|Freddie Wong's debut The Drunkard, seen at this year's Hong Kong International Film Festival.|
The image of the dissolute artist pursuing a bohemian lifestyle and resisting the allure of the market may not have much credence in today's rampantly commercialised culture. But if the novel The Drunkard is anything to go by, the tension between art and commerce was very real for Shanghai-born novelist Liu Yichang. His autobiographical stream-of-consciousness work tells the story of a writer living in the squalor of early 60s Hong Kong, balancing serious literary ambitions with the need to write pulp fiction and soft porn to earn a living. For not the first time a local director has produced a screen adaptation of Liu's book, which appeared at this year's Hong Kong International Film Festival.