‘Kumander Liway:’ Martial Law Told Through the Eyes of a Family


“MAYBE in the future, if I am able to develop a rich enough material on the subject,” said filmmaker Kip Oebanda when asked about creating a film about the life of “Kumander Liway,” a former New People’s Army (NPA) leader in Negros Occidental during Martial Law. (In detention, but independent, Inquirer.net)

The year was 2014. 

Oebanda did not want to rush because the story was “deeply personal and serious.” So in the years to come, he wrote and directed instead three independent films, “Tumbang Preso” (2014), “Bar Boys” and “Nay” (2017), which nevertheless showcased his capacity as a storyteller. In between, continuously researching and developing the biographical film–but always doubting.

“Ayoko talaga siyang gawin noong una, honestly. Why would I put myself in a dangerous position. ‘Liway’ will inevitably have a political slant,” Oebanda said. (The Reel Life of Kip Oebanda, Manila Bulletin)

But “the time is right,” so he said. 

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‘Pan de Salawal’ Will Leave You Smiling After Watching


THESPIAN Bodjie Pascua returned to the big screen in this year’s Cinemalaya Philippine Independent Film Festival. Starring in the full-length entry “Pan de Salawal” (The Sweet Taste of Salted Bread and Undies), Pascua portrayed Sal, an ageing baker who has lost the will to live after being diagnosed with chronic kidney disease.

While his character was a far cry from the jolly, lively Kuya Bodjie we used to know in a kiddie TV show, Pascua managed to warm the hearts of Cinemalaya audiences with the help of 7-year-old child actor Miel Espinosa.

The tandem of Sal (Pascua) and Aguy (Espinosa) showed how one’s “dying” outlook in life could change with a just a “little” nudge.

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All the ‘Indie Nation’ and ‘Dokyu’ selections to catch at Cinemalaya 2018


BEYOND showcase of competing films in full-length and short categories, the 14th Cinemalaya Independent Film Festival is also giving its audiences a myriad of films in various genres, catering to different cinematic preferences and experiences. 

Continue reading “All the ‘Indie Nation’ and ‘Dokyu’ selections to catch at Cinemalaya 2018”

IN PHOTOS: The 10 Full-Length Films at the Cinemalaya 2018

(From the Cultural Center of the Philippines)

THE Cultural Center of the Philippines and the Cinemalaya Foundation are set to roll out the red carpet for the 14th edition of the country’s biggest independent film festival.

Themed “Wings of Vision,” the Cinemalaya Philippine Independent Film Festival runs from August 3 to 12 at various venues of the CCP and selected Ayala Cinemas. It promises to deliver the best visual storytelling to every film enthusiast with its line-up of full-length films and short features.

​There is surely a film that captures every audience’s imagination among these 10 competing full-length entries.

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6 Stages to Watch out for at the 2018 Fête de la Musique

(From Alliance Française de Manille)

THIS 2018, Fête de la Musique continues its tradition of bringing together people from all walks of life. And with over 40 stages in and outside Metro Manila, Fête once again transcends all musical genres and tastes—from pop to hip-hop, reggae to classical, electronic to jazz, and so much more.

Surely, there’s a venue that will suit music fans from all over the country. Where to visit when? Here’s a guide to Fête de la Musique 2018’s main and pocket stages happening on June 16, 23, 29, and 30: 

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Short Film Finalists at Cinemalaya 2018 Revealed

(From the Cultural Center of the Philippines)

THE Cinemalaya Foundation Inc. announces the Short Film Category finalists of the Cinemalaya Philippine Independent Film Festival 2018.

The 10 finalists are: Logro by Kani Villaflor; Si Astri Maka Si Tambulah by Xeph Suarez; Babylon by Keith Deligero; Jodilerks Dela Cruz, Employee of the Month by Carlo Francisco Manatad; Sa Saíyang Islá (In His Island) by Christian Candelaria; You, Me and Mr. Wiggles by Jav Velasco; Nangungupahan by Glenn Barit; Kiko by Jojo Driz; Siyudad Sa Bulawan (City of Gold) by Jarell Serencio and Olivia Ranido; and Yakap by Mika Fabella.

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Last Week of National Literature Month: 6 Events to Catch!

(From the National Commission on Culture and the Arts)

THIS year’s National Literature Month is culminating with three more cultural and literary events spread out in venues all over the country.

So authors and book lovers, arts and culture enthusiasts, students and educators, and anyone who is  passionate about literature, whatever your age and background, gather! Here are what we should not miss: 

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Where Do You Want Your Art: In the Park or in Poblacion? Or Both!

ART continues to thrive in Makati City’s public places. This month alone, two art events are taking place: one a long-running festival, and the other, on a first of its kind auction; but both, a showcase of local and foreign art in all forms imaginable, as well as a gathering of artists, collectors, enthusiasts, students, stakeholders and everyone into art. 

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9 Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Miss the 9th ManilArt

Text By Euden Valdez; Photos from ManilArt.org

BECAUSE of the Philippines’ rich history, diverse influences and unique cultures, its art is as equally rich, diverse and unique.

This is what ManilArt has been showcasing since its first outing in 2009, a time when the modern-day Philippine art revolution was just beginning.

As it opens its ninth edition come October 12, the international art fair portrays the role of Philippine art in expanding the artistic frontiers of Southeast Asia, said the National Commission on Culture and Arts in a press statement.

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Music that Enriches from ‘Mandiriwa’ Joey Ayala

TICKETS to concerts of famous, foreign musical acts are pricey (if not overpriced) for many reasons. There’s the grand stage set-up with pyrotechnics and lighting effects, the different costume changes, the many back-up dancers/singers, the state-of-the-art musical instruments and sound engineers, and all the other logistics. Most importantly, there’s the much-awaited idols, like Madonna, Coldplay, Britney Spears, Chris Botti and Sting, etc. All had VIP tickets ranging from P20,000 to P60,000.

This is the formula of a sold-out and entertaining concert in westernized, colonized Philippines.

But what about a concert in an intimate venue where guests can cozily enjoy music (while sipping beer, yeah). A concert stripped down of all elaborate designs, props and back-ups. A concert featuring ethnic instruments that are part of our culture. A concert revealing our identity as Filipinos through indigenous music and ingenious lyrics.

This, on the other hand, is the formula of Joey Ayala’s “Mandiriwa” concert held last September 18 at the Music Museum.

Continue reading “Music that Enriches from ‘Mandiriwa’ Joey Ayala”