Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Process Based Ordering at a Fruitshake Stall

Blend of lychee, mango and melon
At Fruitastics, a fruit shake stall inside a fruit store at UP Diliman shopping center, it has a working operating system for ordering, paying and claiming.

As you enter the store, stall is at the entrance.

  1. Choose number of fruits and size and get a stub with price and code.
  2. Pay at a separate counter and get a stamped stub.
  3. When you return, present your stub and claim. If traffic is heavy, you wait a little.

At P 65 for a 22 ounce cup of a real fruit-based shake, who would not be trooping to Fruitastics. When there are many patrons, the simple system regulates the flow.
Center is at 63 which I reach by walking from Palma Hall at 24

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Stage on Screen

Indies have now borrowed the theater’s format for their medium. Indayog ng Nayatamak, the opening film of Shorts B directed by Joris Fernandez translates a dance of a relationship in a struggle in a digital format capturing in detail the human expression and movement visually and musically. Conflict is interpreted by young dancers Kelvin Joseph Barroso and  Chinky May Juntura.

Hari ng Tondo by Carlos Syguion-Reyna is a zarzuela on screen of two opposing factions. Lead stars are backed up with an ensemble acting and singing with distinct roles to play in narrating the story of an aging father facing a personal and financial dilemma.

The festival is a feast in diversity not only in themes but format as well. While I miss the intimacy of the theater, the effects made up for it. I enjoyed viewing Indayog and Hari at a price within reach.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

My Barber's Tales

I see several tales.  Tale, a story that may not be completely true. Or a story of someone’s actual experiences. First is the feminist statement on the role of the rural female in reforming society through underground means.
Second is the transformation of the lead female Marilou from a passive housewife subservient to her husband the community to a passive resistant supporter of a rebel movement to an active aggressor.

There are the tales of Father, Mayor, Mayora, the rebel, the fertile wife, the spinster, the military and the most colorful, the comfort women.

Beyond the tales, I see a setting in throwback days in Barber’s Tale, a movie of Jun Lana. A rustic idyllic place where pace is slow, day is long, air is clean. A place that is quiet where conversations disturb the sound of the river and the howling wind. When night falls, a single “hasag” is sufficient to illuminate the entire shack. It tells a story of setting and time. Where the center of action is in a barber’s chair whose seat is not made of foam but of an organic leaf. Razor used is not a thin razor blade but a hardened metal. This small barrio is set in a flat land surrounded by hills.  To gain access one crosses a river in a hanging bridge. To escape, one hides inside one of the chambers of a cave.

Access to the outside world is in a small box called a transistor radio powered by cell batteries and at times through an outdated tabloid and Panorama magazine. Control of the barrio is like any other community, through the Mayor, the parish priest and the commanding officer.

Those were the days when tales were told by a living creature called man where a story unfolds slowly tracing the transformation of the central character. Soon a tale will be told about the snowballing of the transformation of Marilou and Edmond to the barrio, the community, a sector and eventually to a movement.

Barber’s Tale is a creation of Jun Lana starring Eugene Domingo.  Movie was shot in Daraitan Tanay.  Photos lifted from mymovieworld.

Saturday, August 09, 2014

What is shared between 1st ko si 3rd and #Y?

Watching two Cinemalaya entries back-to-back representing extreme eras made me think commonality and differences. Y kids think of immediate pleasure and group reciprocity while the oldies have deferred satisfaction and solo contemplation. The Ys have the cono language and the oldies conversational tagalog. The oldies are thrilled by memories and simple situations while the Ys by more complex stimulus; drugs, sex, smartphones, social statements.

Both Ys and the oldies have the need to be appreciated, the oldies as simple as no denial of happiness and the Ys with someone to listen to their angst. The oldies derive support from longtime friends and immediate family and the Ys from nowhere and professional help. Both experience the pain of being human perhaps on the same destructing level but the oldies confronting them with tenacity and the Ys sadly with resignation through sex, drugs and the ultimate escape, suicide.

1st and Y are two movies with diverse approaches on the human spirit. One is on number and the other a letter. Number or letter, both broken wanting for redemption and eventual salvation.

Cinemalaya 2014

Tuesday, August 05, 2014

Everything about Mariquina from actors, production to shoes is world class

Lifted from FB
Everything about Mariquina from actors, production to shoes is world class. Using analogy of shoe making and the search for the appropriate pair of shoes, Mariquina’s story slowly unfolds until Imelda Guevarra discovers her deeper self.

