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Hong Kong Horror Cinema

Edited by Gary Bettinson, Daniel Martin

Paperback (Forthcoming)
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The first book-length English-language study of Hong Kong horror films

Dumplings stuffed with diabolical fillings. Sword-wielding zombies. Hopping cadavers. Big-head babies. For decades, Hong Kong cinema has served up images of horror quite unlike those found in other parts of the world. In seminal films such as A Chinese Ghost Story, Rouge, The Eye, Dumplings, and Rigor Mortis, the region’s filmmakers have pushed the boundaries of genre, cinematic style, and bad taste. But what makes Hong Kong horror cinema so utterly unique? Why does it hold such fascination for “serious” cinephiles and cult fans alike? Hong Kong Horror Cinema is the first English-language study of this delirious and captivating cinematic tradition, offering new insights into the history of Hong Kong horror through case studies of classic films and through a detailed consideration of their aesthetic power, economic significance, and cultural impact in both the global and domestic market.

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Notes on Contributors
Introduction; Gary Bettinson & Daniel Martin

Part I: Formations and Fragmentations: The Development of Hong Kong Horror

Chapter 1: What Can a Neoi Gwei Teach Us? Adaptation as Reincarnation in Hong Kong Horror of the 1950s; Raymond Tsang
Chapter 2: The White Snake in Hong Kong Horror Cinema: From Horrific Tales to Crowd Pleasers; Liang Luo
Chapter 3: From Killer Snakes to Taxi Hunters: Hong Kong Horror in an Exploitation Context; Andy Willis
Chapter 4: The Enduring Cult of The Bride with White Hair: Chivalry and the Monstrous Other in the Hong Kong Fantasy-Horror; Daniel Martin

Part II: Genre Hybridity: Comedy and Kung-Fu in the Hong Kong Horror

Chapter 5: Animated Pasts and Unseen Futures: On the Comic Element in Hong Kong Horror; Andrew Grossman
Chapter 6: Performing (Comic) Abjection in the Hong Kong Ghost Story; Felicia Chan
Chapter 7: Hands, Fingers, and Fists: ‘Grasping’ Hong Kong Horror Films; David Scott Diffrient
Chapter 8: Tsui Hark’s Detective Dee Films: Police Procedural Colludes with Supernatural-Martial Arts Cinema; Kenneth Chan

Part III: Transnational Trends: Globalization and Politics in Contemporary Hong Kong Horror

Chapter 9: Cross-Border Implications: Transnational Haunting, Gender, and the Persistent Look of The Eye; Enrique Ajuria Ibarra
Chapter 10: Food for Thought: Cannibalism in The Untold Story and Dumplings; Lisa Odham Stokes
Chapter 11: Sympathy for the Slasher: Strategies of Character Engagement in Pang Ho-cheung’s Dream Home; Gary Bettinson
Chapter 12: Ghostly Returns: The Politics of Horror in Hong Kong Cinema; Vivian Lee

About the Author

Gary Bettinson is Senior Lecturer in Film Studies at Lancaster University. He is the author of The Sensuous Cinema of Wong Kar-wai: Film Poetics and the Aesthetic of Disturbance (Hong Kong University Press, 2015) and editor of Asian Cinema (Intellect Press).

Daniel Martin is Associate Professor of Film Studies in the School of Humanities and Social Sciences at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST). His recent research concerns the international circulation of films from East Asia. He is the author of Extreme Asia: The Rise of Cult Cinema from the Far East (Edinburgh University Press, 2015), co-editor of Korean Horror Cinema (Edinburgh University Press, 2013).

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