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9 Indie Films You Shouldn't Miss at the Cinemalaya Festival 2016

Filipino indie films are back on the silver screen!
9 Indie Films You Shouldn't Miss at the Cinemalaya Festival 2016
Filipino indie films are back on the silver screen!

The 12th Cinemalaya Independent Film Festival opens this August bigger than ever as it expands from Manila to Cebu. With the theme “Break the Surface,” Cinemalaya 2016 marks the return of the full length feature category along with the following classifications: Festival’s Best, Asian Showcase, Documentaries, Tribute to Francis Pasion, and Cinemalaya Institute showcase.

Nine full length feature films will compete for this year’s Cinemalaya Award. Check them out below:

Ang Bagong Pamilya ni Ponching by Inna Salazar and Dos Ocampo

Synopsis: A religious man who does petty crimes, Ponching, gets into text scamming, thinking it will not really hurt anyone. One day, his seemingly innocent text scam accidentally cons a recipient into thinking he is the bastard child of their late relative.

Dagsin by Atom Magadia

Synopsis: After surviving the Death March, Martial Law, and the loss of his legs, Justino became an atheist. But when his wife dies, a part of him yearns to believe in life beyond death and a chance to be with her again. Searching for parts of her that he can still hold on to, he goes through her diaries—opening a Pandora's Box of secrets.


Hiblang Abo by Ralston Jover

Synopsis: Hiblang Abo speaks volumes of muted memories and infinite struggles among four men in their twilight years, confined in a hospice facility or home for the aged. Their gray hair grows and fades unnoticed, their lives enter the void of oblivion. Everything unfolds so naturally into their swan song until their body pains and heartaches yield the same intensity, when their hearing and their feelings become permanently impaired; and when their blurry vision and memories become “clear” signs that the inevitable state of death is as fleeting as the vibrancy of life itself.

I America by Ivan Andrew Payawal

Synopsis: I America is a dramedy about a complex half-Pinay, half-Caucasian lady. She tries to get her passport and US visa in a quest to meet her father for the first time.

Kusina by David Corpuz and Cenon Palomares

Synopsis: Kusina (The Kitchen) is the silent witness to the life and love of Juanita. It is her sanctuary, the place where she creates dishes for her family, her friends, even enemies and strangers. Through cooking, she gets to know the people around her, and in return, reveals herself to them.

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Lando at Bugoy by Vic Acedillo Jr.

Synopsis: Disrespected by his teenage son, a 40-year-old high school dropout tries to solve the problem by returning to school, which only makes his son hate him even more. Amidst the struggle between them, an unexpected event changes everything.

Mercury is Mine by Jason Paul Laxamana

Synopsis: Carmen, a middle-aged cook, is about to close down her eatery at the foot of Mt. Arayat when a white American teenage boy named Mercury approaches her and begs for work in exchange of nothing but shelter.

Pamilya Ordinaryo by Eduardo Roy Jr.

Synopsis: Jane and Aries are teenage parents. They make a living out of stealing on the streets... until fate hits back at them.

Tuos by Derick Cabrido

Synopsis: A woman chosen to keep an age-old tradition alive must now choose between her granddaughter’s life and a belief that shackled her in solitary confinement.


Cinemalaya Festival will run from August 5-14 in the CCP Theater and satellite venues at Ayala Malls, including Greenbelt 3, Glorietta, Trinoma, UP Town Center and Nuvali. In Cebu, Cinemalaya will be screening from August 9-14 at the Ayala Center Cebu. Tickets are priced at P150 and a discounted rate of P100 for students.

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