Friday, July 01, 2005

sinebuano

Last week, I had a delightful time catching up with an old friend visiting from Cebu. When I first met Benjie Ordonez we were both much younger and trimmer and more concerned with conquering the world through Magic: The Gathering. Nowadays, we're both dads and possessed by the imperatives of agenda - prose and comic books for me, film for him.

He's one of the motive forces behind Sinebuano, a group of young Cebuano filmmakers and cineastes whose love and devotion for Filipino films (particularly, Cebuano, of course) is helping invigorate the scene in the Visayas. With several successful events under their collective belt, Benjie and his compatriots have more things to do, reaching out to student filmmakers and professional craftsmen alike, all with the intent of injecting freshness and life into a craft that once upon a time deservedly evoked admiration from our Asian neighbors. There is a flood of talent in Cebu, including one of my writer/director friends Paolo Dy, who won the MTV scriptwriting event last year (Nikki and I are poised to help develop a TV show with him).

I love independent film myself, and was happy to view their production of "The Witness", thanks to the DVD copy given to me by Benjie, the film's executive director/producer. I first encountered this story, appropiately enough, as a comic book, written by Carlo Borromeo and illustrated by the talented Reno Maniquis (creator of Maskarado and whose classic Filipino-style work in the upcoming comic book anthology Siglo: Passion is nothing short of astounding). I enjoyed the 9-minute short, kudos all around, especially to director Jurly Maloloy-on, Jr. Thanks to Reno's blog, I know you can view the film here and read the original comic book here.

I tried my hand at film, once upon a time, with Super 8, under the guidance of old friend and CCP awardee Noel Lim (he and komikero Gerry Alanguilan have a long-running production of Gerry's classic comic book "Wasted" unfairly in limbo - hey guys! Tapusin niyo na!). This was before digital film made everything more or less democratic and I soon gave up when the cost escalated (I had the reels shipped from Hawaii and they cost more than I could possibly afford). I even wrote a couple of screenplays, both of which, in mangled form, made it to the big screen (don't ask, they embarass me since their ultimate form is not something I can really claim as mine anymore, not that I'd want to associate my name with their lackluster ickiness).

Anyway, if you're in Cebu today, check out what Sinebuano has in store:

SALIDA: DOS

July 1, 2005 is the date for SALIDA: DOS!

Another showcase of Digital Cebuano independent films and Cebuano Independent music.

Films to be shown are:

The Witness by SineBuano
Pusod by SineBuano
Bitin Na Pagmamahal by Victor Villanueva
Miko by Paolo Dy
Obsession by Merrel Tabelon
Theresa by Norbert Elnar
Slapshock MTV:Misterio by Paolo Dy

Performing Bands:

Shiela and the Insects
Missing Filemon
Shadowbox Serenade

Show starts at 8pm

Handuraw Cafe is located at the Old Coaco Bldg., M J Cuenco Ave., Cebu City.

Tickets are pegged at 75 pesos with free slice of pizza or beer.

Go and have a great time!

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