Bagong Cristo

In a conservative country like the Philippines, tinkering with the image of Jesus Christ is usually taboo. We are all familiar with the divine narrative – the begotten son of God was sent to Earth to save the world from sin, the man spends his three decades on Earth teaching, and is later persecuted and…

Birdshot: More than a Parable on Innocence

WARNING: This analysis has a few spoilers. Filipinos face too much brutality that it feels as if we have already been desensitized by our society’s ills. But Birdshot reminds us of our true nature—one of innocence and idealism. Like the endangered Philippine eagle, this film is a rare breed of cinema that entertains yet opines,…

Fathers and Sons: A Dulaang UP Masterpiece of Two National Artists

What do you get when a Nick Joaquin classic gets translated by Virgilio Almario and Jose Lacaba, directed by Tony Mabesa, and brought to life by veteran thespians like Leo Rialp and Rody Vera? For the opening salvo of its 42nd season, Dulaang UP stages Fathers and Sons – a powerful work of not just…

Bite-Sized Reviews of Cinemalaya 2017 (Full Length Features)

Let’s be honest: many of us just watch movies to satisfy our visual and emotional appetite. Sadly, this affects the quality of the films we enjoy and choose to watch. Very few are trained to look beyond a film’s narrative and appreciate the figurative and the technique. As a result, many are unable to have…

The ‘Female Oblation’: After #UPlift, Ferdie Cacnio Will Continue to Create

​ He wasn’t able to sleep the night his masterpiece, “Uplift,” was shown to the public, in front of the University Theater of UP Diliman, during the full bloom of sunflowers along University Avenue, at a celebratory time of commencement exercises. It wasn’t because of uncontainable sense of achievement that the visual artist was still…

Understanding the Angry Christ

I am no theatre critic, but I’ve seen every single production of Dulaang UP since its 33rd season—that’s more or less 30 plays. There were hits and misses, but hands down, Angry Christ easily ranks as one of the most enigmatic and beautiful. I would admit, for each Dulaang UP season, it is Sir Dexter…

Orapronobis

The commemoration of the Passion of the Christ is an opportune time to pause for a while and reflect on all that has been and all that will be. And while a very few blessed kababayan can afford to travel either to the Sistine Chapel in the Holy See or the Holy Land in Jerusalem, you…

Gabe Bondoc: The Homecoming of a YouTube Sensation

One. Two. Seven. Nine. It took a while before I (as well as hundreds of other fans) got to hear that intro live in Manila straight from the man himself—Gabe Bondoc. It was long overdue, but damn was it worth the wait. We Match Unlike many of his over 300,000 subscribers, I didn’t find Gabe…

When Manila Went Gaga Over the Goo Goo Dolls

Anyone who grew up in the Philippines in the 90’s  will easily recognize The Goo Goo Dolls as the band behind the hit “And I don’t want the world to see me,” the original soundtrack to the film City of Angels. For some 90’s kids like me, it wasn’t until I asked my older siblings that…

EDSA 31st Anniversary: Iba ‘Yan — A Music Video

Sa isang pambihirang pagkakataon, ipinamalas ng Pilipino sa mundo ang lakas ng pagkakaisa. Ang isang diktador at ang kanyang rehimen ng karahasan, pinatalsik ng sama-samang pagkilos ng sambayanan. Ang demonstrasyon, naging mapayapa. Ang mga tangke, hinarangan ng nagkakapit-bisig na mamamayan. Ang mga baril, tinapatan ng mga bulaklak at rosaryo. Ngayon, tatlumpu’t isang taon na ang…

Mula sa Buwan: When a French Classic Becomes a Filipino Zarzuela

There are modern clichés, cheesy movies and hugot plays — and then there is Mula sa Buwan, a theatrical play that gets your hopes up then leaves you devastated as you experience a forgotten story worth remembering. Mula sa Buwan is the adaptation of Edmund Rostand’s timeless French piece, Cyrano de Bergerac. Instead of 17th century France as its…

Sa Wakas: A Realistic Finale

A boy meets a girl. They go through a series of dilemmas and may even be separated for period of time, but they would still eventually end up together. This has been the typical formula for cliché love stories — no matter if the film is foreign or Filipino. But this is not the kind…