Weeks ago, we got our first look at the six filmmakers who were selected for the 2018 QCinema Circle Competition—one of the foremost film festival competitions in the country today. Now, we've received the first details on the six films of the Circle Competition, in the form of short synopses for each:
Billie and Emma by Samantha Lee looks into the depths of a young female friendship. Billie is a 17-year-old rocker girl who is forced to move to the province. She meets Emma, the queen bee, model student, and perfect daughter, who suddenly gets pregnant. Together, they go through the experience of first love and they explore what it means to be a family.
Dog Days: Pinoy Hoop Dreams by Timmy Harn shows half-black half-Filipino wannabe basketball star Michael Jordan Ulili chase his hoop dreams. The rookie player believes he has special God-given powers to have what it takes. But his power takes him on a journey where he is faced with the weirdness of his destiny.
Hintayan ng Langit by Dan Villegas involves a woman in limbo who comes to grips with her past. Lisang has been waiting for two years, but her bad behavior has kept her from moving forward. A new list of eligibles will soon be released and her name is finally being considered, but there's a shortage of rooms in purgatory and she would have to share a room with a man from her past.
Masla A Papanok by Gutierrez Mangansakan II goes back to 1892 when a giant bird mysteriously appears in Maguindanao foretelling the fall and rise of colonial empires.
Panata sa Bundok Gulsuk by Jordan Dela Cruz is set in the idyllic city of Naga, and explores a dark coming-of-age story. A naive teenage boy journeys towards the peak of the mythical Mount Gulsuk to search for a cure for the mysterious, incurable disease that afflicted his pregnant high school girlfriend.
Sila-Sila by Giancarlo Abrahan follows the story of a gay man, who, while at a high school reunion, tries to avoid confrontations with people from his past, especially his drunk ex-boyfriend. And so he escapes through his gay-dating app, meeting "strangers" in the vaguely familiar campus.
Along with the synopses for the Circle Competition films, QCinema has also revealed the new Filipino documentary films that will premiere at the festival.
All Grown Up by Wena Sanchez tells a story about what it means to help the people you love the most. After years of nurturing and protecting her younger brother, a filmmaker is forced to question her ability to help the people she loves when her own daughter begins to have troubles of her own.
Pag-ukit sa Paniniwala by Hiyas Baldemor Bagabaldo shows the journey of a third-generation master carver in transforming blocks of wood into a gigantic Jesus crucified on a 12 feet cross. This life passage is juxtaposed to a procession of images including that of a 500-year-old Dead Christ. The contrasting harmony of the sculptors, the sculptures, and the devotees reveal a customary yet surreal portrait of Paete, a small artisanal town in the Philippines.
LUZVIMINDA by Shallah Montero looks into the Philippine drug war through the eyes of women.
These preliminary synopses should give us an idea of what to expect from feature films and documentaries of this year's QCinema.
The Quezon City International Film Festival 2018 is slated to run from October 21 to 30, 2018. For more updates, visit the official QCinema Facebook page.