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Mario Bautista, has been with the entertainment industry for more than 4 decades. He writes regular columns for People's Journal and Malaya.

Oct 2, 2019


THE QCINEMA International Film Festival led by Mayor Joy Belmonte will be shown from October 13 to 22 and they have lined up exciting cinematic treasures to be shown exclusively at Gateway Mall, Ayala Trinoma, Robinsons Galleria, UPFI Cine Adarna, Cinema 76 Anonas, and Cinema Centenario.

The opening film is Sigrid Andrea Bernardo’s suspense-drama, “Untrue”, starring Cristine Reyes and Xian Lim, shot on location Tbilisi, Georgia. The closing film is “Wet Season” by Singaporean director Anthony Chen, best known for the acclaimed “Iloilo”.

QCinema 2019 focuses on Asian filmmakers who made a mark in world cinema, what with Asian filmmakers bagging the Palm d’ Or award at the prestigious Cannes Film Festival for two consecutive years.  It also recognizes women filmmakers participating in competitions for documentaries and short filmswith  female-centric themes.

The main competition, AsianNext Wave, includes three Filipino titles which each received a P1,500,000 seed grant: Arnel Barbarona’s “Kaaway sa Sulod”, Rae Red’s “Babae at Baril” and Glenn Barit’s debut feature “The Cleaners”. The QCShorts feature Judy Free by Jean Cheryl Tagyamon; Tokwifi by Carla Pulido Ocampo; Here, Here by Joanne Cesario; SPID by Alejo Barbaza and Mervine Aquino; Excuse Me, Miss, Miss, Miss by Sonny Calvento; and Isang Daa’t Isang Mariposa by Norvin De los Santos.

The six filmmakers got P200,000 production grants each in the shorts competition. Three new Filipino documentary features, recipients of post-production grants of P500,000 each, will premiere in the section, DocQC. They are For My Alien Friend (by Jet Leyco), A is for Agustin (Grace Pimentel Simbulan) and Spring by the Sea (Aleia Garcia).

Five other films will showcase Asian talents at the Asian Next Wave.  These are Nakorn-Sawan (by Puangsoi Aksornsawang, Thailand); Ave Maryam (Robby Ertanto, Indonesia); Fly By Night (Zahir Omar, Malaysia), The Long Walk (Mattie Do, Laos) and Suburban Birds (Sheng Qiu, China).

In the Screen International section, award=winning films from Cannes and Berlin to be shown are “Beanpole” (Kantemir Balagov); “By The Grace of God” (François Ozon); “Nina Wu” (Midi Z) ; “Bacurau” (Kleber Mendonça Filho & Juliano Dornelles); “Frankie” (Ira Sachs), “Synonyms” (Nadav Lapid), “The Whistlers” (Corneliu Porumboiu), “God Exists Her Name is Petrunya” (Teona Mitevska), “On A Magical Night” (Christophe Honore) and “High Life” (Claire Denis).

The Special Screenings section will showcase Lingua Franca (Isabel Sandoval); Dogs Don’t Wear Pants (J.-P. Valkeapää); Top End Wedding (Wayne Blair); No Data Plan (Miko Revereza); The Cave (Tom Waller); Krabi, 2562 (Ben Rivers and Anocha Suwichakornpong); A Girl Missing, which is presented by Japan Foundation (Koji Fukada); and recent Locarno winner, Vitalina Varela (Pedro Costa).

This year, QCinema introduces a new section. New Horizons is a platform for debut films or second features from around the world. It explores a range of genres such as The Bare Necessity (Erwan De Luc); Buoyancy (Rodd Rathjen); Homeward (Nariman Aliev); The Red Phallus (Tashi Gyeltshen); Chola (Sanal Kumar Sasidharan; and System Crasher (Nora Fingscheidt).

Six films representing the LGBTQ spectrum in the section, RainbowQC are Venice Queer Lion winner Jose (Li Cheng); Song Lang (Leon Le); Port Authority (Danielle Lessovitz); Where We Belong (Kongdej Jaturanrasamee); And Then We Danced (Levan Akin); and the Berlinale Teddy awardee, Brief Story from the Green Planet (Santiago Loza).

Centenial Classics will feature digitally restored films by ABS-CBN Film Restoration Project and FDCP. Part of the list are Biyaya ng Lupa (Manuel Silos); Malvarosa (Gregorio Fernandez); Insiang and Maynila sa Kuko ng Liwanag (Lino Brocka); Noli Me Tangere (Gerardo de Leon); and Tisoy (Ishmael Bernal).