A stark and, at times, horrifying presentation of the Pandemic restrictions the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) inflicted on all of China – including Hong Kong – Naked Nations – Tribe Hong Kong is the last film the writer/director/producer Scud intends to create. As with the rest of Scud’s body of work, this film centers on the Gay Chinese men stuck in Hong Kong at that time. Focusing on a loose band of 20 gay men, Naked Nations – Tribe Hong Kong shares lightly fictionalized accounts of their stories throughout the Pandemic.
The opening scene frames the entire experience with an appropriate sense of schadenfreude; 20 young men are running naked through the streets of night-time Hong Kong. Most are wearing state-sanctioned masks. The ones who aren’t run afoul of the MCU (Mask Compliance Unit) of the Hong Kong police. To say the restrictions placed on people residing in all of China were strict would be an understatement.
“She spent the entire production shoot behind bars in prison for criticizing the Pandemic safety measures.”
Early in Naked Nations – Tribe Hong Kong, Scud chooses to recreate an all too frequent occurrence. According to an emergency rule imposed by the CCP, if your place of residence has been locked down due to people testing positive for COVID, everyone who lives in said apartment building or house is on quarantine. We watch as a Jobbo actor prepares for his daily assignment and is informed by the producer that he must leave at once because his apartment building has been placed under quarantine. To permit him to work that day would jeopardize the entire production. At the height of the Pandemic, if even one person stood a risk of testing positive for COVID, China was shutting down businesses and film shoots. The ‘Zero COVID’ policy inflicted by the CCP on the Chinese people was the worst kind of tyranny. It smacked heavily of many actions portrayed in works such as 1984 or Brave New World. Anyone could be accused of being positive for COVID, and then you would have a long two weeks of quarantine ahead of you.
"…a towering work of art"