worldwide appeal of genres such as the kung fu film, and nurtures a comparative and critical understanding of issues of gender, race, and migration. Interviews with film professionals such as directors Mabel Cheung and Andrew Lau, producer John Sham, film festival director Roger Garcia, and other guests, offer candid insights about the industry.
“Our ‘on site’ location in the cultural crossroads that is Hong Kong allows us extraordinary access to the industry,” says Professor Marchetti. “I am particularly pleased that this MOOC showcases a team of scholars within the HKU Department of Comparative Literature and the Faculty of Arts who do cutting-edge research and model pedagogical excellence.” Magnan-Park asserts, “Those in the know understand Hong Kong cinema’s uniqueness and its continuing impact in transforming other national cinemas, including China and Hollywood. You too can begin your journey to become a cinematic doyen.” The instructors are keen to facilitate teacher-student and peer-to-peer interactions that, like Hong Kong cinema itself, energize as they educate. Marchetti is hopeful that “MOOC learners will see how these flows and dynamic processes are inflected in characterization, plot development, and space-time configurations on Hong Kong screens.” Magnan-Park guarantees that Hong Kong cinema will “kung fu your mind” to reveal your inner Hong Kong connections.
For information and registration see the following links: https://www.edx.org/course/hong-kong-cinema-through-global-lens-hkux-hku06-1x OR http://online.hku.hk.