Taipei Film Festival honors Filipino documentaries

The title of the program refers to the powerful creations of artists working in the country’s harsh conditions, the program director said.

The Taiwan International Documentary Festival is set to present what is believed to be the biggest retrospective of Filipino cinema ever presented outside the Philippines, the organizer said in a statement on Friday.

The festival’s main program, titled “Necessary Fictions: Negotiating Realities in Post-national Philippine Documentaries,” would be a comprehensive retrospective of Philippine cinema, with 46 films organized into 11 sub-themes by 32 directors spanning 40 years of cinematic history. , said the Taiwan Film and Audiovisual Institute.

The selection of works presents independent Filipino cinema in all its diversity by exploring the country’s history, culture, folklore, religion, ethnicities and geography, presenting multiple realities that go far beyond the impression of a single country, the institute said.

The expansive section would also offer insight into the creative trajectory of independent Filipino cinema through online forums and screenings, he added.

Many internationally renowned directors also feature in the main program, including Lav Diaz, winner of the 2016 Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival; Raymond Red, who won the Palme d’Or at the 2000 Cannes Film Festival in the Short Film category; and Kidlat Tahimik, widely considered the “father of independent Filipino cinema”, he said.

One of the featured films, Why Is Yellow the Middle of the Rainbow? from Tahimik? from 1994, uses the rainbow as a metaphor for changes in the Philippines, reflecting on the relationship between the individual and the nation, providing a new interpretation of the term “Third World Cinema,” the statement said.

Another feature film, 2002’s Sacred Ritual of Truth, documents Manila-based director Auraeus Solito’s return to his hometown on the island of Palawan to learn more about his own indigenous culture.

The program is planned jointly with independent Filipino curator and film programmer Merv Espina, the institute said.

Festival program director Wood Lin (林木材) said Espina chose the term “necessary fictions” to encapsulate the powerful and creative works to be shown, which are representative of the aesthetic choices the filmmakers had to face. to harsh reality.

The 13th edition of the festival will be held from May 6 to 15 at four venues in Taipei – Taiwan Film and Audiovisual Institute, SPOT Huashan, Viewshow Cinemas Taipei Qsquare and Taiwan Contemporary Culture Lab.

The festival will feature more than 150 films, as well as public and educational programs such as Q&A sessions, workshops and exhibitions.

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