Recently, there has been a hot talk in Hong Kong. Of course, it is Anita Mui. Anita Mui was a “big sister” in the music world before her death. She was respected by others. After her eighteenth year of separation, her biographical films still achieved a “phenomenal” box office in Hong Kong under the epidemic. They have exceeded HK $33 million in less than two weeks of release, and are expected to become the box office champion of local films in Hong Kong this year. This is a miracle of Hong Kong produced films in recent years.
The film Anita Mui also set a record: it was released simultaneously in Chinese Mainland, Hong Kong, Macao and Taiwan on November 12. This is the first time that a Chinese film has been released on the same day in four places on both sides of the Taiwan Straits. Perhaps it is the best gift given by the times to this “daughter of Hong Kong”. All Chinese who have been touched by her singing and acting skills have not forgotten her. Even missing her is not limited to the generation who grew up with her and shared the glorious years of Hong Kong, but also includes the generation who grew up after her death and knew her very little.
Then why is Anita Mui the only star in Hong Kong’s entertainment circle who is crowned “Hong Kong’s daughter”?
Because Anita Mui is the ultimate embodiment of Hong Kong spirit.
Anita Mui was born in the 1960s. At that time, Hong Kong was still a typical immigrant city, transit station and shelter. The economy had not yet taken off, and poverty was the norm. Anita Mui’s family, like more poor families, drifted to Hong Kong for a comfortable meal. Because they are poor, they must work hard. Because they share the same malady, naturally they cannot help each other in the same boat.
The Mei family has 4 children, including the eldest son Mei Qiming, the second son Mei Deming, the third daughter Mei Aifang and the youngest Anita Mui. Since Anita Mui’s father died early, her mother had to raise four children by herself. She was very strict in daily life. Her stepfather, who was born in a local ruffian family, abused her every day with rude words, “to the point that she had no self-respect”.
When Anita Mui was four and a half years old, she went out with her sister, Anita Mui. The places where the two people go most are not schools, but singing halls, lounges, streets and lychee gardens. She once said frankly that she was unhappy when she was a child
When Anita Mui was four and a half years old, she went out with her sister, Anita Mui.
Anita Mui also mentioned in her interview that when she was 11 years old, her mother ran a singing hall. In addition to singing on the stage, she also had to act as a host, or even as a guest band member: “I can’t rest even after I leave the stage. I also have to serve as a waitress, serve meals, clean and wipe the floor.”
In retrospect, Anita Mui used four words “hell on earth” during her teens.
Until 1982, Anita Mui, 19, participated in the first Hong Kong Rookie Singing Contest and sang Xu Xiaofeng’s Season of the Wind with a voice full of vicissitudes. Huang Gui, the judge, gave her the only full score in her life and won the championship with an overwhelming advantage. Her childhood experience has also made her stable since her debut. Gu Jiahui, the composer, once sighed, “She is so young, but she has such a taste of vicissitudes.” In the following years, she almost won all the highest awards that female singers could get at that time. However, in order to give opportunities to the younger generation, in 1990, Anita Mui, who was only 27 years old, announced that she would no longer receive the singing competition award and “retired” ahead of schedule.
In the field of film and television, Anita Mui also continued the legend of a thousand people. At the age of 24, she won the Hong Kong Golden Statue Award and Taiwan Golden Horse Award for her role in Rouge Buckle. Director Er Dongsheng once commented: “Anita Mui is the kind of genius who can act without teaching. This kind of person is rare in a thousand years.”
Still photo of Rouge Buckle
Anita Mui’s popularity in the 1980s saw a large number of singers in their twenties and thirties emerge in Hong Kong, including “Principal” Alan Tam and “Brother” Leslie Cheung. Most of them came from grass roots. They caught up with the economic boom of Hong Kong as the “Four Little Dragons of Asia”. With hard work and talent, they suddenly opened up a new world. That was their era and the golden age of Hong Kong’s performing arts.
The 1980s was the golden age of Hong Kong’s entertainment industry.
Anita Mui’s legendary life of just 40 years has indeed been accompanied by the ups and downs of the city. Although different camps may selectively project some imagination on her, I believe that no one will not admire her perseverance, professionalism and bravery: because of her perseverance and hard work, she can change from a little singer girl who dropped out of school to a “big sister” who is unmatched; Because of its inclusiveness and bold innovation, it can lead Hong Kong to create a new trend of popular culture and become the “Madonna of the East”; Because upholding justice is not clear, we can look at national development in a positive way, condemn unscrupulous media boldly, and uphold justice by “going to the ends of the world”. Her life can be said to be just like the lyrics in “Under the Lion Mountain”: “Life is inevitably bumpy, and it is difficult to be completely carefree. Since we are in the same boat at the foot of the Lion Mountain and help each other, we abandon the distinction and seek common pairs.” “We are in the same corner of the sky, and work together to overcome the bumpiness”, and finally “work hard to write the immortal Xiangjiang famous sentence”.
Anita Mui, as depicted in the film Anita Mui, may not be able to bear a heavy, complicated and real Anita Mui who has come to the world, but if you look back on her story, you can understand the world of Hong Kong pop culture, as well as the story and spirit of Hong Kong.
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Reprinted from Oriental Culture Magazine (ID: dfwh_hk)