Doing The Rounds

Asahi Pentax Spotmatic SP film SLR
Pentacon f2.8/29mm lens
Neopan 1600 (pushed to 3200 with paRodinal developer)
Saguijo, Makati City

The last gig I went to where I got out of the venue and found that I had wrinkled finger-skin was way back when Rage Against The Machine played here. I wouldn’t say yet that I’m a big fan of Franco, but apparently a lot of people are, since I heard Saguijo got calls all day confirming if the band was indeed playing that night. Security won’t let people in anymore unless you go way back behind everyone. I went with that, but eventually found myself shooting with my rinky-dink Spotmatic at an arms-length distance with the bands. Thanks to my borrowed German 29mm lens, but no thanks to the almost non-existent light, as a wall of people blocked it.

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Shooting Gigs on Film

Up Dharma Down
Up Dharma Down

It was time.

I started shooting gigs back in 2006, and I’ve always wondered how I can shoot on film, knowing that I did casually start with this hobby dicking around with toy film cameras. Last week, I decided to stop wondering. With an unused Asahi Pentax Spotmatic SP SLR (given as a gift by a fellow gig photographer), I got the brick of Neopan 1600 film I ordered, and shot a roll.

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The Story So Far

So. I’ll be out from work for the rest of the month, and will rest at home. Details will stop from there, and that doesn’t mean you can pester me with comments and email and expect to be answered in real time.


Noynoy Aquino at the Anti Con Ass Rally/Ayala Avenue, Makati City/June 11, 2009

Just like those lazy op-ed columnists, I will post updates in (almost) Twitter-length word boxes:

  • I was all fired up during Cory’s funeral, saddened I couldn’t join with the masses, and was less than brutal in pointing out outright politicking during the event (via Twitter). I should be resting, I know, but things like this lose a lot of spirit if you don’t experience it the same time as everyone else.
  • On the current National Artists brouhaha and the protesters and winners: an indication of how crooked GMA’s current judgment standards are (since, AFAIK, the title is a Presidential award)? an indication of how the supposed winners are undeserving based on how procedure wasn’t followed, and if they did submit to a re-review, they would surely lose the title? Latest update: an inquiry in the lower house will be conducted. Oh how fun this would be to watch.
  • Sentiments re GMA’s Le Cirque fiasco: I read this bit first on the online social networks, which was so ahead than say, Inquirer. So the accusation that this was propaganda started by “communist-arm” BAYAN is ridiculous, like they would consider making use of a gossip column of the NYT.
  • Again, re Le Cirque: the THEORETICAL dinner menu, which I don’t think was ever authenticated by the local media, was I understand made by a friend from the social networks. I can’t validate if ever he did state that it was THEORETICAL, since his site is down. I was surprised though that the list was even used at small rallies protesting the dinner, at student carinderias (as seen on TV news).

And on a lighter note:

REVIEW: Darren Aronofsky’s The Wrestler

Keep this in mind first: the former passion of movie-watching, and giving out an opinion about each experience, comes rarely to me now. The UP Film Center was my second home back in college (it also happens to be just across the street from my dorm), I surprised my film professor that I wasn’t a film major after taking two subjects already from him, and the first topics I blogged about early 2000 were movie reviews.

Having stumbled upon the new Darren Aronofsky release, The Wrestler, a few weeks back, I knew, instantly, this will be a treat. I’ve seen all this director’s previous films: Pi (its now a blur to me now, though), the frantic and just-alright Requiem for a Dream, and a critically-panned flop, The Fountain, which I actually liked.

Let it be said that there is nothing new, plot-wise, with The Wrestler. In sum, we really just see an aging professional wrestler struggling with real world facts: that he’s old and damaged, that he’s past his career prime, that his neglected daughter hates him, and that the stripper he gets lap-dances from is ultimately hesitant in starting a relationship with him. He wants to correct each mistake, make everything as happy and content, like his beloved hair-metal songs, the soundtrack of his life, his once-celebrated career.

A look of wonder will creep into your face when you see a tanned, bodybuilder-heavy Mickey Rourke in tights, with his behind to the audience, in what looks like a nursery school room. We only get to see his face minutes after, in the wrestling ring. A few minutes more, after a coordinated victory, we see what its like behind the show, the faces behind the characters of any larger-than-life persona you can think of: mayhem, hate, and of course, the contrasting all-American hero. Mickey Rourke plays Ram Robinson, and yes, he is that hero.

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Endo, A Review

I have been disinterested with the local film festival circuit for almost a decade now, and it is a sad fact that I only make the effort to watch the entries when they’re given their brief stints in the more accessible cinemahouses. The latest film I could file under that category is Jade Castro’s Endo.

The movie trailer (posted above), the score (by Ang Bandang Shirley‘s frontman/songwriter Owel Alvero), and its awards (from Cinemalaya and Festival des 3 Continents 2007)/credits (screenwriting powerhouse Michiko Yamamoto as producer), were already factors that begs for the tag ‘promising‘. That boy Jason Abalos looks like he’s out to prove something, and that Ina Feleo seems to lovingly occupy the screen with a relentless, muted charm. My assumptions were proven right: no recent local -nor foreign- movie I’ve seen lately comes even close to the simple greatness of this honest romance.

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