Filipino indie film makers need to stop whining and step up

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A firestorm of “indignation” descending upon Get Real Post article Filipino films: they don’t make us think (written by Ilda) brought to light the plight of hapless Filipino independent film makers in an industry dominated by big studios and distributors out to make a quick buck from a largely vacuous society. To borrow a line from Mission Impossible, “your mission if you choose to accept it” is to become visible in a field that is rigged against your favour. Indeed, the character played by Tom Cruise is a “hero” because he does — and succeeds — precisely in that kind of endeavour.

Unfortunately for these “marginalised” members of the Philippines’ film industry being “good” is what they believe gives them an entitlement to whine about doing “their best”. But studio movies are the McDonald’s of the film industry (the subject refered to by Ilda’s article). They use formulas — proven cinematic devices that appeal to as broad a range of viewers as possible. In contrast, indie films are driven by their creators’ visions and passions. As a result, indie works are far more edgy, risque, and often (the good ones, at least) leave a deep impression on their viewers. The indie world is the cauldron of creativity that spawned groundbreaking works using styles and stories that no produced-by-committee movie could ever pull off.

For indie film producers, an audience is a bonus. For Studio movie producers, an audience is the whole point. The latter is driven by credentialism and the former by insight. We all know mass appeal brings home the bacon, whilst edginess and loyalty to vision attracts a far smaller subset — insightful minds.

Based on the sort of comments I’ve seen so far posted in that article, it seems the people who lament the marginalised place “indie” films hold in the Philippines are better at whining than stepping up to said challenges. The reality is that the entire content dissemination infrastructure of the Philippines is held by private enterprise who are accountable to shareholders who expect financial returns from their investment. And even more unfortunate is that the majority of the audience who are willing to cough up hard-earned dough to consume said content are quite happy being fed crap.

And that is the mission. It is “impossible” only because the Philippine indie film sector lacks the sort of innovation that makes billionaires out of nerds and outcasts like Bill Gates and Steve Jobs. It’s called “the Philippines”.

The film industry in the United States is, in fact, no different. Big studio Hollywood movies also dominate the industry there. But independent film makers there found a champion in Miramax Films. Founded by the brothers Harvey and Bob Weinstein in Buffalo, New York in 1979, the company was named by combining the first names of their parents Max and Miriam, and was originally created to distribute independent films deemed commercially unfeasible by the major studios.

The company’s first major success came when the Weinsteins teamed up with British producer Martin Lewis and acquired the U.S. rights to two concert films Lewis had produced of benefit shows for human rights organization Amnesty International. The Weinsteins worked with Lewis to distill the two films into one film for the US marketplace. The resulting film The Secret Policeman’s Other Ball (US Version) was a successful release for Miramax in the summer of 1982. This release presaged a modus operandi that the company would undertake later in the 1980s of acquiring films from international filmmakers and reworking them to suit US sensibilities.

Among the company’s other breakthrough films as distributors in the late 1980s and early 1990s were Scandal; Sex, Lies, and Videotape; Tie Me Up! Tie Me Down!; The Crying Game and Clerks. The company also made films such as Pulp Fiction, Flirting with Disaster, Heavenly Creatures and Shakespeare in Love.

In addition to those successes, Miramax acquired and/or produced many films that did extraordinarily well financially. The company became one of the leaders of the independent film boom of the 1990s. Miramax produced or distributed seven films with box office grosses totalling more than $100 million; its most successful title, Chicago, earned more than $300 million worldwide.

The company was also exceptionally successful in securing Academy Award nominations for its releases, many of which resulted in Oscar wins.

[I recommend the book Down and Dirty Pictures — Miramax, Sundance, and the Rise of Independent Film by Peter Biskind, which details the above story from an insider’s perspective.]

In short, marketing indie films for the mainstream can be done. You just need a bunch of real sons-of-bitches in the mold of the way Harvey and Bob Weinstein possess vision but, at the same time, apply an attack-dog commercial acumen to get their visions executed and make a bit of money while they are at it. Rather than whine about being a victim, indie film makers need to take up the attitude of a David going up against a Goliath.

