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Tuesday, May 8, 2012

At the Asia As Our Society Film Festival Press Screening

What do you think? 








            With the aim of promoting Filipino awareness on Asian culture, Asia Society Philippines, together with Shangri-La Plaza and the Film Development Council of the Philippines, will spearhead the Asia As Our Society in May 17 to 21, 2012 at the Shang Cineplex, Shangri-La Plaza.

Albeit how notoriously sporadic a blogger  I am, I was privileged enough to be found online and get invited by the kind people at Asia Society Philippine Foundation, Inc. to the Asia As Our Society Film Festival Press Screening last May 3 at the Shang Cineplex.

            With me in the event were my best bud Carlo Copada, whom I brought as a photographer, and Franco Lasay. At the Cineplex, the three of us were met by Ms. Migel Estoque, the program assistant.

            When we got there, we frankly had little knowledge of what the organization was all about so we requested Ms. Migel to bring us up to speed. According to Ms. Migel, Asia Society Philippine Foundation, Inc. is an organization dedicated to promote understanding of Asia through education and network links and in building cultural bridges – not only between Americans and Filipinos, but also between Filipinos and other Asians through pan-Asian programs.

            She also explained that Asia Society has several branches around the world particularly in Australasia, Hong Kong, India, California, Shanghai, Texas, Washington and New York where their headquarters can be found.

            Ms. Migel noted that while Filipinos were way too engrossed with Western culture nowadays, they fail to become familiar with the identities of other Asian nations. This I thought was very ironic considering that we know a whole lot more about the US and Europe than we know our neighbors in Asia.   

            The film festival was a way for Filipinos to get a glimpse of life in other Asian countries. During the press screening, we were treated to an Indonesian indie film entitled “Jakarta Maghrib” (Jakarta Sunset), which was comprised of six short films that features six different but interconnected stories. The overall story of poignantly portrays the Jakarta sunset as the key element that weaves all the tales and relationships together. 

            Watching this film, one could not help but be staggered by the resemblances between Indonesian culture and Filipino culture. Listening to their language is like listening to a strange Filipino dialect and their ticks, nuances, mannerisms and lifestyles are so similar to ours that Filipino viewers could really identify with the characters in terms of culture.

            The press screening was definitely a refreshing endeavor for me and if you want to be part of this cultural experience yourself, just come on down to Shangri-La Plaza Cineplex from May 17 to 21, 2012. Here’s the best part: IT’S ABSOLUTELY FREE!

            For inquiries about Asia Society and the film festival, please contact 752-4374, 09335309721 or info@asiascoiety.org.ph


(Photos by Carlo Jay B. Copada)

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