"I'm happy. I'm glad to be here tonight, because the filmmakers are here."
This was Founding Director Tikoy Aguiluz's welcoming statement to the directors who attended the awards night of the 14th Cinemanila International Film Festival on Saturday, December 8, at Bonifacio High Street in Taguig City.
Cinemanila is an annual film festival that offers the best movies from
around the world. It also holds a competition for local indie filmmakers in the country.
Present during the awards night were indie filmmakers Gym Lumbera, Whammy Alcazaren, Teng Mangansakan, Richard Somes, Pamela Llanes Reyes, Carl Papa, Bienvenido Ferrer III, Benito Bautista, and Chuck Gutierrez.
According to Direk Tikoy, these directors submitted their movies to Cinemanila even if they do not give grants or cash prizes. "I'd really have to hand it out to the filmmakers who are here tonight, because we've never offered any grant, we've never offered any P500,000 subsidy, we do not give any cash prizes. But they made the films, and they submitted the films to Cinemanila," he said.
The respected director added that the submitted films are in line with Cinemanila's mission. "What we've always wanted to do was show good films. We've stuck with that crazy idea of promoting and showing good films. Whether there's an audience or not, we never cared. We always thought if you show the films, the audience will come," Direk Tikoy said.
ENTRIES. There were three categories in in Cinemanila's competition section. The first one is Young Cinema Shorts in Competition for budding young filmmakers. The second is the International Competition for the world's best full-length movies. The last is Digital Lokal for full-length Filipino independent movies.
Four movies were competing for Young Cinema Shorts Competition: Aurora, My Aurora by Janus Victoria, Kabilang Dulo by Bienvenido Ferrer III, Ang Prinsesa, ang Prinsipe at si Marlborita by Carl Papa, and Unawa by Pamela Llanes Reyes.
Eight movies were competing in the International Competition category: 36 by Nawopol Thamrongratanarit, Flashback Memories 3D by Tetsuaki Matsue, The Great Cinema Party by Raya Martin, Juvenile Offender by Kang Yi-kwan, Kayan by Maryam Najafi, Television by Mostofa Sarwar Farooki, Post Tenebras Lux by Carlos Reygadas, and If Not Now, Then When? by James Lee.
Lastly, there were five movies competing in Digital Lokal: Colossal by Whammy Alcazaren, Obscured Histories and Silent Longings of Dagaluan's Children by Teng Mangansakan, Ang Paglalakbay ng mga Bituin sa Gabing Madilim by Arnel Mardoquio, Supremo by Richard Somes, and Taglish by Gym Lumbera.
WINNERS. Two awards were given in the Young Cinema Shorts Competition category.
Best Short Film went to the animated Ang Prinsesa, ang Prinsipe at si Marlborita by Carl Papa. Ishmael Bernal Prize for Best Short Film went to Sa Kabilang Dulo by Bienvenido Ferrer III.
Five awards were given in the International Competition category. Korean director Kang Yi-kwan's Juvenile Offender took home two awards: the Lino Brocka Grand Prize, and Best Actor for it's lead, Seo Young-Ju. Juvenile Offender is about a troubled young man who meets his mother, who disappeared years ago.Director Kang Yi-Kwan was present to receive both awards. "I love Manila," he told the audience.
Meanwhile, the Best Director in the International Category went to two directors: Thai director Nawopol Thamrongratanarit for 36 and Mexican director Carlos Reygadas for Post Tenebras Lux.
The International Competition Jury Prize went to If Not Now, Then When? by James Lee from Malaysia.
Lastly, the Best Actress award went to Oula Hamadeh of Kayan. For the Digital Lokal category, Mindanao-based director Teng Mangansakan won two awards: the Lino Grand Prize and Best Director awards for his movie Obscured Histories and Silent Longings of Dagaluan's Children. The movie tells the story of Mindanao's people living amidst armed conflict.
In Teng's acceptance speech, he offered his award to the people of Mindanao who have just survived the battering of Typhoon Pablo.
"Their resilience, bravery, and fortitude were tested in the storm,"
the director said.
Another award in Digital Lokal went to Davao's Arnel Mardoquio for Ang Paglalakbay ng mga Bituin sa Gabing Madilim, which is about the Bangsamoro struggle. The movie won the Jury Prize.
The Cinemanila jury was composed of local and foreign personalities, like Thai writer Prabda Yoon, Korean personality Ji-hoon Jo, Filipino film scholar Mike Rapatan, Filipino director Antoinette Jadaone, Japanese producer Aki Isoyama, Filipino screenwriter Raymond Lee,
Filipino reporter Arly de la Cruz, Filipino lawyer Juni Alajar, and
Thai director Panu Aree.
The night's hosts were character actor Archie Adamos and beauty queen Gwendoline Ruais.
Here is the list of winners in the 14th Cinemanila:
Lino Brocka Grand Prize – Juvenile Offender (Korea, 2012) by Kang Yi-kwan
Grand Jury Prize – If it’s Not Now, then When? (Malaysia, 2012) by James Lee
Best Directors – Carlos Reygadas for Post Tenebras Lux (Mexico, 2012) and Nawopol Thomrangrattanarit for 36 (Thailand, 2012)
Best Actress – Oula Hamadeh for Kayan (Iran/Canada/Lebanon, 2012)
Best Actor – Seo Young-joo for Juvenile Offender (Korea, 2012)
Lino Grand Prize – Obscured Histories and Silent Longings of Daguluan’s Children by Teng Mangansakan
Grand Jury Prize – Ang Paglalakbay ng mga Bituin sa Gabing Madilim by Arnel Mardoquio
Best Director – Obscured Histories and Silent Longings of Daguluan’s Children by Teng Mangansakan
Best Short Film – Ang Prinsesa, Ang Prinsipe at si Marlborita by Carl Joseph Papa
Ishmael Bernal Award – Kabilang Dulo by Bienvenido Ferrer III
Lifetime Achievement Awards
Celso Ad Castillo
Sahamongkol Film International