Updated: Aug 5, 2019
With 15 Years of weaving film dreams, Cinemalaya is here again. Back with more power and magic for the film audience, you can feel the excitement…the energy. It’s all around us…the sights, sounds and the people. You can live and breathe the independent filmmaking vibe for one whole week.
Cinemalaya has changed the lives aspiring filmmakers, many who got their big break with the festival through the realisation of their unique visions and ideas, resulting to the Nikkei Asia Prize for Culture and Community earlier this year
This year’s 15th edition is a special one.
What’s truly amazing is the current line up of films and events Cinemalaya Foundation and Cultural Center of the Philippines has in store for all film enthusiasts and lovers, the filmmakers and general audience alike.
As Festival directory Cris Millado pointed out, there are many reasons to celebrate in the 15th edition of Cinemalaya. “We hope by next year the number – depending on the turnout in these regional venues – we would like to even increase the screens more. We’ve got the festival down for two weeks. But to extend its impact and influence outside of the festival is another field altogether. For this we’ll need the help of both government and private institutions,” he says.
With so many things to see and do, here’s our recommended 3-point focus.
10 new short feature films: “Disconnection Notice,” directed by Glenn Lowell Forneste Averia; “Gatilyo (Trigger),” directed by Harold Lance Pialdal; “Heist School,” directed by Julius Renomeron Jr; “Hele ng Maharlika (Lullaby of the Free),” directed by Norvin De Los Santos; Kontrolado Ni Girly Ang Buhay N’ya (Girly Is In Control of His Life)” directed by Gilb Baldoza; “Sa Among Agwat (In Between Spaces),” directed by Don Senoc; “Sa Gabing Tanging Liwanag Ay Paniniwala (Belief As The Light In Darkness),” directed by Francis Guillermo; “Tembong (Connecting),” directed by Shaira Advincula; “The Shoemaker,” directed by Sheron Dayoc; and “‘Wag Mo ‘Kong Kausapin (Please Stop Talking),” directed by Josef Gacutan. 10 full length films: Iska by Theodore Boborol; John Denver Trending by Arden Rod Condez; ANi by Kim Zuñiga and Sandro del Rosario; Belle Douleur by Joji Alonso; Malamaya by Danica Sta. Lucia and Leilani Chavez; Children of the River by Maricel Cariaga; Edward by Thop Nazareno; Pandanggo sa Hukay by Sheryl Rose Andes; Tabon by Xian Lim; and Fucc Bois by Eduardo Roy, Jr.
Special events: one major highlight is the Vision of Asia section that brings filmmakers’ different perspectives from across the continent. Among the selection of Asian films is Lying to Mom by Japanese director Katsumi Nojiri, which won at the Tokyo International Film Festival, Still Human by Oliver Siu Kuen Chan, the film about a Filipino domestic helper stars Criselle Consunji, who won Best New Performer at the Hong Kong Film Awards. Cinemalaya likewise highlights the best of other local festivals, with winning films from QCinema, Sinag Maynila, ToFarm, Cinema One, Metro Manila Film Festival and Pista ng Pelikulang Pilipino. All films from the past years will be available at viewing stations dubbed Cinemalaya on Demand.
New venues for viewing: Along with Ayala Cinemas, the festival is now partners with Vista Cinemas. Micro-cinemas Cinema Centenario at Maginhawa in Quezon City, Cinema ’76 in San Juan and Anonas, the Black Maria in Ortigas, CBRC Dream Theater in España and FDCP Cinematheques in Manila, Iloilo and Davao will be screening Cinemalaya films. Aside from Metro Manila, the festival will reach new audiences in Cavite, Pampanga, Naga and Legazpi, Bacolod, Iloilo and Davao.
Wow! All these and more!
There are so many “hidden treasures” to discover from August 2-13, 2019.
As starting filmmakers, this is one film festival you don’t want to miss!
Cris Millado further adds, “Cinemalaya has journeyed since its start many years ago and has launched the careers of many filmmakers, has changed practically the landscape of Filipino cinema and continues to do so. And, in fact, has stimulated the creation of other independent film festivals as well. Making it a really very vibrant landscape for filmmakers and audiences alike,”
So enjoy the festival, be open to new film visions and ideas, and bring home the moments worth cherishing.
Remember to gear up, ready your cellphones, food, pens & papers.
Lastly, don’t forget to bring your raincoats and umbrellas. You might need one.
Story by The Film Dream, Manila, Philippines
August 2, 2019
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