PH Cinema Celebrates 100 Years in Biggest Int’l Film Festival in Mexico

PH Cinema Celebrates 100 Years in Biggest Int’l Film Festival in Mexico
Photo courtesy of Film Development Council of the Philippines (FDCP)

PH Cinema Celebrates 100 Years in Biggest Int’l Film Festival in Mexico

The world continues to join the Philippines in the celebration of its One Hundred Years of Philippine Cinema, especially as the Philippines has been announced as this year’s Spotlight Country at the 22nd Guanajuato International Film Festival (GIFF). The festival will run from July 19 to 28, 2019 in World Heritage sites Guanajuato and San Miguel de Allende in Mexico.

Led by the Philippine Embassy in Mexico, the Film Development Council of the Philippines (FDCP) will help spearhead the Philippine Spotlight Program and the Philippines’ Guest Country participation at the GIFF in partnership with the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA), Department of Tourism (DOT), Tourism Promotions Board (TPB), ABS-CBN Films (Star Cinema), and Cinematografo.

“The selection of the Philippines as the first Southeast Asian Spotlight Country in the Guanajuato International Film Festival is a great honor and perfect opportunity to bring the best of Philippine cinema and our culture to Mexico, a country which we share a long history with. FDCP is pleased to spearhead the participation of the country at such a big film festival,” said FDCP Chairperson and CEO Mary Liza Diño.

Aside from films, GIFF will be a celebration of Filipino culture which will spotlight the country’s music and food. There will be a conference on the History of Philippine cinema: Cinema, Colonization, and Culture by University of the Philippines Film Institute (UPFI) film historian and educator Nick Deocampo; a Mexico-Philippines Bilateral Forum in collaboration with Instituto Mexicano de Cinematografía (IMCINE); and a musical concert which will be attended by 1,000 expected guests. FDCP Chairperson Liza Diño, who is also a chef, will prepare an 8-course dinner to treat VIPS to Filipino-Mexican fusion cuisine, together with Mexican chef Marcela Bolaño, the chef and owner of Marsala, Cocina con Accen, and MB Catering by Desing in San Miguel de Allende.

A total of 30 films will be screened at the GIFF in different sections, including Philippine Cinema Retrospective: Cinema, Colonialism, Culture, Kidlat Tahimik, QCinema/Contemporary Films, Short Films from Philippine Archipelago, and In Special Program/Section.

The selection consists of luminaries of Philippine cinema, such as Kidlat Tahimik, Lino Brocka, Lamberto Avellana, and Fernando Poe, Jr. Other Filipino filmmakers who will showcase their works at the GIFF are Brillante Mendoza, Mario Cornejo, Sheron Dayoc, and Khavn De La Cruz. ABS-CBN, the country’s largest media company, will also participate at the GIFF.

Philippine Cinema Retrospective: Cinema, Colonialism, Culture 

  1. A Portrait of the Artist as Filipino – Lamberto Avellana, 1965
  2. Maynila sa mga Kuko ng Liwanag (Manila in the Claws of Light) – Lino Brocka, 1975
  3. Ganito Kami Noon, Paano Kayo Ngayon? (As we were) – Eddie Romero, 1976
  4. Pagbabalik ng Lawin – Fernando Poe Jr., 1975
  5. Batch ‘81 – Mike De Leon, 1982
  6. Oro, Plata, Mata – Peque Gallaga, 1982
  7. Himala (Miracles) – Ishmael Bernal, 1982
  8. Noli Me Tangere – Gerardo de Leon, 1961
  9. Karnal – Marilou Diaz Abaya, 1983

Kidlat Tahimik

  1. Mababangong Bangungot (Perfumed Nightmares) – 1977
  2. Turumba – 1981
  3. Bakit Dilaw ang Gitna ng Bahaghari? (Why is Yellow the middle of the Rainbow? – 1994 (Documentary)
  4. Lakbayan – 2018, with Brillante Mendoza and Lav Diaz

QCinema/Contemporary Films

  1. Matangtubig – Jet Leyco, 2015
  2. Apocalypse Child – Mario Cornejo, 2015
  3. Manananggal sa Unit 23B – Prime Cruz, 2016
  4. Women of the Weeping River – Sheron Dayoc, 2016
  5. Pag-ukit sa Paniniwala – Hiyas Bagabaldo, 2018 (Documentary)

Short Films from Philippine Archipelago

  1. To Siomai Love – Remton Zuasola, 2009
  2. Boca – Zurich Chan, 2010
  3. Sanayan lang ang Pagpatay – Gil Joseph A. Sanchez, 2011
  4. Ang Pagpukaw sa akong Damgo – Arbi Barbarona, 2014
  5. Happy Fiesta – Joe Bacus, 2014
  6. Aliens Ata (Maybe Aliens) – Glenn Barit, 2017
  7. Bawod (Bent) – TM Malones, 2017
  8. Tembong – Shaira Advincula, 2018

In Special Program/Section

  1. Mula sa Kung Ano ang Noon – Lav Diaz, 2014
  2. Alipato: The Very Brief Life of an Ember – Khavn Dela Cruz, 2016
  3. Eerie – Mikhail Red, 2018
  4. Yellow Rose – Diane Paragas, 2019

National Artist for Film and Father of Philippine independent cinema Kidlat Tahimik will be given an international tribute at the GIFF for his contribution to the cinema along with “Good Will Hunting” director Gus Van Sant and “The Man Who Killed Don Quixote” director Terry Gilliam. Moreover, Cannes winner Brillante Mendoza will serve as the President of the Jury and will also give a keynote address at the GIFF.

Since 1998, the GIFF has been offering a diverse selection of screenings, conferences, and other activities and bringing international film industry professionals together for networking opportunities.

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