Shang presents 18th Spring Film Festival: Enjoy free screenings of epic Chinese films at Red Carpet Cinema from Jan. 23-30

Shangri-La Plaza, recognized as the hub of world cinema in the Philippines, is ushering in the new year with an exciting lineup of film festivals, arts and cultural events, and collaborations with various embassies. Kicking off this year's festivities is the beloved Spring Film Festival, returning for its 18th year at the Red Carpet Cinema from January 23 to 30.

In collaboration with the Ateneo Ricardo Leong Center for Chinese Studies, Ateneo Celadon, and the Film Development Council of the Philippines, and with unwavering support from the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China, the 18th Spring Film Festival goes beyond being a mere cultural exchange. It aims to provide Filipinos with a profound understanding of Chinese culture and broaden their knowledge about one of the world’s largest film industries.

The festival features notable films, including the gripping action thriller "The Captain" by renowned Hong Kong director Andrew Lau. Based on the real-life incident of Sichuan Airlines Flight 8633, where a windshield shatters abruptly after take-off, the film portrays the remarkable efforts of a strong-willed captain, played by "Grand Slam" award-winning actor Zhang Hanyu, to perform one of the most significant miracles in aviation history.

Another highlight is "Looking Up," a poignant tale directed by veteran Chinese actor Deng Chao. Stranded in space, an astronaut draws strength from his enduring connection with his father. The film was showcased at prestigious film festivals such as the 2019 Busan International Film Festival and the 32nd Tokyo International Film Festival, winning Best Film at the 11th Macau International Movie Festival.

The animated Sino-US co-production "White Snake" by Amp Wong and Zhao Ji, based on a popular Chinese folk tale, tells the story of a white snake yearning for the human experience. The film explores the challenges faced by the star-crossed lovers when the snake magically transforms into a woman and marries a scholar.

Enter the fantasy world of "Legend of the Demon Cat" directed by influential Chinese auteur Chen Kaige. The film follows poet Bai Letain and monk Kukai as they investigate the death of the emperor’s concubine, complicated further by the appearance of a demon cat wreaking havoc in their city.

Thriller and mystery enthusiasts can immerse themselves in "Full River Red," a period film by award-winning director Zhang Yimou. Set in the Southern Song dynasty, the movie explores a murder mystery, delving into themes of betrayal and patriotism. As one of China’s highest-grossing films in 2023, this dark comedy promises a captivating cinematic experience.

The festival concludes with the riveting disaster film "The Bravest," directed by Hong Kong filmmaker Tony Chan and starring Chinese A-lister Huang Xiaoming. The film depicts the struggles of Chinese firefighters as they battle to contain a massive fire following an oil pipeline explosion, inspired by the real-life Xingang Port oil spill incident that made headlines in China.

Beyond the cinematic offerings, the 18th Spring Film Festival reintroduces the Chinese Painting Workshop on January 27, 2024, at 2 pm in the Grand Atrium. Master Fidel M. Sarmiento, President of the Art Association of the Philippines, will lead the workshop, known for his past successful art sessions at Shangri-La Plaza. Mall visitors can also enjoy an exhibit showcasing intricately made fans and scrolls.

Additionally, the East Atrium hosts "Nihao, China," a special photo exhibit organized by the Embassy of China in the Philippines and Chinatown TV. Running throughout the film festival, the exhibit features iconic landmarks and landscapes across China, diverse ways to celebrate the Chinese New Year on February 10, and fortune predictions and readings per zodiac animal for the Year of the Dragon.

Embark on a journey to discover the wonders of Chinese cinema and rich culture at the 18th Spring Film Festival, taking place from January 23 to 30 at Shangri-La Plaza. Stay updated on festival highlights and make inquiries by following Shangri-La Plaza on Facebook at and on Instagram @shangrilaplazaofficial.

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