Burnt Ultimatum

28 09 2008

Knowing that I will probably be off to the other side of the Pacific in less than a year puts quite a pressure on the present (and immediate future). Time to bring out the to-do list.

1. Travel

Oct and Mar

Nov and Feb

Dec or Jan


2. Books

3. Movies (among others)



13 09 2008

Many thanks to Lawrence for introducing me to ‘Lipgloss,’ a new, hilarious Gossip Girl-wannabe show from TV5. The teen drama features heavy doses of amazingly wooden dramatic acting and Milby-like Tagalog deliveries from a posse of young Pinoy showbiz E-listers. Delicious. Welcome back Rachel Lobangco!

Last week, we went again to Sagada (for the fifth time!) and I fell in love with the place even more. Anyone who wants to go there anytime soon, I’m all go.

Pad Thai

1 09 2008

My first encounter with a work of Thai auteur Apichatpong Weerasethakul (a mouthful!) was in his Cannes-Jury-Prize-winning film Tropical Malady, which was based on a Thai Buddhist folktale with a surreal and homoerotic twist. The structure of the film reminded me very much of Mulholland Dr., a film that similarly begins quite logically with a few offbeat scenes before imploding in the middle and descending to inexplicable and irreversible strangeness. A unique, original, ambitious, dreamlike, poetic, meditative piece of filmmaking. Trailer!

Syndromes and a Century, his 2006 film banned in Thailand because of certain ‘sensitive’ scenes, including a Buddhist monk playing a guitar and doctors drinking whisky in a hospital (a quietly hilarious scene), follows the same stylistic path as Tropical Malady. It sort of tells (in the loosest way possible) the story (or non-story) of his physician parents before they fell in love with each other. In many ways, it is two pre-love stories that parallel each other; one is set in rural Thailand in the past and the other in urban Bangkok in the present. It can be frustating and alienating given that the film picks up narrative strands in the beginning then completely abandons them halfway. Trailer!