MMFF concludes with a whimper

Many filmfest observers were dismayed at the results of the Gabi ng Parangal last week at the Kia Theater. While the members of the jury paid slight attention to Ang Larawan honoring the musical film with the Best Picture, Best Musical Score, Best Production Design, Best Actress (Joanna Ampil) and the Gatpuno Antonio J. Villegas Award, it was evident the jury also wanted to distribute the trophies to the other entries causing many raised eyebrows post-haste.

Some awards seemed unacceptable to a lot of those who annually watch the films and awards.

'Ang Larawan' producer Celeste Legaspi with the musical film cast member Menchu Lauchengco accepts one of the major awards during the Gabi ng Parangal
Nonetheless, the decision of the jurors was final and they could not change their decsions now.

This column agrees on certain awards, and doubts the others. But I dare not say which as my group, the Society of Philipine Entertainment Editors (SPEEd), also hands out recognition of outstanding works in the movie since last year. Some of those that have been awarded in certain categories in last year’s film fest may still be considered for the group’s awards either in April or early May this year.

So, I think the members of the group have already formed their judgment on which films from this year’s festival that have made a mark and could be in the running for this year’s Eddys.

On the social media, I read a post of a tabloid columnist, which made me really laugh, about the award given to a certain actor. The reactions to his post was mixed, naturally, some even saying the columnist was rather harsh comparing the actor’s performance with another actor that did not win an award.

MMFF 2017 Chairman Cong. Karlo Nograles and Gabi ng Parangal hosts Paolo Bediones and Kylie Versoza
Judging films for awards is rather tedious. If taken seriously, one needs an entire day to figure out what’s good or bad in a movie, from its creative to the productions aspects. 

I once served as a member of the jury of the MMFF in the early '90s wherein Imortal won most of the awars including Best Actor (Christopher de Leon) and Best Actress (Vilma Santos) and most importantly the Best Picture trophy.

We viewed the entries once in a private screening and cast our votes later. No, we didn’t know which films, actors, and production people won until the night of the awards. Fortunately, the movies and most of the performers I voted for got the awards.

And yet, there were still others who dissented from the choices we (the jury) made. As the cliché goes, “you can’t please everyone,” as this year’s batch of winners has many dissenting from the judges’ choices.

Derek Ramsay receives the Best Actor plum for his role in "All of You"
Images by Sonny Espiritu
Whatever, I’d like to congratulate the winners, deserving or not, for making this year’s MMFF better than the previous year.

* * *

It saddens me to learn that Fox Action Movies will no longer be on SKYHD on Jan. 15. I am not sure what’s going on in the minds of those that run the Fox group in the Philippines. First they took away Fox Premium Movies on SKY’s HD line up and replaced it with Fox Movies showing movies with commercial interruptions. And we thought, pay television (which is the principle behind cable TV) should be bereft of commercials. Another issue I have with Fox Movies is the English subtitle. Well other movie channels like HBO and its string of other brands give audience the option of having a subtitle for the movies in the language they are most at home with.

With Fox Movies, no you’re not given a choice. Small wonder many movie and series lovers take to streaming now from different websites that offer a wide range of titles, new, old or exlclusives.

Sooner than late later, these movie channels on cable TV will realize the have been overtaken by online movie channels.


Topics: Gabi ng Parangal , Kia Theater , Best Actress , Joanna Ampil , Gatpuno Antonio J. Villegas Award ,
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