* * *

Losers always whine about their ‘best’! Winners go home and f**k the prom queen.” — John Mason played by Sean Connery in the film The Rock

[NB: Parts of this post were lifted from the Wikipedia.org article “Miramax Films” in a manner consistent with the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License which governs the consumption of the content of this site.]
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90 Comments on “Filipino indie film makers need to stop whining and step up”

  1. Sean Connery’s character line said it all; and since I’ve seen that movie years ago I’ve been f—ing the prom queen.
    Too bad for the whiners, because if they believe that’s the best they’ve got, I feel sorry for them. Maybe a little attitude adjustment will clear their vision; preferably dropping the stuck-up b*tch act and replacing it with a sincere sense of concern for things.
    In this day and age it is so easy to go shoot something. But just like hunting, you can prepare well for your shots and bag the game, or shoot the whole forest then brag about the “one that got away” to fellow bad sports.
    Content counts, and quality too.
    If something doesn’t seem to work out, go figure it out instead of complaining. Don’t expect things to just fall into your lap the way a dirty stripper’s underwear would at a pole dance session.
    Still I feel compunction to apologize for my scathing remarks as a comical twist to this comment. Then again, to you small minded whiners, screw you all! =D

  2. “The masses want the best of the best? I will give them the best. The masses want their future? I will give them the future that they want to see!”

    It’s kind of odd that the biggest film studios in the Philippines just refuse to pay attention to the backlashes they had faced, especially with “Enteng Kabisote 3”.

    1. Thanks, and a happy New Year to you too. Better yet, why don’t you invite your friends over to comment here. It’s an open forum and no membership is required. Anybody can express any views here as long as they observe our commenting guidelines.

      Perhaps we can find solutions to the challenges faced by all of us little Davids going up against the evil Goliaths of Pinoy society. 🙂

      1. The thing about commenting here is that we are all anonymous (kagaya ko.) If we have a healthy discussion in Facebook, we’d be able to know each other more. Anonymous online users (kagaya ko) tend to become trolls.

        By the way, Adrian, I already joined your group a few minutes ago. 🙂

    2. paunawa po wag nyo pong dugtungan ang shake rattle and roll nang pang labing apat nakakasawa n po tumanda ako lahat lahat shake rattle and roll p ren yan,ipakita nyo po ang pagiging “artist kuno” nyo okie;)

  3. Filipino cynics should stop whining and step up. Filipino independent filmmakers have been stepping up for decades but the Philippines does not have the same film market as the United States where there is an actual audience for independents and art films, but they try, they really try to instill within the audience an appreciation for more serious fare. Instead of wanting to be like the United States and whine about why you live in a country that you think and claim is a pathetic version of its Western neighbors, why don’t you just give these filmmakers’ films a try. That will put a stop to these nonsensical exchange of tirades posing as serious writing.

    1. Agree. Cinema is a unique experience for every country with a concept of it and we must claim it as our own. Only if we begin to realize that cinema is not just what we suppose it is can we move to improve the industry which you people are, apparently, concerned about.

      Don’t judge what you don’t know.

      1. Agree. You should at least watch before you judge. Terrible standards for any form of journalism. I don’t watch regular Philippine movies but I made it a point to watch Cinemalaya last year. I took my boyfriend who is a foreigner to see a bunch of movies. Our favorites was “Sayaw ng Dalawang Kaliwang Paa” which he said could compete in any festival worldwide. I find it sad that instead of supporting the struggle of the Arts, we tear down the people trying to make a difference. Crab mentality at its finest.

  4. There are three things wrong with this article. First, the assumption that the indie filmmakers were doing nothing but whining; beyond the comments page, these people obviously continued to work, making films, and battling the system for years. Second, the assumption that a lack of talent (“innovation”) is all that hinders indie producers from making it; the author seems unaware of other delicate factors in movie marketing in the Philippines that may not be true in the Weinstein Brothers country. A good place to start learning is Jessica Zafra’s article on the marketing and distribution of Zombadings 1: Patayin Sa Shokot Si Remington. (http://interaksyon.com/article/13514/jessica-zafra-stars-vs-zombies) Third, the assumption that indie filmmakers have been failing at getting their films seen, when there are success stories like Kimmy Dora, Ang Babae Sa Septic Tank, and Zombadings, plus the growing number of audience attendance at festivals like Cinemalaya. Like the previous article by Ilda, this one is again plagued by a lack of facts.

