Story about dementia wins Golden Village's inaugural short film competition

Gabriel Choo
Winners of GV25 Film Shorts, The Moonmen – (from left) Joshuah Lim, Wesley Lim and Alvin Lim. (Photo: Golden Village)

Cinema operator Golden Village crowned the winners of its inaugural “GV25 Film Shorts” competition at the new Golden Village cineplex at SingPost Centre on Monday (30 October) evening.

“GV25 Film Shorts” is a new grant scheme for aspiring filmmakers to make short films in Singapore. It was developed as part of Golden Village’s 25th anniversary celebrations, and contestants had to align their film storyline with the theme “Past, Present & Future”.

There were over 200 entries for the competition, with only three being selected eventually. During the finale event, the top three finalists’ films were screened and the winner, a trio called “The Moonmen”, was announced. The Moonmen were awarded a $3,000 cash prize.

“GV25 Film Shorts was designed to encourage aspiring filmmakers to come forward and share their ideas with renowned industry players. The initial response far exceeded our expectations, and we’re very pleased with the quality of the final three films,” said Clara Cheo, CEO of Golden Village Multiplex.

The Moonmen’s film, “Chiak” (Hokkien for “eat”), features a family’s struggle in coping with dementia. Their short film will be screened in selected Golden Village cinemas for a period of two weeks, tagged to selected upcoming movies.

A scene in the winning film, “Chiak”. (Photo: Screenshot of “Chiak”)

In an interview with Yahoo Lifestyle Singapore at the end of the event, the trio got candid about their win and shared more about the whole experience as well as their camaraderie.

They all have the same surname and are often mistaken for brothers. But The Moonmen, which consists of Alvin Lim, Joshuah Lim and Wesley Lim, are actually a group of friends who met in their polytechnic days. They decided to embark on this film journey after talking about it one night over dinner.

Joshuah, in particular, wanted to do it, having been diagnosed with leukaemia just the year before. “I wanted to do something with my life, and it had to be something I enjoyed,” he said.

“We’re very honoured to have won GV25 Film Shorts, as our competitors produced great films too. Filmmaking is our passion and we came together, armed with a good idea to do what we enjoy, and winning is an added incentive for us,” added the 22-year-old, who is currently working in a church.

Wesley, 23 and Alvin, 26 were soon infected by his enthusiasm and that was how they got the film rolling for three whole months. Joshuah was the film’s director, Wesley the editor and Alvin the producer.

“It’s hard to believe it happened. There were a lot of passive-aggressive moments but we learnt and understood each other more,” said Alvin.

Winners of GV25 Film Shorts, The Moonmen with mentor Boris Boo (third from left). (Photo: Golden Village)

“Winning was not their top priority, but doing what they cared about and sending across a message that tugs at the audience’s heartstrings was their goal and that ultimately got them the win,” said director Boris Boo, who mentored the boys throughout the process.

Boo was also part of the judging panel which included film industry heavyweights such as directors Kelvin Tong, popular YouTubers Tree Potatoes, Singapore Film Society President Kenneth Tan and Golden Village’s Head of Programming Sharanjit Kaur.

The other two finalists were a cappella group The Apex Project, who did a film on time manipulation, and television scriptwriter Marcus Goh, who revisited the history of the founding of Singapore. All three short films can be viewed online here.

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