Entrepreneur and producer Dr. Carl Balita is actively campaigning for the public to stay home during the start of the quarantine until today not just to contain the virus but to also to help the health and service professionals who are the frontrunners in the field. Among the many strategies he launched was the “Video Home Festival(VHF)”, a short filmmaking competition anchored on the theme “lockdown.” The challenge of the competition is to create films based on the theme while observing quarantine guidelines using immediate technology, space, and casts available for the filmmakers.
“I knew that the filmmakers were oozing with creativity in the new normal and were itching to express their craft even with all the limitations of a quarantine experience,” says Dr. Carl. “We were surprised when after more than a month from our launch, entries came in from professionals, film students, and enthusiasts.”
Dr. Carl expounded the festival to raise funds for the industry workers through the Movie Workers Welfare Foundation (Mowelfund). Being a film producer himself and within the circle of show business, heis aware of the current plight of the industry players. Mowelfund Board Member Boots Anson-Rodrigo and President RezCortez welcome the idea and are exploring new partnership opportunities with Dr. Carl and his company, Dr. Carl Balita Review Center (CBRC) on how to bring the collaboration to a more productive level. Festival Director Jek David notes that some of the entries have international caliber, highlighting the quarantine experience of the filmmakers.
What holds a film together when one of the main elements becomes absent or voluntarily removed?
Before the advent of sound, films were devoid of dialogs and diegesis as modern history painstakingly moved along. Intertitles were inserted long before they were followed as conventions. At most, every aspect of modern day inventions would become a learning journey toward the development of world cinema. In fact, in the earlier years, films from the post-invention had been far more superior than their more technologically equipped successors (Arnheim, 1932). They could be true in essence because of their inherent qualities and characteristics to fill what wasn’t there yet. There simply was more time and less impact of ascendancy to allow creating more spaces for expansive projects.
British filmmaker and actor, Charles Chaplin caught on earlier with the power of the language of film. Story becomes king and execution is everything. And in the more profound method of analyzing films, structural-linguistic theory is by its essence a more substantial philosophy to deliberate and consider. And by understanding the very foundation of film history and its nuclear core, there may be a conceivable inference to achieving a sort of objectivity in studying every element that a film presents as a whole. Quite possibly, even if one or two components is missing, its effectiveness rests mostly on whether its desired effects reach it audience. A film may be subjectively incomplete, but it will always be inimitably a creation of its own.
The QCinema International Film Festival ended its most commendable run last week but the films that we had seen are still very much talked about in coffee shops. We can only hope that next year’s edition would be as audacious and relevant as Diokno’s Kapatiran, or as fresh and unrelenting as Cruz’s Sleepless. Here’s what we heard these coffee lovers say about each competition film from #QCinema. It appeared that not one saw Cesar Hernando’s Gayuma. And we don’t think they ever played Patintero, or ever came out of the house to play. Millenials!
Perhaps based on a news report in 2012 when a rebel group was alleged to have ransacked a relief center in Davao during the aftermath of Typhoon Pablo, Iisa, a film written by Arnel Mardoquio narrates the melodrama of a motley crew of rebels bound by both personal and sociopolitical struggles. What seem to be problematic in its presentation are the many suffocating concerns of its politics, including whether a mother, guided by years of Marxist principles, would end up throwing everything out of the window by misappropriating revolutionary funds for personal use. No matter how critical her dilemma is, one may have to question the found reality employed by the filmmakers, among other things.