    1. Again, it is an unfortunate circumstance that I gained my perception of Pinoy indie producers from the small cross-section of comments here in GR Post. That’s the same principle I’ve been explaining with regard to the MMFF — itself an unfortunate circumstance in that it lends the name of the Philippines’ capital city to a “film festival” that was hyped up as the cultural event of the year.

      It’s simple, really. You just need to prove me wrong by uplifting the quality of the “debate” and redeem the industry you belong to by showing us results.

      Indeed, as you pointed out, there are exceptions. But then just like, say, Manny Pacquiao and Lea Salonga who are also exceptional Filipinos don’t change the fact of the collective mediocrity of Philippine society, every exceptional film you point out will be undermined by the thousands of crap Pinoy movies that are given air time by the Philippine Media and supported by the inbred distribution industry that orbits around it.

      Same challenge we face in politics. Despite a rich set of options of qualified presidential candidates in 2010, Filipinos still did what they did best and voted the most incompetent one into office.

      It’s called “the Philippines”. 😀

  5. paulit-ulit ko itong sinasabi, may alam ba kayo sa indie film industry ng Pinas? may mga na-mention kang pelikulang tulad ng Pulp Fiction, Clerks, The Crying Game at Shakespeare in Love. pero wala ni isa kang na-mention tungkol sa anumang indie film of the past decade. that is essentially my beef with you guys. you don’t know what you are talking about. and you guys do not want to admit it. have you seen or even heard of the following: Pagdadalaga ni Maximo Oliveros, Jay, 100, Confessional, Yanggaw, Ang Babae sa Septic Tank, Busong, Dinig Sana Kita, Ang Damgo ni Eleuterio, Zombadings, Kimmy Dora? lahat ‘yan indie. iba-iba lang ang budget nila pero indie lahat ‘yan. David vs Goliath, three years of my life have been spent precisely living that. and it is an uphill struggle.

    now, i have had good and bad criticisms of my work. and i simply do not mind negative criticisms of my work. but in fairness to these people, they have seen my work. ikaw, wala ka namang napanood e. nasa 8th year na ang Cinemalaya pero wala kayong kamalay-malay about it. at ‘yan ang impossible mission for me. kayo, na sinabaihan na about it, e ang tigas-tigas pa ng ulo na maging resolute in your stance. manood kayo.

    ngayon, ito ang misyon ko sa inyong mga cynics. (unfortunately, i cannot call you critics yet kasi di n’yo pa napapanood ang mga pelikula namin). your mission, should you choose to accept is watch any one of the films i’ve mentioned. and try to google them. try to find out if these films have actually been blogged, written about by other websites or even newspapers. madali lang namang i-google ang mga pangalan ng mga tao behind these.

    hindi kahinaan na tanggapin n’yo ang inyong kahinaan.

    1. Precisely my point. The fact that people know jack about the indie film scene in the Philippines should be telling you something — it means that whatever efforts being excerted to get Pinoy indie films visible in the mainstream is not enough.

      That’s like telling customers, “Why settle for McDonalds, when you can get a healthy gourmet hamburger at this and that restaurant?” Obviously your customer base does not see the value proposition of your products clearly.

      You need to get a bit more clever than that. And it starts by doing a bit less whining.

      1. Which customer are you talking about? You mean yourself right? You know, just because you don’t see it doesn’t mean it’s not there. To accept as compete truth your narrow field of experience is hubris. Don’t speak for people who already know where to get better burgers than McDonald’s. They know more about burgers than you. You may not even know how many people are already eating there. Catch up.

  6. Bong, actually, it’s in the definition of terms, since there are two types of film producers: (1) “Indie” is “[o]ne, such as a studio or producer, that is unaffiliated with [and is differentiated from] a (2) larger or more commercial organization”

    Then, there is the film producer’s purpose: (1) a “movie intended to be an artistic work” and (2) a “commercial movie of mass appeal” or for mass entertainment.

    Indie films have often been associated with “artistic work” (“work of art”) while large film organizations with “commercial” movies “of mass appeal”–but certainly not to the exclusion of the other.

    For, it’s possible that an “indie” produced film may be intended for “mass” appeal while a film produced by a large organization may be meant to convey a “work of art.”

