Tuesday, December 24, 2013

For a civilized society

(From PDI-Entertainment’s Indie Bravo supplement, published Dec. 9.)


“The Most important quality of ‘Harana’ is its music and the masters who preserved them,” said filmmaker Benito Bautista of his acclaimed documentary.

“The concept was to highlight the quest for the old harana songs, and to discover the masters of that tradition. I made it into a celebration of those masters and their final collaboration with (guitar player) Florante Aguilar.”

Last March, “Harana” won the audience award for documentary at the Center for Asian American Media Film Festival in San Francisco. One of last year’s Indie Bravo honorees, Bautista is grateful for making the cut anew. “I      am joyful and, again, inspired to continue my contribution to Philippine cinema,” Bautista told the Inquirer.

The filmmaker revealed a singular challenge that plagues independent endeavors: “The gathering of financing. We tend to create unique, sometimes untested, concepts for the sake of discussing issues that general audiences may not be ready for. This translates to lower viability for financing and ROI (return of investment).”

But it has inimitable rewards, he added: “Limitless and non-formulaic expressions in the medium, that translate to growth, betterment and a more culturally civilized society.”

Currently working on a project titled “Mumbai Love,” starring Solenn Heussaff and Martin Escudero, Bautista conveyed optimism for the indie scene: “We are heading into another realm of growth for Philippine cinema as our filmmakers tell stories with good intentions, with the aim of crossing regions beyond not only physical boundaries, but also within.” Oliver Pulumbarit

No comments: