‘Kokuryo’ wins Best Film at Piling Obrang Vidyo (POV) 2023

With the collective reclaiming of our narratives, Piling Obrang Vidyo (POV) successfully held its onsite film screening and awards night for its 19th edition, presented by UP Cinema. With the easing of pandemic-related restrictions, the annual film festival competition was back home at UPFI Film Center's Cine Adarna last March 24, 2023. 

In its 19th year, POV opened the film competition for college and senior high school students to further amplify the voice of the youth, with POV XIX's theme: Bagong S19lo: Atin ang Kwento, the annual interschool film competition allows redeeming the alternative space for cinematic discourse. 

This interschool video competition showcased narrative, documentary, and experimental films of Filipino students. Along with the onsite screening, POV XIX also brought these Filipino students' short films online for free at Cinemata.

UP Cinema received over a hundred film submissions this year in these categories. However, only 12 of them became finalists having four entries per category, with most of them coming from Far Eastern University (FEU), De La Salle – College of Saint Benilde (DLSU-CSB), University of the Philippines Visayas (UPV), and Mapua University.

The jury watched and screened the finalist movies, which include documentarist Adjani Arumpac, who worked on projects like Nanay Mameng (2013) and Conchita (2018), KHAVN, who was awarded a Palanca Grand Prize with his novel "Antimarcos," Director Keith Deligero who is a founder of BINISAYA Film Festival in his home province of Cebu, Mao Fadul who is award-winning production designer, musical scorer, sound designer, and audio producer Pepe Manikan, Two-time Gawad Urian Best Documentary Awardee Jewel Maranan, and last but not least, Mariah Reodica who is a writer, filmmaker, and musician who was awarded the 2018 Ateneo Art Awards Purita Kalaw-Ledesma Prize for Art Criticism.

After screening the films, the POV team presented the awards to the finalists and awardees. 

Kokuryo: The Untold Story of Bb. Undas 2019 (2022) by Diokno Manuel Dionisio bagged most awards, including Best Narrative, Best Production Design, and Best Screenplay. They were hailed as Piling Obrang Vidyo XIX (Best Film). While Alingasngas ng mga Kuliglig (2022) by Vahn Leinard Pascual won Best Direction, Best Music/Original Score, and Cinemaster's Choice. Migs Ruallo's Pempem at ang Bomba Magazine won Best Editing, Best Performance, and Viewer's Choice.

Other winners were Itom nga Bugas Kanaryo nga Ugat (2022) by Leonard Ian Billones, who won the Jury Prize, and Best Sound Design. Balde at Brotsa (2022) by Josh Mutia winning Best Documentary. mind body (2023) by Josh Van Ulric Campo as Best Experimental Awardee. self-portrait (2022) by Daphnee Gail Ferrer getting the Best Cinematography. and the documentary The Secret Band of Thebes (2022), which was awarded a Special Citation for Animation.

This year’s Piling Obrang Vidyo has been made possible through its continued partnerships with related institutions and organizations. POV XIX is co-presented by UP Diliman OICA and Cinemata, in cooperation with DAKILA, Active Vista, and Screen Asia. 

Its organization partners include UP Cinema Arts Society - UP CAST, PLM Independent Film, and Arts, FEU Film Society, 24 Frames - CIIT Film Organization, Film Aficionados Circle, Mapúa •MOVE, CINEMATA, UP CMC FST Konse and Kalasag, with special thanks to U.P. Cineastes' Studio, SineDulaang Agustino, and Silip Lente - Adamson University. 

The event’s media partners are Asian Film Festivals, Radyo Katipunan 87.9 FM, and BLOG-PH.com., and Radyo Katipunan 87.9 FM

UP Cinema and the POV team hope to maintain the hybrid set-up of the festival next year; the online space is here to stay as we make cinema accessible beyond the campus film theater, Cine Adarna. The organization aims to continue providing space for youth films and more accessible film education. They believe that the film experience should be taken beyond the screen. 

JL Santiago Aquino

A millennial lifestyle blogger from Caloocan City who adores trying new things. ✨ Email: blog.ph7@gmail.com. Follow @JayL_Aquino on Instagram, Twitter, TikTok & Facebook.

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