Written and photographed
By Jude Thaddeus L. Bautista
France has a long history of supporting Filipino artists and filmmakers. This year the short film NAKAW by Noel Escondo and Arvin Belarmino will be part of the 22nd French Film Festival. The fest will run from June 9-17, 2017 at the Ayala Malls cinemas in Greenbelt 3 and the Bonifacio High Street Central Square Cinemas.
Audiences can get the best contemporary French cinema for the reasonable fee of only P100 pesos. June 12, Independence Day, however, is a special date set aside for Filipino cinema. For the first time ever, the French Film Festival will dedicate one weekend for free public outdoor screenings at Circuit Makati on June 17 and 18, 2017.
Prestigious titles include Cannes awardees: MA’ ROSA, directed by Brillante Mendoza (Main Competition, Best Actress Award, 2016); ON THE JOB, directed by Erik Matti (Director’s Fortnight, 2013); and ANINO by Raymond Red (Short Film Corner, Palme d’Or for Best Short Film, 2000).
2017 has seen a resurgence of talent in the short film format for Filipinos. Apart from NAKAW Cannes included 3 other Filipinos in the Short Film Corner: LOVE REMEMBERS by Ralston Jover – starring OJ Mariano and Mercedes Cabral, AYO AYO by Reena Dunque and BLOOD AND INK (Dugo At Tinta) by Jill Damatac. (from ManilaTimes.net)
While Carlo Francisco Manatad’s short film, JODILERKS DELA CRUZ, EMPLOYEE OF THE MONTH is an entry in the festival’s 56th Semaine De La Critique (International Critics’ Week) a precursor to Cannes Film fest.
NAKAW is an intriguing 7-minute short film that was shot in one continuous take without cuts. Filmmaker Arvin Bleramino describes it as “a social realism crime film. It’s about a boy who snatched a woman’s purse. 5 lives were changed because of what happened.” NAKAW will also be a part of this year’s CINEMALAYA Film fest.
Alfred Hitchcock made the one take technique famous in the classic ROPE. In the full-length movie he was able to conceal the cuts when the camera would go through doors. A lot of filmmakers have tried to duplicate the feat since then. Most recently rapper Gloc 9’s music video HOY also employed this technique:
NAKAW was shot in a hidden slum area in Cavite. Belarmino had experienced filmmaking using the 2-camera set up before. The one continuous take fascinated and challenged him and his co director. Asked what he wanted audiences to take away from it he said, “We were able to magnify what’s happening in the slum areas. Its like nandun ka talaga sa eksena.” Executive Producer Patsy Ferrer added, “Its also getting people excited about short films. Giving short films an importance as a medium because we always see full length, when it comes to indie. Pero short film di masyado na papansin.”
The French Embassy’s Charge D’Affaires Laurent Legodec made note of another important and related event, “Brillante Mendoza was chosen by the French agency (Institut Francais) to be a mentor to the young filmmakers from all over the world as part of La Fabrique Cinema, a film production workshop that was held earlier this month. This is also a sign that what we are doing is important, that what we are able to reinforce our exchanges and cultural dialogue between France, the Philippines and the rest of the world.”
Legodec continued, “Philippine cinema stands out in the region. France is proud to be a very strong partner in developing this sector in the country. In fact there are many, many opportunities for France and the Philippines to work closer together, not just in film and culture but also in trade, the sciences, education, infrastructure, transport, sustainable energy and so on and so forth.”
In fact our country has immediately reaped from the partnership. Carlo Francisco Manatad who participated in Cannes with short film, JODILERKS DELA CRUZ, EMPLOYEE OF THE MONTH, was himself a participant of the La Fabrique Cinema workshop the previous year.
The 22nd French Film Festival in Manila is presented by the Embassy of France to the Philippines, Institut Francais, the Alliance Francaise de Manille and de Cebu, and the Film Development Council of the Philippines, in cooperation with the Ayala Malls, Central Square, Circuit Makati and the SSI Group Inc, and with the support of Peugeot Philippines, Delsey, Marithe Francois Girbaud, Paris Delice, Le Cellier, Don Papa, Monin, ThinkBIT, Cignal and media partners Expat Newspaper, the ABS CBN News Channel, Rogue Manila, L’Officiel Manila, Art Plus Magazine and Manilascope.
Share your French Film Festival story on social media using the hashtag
PhilFrance: Feel French! Celebrates 70 Years of Franco Philippine Friendship
The French Film Festival is part of PhilFrance: Feel French, a festival to celebrate the 70th anniversary of diplomatic relations between France and the Philippines this year. Throughout 2017 the Embassy of France to the Philippines, together with its partners, will organize a series of events that will give the Filipino public an opportunity to ‘feel France’ in everyday life. The line up includes the following events:
–Fete Dela Musique (June 17 at the A Venue Mall Parking Lot and June 23 at Puerto real in Intramuros Manila)
–Revel Unraveled French Classical Music Concert (June 22 at the Cultural Center of the Philippines)
–Tour de Manille a cycling event that coincides with the Tour de France (July 9 at the North Park, SM By the Bay)
–Bon Appetit: A French food market in Manila ( September 22 to 24 at Central Square, Bonifacio High Street)
–A job fair and employability forum for the underprivileged youth (September)
–French Volunteerism Day (October)
–A series of conferences on architecture and urbanism, agriculture and social sciences
–Networking events, business meetings and start-up programs involving the French business community
For more information log on to: