If I were Manila
Sunday, November 13, I had my new lip cream on, a beaded necklace to accent my simple tank top, and a gushing will to watch films showcased in Cinemanila Film Festival held at Market Market in Taguig.
Here are some of the films that got me wistful and interested (now heaving a sigh of ‘I wish I have leave credits):
1. Siglo ng Pagluluwal (Century of Birthing) by Lav Diaz
Two great works Lav Diaz is respected and known for are Batang West Side and Ebolusyon ng Isang Pamilyang Pilipino (Evolution of the Filipino Family).
Siglo ng Pagluluwal, I supposed, has painted a thematic triumvirate on the roles of the artist, prophet, acolyte. I am looking forward to learn that its theme was treated with careful ruminations and artistic wisdom.
2. Poetry by Chang-dong Lee
I can assure you that this is not some chic Koreanovela about a dainty princess who becomes a cockroach, hence an impoverished, not to mention, utterly handsome rescuer grants her the most exotic, wet kiss so they can live happily ever after.
Poetry is one of my top picks so I watched it. 66-year-old Mija, diagnosed with an early stage of Alzheimer’s, struggles to write her first poem. Through the course of her struggle to find a ‘poetic inspiration’, she discovers the crooked ways of a patriarchal society and a crime that decides the fate of the family she loves most.
3. Sun-Beated Path by Sonthar Gyal
How can Nima forgive himself after accidentally killing his own mother, that I wish to learn if I ever get the chance to watch this Chinese film.
4. Sakay sa Hangin (Wind-blown) by Regiben Romana
I’ve kept my unremitting adoration on Philippine’s rich culture. For every passion, a definite mission must be on its way to fulfillment and this might prove true as Sakay sa Hangin tells the story of a tribal musician who ventures to define his cultural identity with the help of those inspired and healed by his music.
5. Agos (Waves) by Samantha Lee
I am from La Union and surfing has always fascinated me. If given the opportunity to escape my daytime job, I’d be happy to watch a female character portrays the role of a surfer on a film that permits us to see beyond the superficial surfing lifestyle. Based on what I’ve read, we can take more than the coolness of being a surfer since the film also explored on values like perseverance, simplicity and passion.
6. Leaving Home by Epoy Deyto
The Philippine rock music scene is a telltale lie without the former rock music station, NU 107, which had just closed last year. Leaving Home is a short documentary that mainstream or indie music lovers and fans would be interested to watch.
7. Menenaya (Waiting) by Richard Legaspi
A kapampangan film in Cinemanila?! A kapampangan with permanent residency in La Union, I’d proudly walk down the cinema hall and watch this with or without knowing what the movie is about.
8. Buena Noches Espana
A romance (could be) and a journey of a young man that breathe through the mystique of teleportation, drugs, TV, painting – media arts plus teleportation – the combination of these factors welled up my imagination.
9. Gainsbourg: A Heroic Life
A cabaret theater artist shares his life’s story and glory set in Nazi-occupied Paris. This is the first time I’ve read of a musical drama that is actually included in a film festival like Cinemanila.
10. Mapang-akit (Alluring)
Mapang-akit follows a story about an elderly woman suspected as one of the creatures of the night, that transforms from their human to predatory form to savagely hunt humans and eat their innards; in the Philippine lore, these creatures are called aswangs.
11. The Joy
Where reality conflicts with the imagination and imagination rules over reality, I’m for it.
For more information, you may visit http://www.cinemanila.org.ph. Ticket price is 150 PHP.