Journal | Indie Movies are the Path to A More Intelligent World

“Hindi ito sa panlasa ng masa”

That was my initial comments to J after watching the movie: “Apocalypse Child” and it was followed by: “More people should go watch movies like these” but I retracted when I gave it some thought “But it may be too mature…”

The themes of Apocalypse Child was far too different that what you would expect from the typical genre movie. The hero was not the typical hero archetype, because there was no arc in the story. He didn’t grow out from initial impressions, and I hated him at the beginning and I hated him at the end. There was no closure, no real changes, no lessons learned.

Just like in real life.

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It was just telling a story, and it takes a lot of self reflection to appreciate a story like Apocalypse Child. Because these days we are used to soft tone dramas, or nonsense comedies, that an actual depiction of real life seems surreal. Which is strange! Shouldn’t the life of everyday people be more relate-able?

Of course the purpose of movies is to entertain, but as an art form, it should make us look at something deeper. That people have flaws, and that after every happy ending, life goes on. And it is by exploring the different aspects of life through movies, can we get a better sense of what it is like to experience “life”.

But these days, movies are just distractions that complement a meme culture of people who have too much time in their hands that they end up spending more of the day bored than living. How many people spend time looking through pages in the internet, liking, commenting, browsing, not really spending time productively? I think too many, and I believe (in reference to Nicholas Carr’s The Shallows) this is the reason why people only want simple solutions to their problems.

No complicated movie plots, just let me see the spectacle of insane choreography, CGI, and exploding practical effects.

This is why the Book of Life is just a boring slideshow and not commentary on how people take their lives for granted. This is why Watchmen is remembered for it’s heroes and not the socio-political ramifications of discrimination and intolerance in a diverse world.

And this is why only 10 people went to watch Apocalypse Child tonight. People don’t have the discipline to go through 1.5 hours of an indie film but can endure 180 minutes watching Vice Ganda insult people and use the same gag the whole time. My problem with Filipino comedies is that it relies on one trick to last a whole movie, and because the audience are bored out of their minds due to the garbage they have been consuming for years now, it’s that kind of movie that actually ends up making money.

While only 10 people went to go watch a well-thought out film that comments on the destructive nature of gossip and living out delusions. (It’s one of the themes, the movie does try to tell a lot about the life of 1 guy plagued by a reputation he can’t shake off).

We need more people to appreciate these kinds of films.

Anyway, I think I made my point. I really like to watch more like this in the future, I wonder if Saving Sally will show here in Baguio too?

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