Archive for April, 2008


Look at this! 😉 James, one of the audience who came for the SIFF 12th April screening brought me food! But how did he know that I had lost weight over the Diminishing Memories II’s production?  No matter, I thought it’s such a nice gesture to remind me to ‘feed myself fat fat’ !:p This is soo sweet. Yup! I’ll try to eat more. Haha… thanks James! 😉 
Also, thank you all.. for everyone else who came. Nice! 😉  
Dear all,
Thank you all who had went to the screening on 8th April at the Sinema, 21st SIFF film screening of Diminishing Memories II.  I noticed everyone stayed for the Q&A despite it was already 11pm when the film finished screening.  It was all quiet at first in the audience but I knew since you stayed, you must have something to ask or that you have an urge to want to hear more.  Hence, thank you to everyone who came for the screening despite heavy rain.  It was good to meet up face-to-face. 😉
I heard there were also enquiries about the purchase of Diminishing Memories (Part one) DVD after the screening.  I know some of you managed to track me down but I shall write a note here again to let those who’s still searching that yup! You can place an order for the DVD directly from me.  Please drop an email to
In addition, I have also received orders for Diminishing Memories II on DVD.  Thank you for your support and interest, yes you may place an order with me first but the DVD for DMII is not available yet.  Once it is available, I’ll revert. Thanks!!
Thank you so much, I am very touched by your responses… ;)) YP    
Hellow all, thank you so much for your support in the first screening of Diminishing Memories II at the SIFF.  I was a little suprised that everyone actually stayed for the Q&A even thought it was already 11pm when the film finished screening.  It was very sweet of you guys, thank you so much! 
Anyway, for those who haven’t got a chance to catch DMII, here is another trailer entitled ‘New Development Trailer’ on Youtube:

Hi everyone.  Diminishing Memories II made its first screening (World Premiere) at the Singapore International Film Festival on Tues, 8th April.

I’ve started to hear some feedback and thoughts about the film…. stay tune for more updates on this page! On the other hand, if you had already catch DMII on Tuesday, please feel free to leave your comments here too by clicking ‘Add a comment’ button! 😉

Thanks so much for your support!! 😉 Yee Peng, the director.


21st Singapore International Film Festival 8th April Screening’s Audience Responses:

Very glad to know there will be audience who will really GET IT!  Able to “see” what the film is really about and to see further- the dimension of a deeper meaning:

“To me, DMII is much bigger than the theme on Lim Chu Kang. Growing up in urban area myself, I’ve no strong attachment to the farms, but I share your love in this land that we grew up on. It’s not just Lim Chu Kang.

I think DMII has gone deeper than sheer nostalgia. It questions beyond
the superficial notion of development and how everybody has accustomed
to it, playing to the rules of the game.
李慧玲,《联合早报》采访组主任Lee Huay Leng, Lianhe Zaobao


More feedback from the screenings of SIFF:

“Just wanted to tell you I enjoyed the film. DM II is different from DM I but very good. I like your reflections, the narration and your choice of interviewers. I think it ended up being a film that gave the viewer a lot of food for thought without forcing the viewer into thinking the same way as you – the director. I thought it was very educational.” ~~ Stephanie Ho, The History Workroom


“I really enjoyed the film! and the Q&A was great – you’re so passionate about the subject and it’s so nice to see a Singaporean with such passion. What i really liked about the film is how you handled the personal emotions. It wasn’t self-centred or indulgent. The interview with your mum was a surprise, it injected a poignant insight into your filmmaking process.” ~~ Audrey, Substation


I thought the structure and script was quite tight. It was a very engaging storyline and also very informative because as you said, you are giving voice to people whose voices are not often heard. Fully agree with you that we hear the government’s side all the time and need to hear more of other voices. On that basis alone, this is an important film.” 

