A Human Truth

Text by Patricia Lee
Photography by Jovian Lim

Boo Jun Feng is the kind of conversationalist who manages to get his views across, without giving away too much. Our chat is punctuated by pauses, as he seems to mentally explore the angles of a question and inspect his thoughts. When he does respond, his words are perfectly proportioned.

He’s not going to impose his message, or spell it out for you. Jun Feng is as resolutely understated in person, as he is through film. I realise what he stops short of saying is often as key as what he chooses to reveal.

One subject Jun Feng is known to speak out about, however, is Pink Dot, the annual day out at Hong Lim Park in support of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender communities in Singapore. The event has been gaining traction both at home and abroad thanks, in no small part, to the filmmaker’s video campaigns for it. Intelligent but unintimidating, he weaves together narratives that would prick even the most apathetic.

My favourite, dating back to 2011, is simply entitled “Support The Freedom to Love“. In all its seven stories, there’s a character or situation that anyone living in modern society would recognise. I see my friend in the eligible bachelor, deflecting questions at a wedding on when his turn will be; I feel the injustice of the couple unable to hold hands in public. And it’s not just me. If YouTube views are any indicator of public support, Jun Feng’s video has resonated with close to 375,000 people across the globe.

“I saw comments left by someone in the States, in some woodshed, who was watching the video and bawling,” says the director. “On the other extreme, some felt it was too emotional. How connected one is to a piece is so subjective, but I would like it to be able to at least speak to you so you can pass it on to someone else.”

Read more in The U Press N˚3 (Singapore edition).