Philippine's Movie and Television Review and Classification Board (MTRCB) has asked the director of the film, Aurora , to explain why the uncut version of the movie was shown at the University of the Philippines without the permission from
The independent movie was banned as unfit for public viewing by the MTRCB but it was shown just the same at the UP Film Institute (UPFI) Cine Adarna in January.
The MTRCB said the film was screened for commercial gain and without the corresponding permit to exhibit from the body. The MTRCB has already instructed director Adolf Alix Jr. to submit his counter-affidavit to explain his side.
Filmmaker Sean Lim, the representative of Oxin Entertainment, had already submitted his counter-affidavit to the MTRCB. Oxin Entertainment is the company that released Aurora. Lim, in his written testimony, said the film was part of an
educational screening at the UPFI and the scheduled showing was under the pretext of the state university’s aim in promoting academic freedom.
Controversial and X-rated (banned) films were given a public exhibition because of the Netpac competition of the Cinemalaya film festiva at the Cultural Center of the Philippines (CCP).
Network for the Promotion of Asian Cinema (Netpac) is composed of film critics from all over the world. Among the films vying for the Netpac prize are Paolo Villaluna and Ellen Ramos' Walang Hanggang Paalam and Adolfo Alix Jr.'s Aurora
, both rated X by the Movie and Television Review and Classification Board (MTRCB).
Meanwhile, a third entry, Bayaw , created a buzz because of its full-frontal male nudity. A fourth Netpac film, Auraeus Solito's Boy , was banned in Singapore because of a long gay love scene as well.
Villaluna said that the film's journey from censorship to the CCP was long and arduous. It makes you realize that filmmaking has become a struggle in this country. It's frustrating ... but we are totally relieved to premiere at the CCP.
The indie film Bayaw , was banned (Rated X) when the Movie and Television Review & Classification Board (MTRCB) reviewed it on August 27.
Bayaw will be submitted again to the MTRCB for a second review on September 1. The people behind this production are all hoping that it will be approved for exhibition, with minimal cuts or no cuts at all, in time for its showing. The film,
produced by Climax Films and directed by Monti Parungao (Sagwan), is scheduled to open on September 2 in selected theaters nationwide.
Philippines censors get wound up by university showing of banned films
The move by the Philippines Movie and Television Review and Classification Board (MTRCB) to stop Thursday's scheduled screening of Kinatay at the UP Film Institute was "not a personal attack" on its director, Brillante
Mendoza, said censor chair Marissa Laguardia.
She said it was meant to check the state-run institution's practice of holding public screenings of banned "X"-rated films.
During a press conference on Tuesday night, Laguardia referred to an ongoing case between the board and the UP Film Institute that stemmed from the latter's showing of previously disapproved films like Adolf Alix Jr.'s Aurora
, Lav Diaz's Death in the Land of the Encantos and Alejandro Bong Ramos' Butas .
Are they really showing ' Kinatay ' just to professors and critics? How many persons are expected to attend? The UP Film Institute representative we spoke with on Monday failed to answer these questions, Laguardia told Inquirer
She stressed that a film screening attended by at least 50 people is already considered a public exhibition-which makes the movie to be shown subject to classification. Citing the board's rules and regulations, Laguardia added that a movie
slapped with an "X" rating is banned from public and commercial exhibition.
As late as Tuesday night, the chief censor noted, Centerstage/Swift Productions, the producers of Kinatay , had not filed a request for review.
Mendoza's movie debuted at the last Cannes International Film Festival in France, where he won the Best Director trophy. The UP screening was to be its local premiere.
Update: Kinatay Passed Uncut
11th August 2009. From philstar.com
Cannes Film Festival Best Director for 2009 Brillante “Dante” Mendoza received an unexpected bonanza — a regular permit to show his Cannes film Kinatay without cuts in all venues from the MTRCB (Movie and Television Review and Classification
Board). Ironically, the controversial film may just have served as catalyst for the board to rethink its policies.
During the open forum that followed the UP screening, director Dante revealed that during the meeting he requested with MTRCB, he made it clear that he would have his film reviewed but would not allow any cuts on his film and would simply cancel
the premiere screening should that be the case. After the MTRCB review, interestingly, he was given the green light. Kinatay is a dark grim look at the underworld where a drug dealer-prostitute is butchered by corrupt cops.
Kinatay . Filipino director Brilliante Mendoza delivered what could be read as a searing indictment of his country's attitude towards women – or you could also see it as an ultra-violent film in which a woman is kidnapped, beaten,
tortured, graphically dismembered, her body parts put into plastic bags and shoved on rubbish heaps outside Manila.