  7. Indie Films, based on what I’ve seen being shown on the past three Cinemalayas (mind you, I haven’t seen all of the films) have compelling plotlines. But I feel that some indie filmmakers are slowly settling into a comfort zone of sorts by making films about people in poverty and gratuitous homosexual scenarios. There’s no problem if there is a new take using these hooks, my only problem is that if Indie filmmakers keep relying on these same formulas for films, then they won’t be any different from mainstream movie makers by rehashing the same stuff to crank out a title.

    By the way, I’ve watched “Babae sa Septic Tank” and “Zombadings”. Loved the former for it is really entertaining and it pokes fun at the tried-and-tested formula for indie film-making that I mentioned. The latter one though, left a bad taste in my mouth: it does nothing in changing the stereotype of the “Gay man” and just uses that shtick to make “funny” scenes. Nice try though.

    1. I can relate with your observation that “some indie filmmakers are slowly settling into a comfort zone of sorts by making films about people in poverty and gratuitous homosexual scenarios.” I mean those, of course, are the obvious topics, but surely there are others, and that’s where creativity and innovation come in.

      As I said in a previous comment, I’ve seen movies like Oro Plata Mata and Batch 81. I also thought Kakabakaba ka ba? was brilliant. There is no gayness (not that there is anything wrong with gayness) in those films and no appeal-to-victim-mentality portrayal of poverty in these.

      Considering that the industry has more access now to an open market and a far bigger middle-class consumer base than what we had back in the 80’s it’s actually amazing that so little commensurate progress had been seen since then.

      1. how can you relate to his post if you’ve not seen it? i agree with Redlead that some filmmakers have already lulled themselves into doing what is safe. i find his remarks credible kasi alam ko, napanood niya ang mga pelikula. pero ikaw, si Ilda, at ang iba pa rito, ba’t natatakot kayong manood ng isa man lang pelikula from Cinemalaya? o even Maximo for that matter. have you seen it? have you heard of it even? babae sa septic tank, have you seen it? have you even heard of it? kasi, for both films, wala ka pa ring kaalam-alam, e kasalanan mo na ‘yan at hindi ng mga indie filmmakers.

        please enlighten us by citing 5 indie films you’ve seen of late. please lang, mr benign0. kahit 3. kahit 1. go lang.

        1. See this is the trouble with the way Pinoys sell their products. They make appeals rather than demonstrate value.

          And you guys wonder (and whine about) why you guys never find a big enough audience for your productions. Tsk tsk. 😀

    2. Here is another observation from eminent UP professor Michael Tan which I featured in my book

      Commenting if the Philippines could be at the forefront of education on sex and sexuality Tan said no, because “media have very sensational coverage but they still have this patina of moralism which is strange.” He said this brims over to the film industry that churns out movies carrying the “crime and punishment” theme — for instance, movies with pots of adultery that run steamy sex scenes but which towards the end, mandate that the adulterer, who is always the female, gets shot or imprisoned.

      “With these endings, movies become a morality play after two hours of titillation,” he said.

      […]

      Tan said Filipino movies also carry the “crime and redemption” theme, in which a sex worker eventually realizes there is a better life outside prostitution, but only after the audience [have] been treated to several sexual episodes.

      … which highlights the point further.

      1. benignO: before I download your book, is there anything at all in there that you wrote yourself? You know, there is a difference between original thought and simply collecting a bunch of quotes that support your opinions.

        1. It’s 100 percent original with reference to quotes pertinent to the message I want to bring across. Bandwidth won’t be an issue because it is a 344KB PDF download. And it’s free.

  8. Ang pumatol sa tanga, mga tanga rin. Alam naman nating walang kwenta itong Get Real Post, ba’t pa kayo nagcocomment. Nagpapapansin lang sila. Pati yung grammar ni Benigno nagpapapansin din.

    (Okay, since nagcomment ako, ibig sabihin tanga rin ako. Hahaha.)

      1. *sigh*

        That’s where you are wrong, Mr Alem. Just because some people haven’t seen your films doesn’t mean they are “tanga”.

        And I actually thought you were sincere about having a decent discussion. My mistake.

