Quick and dirty Firecracker reviews:
Manhole was quite funny. The locations used were particularly evocative, subtly reflecting the characters and their lives. It also did a really good job of showing how much China has changed socially, economically and culturally in just a few years.
Cross Harbour Tunnel was very obviously an indie film – they’d put a lot of work into it but production values were necessarily low. I’d recommend it for the good script and performances, as well as a different view of Hong Kong. Lots of films have told the story of one day or night from many, overlapping viewpoints, but Cross Harbour Tunnel managed to be original.
Leaving in Sorrow would have been a lot better if it had been more tightly edited and more strongly structured. As it was a dogme-style film a lot of the clues about time and location that would normally come from the lighting, music, mise en scene, etc, weren’t available to the film maker and this showed up weaknesses in the plot. From the conversations around me when it finished, I wasn’t the only one who wasn’t sure how to read the ending.
I don’t know if it’s a cultural thing, but all three of the films I saw seemed at least fifteen minutes too long.