Philippines

Lav Diaz – Ebolusyon ng isang pamilyang Pilipino AKA Evolution of a Filipino Family (2004)

Quote:
An especially long film. And a special long film. An even more special detail is that, while watching it, the film gives you an inevitable feeling that it should last exactly this long, if not longer. The manner of production is also noteworthy. The film was shot bit by bit over a period of nine years, first on film and more recently on video. It is a method of shooting that was partly necessitated by financial considerations, but that also fits in well with the epic story that extends over a period of more than fifteen years. The film spans the Marcos regime’s state of siege in the Philippines (1971-1987). As the title indicates, Diaz follows the adventures of a family against the backdrop of the social and political developments in this crucial period in history. Read More »

Jun Lana – Mga kuwentong barbero AKA Barber’s Tales (2013)

Barber’s Tales (Filipino: Mga Kuwentong Barbero) is a 2013 Filipino drama film by Jun Robles Lana. The film stars Eugene Domingo as Marilou, a widow who is forced to take her late husband’s job as community barber during the end of Marcos era. The film is the follow up to Lana’s film Bwakaw and second of a trilogy focused on the small town life in the Philippines.[1] The film had its world premiere and competed at the 2013 Tokyo International Film Festival, where it won the Best Actress Award for Eugene Domingo’s performance.

The film had its commercial release in the Philippines on August 13, 2014. Read More »

Khavn – Mondomanila: Kung paano ko inayos ang buhok ko matapos ang mahaba-haba ring paglalakbay AKA Mondomanila, or: How I Fixed My Hair After a Rather Long Journey (2010)

Quote:
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. Read More »

Khavn – Ang Pamilyang Kumakain ng Lupa AKA The Family that Eats Soil [+Extras] (2005)

Quote:
The Family that Eats Soil is a very outspoken experimental film maker with a prolific rate of production and an uninhibited lust to investigate and cross all frontiers. This film also displays clear traces of furious improvisations and a nonchalant provocative manner. In Filipino society, the family is holy, like the earth, because the society is basically still agrarian. In the bizarre and surrealistic world of The Family That Eats Soil, a strange and dysfunctional family sits down three times a day to a meal of soil. Outside the meal times, the individual family members experience extravagant adventures. Read More »

Lav Diaz – Walang Alaala ang mga Paru-paro aka Butterflies Have No Memories [Director’s Cut] (2009)

Quote:
Diaz’s contribution to the 2009 Jeonju Digital Project.

Canadian Martha (Lois Goff) returns to the site of her Filipino upbringing, now a depressed ex-mining town. Her childhood friend Willy (Willy Fernandez) still carries something of a torch for her, but the bitter, ambitious Mang Ferding (Dante Perez) soon thrusts him into a test of loyalties. Read More »

Glenn Barit – Cleaners (2019)

Different students from a high school cleaners group each deal with different pressures of being clean and pure while also discovering that the world is dirty and superficial to begin with.

Barit developed a distinct visual palette for the film that resembles highlighted photocopies (much like books and readings common in Philippine schools). To achieve this, they finalized the offline cut of the film, exported it at eight frames per second, then printed each of those frames out to look like photocopies. What followed was months of manual highlighting of each frame before these were batch-scanned and put in place of the original offline cut. Read More »

Lino Brocka – Bayan ko: Kapit sa patalim (1984)

Kapit was well covered by media, as any competition film in Cannes is covered, except that the rave reviews were numerous. Festival reports had it that, of the critics, only a minority found the film’s “constant agit prop a little hard to digest, however much they sympathized personally with Brocka’s politics.” Le Quotidien’s Gerard Lefort felt that the famous Costa-Gavras could stand comparison with Lino Brocka! Brocka garnered enough inter­ national prestige in the 1984 Cannes event to put Philippine cinema an—foremost in Brocka’s priorities— Philippine politics in the limelight. Read More »