Let me first say how happy I am at the current state of Filipino Indie Films today compared to a decade ago. Hey Indie Films are still getting a hard time getting into big screen cinemas because of the lack of revenue malls get from it, we also have to understand the business side of the malls. But not malls are like that, Ayala malls once a year feature Cinemalaya films and other indie bodies out there.
But moving forward, now we have a lot of movie cinemas catering to indies and it’s been fun, it may not be making tons of money right now, but the more important thing is that the Filipino public is being given films we deserve. Yes! We deserve better films, better stories, better quality-made films that brings out the essence of being a Filipino.
The country is still catching up with CGI and special animations, and sometimes it makes horrible films trying to put these animations over the story. For me, story is still and will always be KING! That’s the upperhand we have over the other countries – to show the raw and unedited side of human existence.
I’m lucky that I grew up into watching a lot of classic films growing up. And some of these are really the great ones made such as:
- Oro, Plata, Mata
- Ganito Kami Noon, Paano Kayo Ngayon
- Muro Ami
- Bagong Buwan
That’s all I can remember now, these films really did impact me in choosing films to watch and also these films talked social issues in their time. I remember how Muro Ami tackled issues of child labor and the wrong method of fishing. Bagong Buwan tackled the religious differences of a war-torn Mindanao, which is still relevant until now. And who can forget the star-studded drama casting of Magnifico that put everyone into tears in cinemas.
These are the films Filipinos need, not those films in December filled with 2-hours of product advertisements. I’m not saying that everything being shown by the MMFF every December is shit, but most of it are. And some movies really contribute to the dumbing-down of society.
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Now that I’ve offloaded my grievances in Philippine Cinema, it’s now time talk about some good Indie Films that I believe every Filipino should watch as it affected me in the way I see the everyday life of being a Filipino. These films mostly talk about social issues Filipinos are blinded, or still refusing to see.
Now this list is of my own and they are not ranked in any particular order, all that I’m saying is that you have to watch these films and it might affect you the way it did to me.
And also, I won’t be describing any synopsis as I’m afraid I might spoil something, I’ll let you figure it out.
On The Job (OTJ)
Sa North Diversion Road
Honor Thy Father
Lando at Bugoy
Star na si Van Damme Stallone
Nakauwi Na (Short Film)
Sunday Beauty Queen
Ang Maangas, Ang Marikit, at Ang Makata (Short Film)
These films are only from my memory and the list would be longer if I remembered every good indie film I’ve watched. Also, these films may be hard to find now as only a few really release it in DVD, but you can find some on iFlix and some are occassionaly shown in Indie Cinemas such as Cinema 76, Black Maria, Cinemateque and other studios.
How about you? What are your favorite Filipino Indie Films? Comment your suggestions below and maybe I haven’t watched those!