~~ Ai Lin


James bought me FOOD!!! at the screening of SIFF:

“Well done. DM2 focus on a very different perspective from the theme for DM1.  Its like growing up from a simple, innocent kampong girl who matures into a socially-aware, insightful and thoughtful intellectual who understands the plights of the farmers and kampong people…using the film media to highlight these issues.


You pointed out correctly that the only thing permanent is change; as all conditioned things are subject to change. People and places are constantly appearing and disappearing as time goes by. This is a favorite topic at the heritage board discussion forums.


In land-scarce Singapore, very soon there would not be enough spaces for burial grounds and cemeteries for the dead. These would have to make way for housing estates for the living as what had happened in Bishan, Choa Chu Kang, Bukit Ho Swee (ma kao thiong) and many other places.


During the Q & A session, I tried to balance the discussion the way your mother did in the interview segment of the film….else there may be misinterpretations when discussing about the views of the authorities.” ~~ James Seah


Received an email from one of the audiences at the screening, comments as below:

"Hi Yan Ping, after watching your documentary, my hubby and I were very impressed and we really love it. I think this film has your personality and is really very personal. It’s like opening a door to let others peek at your "world". We like this approach very much. This film is so different from other documentaries that we have seen and it really stands out from the rest. Very impressive! I hope this film will get more international screenings and be even more successful than your previous. I also can see from this film that you have graduated from a "student" to a "professional" production.  Can’t wait to see your next production…all the best… really like the part where you interviewed the CEO of the new agri-tainment developer. Your question about the "well" really caught him off-guard….heehee…I think you have also added some humours in this film which makes it quite entertaining as well as maintains the audience’s attention throughout the film."  ~~ Sulin


This is also one of the audiences at the screening, managed to track me down via email to order a DVD copy of Diminishing Memories part one. haha.. and here’s the comment via email:

"Just saw your documentary last night. Congratulations on an excellent job and for preserving your memories of Lim Chu Kang; the distinctness of different areas and districts in Singapore is hard to imagine now, but I’m glad you brought that out. I’m very glad that films such as yours are being made; one thing I was hoping to see in the documentary (perhaps a future subject?) was a bit more background on the Teochew and Hokkien communities in Lim Chu Kang, though I am sure you had your hands full already with what made up the film."  ~~ Wei Chian


Now, Sam is the “elderly Indian gentleman’ Stefan was referring to on his review of DMII (, the gentleman who had been to one of the part one film screenings and asked if I had really moved on then.  I must say Sam was sharp.  He could sense I hadn’t moved on by the end of the part one film. There was another audience at the world premiere screening of DMII asking me if I would make part three.  I asked if there’s yet another film about Lim Chu Kang again, would he want to watch.  He said yes as he wanted to hear what more I have to say.  Hahaha… this is sweet as I do have a lot to say indeed! (Not only about Lim Chu Kang I believe) But well I guess I would like to say NO to DMIII at the moment. 😉 Please see comments from Sam below:


Hi Yee Peng,

I thoroughly enjoyed watching your film.  It is very touching without being sentimental.  It is apparent that Diminishing Memories tells as much about yourself as the transformation of Lim Chu Kang.  The film has the dramatic feel of loss-of-innocence or coming-of-age story.  While watching the film it brought back my childhood memories about loved ones who have passed away and places that have changed beyond recognition. 

Its obvious that you haven’t finished telling this story.  Particularly because in real life the story is still unfolding.  It won’t be fair to suggest that you look away.  You should certainly revisit the story in part III after a few years to cover what had transpired during the period.  That should wrap it up.   

But meanwhile, to keep your sanity and preserve your frail health, you should take up another film project covering a different subject.  With your commitment, perseverance and story telling talent you are now ready to take up bigger issues and to paint a larger canvas. 

