The film festival circuit has been a triumphant path so far for Bitter Melon. The film by acclaimed director H.P. Mendoza which was chosen last year for funding and support by Cinematografo Originals.
Last Saturday, the dramedy was screened at Asia Society as part of the official closing presentation of the prestigious 41st Asian American International Film Festival (AAIFF 41). In spite of a very busy weekend in New York with ongoing summer festivals, the screening drew an enthusiastic multicultural audience that had an animated Q&A with Mendoza and the cast members.
“I laughed, I cried, I shivered, it was that emotional,” said filmgoer Joe Wentzell. “Anyone can relate to this film. We all have family demons. How do we deal with them?”
Vice Consul Khrys Corpuz Popov commented, “My husband and I enjoyed the film. It’s uncomfortably funny and dark, not your typical Filipino movie.”
Screenwriter Nathan Liu said that this movie is ready for a wider release so people can see the cinematic Filipino American masterpiece. “Honestly, I even think this will work very well for a streaming service like Netflix,” said Liu.
Director Mendoza remarked: “This is a movie on how men deal with women, how men deal with men, and how men need to change. I want people to talk about it and to listen to each other. I want them to talk about what empathy really means.”
“We’re so proud of H.P. Mendoza and ‘Bitter Melon’,” said Cinematografo Executive Director John-D Lazatin. “This is what we aimed for: showcase independent filmmakers and be a platform to bring their stories to the world stage.”
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