The transition from denial to grief is painstakingly detailed and is successfully engaging. Imagine an ensemble of great performances from Mylene Dizon, Bing Pimentel, Ricky Davao, Barbie, Che Ramos conveying the nuances of their roles in a polished production execution.

Film is not new breed but seasoned breed. A Pinoy showcase to the world!

Cinemalaya 2014

Monday, August 04, 2014

Dagitab. Idea seeded to further think about

Dagitab capitalizes heavily on the campus icon, logos, artifacts to give them permission to explore liberal possibilities even the extreme ones. Like "Ano ang hinahanap natin? Bakit di tayo masaya?"

Meaningful conversations between two parties may sound phony but could be sincere like talks in a static car, essay readings, Zara's bonding sessions, the beach, workshop, in the bedroom, at the barbecue stand, Los Banos and Avenue walks, barn reveals, breakfast and several others that after watching the movie.

One longs for a discussion group to thread all the various sparks together and to surface one again to the key message: explore life's liberal possibilities. (Even the actors' sensitive capture of the nuances of their roles is in itself an interesting topic for exploration, ranked in no particular order by Eula Valdez, Nonie Buencamino, Martin Del Rosario, Sandino Martin, Ronnie Lazaro and the ensemble at the professors' drinking sessions [it is said you get eureka moments in a beer garden] ).

Output of the Discussion. Post Script Thoughts:
  • The two key characters are in need of sparks to level them all: the husband from the search of a lost love, the wife from an interaction. When found, it spiked his sexual urge and zest for life starting with preparing breakfast for his wife. For the wife, the affair without a guilt leveled her up. The young writer wrote inspired.
  • Reset if you lose, at a loss and get muddled. Find it back, you get refreshed.
  • Only when one faces a similar encounter of the many moments staged can one internalize what Dagitab is really all about. The idea was seeded to further think about.
  • Eventually, there may never be a resolution because man's search for meaning has no concrete answer.
  • Thus "tuloy pa rin ako."

Cinemalaya 2014
Discussed with Yman M. 6 August 2017

Sunday, August 03, 2014

Joy, Pain and Hurt Feelings in Sundalong Kanin

I felt the pain the young characters go through. I related to the struggle of Badong choosing between friendship and revenge for a violation. I empathized with the love of an elder brother. I shared with the joys of bonding and friendship through common artifacts and object. I got hurt with the betrayal. That to me is Sundalong Kanin.

Pinatibay niya ang aking dibdib.

Cinemalaya 2014

Children's Story for Adults' Sensibility

Children's Story, an entry in Cinemalaya 2014 Festival on raw gladiator fight starring Buboy Villar, Miggs Cuaderno, Gloria Sevilla, Nathan Lopez jolted me for the boldness of the theme on grit and forgiveness with no closure.

The sleek technical craft deployed by Director Roderick Cabrido brings out the smell, taste, look and sound of raw grit. The initial presence of actors Nathan Lopez, Miggs Cuaderno, Buboy Villar, Gloria Sevilla effectively defines their characters to engage the viewers on who they are. Yet in spite of the grit, one feels for the humanity and the softness of their persons.

Two sentences that drive the Al and Jun to pursue "Sumusuko ka na ba?" and "Kakalimutan din natin ito!"

Beneath the tragedies, dirt and throbbing pain is hope from the tested brotherly love. Moving and thought provoking!

Cinemalaya 2014

Grit-courage and resolve; strength of character.
Clench (the teeth), especially in order to keep one's resolve when faced with an unpleasant or painful duty.

Bwaya, my opening indie film in 2014's Cinemalaya

Bwaya, a well crafted execution that captures the true sentiments of simple people. Humanity is dramatized thru tone and dramatization. The Agusan marshland, bwaya, a floating schoolhouse and a marginalized community were the novel elements to stage a universal message of a mother's emotion for loss, a sense of community and the concrete experiencing of the various stages of change from shock, denial, revenge and eventual acceptance.

Director Francis Xavier Pasion effectively puts across the message through the films' tonality, choice of actors and their interpretation and the technical technique. The slow pace, subdued lighting, crawling banca movement contribute to picture the character of the place and the theme.

While lifted from a true story in Agusan,it is presented not as a semi-documentary but as an interesting story with an intro,several highlights, conflict and a resolution.

Meeting Director FX Pasion and
Actor Karl Medina after the screening
Practitioners of change management will appreciate this 2014 Cinemalaya entry. A community with shared values can relate, a family moved and an individual touched.

Updates: Karl Francis