If you haven’t already watched Engkwentro, this is your chance to watch the Filipino film that earned two coveted awards during the 66th Venice Film Fest held last September.
Felix Roco topbills the indie film, Engkwentro, which will be screened in cinemas on December 11, 12 & 13 at SM Mall of Asia, North Edsa, Megamall, and Cebu. By January 2010, it will be screened at SM Davao, Iloilo and Bacoor.
Inspired by real events, Engkwentro follows the last 24 hours of two teenage brothers on opposite sides of a gang war.
Featuring a career-making performance by young actor Felix Roco and directed by 22-year-old filmmaker Pepe Diokno, Engkwentro took home two awards at the Venice Film Festival—the Horizons Prize for new trends in cinema, and the US$ 100,000 Lion of the Future" Luigi de Laurentiis" Award for Best Debut Film.
In a previous interview, Felix told PEP (Philippine Entertainment Portal) that doing this indie film made him aware of the extrajudicial killings among residents of slum areas. "Napapanood ko siya sa news.
Nakakagulat din kasi maski mga bata pinapatulan nila. Nakakulong na petty crimes lang pinaparusahan ng ganun. Parang hindi tama. Eye- opener din sa akin."
SYNOPSIS. Inspired by true stories, Engkwentro tells the story of Richard and Raymond, two teenage brothers on opposite sides of a gang war. Richard is the leader of his gang, "Bagong Buwan" (New Moon) while Raymond is just being inducted into ’Batang Dilim’ (Children of the Night), a rival gang led by charming solvent boy Tomas.
Complications arise at a deadly midnight encounter, when Tomas gives Raymond the task of killing his older brother.
All this happens while the City Death Squad lurks on the streets. This real-life vigilante group is allegedly backed by the omnipresent Mayor Danilo Dularte Suarez, and is responsible for many unsolved murders of teen gangsters. Today, they are hunting down Richard. Will they take down the younger brother, too?
ABOUT FELIX ROCO. The son of local cinema legend Bembol Roco, 20-year-old Felix Roco makes a mark with his internationally acclaimed performance in the Venice Film Festival double-awardee Engkwentro.
Taking the lead role of Richard, a gangster running away from the murderous City Death Squad, Felix shows an undeniable range and versatility that may be one of his most challenging performances. Because Engkwentro was shot a la one continuous take, Felix styled his performance like a stage play, memorizing all his lines and deeply internalizing his character. With no room for mistakes, Felix did his own stunts and narrowly avoiding injuries on set.
In order to prepare for his performance, Felix drew from his own past experiences. A former fraternity member, Felix overcame his "wild" younger days and has now transformed himself into a professional, serious actor. He wants young viewers to follow his example of conquering challenges and chasing dreams.
CLICK HERE to read PEP’s review of Engkwentro.