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  • Peter Kam Fai Cheung SBS

A People's Car


FADE IN:

EXT. ROAD - DAY

Peter waits by the roadside to see a cyber-green New Beetle coming along.

PETER (V.O.)

Having secured a parking

lot, my wife can now

drive to work by herself.

As the cyber-green Beetle makes a turn, two passers-by also turn their heads and chat as if they're referring to the Beetle.

PETER (V.O.)

Yes, the Beetle isn't just

a car, it has a story. It was first commissioned in 1934

by Hitler as a people's car.

INT. CLUB HOUSE - DAY

Peter reads a newspaper article about the Beetle story. A black-and-white feature photo depicts a Beetle with Hitler speaking in the background. .

PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd)

Around that time, only

50 Germans could afford

to own cars. Hitler meant

to subsidize half of the

production costs to benefit

the people.

INT. STUDY - DAY

Peter surfs the web.

PETER (V.O.)

A people's car had to be

simple and compact. The

bug-shaped car was

designed by the then best

German designer Porsche.

Pausing.

PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd)

Production of the people's car however stopped due

to World War II. Still, Hitler's

officers got some, and Hitler

got the first convertible.

Pausing.

PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd)

In 1968, Disney made

magic of the Beetle in the

film - the Love Bug. The

film was released in Hong

Kong in 1972.

Having found the full movie "Love Bug" from YouTube, Peter begins to watch it.

PETER (V.O.)

When I first worked as a

Housing Assistant in 1974,

my immediate supervisor

owned a 1973 yellow

Beetle. I often took lifts

to Kowloon to attend

evening classes. I sat at

back and my head would

hit the roof if there're bumps.

Pausing.

PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd)

While I was working in the

Squatter Control division,

Yuen Long in the late 1970s,

a colleague of mine owned

a 1968 orange Beetle. He

was so generous to let me

drive it from time to time.

I found it lacking power

and steering precision.

FLASHBACK

INT. SITTING ROOM - NIGHT (1998)

Peter reads a car magazine.

PETER (V.O.)

The New Beetle was

introduced in 1997. It

looks good, but its max

power is just 102 PS.

My 1989 Nissan 200SX

has 173PS and my

my 1994 Eunos 30X

130 PS.

INT. SITTING ROOM - NIGHT (2001)

Peter reads a newspaper insert featuring the Beetle.

PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd)

Wow, the 2001 New

Beetle 1.8T has 150PS.

Let me suggest that to

my wife.

INT. CAR SHOWROOM - DAY (2001)

A SALES REPRESENTATIVE (20s) is receiving Peter and his WIFE as they examine the interior of a New Beetle.

PETER

Wow, it has a built-in

flower vase!

END FLASHBACK

PETER (V.O.)

.Since then, it has been

very much her cute car.

Peter remembers something.

PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd)

When I visited Mexico,

the first connection I could

make with the country was

my New Beetle. So I began

my small talks with Mexicans

with it. I could tell they

appreciated my support of

their production.

INT. DINING ROOM - NIGHT

Peter and his wife are having dinner.

PETER

Do you know that the last

Beetle left the Mexican

production line on July 10,

2019?

His wife looks a little shocked.

PETER (Cont'd)

If we're to buy another one,

we had better...

WIFE

The availability of spare

parts in future will be a

problem...

FLASHBACK

EXT. ROAD - DAY (2014)

While driving his 1989 Nissan 200SX, Peter detects something.

PETER (V.O.)

Oh, there's something wrong

with the clutch.

INT. NISSAN SERVICE CENTER

A service CONSULTANT (50s) talks to Peter.

CONSULTANT

We couldn't find any spare

part in Japan. After conducting

a world search for months,

we finally secured one. You're

very lucky!

PETER

(Grateful)

I couldn't bear scrapping it,

as it still looks good...

END FLASHBACK

PETER (V.O.)

Yes, all good things must

come to an end, or they

wouldn't be good!

Peter and his wife talk about something else.

FADE OUT. The End

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