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Three Filipino films get nods at 16th NYAFF

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Three Filipino films namely Mikhail Red’s “Birdshot (2016),” Jet Leyco’s “Town In A Lake (Matangtubig, 2015)” and Avid Liongoren’s “Saving Sally (2016)” will be shown at the 16th New York Asian Film Festival (NYAFF).

A scene from 'Saving Saly' /mb.com.ph

A scene from ‘Saving Saly’

From June 30 to July 13, the festival venue is at the Film Society of of Lincoln Center’s Walter Reade Theater (165 West 65th Street); and from July 14 to 16 at SVA Theater.

“Birdshot” will be part of the Centerpiece Gala.

According to the website of the Film Society of Lincoln Center, it is “a continuation of the festival programmers’ efforts to champion films from Southeast Asia, and the Philippines in particular.”

Mikhail’s film is also in the main competition section together with six others – “Bad Genius” (Thailand), “A Double Life” (Japan), “The Gangster’s Daughter” (Taiwan), “Kfc” (Vietnam), “Jane” (South Korea), and “With Prisoners” (Hong Kong). Winners of the main competition will be revealed on the festival’s final night at Film Society of Lincoln Center on July 13.

As one of the most popular summer events in New York City, audiences should expect to “be wooed by die-hard romantics, unnerved by scary devil children, and witness the fury of angry young men on a path of destruction.”

This year, the festival will showcase 57 films as Subway Cinema aimed to exhibit popular film culture in all forms around Asia.

‘Birdshot’ (Screengrab from YouTube) /mb.com.ph

‘Birdshot’ (Screengrab from YouTube)

Since its establishment in 2002, the NYAFF has been dedicated to “bring wide audiences and critical attention to contemporary and classic Asian cinema in the US.”

Recall that last year’s festival also presented three Filipino films: Mario Cornejo’s “Apocalypse Child (2015),” Ralston Jover’s “Hamog (Haze, 2015)” and Erik Matti’s “Honor Thy Father (2015). The third bagged the Star Asia Award for John Lloyd Cruz and Screen International Rising Star Asia Award for Teri Malvar.

Erik was also the first director from the Philippines that represented the country in the festival with his ghetto superhero movie, “Gagamboy (2004),” back in 2005.

He also submitted two of his work “Rigodon (2012)” and “Vesuvius (2012)” to the NYAFF 2013.

Other local films that also joined the festival were Christian Linaban’ “Aberya (2012),” Gino M. Santos’ “The Animals (2012),” Kevin Dayrit’s “Catnip (2012),” and Rico Maria Ilarde’s “The Fridge (2012).”

‘Town In A Lake’ (Screengrab from YouTube) /mb.com.ph

‘Town In A Lake’ (Screengrab from YouTube)

In an article published in Subway Cinema during the NYAFF 2013, the reason they are open to Filipino films is that “Pinoy films is a cinema on fire, formed from fever dreams, pure sensation, and outrage that provides brisk, intelligent entertainment.”

“But beyond the lively phantasmagoria, these films reveal a culture that has gone through the terrors of war, colonialism, and dictatorial rule, still aflame with conflict and contradictions. This lineup is a testament to the vibrancy and resilience of an industry that is possessed by the bold brilliance of a young generation of brand new filmmakers,” it added.

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