Sinag Maynila 2015

Monday, March 09, 2015


I’ve read some blogs and other posts actually complaining about how indie has now become “mainstream”.  Personally, I used to feel that way when the beshie and I started making plans of getting Cinemalaya tickets days before an entry is shown because shows get sold out almost immediately. Meaning, Cinemalaya has indeed gone mainstream in terms of audience impact. Or maybe it’s because more mainstream actors are doing indie as well. Pinoys and their idol mentality.


After giving it much thought, I decided making movies are so expensive and that there are still many brilliant gems in the film industry waiting to be discovered but don’t have a chance because of budget. Sabi ko, sige na nga. Hindi na’ko magpapaka-brainy in judging what movies other film-goers can see--if they’ll enjoy this or judge their intellectual capabilities to understand a movie that I liked. That’s just being judgemental and selfish because people watch movies for different reasons. But I confess, may mga indie na dapat nagb-blockbuster. I’m like: "Filipinos, why are you watching that overly-dramatic love story or generic comedy instead of this mind-f***ingly great film?! Where. Are. Your. Brains?" (Okay, I sound mean. Sorry.) So there, I was very selfish about “my” indies. Haha. But since I’m all more mature about it, I am happy and very supportive about new film festivals. In fact, here I am writing about one! (Yeyy me!) 

In an effort to support the local film industry, Solar Entertainment together with the celebrated,multi-awarded director Brillante Mendoza launched the first ever Sinag Maynila. Mendoza was quoted to have said that it is “better than those of other film festivals”, giving participating filmmakers a grant of P2 Million and they get to have part-owndership of their films. With it's tagline, "Pelikulang Pinoy, Pusong Pinoy", Sinag Maynila will feature five of the country’s notable indie directors.



The festival is slated on March 18-24, 2015 at these designated SM Cinemas: Megamall, North Edsa, Southmall, SM Mall of Asia, SM Aura Premiere and SM Fairview. The organizers have yet to announce ticket prices or if the festival will be generous enough to give senior or student discounts, you may instead stand by for more updates about ticket prices and  film schedules by checking out their social media accounts:


Meanwhile, here are the entries (Note: Indies have the coolest posters! Got film synopsis from their FB Site, you’re welcome):

1.     Balut Country
Director: Paul Sta. Ana
Cast:  Rocco Nacino, Ronnie Quizon, Vincent Magbanua, Angela Cortez and Ms. Nanette Inventor
Synopsis:
"Balut Country" tells the story of Jun, an heir to the duck farm left to him by his late father, who must decide between selling the property to secure a future with his partner, or sparing the family of the land's caretakers of inevitable displacement.




2.     Ninja Party
Director: Jim Libiran
Cast: Odette Khan, Annicka Dolonius, Julz Savard, Bea Galvez and Elora Espano. Also starring Teresa Loyzaga, Dennis Marasigan, Japo Parceo and Mariz Reyes. 
Synopsis: In "Ninja Party", top female students of an elite Catholic School discover their identities and sexualities amidst clashing values. Conflicts between themselves, their families and their school forces them to grow up and grow in friendship. They face slut-shaming when rumor spreads about their participation in a secret orgy.





3.     Bambanti
Director: Zig Dulay
Cast: Alessandra de Rossi, Micko Laurente, Julio Diaz, Shamaine Buencamino, Lui Manansala
Synopsis: "Bambanti" is about the search for a missing watch that instigates the painful quest for the truth in Belyn's and her son's life. 






4.   Imbisibol
Director: Lawrence Fajardo
Cast: Allen Dizon, Ces Quesada, Bernardo Bernardo and JM de Guzman. Also Starring JC Santos, Onyl Torres, Angelina Kanapi, Fred Lo, Naoki Takai, Shinepi Suzuki, May Alleman, Kaz Sawamura, Masaharu Iwamoto, Oyee Barro, Ms. Cynthia Luster and Mr. Ricky Davao.
Synopsis:
"Imbisibol" follows the lives of four Filipino migrant workers in Japan-Linda, Benjie, Manuel and Rodel who, amidst their individual struggles, are suddenly caught together in an even more complex game of hide and seek where staying invisible is the only way to survive.




5.   Swap
Director: Remton Zuasola
Cast: Dionne Monsanto, Matt Daclan, Mon Confiado, RK Bagatsing, Jess Mendoza, and Ligaya Rabago
Synopsis:
In "Swap", a young father is torn between solving a crime and committing another crime when one day his only son got kidnapped and the criminals demand him to steal another kid in exchange for the life of his son.



Let’s all show our local film industry some support and shout out to the organizers of Sinag Maynila for this effort! See one or better yet, see ALL the films in an SM Cinema near you!

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