The Metro Manila Film Fest selection committee, headed by University of the Philippines professor Nick Tiongson announced the eight full length movies and eight short films on Friday, November 18.
Notably missing from the entries are Vic Sotto and Vice Ganda, even films starring famous love teams James Reid and Nadine Lustre (JaDine), Kathryn Bernardo and Daniel Padilla (KathNiel), Liza Soberano and Enrique Gil (LizQuen), and Alden Richards and Maine Mendoza (Aldub).
The MMFF’s executive committee wants a “thorough reform” of the selection process. The new rules dictate that choices for the finalists should be based on cinematic attributes and technical excellence (40 percent); overall impact (40 percent); Filipino sensibility (10 percent); and global appeal (10 percent).
Here are the “Magic 8:”
Alvin Yapan’s Oro
Starring: Joem Bascon, Mercedes Cabral and Irma Adlawan
Arturo San Agustin and Real Florido’s Kabisera
Starring: Nora Aunor , Ricky Davao, Luis Alandy, Jason Abalos, JC De Vera and RJ Agustin
Avid Liongoren’s Saving Sally
Starring: Enzo Marcos and Rhian Ramos
Baby Ruth Villarama’s Sunday Beauty Queen
Starring: Cherrie Mae Bretana, Hazel Perdido, Leo Selomenio, Mylyn Jacobo, and Rudelyn Acosta
Erik Matti’s Seklusyon
Starring: Dominic Roque, Elora Espano, JR Versales, John Vic De Guzman, Lou Veloso, Neil Ryan Sese, Phoebe Walker, Rhed Bustamante and Ronnie Alonte
Jun Robles Lana’s Die Beautiful
Starring: Paolo Ballesteros, Joel Torre, Gladys Reyes, Luis Alandy, Iza Calzado and Albie Casiño
Marlon Rivera’s Ang Babae sa Septic Tank 2 #ForeverIsNotEnough
Starring: Eugene Domingo, Jericho Rosales, Kean Cipriano, Cai Cortez and Khalil Ramos
Ted Boborol’s Vince & Kath & James
Starring: Julia Barretto, Joshua Garcia, and Ronnie Alonte
The eight short films are Birds, EJK, Manila Scream, Mga Bitoon sa Siyudad, Mitatang, Mono, Passage of Life and, Sitsiritsit.
Quality over commercial value
“When we computed all our individual scores, there was a consensus on these eight films. There were no objections among the execom members, and neither were there other issues that came about from these choices. We were all focused on the same direction, and concerned primarily on the quality of the films,” Nick Tiongson said.
Execom member Krip Yuson said, “Commercial value is not really our main concern. Our first concern is quality. Even if some may say the other films will make more money, that was not a concern on our part. So long as a film does not pass the evaluation, whatever the genre, it is not considered for the final cut.”
Yuson added the committee wanted films that “have something to say” and aimed to encourage viewers to support independent movies if they desire a change in the industry.