"The future of Philippine cinema is alternative cinema."--Tikoy Aguiluz


Cinemanila festival founding director Tikoy Aguiluz shared his thoughts about Philippine cinema during the awarding rites held last October 23, 2009 at the NBC Tent, Taguig City.


Well-attended ang culminating activity ng 11th Cinemanila International Film Festival 2009 last October 25 sa Cinema 6 ng Market! Market! Ipinalabas bilang closing film ang pelikulang Himpapawid (Philippine premiere) na dinirek ni Raymond Red. Siya rin ang nagsilbing screenplay writer at cinematographer ng naturang pelikula na base sa tunay na nangyari sa isang hijacker ng eroplano.


(CLICK HERE to read PEP’s review of Himpapawid)

Pumunta sa screening ang mga kabilang sa cast ng pelikula, tulad nina Flor Salanga, John Arcilla, Ronnie Lazaro, at Jess Evardone. Naroroon rin ang ibang indie directors na gustong mapanood ang comeback directorial project ni Raymond Red, matapos na manalo ang kanyang short film na Anino ng top prize (Palme d’Or) sa Cannes Film Fest noong taong 2000.

Hindi man personal na naka-attend sa Philippine premiere ng Himpapawid, may video clip naman sina Direk Red at Himpapawid lead actor, Raul Arellano. Kinunan ito sa Tokyo, Japan, dahil nag-compete ang pelikula sa Tokyo International Film Festival na ginanap noong October 17-25, 2009. Ayon sa direktor nito’y maganda ang naging pagtanggap ng mga manonood (Japanese and other foreign viewers) sa bago niyang pelikula.

Muling nagpasalamat ang Cinemanila founding festival director na si Amable "Tikoy" Aguiluz VI sa mga dumalo (karamihan ay bahagi ng independent cinema industry), hindi nga lang niya ma-acknowledge ang lahat, including some from the local entertainment press.

Bukod sa cast ng pelikula, nanood ng Himpapawid ang National Artist for Literature na si Bienvenido Lumbera, ang Digital Lokal jury chair, Ms. Sonja Heinen (ng Germany), French observer-critic Max Tessier, indie writer-directors Armando "Bing" Lao, Senedy Que, Sherad Anthony Sanchez and John Torres na kabilang din sa jury (Digital Lokal and Young Cinema sections, respectively).

Direk Tikoy gave special mention to his daughter, Anima Aguiluz, "she did all the work and I just gave the speeches. Thank you!" sabi niya.

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Ang speeches na tinutukoy ni Tikoy Aguiluz ay ang mga binigay niya sa October 15 opening rites at sa October 23 awarding ceremony ng 11th Cinemanila, sa NBC Tent, The Fort, Taguig City.

Present sa mga nabanggit na events ang Taguig City Mayor Freddie Tinga and his wife Kaye Tinga; Vice-Mayor George Elias, ang mga kagawad ng Taguig City, at mga taga-industriya, sa pangunguna ng isa pang National Artist for Film, Eddie Romero, at ang kanyang anak na si Joey Romero of the Movie and Television Review and Classification Board. Kabilang rin sa mga panauhin ang filmmaker na si Kidlat Tahimik at mga artistang taga-suporta ng indie cinema tulad nina Ronnie Lazaro, Joel Torre, Luis Alandy, Ketchup Eusebio, Mon Confiado, Ynez Veneracion, Anacbanua star Che Ramos, at Ana Capri. Sina Albert Martinez at Giselle Sanchez ang nagsilbing hosts ng gabing iyon.

Tikoy Aguiluz was grateful for the City of Taguig for hosting the ten-day international cinema event.

At nagpasalamat din siya sa Hollywood filmmaker, Paul Schrader sa naibigay na suporta sa kanyang pinamamahalaang international film fest. Nakilala si Mr. Schrader bilang screenplay writer ng mga pelikulang Taxi Driver (1976) at Raging Bull (1980) at director ng Adam Resurrected (2008). Dahil sa kanyang naitulong sa industriya, si Mr. Schrader ang recipient ng Lifetime Achievement Award mula sa Cinemanila this year.


Si Lav Diaz naman ay nakatanggap ng Indie Spirit Award sa 11th edition ng Cinemanila.

* * * * *

FUTURE OF PHILIPPINE CINEMA. Sa isang bahagi ng speech ni Tikoy Aguiluz (whose body of work, as filmmaker, include such significant and award-winning films, as Boatman, Segurista, Biyaheng Langit, Rizal Sa Dapitan, among others) ay binanggit niya ang kinabukasan ng Philippine cinema.

Ayon kay Direk Tikoy, kamakailan lang ay gumawa sila ng documentary on the future of Philippine cinema. Isa sa kanilang na-interview ay si Arleen Cuevas, producer ng Independencia. Ani Arleen, "The future of cinema is Philippine cinema."


"I’d like to add to that," sabi rin ni Tikoy, "the future of Philippine cinema is alternative cinema. And that’s the cinema of Lav Diaz, the cinema of Brillante Mendoza, the cinema of Sherad Sanchez, John Torres... all these filmmakers who are now making movies and telling all these stories.

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"I’d also like to mention what Paul Schrader has been saying for the last few days: it’s not very optimistic. Paul Schrader has been saying that cinema, as we know it, is not there anymore..."

"Coming from a master storyteller, I find that hard to believe," sabi pa ni Direk Tikoy, na ang paniniwala ay: "For as long as there are stories to tell, and Paul Schrader has told the most incredible stories that we’ve ever heard...as long as there are stories to tell, and as long as there are Filipino filmmakers that tell our stories to the world, and tell their stories fast--cinema will always be alive!

"On that note, I say, Mabuhay ang Philippine cinema! Mabuhay ang Filipino filmmakers!"

And on that positive note, the 11th Cinemanila International Film Festival 2009 was brought to a close.


CLICK HERE to view photos taken during the event.


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