  9. The reasons for this being an issue fly over my head, to be honest. A filmmaker has a choice, whether it’s in this country or any other one — he can make something artistic, or he can make something that sells. Look at US movies, and tell me the situation is any different — most movies that are actually profitable are utter shit. 90% of Bollywood movies are utter shit, too, but they make money. If you’re a filmmaker — and I suppose I can extend the same argument to writers, artists, serious musicians, and liberal arts scholars — you know going into it what your choice is: follow your soul, or follow your wallet. Don’t bitch about it later if you misapplied your expectations.

    From my point of view (as a writer, who makes a living doing things in which creativity is not so necessary, or appreciated), if you complain about your audience, or lack thereof, you’re only revealing your own dissatisfaction with your work.

  10. Mahirap yatang i-point sa iyo Benigno ang isang bagay kung wala ka din namang gagawin about it.

    Umiwas ka nung sinabing mag-join ka sa Cinephiles.

    Gumawa ka ng ganitong article to further irk the commenters dun sa article ni Ilda.

    One thing’s for sure, may bayag ka lang dito sa Internet.

  11. Benigno will only consider indie films as a valid entity if they’re patronized by the masa, which is the very same group that he despises. Therefore, this whole effort to get him to actually WATCH contemporary Pinoy cinema will never, ever work….unless, of course, Hollywood and Michael Bay suddenly validates our entire existence.

    I’m beginning to understand this whole anti-Pinoy stance. Very cunning, I must admit. But in the end, typically Pinoy. In retrograde mode, I must add. But congrats on the publicity! I mean it. This is one way to get Goliath to turn his head. 🙂

    That’s it. I’m officially out of here.

      1. omg benignO is it true? only when Hollywood validates Philippine Cinema will you ever watch a contemporary Filipino film? please let it not be, promise you’ll watch a local independent film this year… please?

        1. That, and the fact that I, along with many other film lovers in this country believe that he is one of the directors that will bridge the mainstream-indie divide by producing films that will be entertaining but challenging, audience-sensitive and yet appealing to mass audiences and insightful without losing its “commercial” appeal. one still needs to reach out to mass audiences in “indie” efforts.

          jerrold makes good films for everyone. that alone makes him admirable to me and other film lovers.

          the real issue isn’t as you are suggesting, the catching up of indies to mainstream ways. it is bringing the two together to form a national cinema that is representative and entertaining for both the man on the street and the university student.

          also,

          MANOOD KA MUNA NG PELIKULA BAGO DUMADA. IKAW ANG REKLAMO NG REKLAMO WALA NAMANG GINAGAWA.

        2. Tsk tsk. If he makes “good films” as you suggest, then why do I detect a bit of forcefulness in the recommendation you make that I watch said films…

        3. why do i detect a bozo na hindi kayang magpatalo?!? practice what you preach brother, or at least, watch what you critique.

        4. We do not get surprised when people from the industry participate in our blogsite. Why do you seem surprised?

          If PNoy himself started participating here, I wouldn’t be surprised. I’d love the opportunity to pick his brain. 😉

      2. I love Jerrold Tarog’s movies. Beingn0 has a right not to watch or even not to care, but it’s his loss. I mean, a person with a closed mind misses out on many of life’s pleasures. What kind of person dismisses a good recommendation? Haha, ang labo. Bozo or not.

  12. “One thing’s for sure, may bayag ka lang dito sa Internet.”

    This made me laugh! But you’re right. He’s just one of them who just keeps on hating and hating and wait… WHINING but never does a single thing to gather knowledge from what other people say. 🙂

  13. I’ve yet to see a local movie offering that will catch my interest. Something that challenges traditional movie cliches and values (such as rooting for the underdog) may do it.

  14. I have noticed this trend in indie films from the past few years based on a friend’s observations: themes always centred on slums, slums, slums, slums…whores, whores, and many whores…then, there’s our gay genre that either depict homosexuals as, erm, someone so degrading or comic relief.

    They don’t even depict them like they’re relatable enough like in Wong Kar Wai film ‘Happy Together’ or in a touching coming of age film ‘Love of Siam’. When can I see someone onscreen who isn’t straight doing decent job like being a nurse or someone I’ve met with ordinary personalities??? Call me any bad name for my opinion – I DON’T want to care. I just would like to see great storytelling and greatly detailed relatable ordinary characters.

