Asian Premiere of Walk with Me Held in Hong Kong

By Anne Wisman
Buddhistdoor Global | 2017-09-21 |
Thich Nhat Hanh, foreground, and behind him Brother Phap Huu. Image courtesy of UA CineHubThich Nhat Hanh, foreground, and behind him Brother Phap Huu. Image courtesy of UA CineHub

The contemplative documentary Walk with Me, a cinematic journey into monastic life at Thich Nhat Hahn’s Plum Village community in France, celebrated its Asian premiere in Hong Kong on 1 September in a special event hosted by Plum Village Hong Kong in co-operation with UA Cinemas. Special guests in attendance were Max Pugh, one of the documentarys directors, and Brother Phap Huu, one of the monks featured in the film. Walk with Me is currently screening at various UA cinemas across Hong Kong.​

Directed by Marc J. Francis and Max Pugh, Walk With Me is a meditative journey into the lives of the brothers and sisters of the Plum Village monastic community, narrated by Oscar nominee Benedict Cumberbatch. Filmed over the course of three years, with unprecedented access to the community, the documentary provides a unique glimpse into a life lived at a snail’s pace at the remote monastery founded by Zen master Thich Nhat Hanh in southwestern France.

Attendees at the premiere praised the visuals of the film and the heartwarming glimpses into life as part of the Plum Village community.

UA Cinema Trailer for Walk with Me. From

Thich Nhat Hanh is a Vietnamese Buddhist monk, meditation master, human rights activist, poet, author of more than 100 books, and one of the most influential Buddhist leaders of our time. Known for promoting peace and non-violence, he was nominated for the Nobel Prize by Martin Luther King, Jr. in 1967, and received the Courage of Conscience Award in 1991 for promoting peace and non-violence.

Shortly after filming wrapped, Thich Nhat Hanh suffered a stroke. He remains unable to speak and is paralyzed on his right side. The documentary includes what might be one of the last scenes of him speaking captured on video, as he answers difficult life questions from the crowd. “It was by pure luck that we filmed his last public years. Hopefully the film will form part of his legacy.” Max Pugh remarked. “Thich Nhat Hanh had the aspiration to turn movie theaters into meditation halls and creatively that is what we set out to do.”

Max Pugh, left, and Brother Phap Huu at the Hong Kong premiere. Image courtesy of UA CineHubMax Pugh, left, and Brother Phap Huu at the Hong Kong premiere. Image courtesy of UA CineHub

The special premiere was by invitation only, and attendees included members of various Hong Kong Buddhist communities, including Plum Village representative Brother Phap Kham and fellow monastics, guests from Tung Lin Kok Yuen, the Hong Kong University Centre of Buddhist Studies, and other Buddhist organizations including Buddhistdoor Global.

Before the premiere began, Brother Phap Huu led a short meditation exercise to help audience members settle their minds and be present and “in the moment” for the film. Brother Phap Huu mentioned that he hoped the film would inspire the people of Hong Kong to take moment out of their busy city lives to breathe, and to consider investigating the Buddhist teachings further: “The film is an invitation, ‘Walk with me,’join us for 94 minutes, and afterwards we hope you feel inspired to go out and learn more.”

Public screenings are being held from 21 September–8 October at UA Cinemas (UA Cine Times, UA Cine Moko, UA iSQUARE) in Hong Kong, for screening dates and times in Hong Kong and elsewhere, please refer to the official website of Walk With Me.

Related news from Buddhistdoor Global

Thich Nhat Hanh Returns to Vietnam for the First Time in a Decade
Walk With Me Documentary About Thich Nhat Hanh’s Plum Village Community Premieres at SXSW
Thich Nhat Hanh Travels to Thailand to “Be Closer to his Homeland”
Walk With Me Trailer Offers a Glimpse of Forthcoming Thich Nhat Hanh Documentary

Related features from Buddhistdoor Global

Film Review: Walk with Me – A Welcome Break from Stressful City Life
Walk with Me – Insight on Managing Sustainability from Buddhist Teachings

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