Co-curators Philbert Ortiz Dy and Joel Shepard have lined up an impressive and diverse selection of films for this festival, including emerging and established filmmakers working within the country and in the diaspora. Notable in the line-up are a pair of epic films: Lav Diaz’ Norte, The End of History (which recently screened at the San Francisco International Film Festival…catch it if you didn’t last the four hours!) and a restored version of the 1982 masterpiece (and one of my favorite films), Oro, Plata, Mata by Peque Gallaga. The Philippines’ official Oscars entry, Transit, by Hannah Espia, is a great film for those interested in the saga of Filipinos in the diaspora (or for those who missed Ilo Ilo). How to Disappear Completely, The Woman in Ruins, and Debosyon deftly explore ideas of ritual, devotion, religion and superstition. And what is a film festival without (bitter)sweet comedies on love? Here is the coming-of-age film, Anita’s Last Cha-Cha and Sana Dati, Jerrold Tarog’s take on the romantic comedy.
New Filipino Cinema runs from 11-15 June 2014, at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco, with special screenings, talks, and events throughout.