    Good for you for your support for these films, but all my friends and I want is to see ordinary filipinos like us onscreen, but in a story that’s really worth an in-depth analysis. There are rubbish Hollywood films, but that shouldn’t stop me from criticising Philippine cinema, because I wish it to be in a greater calibre in filmmaking than what Hollywood is right now. I have a brother who is in pursuit of filmmaking (still in highschool abroad).
    So if anyone want to support our film industry, be challenged to reach us, ordinary but not stupid folks, into watching worthwhile narratives.

    1. There are numerous gay-themed films produced each year. You and your friend are mistaken that gay men are never depicted with decent jobs or as ordinary human beings. Though there’s always much room for improvement, and though it’s true that there are many poorly made movies out there, the films are not as homogenous as you’re led to believe by your friend. As a most recent example, “Ang Sayaw Ng Dalawang Kaliwang Paa” depicted a delicate romance between two very ordinary students. If you’re really interested, you should seek these films out for yourself. From a gay man, I’m telling you there’s a lot out there to enjoy.

  15. Na pansin ko naging personalan na kayo…

    If Indie film makers whine bcoz they are making enough money then they should stop making Indie film and start making mass appealing movies na wlang katuturan..

    Peace.

  16. sa pag edit palang ng trailers, makikita na kung interesting ba o hindi ang pelikula. trailers pa lang, palpak na. kaya hindi palusot ang “panoorin nyo muna bago kayo ma react” ek ek. wag nyong pilitin ang tao kung ayaw nilang panoorin ang pelikula nyo.

    uulitin ko lang yung comment ko sa article in ilda,
    mataas ang tingin sa sarili ng mga filmmakers na yan.

        1. ang gusto nya tumahimik ka na lang ilda dahil wala naman talagang kwenta yung komento nung naykupo. logic fail ka pa jan.imbes na sana sinusuportahan nyo yung sariling atin epuro kayo reklamo. tapos mga indie film makers sasabihan nyo na reklamo ng reklamo. actually may karapatan sila magreklamo dahil may output sila na pinaghirapan at ginastusan. kayo ilda at benignO ano bang pinaghirapan nyo at ano ba ang nagawa nyo at reklamo kayo ng reklamo?

        2. @anna

          Your comment is now included in the nominees for the lamest comment on the site.

          I’m a consumer and I have a right to state my opinion and demand for more quality films. The filmakers who insist that there are quality films out there can’t stop me from voicing my opinion. I already know what I like in a film and forcing me to watch SRR13 won’t work.

  17. Is it just me, but reading the article and the exchanges, both Ida and Benigno are the whiners? They whine because they don’t know, and worse, they refuse to know.

    1. hindi lang ikaw. yan din ang pananaw ko. mga reklamador na ayaw aminin na reklamador sila kaya yung ibang tao ang sinasabihang reklamador. nakakahiya sila diba?

      1. Complaining is good. It will help our country become world class. The problem with some people is that they are satisfied with mediocrity. Don’t force people to be happy with your low standard.

        1. For someone who wants the Philippines to stop being a mere rip-off of everything else, grabe yung kagustuhan niyong i-pattern ‘yung Pilipinas sa Amerika at sa mga sinasabi ninyong “developed” countries.

        2. Huh?!? Where did I say “i-pattern ‘yung Pilipinas sa Amerika at sa mga sinasabi ninyong “developed” countries?

          I guess you’d rather some Filipino filmmakers keep ripping-off Hollywood blockbusters instead of coming up with their own ideas.

  18. Hey guys, I have a story that you might be interested in turning into a film!

    A few days ago, a GRP soldier gurl named Ilda rolled out her newly crafted armored vehicle named FFTDMUT. As part of the GRP mission, she decided to roll out to a gathering of all personalities involved in the show business, big an small alike. The sudden appearance of the FFTDMUT took all of them by surprise. Ilda aimed her gun at the few humongously fat people occupying the center known as the Mainstream Dudes.

    A shrill cry broke out: “OH MAH GAWD SHE’S GONNA KILL US ALL!”

