Khavn – Desaparadiso (2015)

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Plot Summary:
One day, they just disappeared. Just like that. One didn’t go to work, one didn’t go to his appointment, didn’t meet his date. The dishes served were left to rot, and the bed remained immaculate; the sheets unruffled and unslept in. One cannot say if they are alive or dead. And for this reason, there is no funeral, no nine-day wake, no mass, no burning of candles, or recitation of litanies for the dead. Because they are not dead (or maybe there are), and who is to know what has become of them?
What can a family do if someone disappears in a dictatorship? You can’t go to the police for help or information. Many families were affected in this way by the cruelty of the Marcos dictatorship (1972-1986). The film shows one of them as an example of paradise lost. Continue reading

Khavn – Mondomanila, or: How I Fixed My Hair After a Rather Long Journey (2010)

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A joyfully outrageous slice of life in the slums set to a punky soundtrack, Mondomanila is a slap in the face of Western expectations of politely miserabilist depictions of the downtrodden. A hyper kinetic, super stylised wild carnival of the destitute, it follows a midget, a one-armed rapper, a ‘day-glo fairy’, a disabled pimp and their friends as they try to get as much sex and drugs as they can (‘the only solution to their problems’, we are told by main character Tony at the beginning) and tackle a racist white paedophile. A toothless showman opens this exuberant bad taste spectacle, promising something horrible and creepy, but the Mondo-style shockumentary aspect is underpinned by the crude reality of life in Manila, making the film vital and energising.
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