I’m not a guy who would review movies solely on the basis of a trailer. Other bloggers have already done that, and are quite good at the nuances of prejudice masquerading as a review of cultural outputs. Rather, think of this as a review of a trailer.
I have to admit that I haven’t watched a fair share of Filipino movies lately. The last one I can remember watching was “Rigodon,” which was okay if not for the predictable turn of events (and Yam Concepcion, of course). But then again, anyone who says “Pinoy movies are not worth watching” is, for all intents and purposes, eating his own crap in the process of talking out of his ass. Lots of Pinoy movies are amazing: “Bwakaw” comes to mind. ”Temptation Island,” while lacking in some respects compared to the original, is a good movie. I haven’t watched “Six Degrees of Lilia Cuntapay” or “Ang Nawawala” yet, but I’ve heard great things about the movies that I’d shell out for original copies of the DVDs. Not to mention that “Himala” was remastered.
In spite of the wealth of good movies that we have, the Vice Ganda comedies and installments of Enteng Kabisote make millions of pesos in the cinemas. I’ll probably be the last person to fall in line to spend an hour and a half to be narcotized by escapist pop cinema, but lots of people seem to enjoy them, nonetheless. I’ll leave it at that, for more qualified people to talk at length about the topic.
This is, however, a piece on idiotic trailers for very probably idiotic movies like “Pinoy Super Kid.”
It was Ifugao Representative Teddy Baguilat who voted following his conscience. ”Ang batayan ng aking posisyon,” Baguilat explained, “ay ang pangangailangan ng aking kababayan sa aking lalawigan.” There were no bishops, no pandering and patronizing, no intercessions from patron saints, not a shred of “Filipinizing” or whatever populist neologisms that were thought of right then and there on the House floor. It’s worth noting, too, that a town in his jurisdiction has its own RH ordinance: not because it was “the will of God,” as the CBCP would often imperiously proclaim, but because it was needed by the people.
The RH bill was passed on the second reading: hardly a plurality, but still enough to be decisive. For those against the measure, it seems that “conscience” is the monopoly of Christians, and Roman Catholics at that.
For the past few months, President Aquino has been prone to more than a few instances of pitik: that he has taken so many talks and forums as an avenue for him to vent out some remarks about “negative stories.” It seems that Daang Matuwid has a few more barriers on the curb. To be a “mabuting Pilipino” in the context of the Aquino Presidency, it seems that a journalist should focus more on writing, reporting, and broadcasting positive, empowering news.
The President said it himself a couple of days ago: “if two sides of a story are reported, if the details of every news are accurate and the freedom of all Filipinos to form their own opinion is valued, then any journalist has nothing to worry about, isn’t it?” And now, perhaps facing mounting criticism, Presidential deputy spokesperson Abigail Valte somehow deflects Aquino’s remark: apparently, it’s the principle, not the thing itself. ”It’s the concept,” she says, not the bill. Not that much has been said about Freedom of Information from the halls of the Palace over the past few months, it’s just that the President – a champion of FOI when he was running – is now (conceptually) for a Right of Reply provision.
“Copying,” says Senator Sotto, “is the highest form of flattery.” Yet in three Senate terms, the Filipino voting public flattered him through a copying of a different sort: his name in the ballot.
The French have a term for it: l’esprit de l’escallier. It’s a perfect retort made too late, as when one argues on a landing, ends up descending from the staircase in frustration, and ends up thinking of a brilliant comeback once he reaches the bottom. The problem is that Tito Sotto never left. He had the temerity to deny the act, the audacity to belittle his critics, and ended up giving a half-hearted – if not half-assed – apology to the Kennedy family for his blatant plagiarism and misappropriations of the “Day of Affirmation” speech. Today he continues to be recalcitrant and even irreverent: perhaps maintaining that his plagiarism is not the worst thing in the world.
To be clear, plagiarism is not the most grievous sin Filipino politicians should be pilloried for. If we take Senator Enrile’s word for it, countries copy each other’s laws, and maybe that’s “plagiarism,” and then again the Senate is not the academe. If we take Sotto’s supporters’ words for it, plagiarism is the concern of the non-masses: those who are educated, who have access to the Internet, and value intellectual property and academic integrity. The gibbets should be reserved for more heinous sins to the public sensibility, and true enough, it should.
For those unfamiliar with the history of the fractured Left in the Philippines, the past few days were a very compelling – if not agitating – crash course. As Anakbayan and Akbayan have locked horns on the matter of “red-baiting,” “yellow-baiting,” and baiting of all sorts, we saw two things unfold. First: the arguments and principles that fractured the Left were brought to the limelight. Second: the same old problems are taking place under the red lights flashed around these days.
It begins, I think, with defining the role of free speech. We are – even nominally – free because we are free to talk. We are free to engage, and we are free to be engaged. We are free to discourse, and we are free to be the subjects and objects of discourse. We cherish freedom of speech and guard it jealously; we protect it with vigilance, and for many of us, we stake our lives on it. And with this freedom comes the freedom to defend, and the freedom to accuse.
I accuse Republic Act No. 10175 – the Cybercrime Prevention Act – of taking away from me that freedom. I accuse the government, for their omissions and commissions, in making that act possible. I accuse those who support this law without exception – and claiming that the act of writing well is the best protection against online libel – of surrendering my rights along with theirs.