    The line is drawn. The small but nimble Indie Dudes off center quickly drew their paltiks. They also realized that the FFTDMUT, starting from its name, isn’t really of fine craftmanship. They noticed Ilda’s ignorance of the showbiz battlefield that hampered her maneuvers (which clumsily crushed some Indie Dudes’ hearts). They saw chinks in the armor and these they peppered with bullets. Unfortunately, most are EMO bullets which aren’t powerful enough to pierce through and the FFTDMUT is actually protected with the GRP Comment Matrix specially designed to withstand these types of bullet. Why they primarily used EMO bullets, I have no idea. Force of habit maybe. They’ve been using the same bullets to nudge the Mainstream Dudes off for some space at the center.

    Bystanders, actually mostly from GRP HQ, that were attracted to the commotion can’t help but goad for more discharge of EMO bullets. More helpful ones suggested they try the Logic Bomb and load it with details and proof and more InsiderKnowledge with the snobbish coating peeled away. Also, even without piercing the armor, they could just increase the intensity of the EMO bullets so that Ilda inside could get rattled.

    In the end, while Ilda aimed her gun, it was never loaded in the first place. The Indie Dudes could have actually be of help because they had ammunition. But Ilda became weary and just retreated back to HQ.

    A blockbuster ladies and gentlemen!

    P.S. Did I just hear one of the Mainstream Dudes chuckle?

    1. Do you even need to point out something unnecessary like ‘indie vs mainstream’ in that P.S. of yours? Quality filmmaking on the whole includes relatable characters, insights that would create a great impact of the heart, and not something to create exploits and self-indulgence. Sure, why don’t you make a film quite like that for a change, but not because of your dirty motives. If you are so bitter and you want to wrong this article then create a story that which can not only please our film elites, but also ordinary working filipinos? Entertain your audience in both the mind AND the heart. Not the self-indulgence and self-gratification of these films which to my friend who has seen several, are so distant, boring and borderline insincere. If anyone could make such a masterpiece then I’m sure Ilda and Benigno will be so humbled down.

      1. And stop pointing out that indie=always great cinema and mainstream= always bad cinema. In the case of our local cinema, they’re both out of touch. Good story, good actors, story with something in life to aspire to and philosophise and not to bore the hell out of people should be encouraged, be it in mainstream or indie.

        1. Relax, Christy, it’s just tongue-in-cheek parody.

          Sorry, I couldn’t translate the tone that well in text back there.

  19. You know, filmmakers, I have a suggestion for you. Instead of focusing on slums, slums, slums, and whore, whores, whores, show a rich person who’s doing it right in life, and show how he’s trying to correct the lazy poor and helping them get their lives on track! I have YET to see that kind of movie. It’s always rooting for the underdog. This time, root for the overdog!

  20. Film industry folk have to eat, so they sulk down before the oligarchs and other moneyed idiots and churn out crap. Pure economics, unfortunately. Otherwise, they starve.

    Speaking of porn, a country that prides itself in free speech yet criminalizes local porno, has no hope of intellectual advancement.

  21. I am seeing parallels among some indie film maker’s whining, and Pinoys’ whining:

    Statement: “Indie films are not good. I’d rather watch foreign films.”
    Indie film maker: “You dumbf*ck! Have you actually seen one??? Have you watched this, this, and this??? See them first before you criticize!!!”

    Statement: “Philippines is awfully disappointing, and the country is unsafe. I’d rather visit other countries.”
    Pinoys: “Racist! Have you even been to other places in the Philippines??? Have you visited place, place, and place??? Visit them first before you criticize!!!”

    etc.

  22. “A whiner writing an article about whining”

    well that is something. hahaha.

    two words for this entire article = “Epic Fail”

    here we go again with the logical inconsistencies and imposing of unjust burden.

    you say that we should prove first that indie films are good and disprove your argument.. well. let us use that same logic here.

    If I say you are a spoiled kid na may bayag lang sa internet, is the burden on me then to prove this? or is it for you to disprove.

    let us use clearer equations.

    this is your logic:
    (you)indie films sucks + (us)you can’t say that until you watch it. = disprove that it sucks before I watch it.

    let us compare it to a similar equation:
    (us)may bayag ka lang sa internet + (you)I am well versed and educated anywhere = disprove first na may bayag ka lang sa internet before we believe you.

    see the lopsidedness of your logic?

    here are more logical equations for you:

    (you)indie films are bad = “assumption” lacks “premise”.

