'Esoterika' from Manila to Hong Kong

Manila Bulletin, March 12, 2015 | Go to article overview

'Esoterika' from Manila to Hong Kong


JUST A THOUGHT: Coming together is a beginning; keeping together is progress; working together is success. - Henry Ford

* * *

'ESOTERIKA' TO THE WORLD: Elwood Perez himself got surprised when informed by the Film Development Council of the Philippines (FDCP) that "Esoterika: Manila," his second venture into independent filmmaking, had been invited as one of three Philippine representatives to the 39th Hong Kong International Film Festival.

The filmfest unreels from March 23 to April 6 at the Hong Kong Cultural Center.

The two other PH films taking part in the fest are Kidlat Tahimik's "Balikbayan #1" ("Memories of Overdevelopment Redux III") and Lav Diaz's "Mula sa Kung Ano ang Noon."

" Esoterika," selected as the opening film of the 2014 Cinema One Originals Film Festival, is a brave new film that tackles a familiar theme set against an even more familiar territory rendered in a rather unconventional film style.

In capsule, Perez, a multi-awarded master film director with an enviable track record of box-office hits in the '70s and '80s, writes of "Esoterika: Maynila": "As if playing a parlor game, the protagonist, a young Manila denizen, narrates his voyage of self-discovery, his transition from restaurant peon to literary artist. In the process, he meets a slew of charmed and bizarre characters. A quasi-fantastic, quasi-realistic voyage of self-discovery, it charts a map to the secrets of a city."

The debut film production of T-rex Productions, in cooperation with FDCP and Tribute Entertainment, "Esoterika: Manila" features performances by male lead Ronnie Liang, Boots Anson-Roa, Vince Tanada, Carlos Celdran, and OJ Mariano.

The Hong Kong International Film Festival, the longest-running and most respected film fest in East Asia, serves as the gateway of quality Asian films to the western market. It posts yearly screenings of 250 titles from all over the world. …

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