A severed head, a depressed Rizal, and other oddities in Cinema One Fest

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THE 13th run of Cinema One Originals Festival entitled, Walang Takot (Fearless) features seven independent local films for the Narrative category, two documentaries, several foreign films, and restored films.

The festival will be showing in selected Metro Manila cinemas — TriNoma, Glorietta, Gateway, UP Cine Adarna, Cinema ’76, and the Film Development Council of the Philippines Cinemateque — from Nov. 13 to 21, with an extended run in PowerPlant Mall Cinemas from Nov. 22 to 28.

Included in this year’s Narrative Category (full-length features) is Dan Villegas’ Changing Partners which stars Agot Isidro, Anna Luna, Jojit Lorenzo, and Sandino Martin. The film tells the story of four individuals who experiences love and heartbreak in order to paint how a real relationship works. The film is an adaptation of Vincent A. De Jesus’ musical of the same name.

Paki by Giancarlo Abrahan is about an 80-year-old woman who decides to leave her husband of 60 years in order to live as an old maid though her children forbid her from doing so. It stars Dexter Doria, Noel Trinidad, Shamaine Buencamino, and Ricky Davao.

Nay by Kip Oebanda is a supernatural thriller about a man who is turned into an aswang (a local version of a vampire) by his nanny. The nanny then instructs her ward on how to survive his new reality. It stars Enchong Dee and Sylvia Sanchez.

Nervous Translation by Shireen Seno tells the story of a shy eight-year-old who finds a pen which can decode the thoughts of other people. It stars Jana Agoncillo and Sid Lucero.

A dark comedy starring Gloria Diaz and Elizabeth Oropesa, Si Chedeng at si Apple by Fatrick Tabada and Rae Red, follows two 60-somethings in finding a long-lost girlfriend while one of them tries to evade the law by hiding her live-in partner’s severed head in a fake Louis Vuitton bag.

In Throwback Today by Joseph Teoxon, a production designer going through hard times finds a glitch in his old desktop computer that makes it possible for him to rewrite his life. The film stars Carlo Aquino in the lead role.

Finally, Richard Somes’s Histographika Errata features a disillusioned and suicidal Rizal, a cross-dressing Bonifacio who leaves the Katipunan to join the US Army to save his neck, and a widow whose sex-for-food errands leads her to become the first-ever Makapili.

In Cienma One’s documentary section, Phy Grande presents Haunted: A Last Visit to the Red House uses a well-known haunted house in Pampanga (known as Bahay na Pula) as a starting point in telling of the horrors experienced by the comfort women during the Japanese occupation.

Meanwhile, Bundok Banahaw, Sacred and Profane by Dempster Samarista shows the culture and mysticism that surrounds the mountain, treating the mountain not as a tourist destination but rather focusing on the communities and rituals done there.

Though not in the competition, Sari Dalena’s documentary Ishma will also be screened during the festival to coincide with the release of ProBernal AntiBio, Ishmael Bernal’s semi-autobiography (styled “anti-biography”) started by Jorge Arago and finished by Angela Stuart-Santiago.

Apart from Originals, Cinema One will also be showing several restored classics including Marilou Diaz-Abaya’s Moral (1982), Jeffrey Sonora’s Asedillo (1971), Celso Ad Castillo’s Tag-Ulan sa Tag-Araw (1975), and Danny Zialcita’s Langis at Tubig (1980).

Foreign films to be shown include the Golden Bear-winning 2017 film On Body and Soul by Ildiko Enyedi, and the Palme D’Or-nominated Good Time by Ben and Josh Safdie. Cinema One Originals will also be showing a 4-D restoration of Steven Spielberg’s Close Encounters of the Third Kind (1977).

For more information on Cinema One Originals and the full schedule of screenings, visit https://www.facebook.com/CinemaOneOriginals/.