How can we record films / movies ?

Submitted by David on Wed, 07/15/2009 - 09:04

After a gentle reminder from Phil, it's time to think about how we'll add films to the catalogue of Hong Kong's history. Here are my ideas - your comments are very welcome.

The idea is that films are a good source of information about old Hong Kong. Initially, because they show old buildings and places that have been demolished.

I can think of three main types of film:

  1. Feature-length, old film shot in Hong Kong. eg Love is a Many Splendored Thing (LIAMST), and any local films shot here.
  2. Feature-length, modern film that recreates some parts of Hong Kong. eg Lust, Caution.
  3. Short film, old, shot in Hong Kong. I'm thinking of the film clips we see on YouTube. Michael Rogge's films are a good example.

I'd like to concentrate on original sources of information for now, ie film types  #1 and #3.

How to categorise the films?

  • By the buildings and places that are shown in the film.
  • By the year that the film was shot. (The alternative would be to categorise by the period that the film is set in. eg LIAMST is set in 1949-50, but was shot in 1955. For the views of Hong Kong, we're seeing it as it looked in 1955, so that seems the best date to catalogue it by.)

How will we want to search for films later?

  • Show me views of Queen's Building in the 1950s
  • Show me views of Hong Kong from the 1960s

These categories and searches are basically the same as we have with the existing 'Image' content type. So, we could either use the existing Image type bor both still images and films (good if they Images and Films will always be the same), or make a new Film type that is a copy of Image (good if we imagine Films and Images will likely need different categories / searches in future).

I'm leaning towards the 'make a new Film type' approach.

What am I missing? Any ideas for improvements?


If you look on the 'create content' menu, you'll see a new option, 'Film / Movie'.

Please give it a try - it is very similar to adding a photo by creating a new 'Image'.

The main difference you'll see is a place to enter a 'Video clip:'. That makes it very easy to show a youtube video here on Gwulo. Just paste in the url of a youtube video, and when you save the new Film / Movie, the video will be displayed.

That's how I made this first test: Hong Kong 1949 strolling from midlevel to downtown

If you're creating an entry for feature film, leave the 'Video clip:' blank, and just list the places shown in the film, and the times they appear. You can see how that looks with the second test: Love is a many-splendored thing

And of course, if you add a place to a 'Film / Movie', when you look at the place you'll now see all the films it appears in, as well as all the photos it appears in, eg: Site of former Royal Building

Does it work how you expected? Anything seem broken or confusing?

Let me know,


PS I'd just finished several hours of typing for all the places in 'Love is a ...'. I clicked 'save', and Netvigator took over my browser to offer me an upgrade to 30M brpadband. And lost all my $#*@%">$#*% typing !