Tuesday, December 24, 2013

'No more excuses'

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

'Mamay Umeng'

The foremost quality of  ‘Mamay Umeng’ is its charm,” director-screenwriter Dwein Baltazar says. “It is a very meditative film; it will test the viewer’s patience—I take that as a compliment… I am very happy that its final cut is very similar, if not absolutely  faithful, to my original vision.”

In April, “Mamay Umeng,” about an old man pondering the end of his life, won best picture (the “Woosuk Award”) at the Jeonju International Film Festival in South Korea.

Baltazar says “Mamay Umeng” brought unique challenges, but also opportunities: “Independence is a huge advantage; we got to freely maneuver our film in the direction that we wanted, with few restrictions.”

The future has become  “brighter” for indie filmmaking, she points out. “We live in a visual age, where equipment and platforms are household-accessible. This has fueled the growth of Philippine independent film-making. Inspiration is just a click away. There are no more excuses!”

Her inclusion in this Indie Bravo! batch makes her feel at once “honored and humbled,” she says. “It’s a long list, with filmmakers that I look up to. It inspires me to do more and be more.” Oliver Pulumbarit

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