Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Top 10 Films Seen in 2007 (5 of 5 parts)

Viridiana (1961)
Directed by Luis Buñuel
When a pious young woman (played by the beautiful Silvia Pinal) is about to take her vows as a nun, she is called to visit her widowed uncle. After he attempts to rape her (due to her uncanny resemblance to his late wife), this sets off a series of events which would test the limits of her piety and faith in both God and in humankind. Though I'm no atheist, this is simply one of the most brilliant cinematic critiques on organized religion and Catholicism (at least pre-Vatican II Catholicism) in particular. That scene where the beggars and transients ramsack the house and parody Da Vinci's "Last Supper" is a classic. (11/18)

Insiang (1976)
Directed by Lino Brocka

2007 has been a very good year for Filipino films (The Metro Manila Film Festival notwithstanding) Foster Child and Tribu proves that Filipino cinema in the tradition of the greats, Brocka, Bernal, Avellana, DeLeon, O'Hara etc. is alive and well. Speaking of Brocka, I'm glad that a lot of the classics of Filipino cinema are slowly making their way to DVD's like this great film. Insiang is the first Filipino film to be exhibited at the Cannes Film Festival and now I know why. It's one of his greatest works. The title character is a typical (albeit very beautiful thanks to the actress playing her, Hilda Koronel) lower-income Filipina whose traditionally passive (mahinhin) attitude reaches the breaking point and unleashes revenge on her mother's lover who raped her and her boyfriend who betrayed her. This is one of the finest films in Filipino cinema. (12/24)

1 comment:

Eleven said...

So I get directed here from Facebook and find the beginnings of a neato blog. I'm also hoping to (re-)fire up Film at 11 for '08. Looking forward to more from you, Klausy.