    (you)indie films are not recognizied therefore they are not good films = “hasty generalization” lacks proper grounding and back-up reference.

    (you)indie films are not mainstreamed therefore they must not be high standard = “non sequitor” need to provide a measuring stick for “high standard” for argument to fly.

    (you)US indie films are good because they have good reception – “appeal to culture” + “non sequitor” ever heard of socio-demographic profiles? Fuzzy Logical Theory on Preference? Media Richness Theory? Game Theory? how about Cultural Diversity and perception?

    just a few of your many logical inconsistencies. and don’t you dare tell me to deal with it. You want proper argumentation right? DEAL WITH THIS.

  23. mahilig ako sa pelikula; hollywood, filipino at blockbusters. Hindi ako gumawaga ng pelikula at ang opinyon ko ay sa linya lang na kaya ko iguhit- bilang isang manonood. para sakin, bilang sining, nais lamang ng pelikulang magpahayag, magpadama. tungkulin ng tao ang mag isip (karapatan nya ang mag aral). ang matuto sa isang pelikula ay isang magandang karanasan pero hindi dapat husgahan ang pelikula kung hindi ka nya pinag-isip o kinapulutan ng aral. nagpapasalamat ako sa mga pelikulang inaantig ang aking damdamin tulad ng dancer in the dark. Nagpapasalamat ako sa mga pelikulang nakakapagpasaya sakin tulad ng little miss sunshine at higit sa lahat nagapapasalamat ako sa mga pelikulang pinag iisip ako tulad ng ang pagdadadalaga ni maximo oliveros. binasa ko ang post at mga komento dito at sa Filipino films: they don’t make us think. bagama’t hindi ako sumasang-ayon sa karamihan sa mga post nina ilda at benigno NAGPAPASALAMAT AKO SA KANILA AT NAKILALA KO (nakakahiya man at dito pa sa grp) SINA thebaklareview AT Alem sa pamamagitan ng kanilang matatalinong argumento. Mabuhay kayo at nawa’y wag nyong tigilan ang paggawa, pagrebyu ng mga pelikulang Pilipino! Hindi kayo nag iisa, marami sa amin ang tahimik na sumusuporta. mahirap baguhin ang kamalayang pilipino pero doon ako sa mga naniniwalang nagsisimula na ito.

  24. Art by nature is subjective. It takes a lot of balls (to be an artist/writer) to stand and defend their work, and it takes tons of courage to swallow pride in losing an audience, this is exactly what is natural with majority of humans (i didn’t mention “Filipinos” because we’re not the only people in the world that matters), we find fault directly at the person when he/she bursts our bubbles, but at least respect the person for standing by his principle firmly, and often times we forget to use our G.M.R.C. along with our common sense.

    There are 3 kinds of people:
    1. Creator
    2. Critic
    3. Indifferent

    Sometimes we should take a dip of each others sauce to understand how to be constructive or not to have to prove something all the time, having a valid argument doesn’t always mean that it is right. There’s always people waiting to aim the gun at someone and shoot.

    For film makers, we just have to do something that we believe is right and never have to explain to others, explaining can sometimes ruin the point. But of course, be responsible on what we express, learn to understand that we are potentially influencing people’s mind and action with our ideas 🙂 (this is just a reminder so please don’t get into rage)

    This is a good read of selected quotes from Moneyball and i suggest you watch it 🙂
    http://onstartups.com/tabid/3339/bid/76799/Startup-Lessons-From-17-Hard-Hitting-Quotes-In-Moneyball.aspx

  25. napakadali magpaka-artsy fartsy. i-shoot mo isang langaw na gumagala sa pisngi ng basura. cut to a society matron’s yogurt dripping with vanilla then cut to Wally Bayola stripping naked in front of bullrushes in an abandoned tannery. . . then. . . you get the idea. An artistic movie which at the same time manhandles you at the edge of your seat, then when the ending comes you either have an epiphany or a wide smile on your face — that is the rarest among the rarest achievement na bihirang-bihira lang ang nakakagawa. Pag artsy ayokong maghikab habang nanonood. Pag di naman ako naghihikab gusto ko naman nalilibugan utak ko. very difficult challenge. Mediocre filmmakers are either artistic or visceral but not necessarily both. Otherwise, that makes them brilliant filmmakers.

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