All the best.  ~~Sam Kumar

A feature report on Diminishing Memories I & II at
Original report, please view:
9 April 2008

























Posted: April 10, 2008 in Column 专栏






A review on Diminishing Memories II from the Nutshell Review.
Review by Stefan
Some 2 years ago, I had watched Diminishing Memories at the National Museum, and found it to be a very intriguing piece of work, in which director Eng Yee Peng shared, through film, her memories of a Lim Chu Kang rarely seen. It was a very personal piece of village life from the past which is now no longer existent in Singapore (not in the old, authentic and charming nature), and it all seemed rather distant, despite our very short modern history.

In fact, I guess almost every army boy would have travelled along that stretch of road at one point in time or another, where a narrow two lane stretch separates temporarily because of a road island. Back in the mid-90s during my tour of duty, I drove along that stretch fairly frequently (yeah I told you I led a double life, and even had double army vocations!), little would I know that some 10 years later, I now realize that the inconspicuous landmark has more significance to a filmmaker, because it served as a post marker to where her childhood home is. And without which, there would be great difficulty as she admitted, to access

This documentary is possibly the first local feature documentary sequel to have picked up where the previous had left off, and the title holds meaning. With memories, like it or not, they start to diminish into the subconscious, and get hazy with each passing day. While we can fairly recall broad moments in time thanks to anchors to connect to, the little details get lost, and probably we could jog our minds with the assistance of photographs and video from archives, without which, we can only start to imagine and fill in the gaps, and herein lies opportunity for inaccuracies to creep in.

Yee Peng returns with a more assured voice both literal and figuratively speaking, and a more mature handling of this documentary. It showed slight detachment from the subject, perhaps because this time round the whimsical nature of reminiscence, and the interviews with subjects very close to her heart (like immediate neighbours and her own parents), gave way to an exploration from the outside, of someone from the past revisiting a location of the present, where once she had spent wonderous childhood moments in, and now having its landscape changed, and becoming unrecognizable.

If you’ve read the newspapers, Lim Chu Kang is now an area earmarked with redevelopment plans to convert 3 parcels of land into "agri-tainment" areas, complete with resorts and spas. And Yee Peng now examines what this means to the current batch of farmers, the new inhabitants of a space she once called her own. We get to go behind the scenes into the farms, and with food undergoing intense media attention for its price hikes, one wonders if Agriculture for entertainment purposes, or the more pragmatic approach to try and expand production to ensure less reliance on imports, should be looked into instead. This documentary sets you thinking along these lines, as the director probes and discovers more about such development plans, and the predicaments faced by the current farmers such as how changes in land leases will come to affect them sooner rather than later.

There are also focused shots on the rich flora and fauna ecosystem of Lim Chu Kang that demonstrated that there’s indeed a lot more to offer on that piece of land. It was also amazing to have watched this film with key members of the audience from the screening of the first film, such as Ivy Singh-Lim, who owns a bistro at Lim Chu Kang, and the elderly Indian gentleman (sorry I don’t have your name!) who had once asked if Yee Peng was going to make a sequel (and it became this movie) to the original film. Like a gathering of seasoned community folks who have now come together again to experience something with one another, it’s akin to just having an extremely small glimpse of the kind of kampung spirit of the past, and I am sure that kind of spirit from the previous inhabitants of Lim Chu Kang, and the current ones, are much, much stronger of course (given that they have banded together to actually petitioned for public bus services, then realizing that they could do it better, went ahead with it on their own, and proved themselves right).

I had mentioned before when I watched Diminishing Memories, that it deserved a place in our film archives for its preservation of lives that once were, or a lifestyle now almost forgotten. I shall repeat that call again, simply because Diminishing Memories II is a well made follow up and excellent companion piece, with enough merits to stand alone too. Although set in current times, it will no doubt be a gem when new and proposed development to the area spring up, and again in keeping pace with our obsession for inevitable change in the name of progress, it will serve as a reminder of what once was a rustic charm that had to give way if we’re callous.

Diminishing Memories II deserved to be watched, and of course, preserved too for future generations. For those who have not had the opportunity to watch the first one, check out the Related Links below. Put together, both films have something valuable to offer, and to experience. Which brings me to ask if more of us would pay a visit to the area too!