Director Ryan Joseph Murcia captures a bittersweet day between lovers Mark and El. Beginning with a myth—a poetic defense of its title—the film is a 19-minute hodgepodge of lovers’ chases and quarrels. The film brims with philosophical notes, but falls short in evoking pang and its sour irony.
Gatilyo ng Baril (Trigger of the Gun)
It’s a throwback noir to a dark age where failed assassin Carlito Dimahilig swung a bolo at Imelda Marcos. Historical accounts, fictional encounters, and Betamax footage create eerie moods in directors Glenmark Doromal and Eero Francisco’s short. Tensions rise as crimes and conspiracies do, leaving us cold and surprised as its investigative female lead.
DirectorKenneth Dagatan just trumped Japanese horror. Marisa plays abortionist to expecting moms, and plays mother figure to a demon child. Bloody, graphic, and dark—the mark of the film’s scream-fest success is not its obvious elements, but its subtle reminder that the source of true terror is within us.
A nine-year-old boy makes mischief in religious spaces not out of naughtiness but of genuine thoughtfulness. Tactless, inconsistent graphics come off as irrelevant visual aids, often appearing as video class-learned effects. It tries to be light when it already is, to be funny when it just needs to be sullen.
Don’t judge this movie by its childish poster. A dark past is told by a puppet, and subconsciously revealed by its master. A clever mix of showing and telling, the film’s five-minute narrative covers present and missing characters, and lost opportunities and repressed regrets—all while not bluntly showing them.
Lisyun Qng Geografia
Oh, young, ripe love—where do we find you? For Tib, he finds it in the places he spent time with former best friend, Tric. Blessed with a millennial soundtrack by Ourselves the Elves, director Petersen Vargas’ film is nostalgic (thanks to its treatment), modern, and at times, overly sentimental.
Annemikami Pablo’s fictional family of two consists of a Sto. Niño-bathing mother and a teenager. They’re stuck in their daily, strained rituals of praying, eating, and throwing tantrums. Silence gives way to hums and shrieks to mount a mood so disturbing, you’d wish they spoke more in the first place.
How do you get inside someone’s head and tell outsiders what’s happening?Director Arvin Kadiboy Belarmino has director of photography Dan Masinsin to thank for its angles. Meticulously shot and edited, Kyel depicts a hazy, confused state of mind not only through its effective lead Frank Ferguson Jr., but also with its technical assets.
Pusong Bato (Heart of Stone)
Protagonist Cinta dela Cruz loves her bygone movie career, and also her new stone lover. Director Martika Ramirez Escobar takes her “what ifs” to this comedic and tragic film, making a piece that dabbles in the interchangable nature of personal frustrations with lifelong desperations. It’s a light film that’s entertainingly, ironically serious.
A silent film whose cinematography speaks the loudest, director Anj Macalanda’s Wawa deals with a father’s death and his son’s melancholic and ritualistic way of coping. Akin to our observation of Pepe Diokno’s Above the Clouds, the film relies on the landscape (and its award-winning editing) to do more of the telling.