It was hours before the closing film of Cinemalaya X indie film festival got to be shown when I suddenly saw one new breed film director whom I admired- in person of director Joselito ‘Jay’ Altajeros- going down the red-carpeted stairs of Cultural Center of the Philippines’ main lobby, and we crossed paths.
I told him: “I missed your film, direk Jay. I needed to blog on that day.”
And he answered, which at once disturbed my thoughts: “You could watch it online, Robert.”
And direk Jay smiled vaguely. I felt pain. And I asked myself: “Why online?”
That very night, after I saw the closing film (“A Thief, A Kid and A Killer”), I heard news already. Something was wrong. And it went viral from 10 p.m. to 12 midnight. THERE WAS A WAR GOING ON.
Again, it was hours before the awarding ceremonies of Cinemalaya X would start. As this blogger lined-up together with his fellow media friends/colleagues, I heard whispers. And those whispers were sent right on my very ears, too. I felt the tension.
CCP ushers suddenly became strict that night. They also all looked tensed. Security was further heightened. And the media people got more excited to go in already inside the CCP main theater.
I asked my self again: “What could happen kaya hours from now?”
Someone had to give-in. Somebody had to sacrifice. Some people had to perform an “act of humility”. Or else. Or else… As what whispers told me: “The war will not stop unless.”
AND THE SHOW STARTED.
Just right after the opening rap number ended, there he was. The very person who gave the funds to mobilize a dream of the young film makers- the very person who believed in them and trusted their artistic talents- right in front of the stage, HE SAID SORRY.
The person was Mr. Cojuangco, who was always behind and not wanting to show-up, but this time, he had to. Or the kids will cry.
He told of statistics and logistics, not merely explaining but presenting. His voice was crumbled, the microphone sound system didn’t give justice and clearance of words through his voice. But somehow, it all sounded just fine.
I just didn’t know if the apologies were accepted.
AND THE SHOW CONTINUED.
There were so many bloopers all throughout the awarding ceremonies, and it just made people laugh and relieve the tension, somehow. But I suddenly remembered the rather objective comment before of one former movie writer turned TV and indie film director- in person of Mr. Ronald Carballo- that in film festivals like this, THE WHOLE WORLD’S WATCHING. So, they should have been a lot more responsible and careful.
I saw two foreign media people seated beside Mr. Mell T. Navarro (an indie film advocate) and I saw in their faces the intrigue, the vague smiles and irritating looks, asking themselves, maybe: “What’s happening?”
The presenters were not fully-instructed. And how could one simple mistake got to be repeated over and over again? I meant, they were already holding the envelope containing the name of the winners, and yet, they were waiting for someone else to give it to them right there onstage. How ridiculous!
But a blogger still managed to laugh. Thanks to the handsomeness of two gentlemen who smiled at him, and the other stared at him, as he kept on looking back at them in the audience seats up. An actor and a director.
Without them, he already walked-out at the middle of the rites.
An astounding acceptance speech brought the blogger back to his fantasies of seeing those two handsome gentlemen. It woke him back to REALITY.
“Hustisya will move-on, even without Cinemalaya”, Dennis Evangelista said as he received a special award for the film Hustisya.
And there was SILENCE.
And another one CAME.
It was the ending words of Ms. Hannah Espia’s speech that made it all clear. The film makers were not at all flattered by the APOLOGIES. They wanted more dialogues, they really were HURT.
Both Dennis and Hannah represented the majority of the film artists who were all deep in pain about the “uploading on Youtube.Com”.
I heard a silent cry from nowhere. I just didn’t know where it came from. I tried to look at Ms. Hannah, yes she was in a verge of tears from where she was seated, but she was too far from where I sat.
This one was serious, indeed. “We could not just simply laugh about it”.
Though our favorite Cinemalaya X film- and that is, “#Y”, by director Gino Santos didn’t win the Best Film award and only won one single award for Best Cast Ensemble, we managed to hide our dismay. We respected the jurors. And alongside that respect, it gave us a unique kind of feeling rather satisfied. Unique kind of acceptance, too. Asking myself: “What more could I do?”
But I saw a world standing still that night. As in pictures and frames. It seemed that every single action stopped. And the clock didn’t move.
From hereon, a rainbow would appear.
I looked at the faces of the young Short Film directors seated beside each other rows above me.
They were the rainbow now…
(as the words were written: August 11, 2014, by robert manuguid silverio)
COURTESY OF RAPPLER.COM, COMPLETE LIST OF WINNERS AT CINEMALAYA X AWARDING RITES:
MANILA, Philippines – Celebrating its 10th year, Cinemalaya ended this year’s film festival with its awards night Sunday, August 10 at the CCP Tanghalang Nicanor Abelardo (CCP Main Theater).
Here is the list of this year’s winners:
Best Poster Design: Justin Besana for Asintado
Audience Choice Award, New Breed Category: Sundalong Kanin
Audience Choice Award, Directors’ Showcase: Hustisya
2014 Gawad Balanghai: Kidlat Tahimik, father of Philippine Independent Cinema
Best Screenplay – Kevin Ang Tan, Lola
Best Director – Kevin Ang Tan, Lola
Best Film – Asan si Lolo Me
Special Jury Prize – The Ordinary Things We Do
Audience Choice – Lola
Best Sound – The Janitor
Best Musical Score – Richard Gonzales, Kasal
Best Editing – Tara Illenberger, The Janitor
Best Production Design – Harley Alcasid, Kasal
Best Cinematography – Mycko David, Kasal
Best Screenplay – Aloy Adlawan and Michael Tuviera The Janitor
Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role – Nicco Manalo, The Janitor
Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role – Cris Villonco, Hari ng Tondo
Best Performance by a Lead Actor – Robert Arevalo, Hari ng Tondo
Best Performance by a Lead Actress – Nora Aunor, Hustisya
Special Jury Prize – Hari ng Tondo
Best Director – Michael Tuviera, The Janitor
Best Film – Kasal
NETPAC Award: Hustisya
Best Sound – Children’s Show
Best Musical Score – Erwin Fajardo, Bwaya
Best Editing – Gerone Centena, Children’s Show
Best Production Design – Toym Imao, K’na, the Dreamweaver
Best Cinematography – Neil Daza, Bwaya
Best Screenplay – Giancarlo Abrahan, Dagitab
Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role – Miggs Cuaderno, Children’s Show
Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role – Barbie Forteza, Mariquina
Best Performance by a Lead Actor – Dante Rivero, 1st Ko Si 3rd
Best Performance by a Lead Actress -Eula Valdez, Dagitab
Special citation for Ensemble Acting – #Y
Special Jury Prize – K’na, the Dreamweaver
Best Film – Bwaya
Best Director – Giancarlo Abrahan, Dagitab
Canon Award Best Cinematography – Children’s Show
NETPAC Award: Bwaya