Recovering from a weekend of media overload – binge-watching The Lonely Gourmet, an addictive manga-derived Japanese TV show that is ‘essentially pornography’, and reading Michael Wolff’s Fire and Fury, which has received so much coverage that you already know half the contents.
And I got out to see Steven Spielberg’s The Post, starring Meryl Streep as Washington Post proprietor Katherine Graham and Tom Hanks as editor Ben Bradlee – about the Pentagon Papers/Daniel Ellsberg/etc affair, and thus in some ways a prequel to All the President’s Men. Gripping stuff, even if the feminist-icon angle is a bit clunky.
This was a ‘special screening’ at the Festival Walk cinema for the Hong Kong press (plus one or two inevitable lowlife hangers-on). However, it was not aimed at movie critics or culture correspondents – but actual news reporters and at least one prominent journalism lecturer. In its invitation, Intercontinental Films Distributors said it was offering the free tickets to thank the local media for their efforts and to inspire them in their future investigative work (or something to that effect).
A cunning way to flatter the recipients into producing positive viral reviews? New marketing floozy doesn’t understand how things work? Several members of the audience were scraping Tuen Mun dirt off their shoes on arrival in the foyer, fresh from staking out new Justice Secretary Teresa Cheng’s illegal structures, and making the government squirm over its latest scandal. It all sounds uncharacteristically, indeed dangerously, edgy for Hong Kong’s notoriously pro-establishment entertainment industry world.