There’s an inherent energy about Hong Kong that makes it fascinating to both locals and visitors alike. This energy is in both the skyscrapers that light up the sky all night as well as the people that toil away into the dead of night. It’s a city with ADHD — in the best way possible. No-one captures this allure better than 29-year-old Stuart Hendricks, in his stunning, slow-motion travel guide of Hong Kong.
Despite only spending five days in Hong Kong, the South African teacher, photographer, and filmmaker manages to perfectly capture the city’s alluring beauty, by slowing it down long enough for us to absorb it. Instead of trying to show the “hidden Hong Kong”, or depicting an overly glamourised version, he instead takes us to the most bustling areas of Kowloon and Hong Kong island to show off its key features.
“I wanted to emphasise a few things that Hong Kong is well-known for, namely the neon lights, red taxis, and the trams,” Stuart tells Localiiz. “I also wanted to showcase the sheer scale of the city and its inhabitants, but at the same time capture a few moments of human connection in this colossal metropolis, for example the couple crossing Nathan Road in the opening scene, the old man smiling at the camera as I walk by, and the two ladies walking together towards the end.”
The connection between people and their city is a theme that echoes through Stuart’s work, as he strives to find stories within each fleeting moment. “In a symbiotic way, the city gets its energy from its inhabitants – the people who live there are the lifeblood of the city – always grafting and toiling away. I think that’s what makes it so fascinating.”
While we often long to escape Hong Kong’s urban jungle and crowds, watching this travelogue perhaps gives us a newfound appreciation for our city’s urban beauty.