The Alliance of United OFWs is one of the organisations which has block screened the controversial docu-dramedy to hit theatres across the UAE this August 19.
Mariecar Jara-Puyod, Senior Reporter
The cronyism, press muzzling, peril and horrors of the 20-year Martial Law in the Philippines from September 21, 1972, heavily shrouded the idealist rebirth of a nation and 36 years after the Romualdez-Marcos clan was ousted on February 25, 1986 through the historic peaceful People Power, that “bad taste in the mouth,” have yet to be expelled.
Yet to be expelled, even as on June 30, 2022, through the majority vote of 31,629,783 Filipino voters worldwide, the 64-year-old son and namesake of the deposed leader, perceived as a dictator and monster - by some - Ferdinand Bongbong” Marcos Jr. - was installed into office as the 17th president of the Republic of the Philippines.
Two months hence, division is still rife. This time, brought about by the “Maid in Malacanang,” a dramedy-cum-semi-documentary on the last three days of the clan and their devoted close-in security and household staff at the palace by the Pasig River in San Miguel, Manila, built in 1750 as the country house of Spaniard Don Antonio Rocha who earned his wealth by participating at the Manila-Acapulco (Mexico) Galleon Trade that spanned 250 years from 1565.
The almost two-hour movie, penned and megged by theatre-turned-independent film scriptwriter-director Daryl Yap has let some Filipinos across the world raised their brows and spit fire.
Nevertheless, as of three weeks ago, and even before the much-awaited August 3 (Wednesday) grand opening across the Southeast Asian nation, You Tube views on the official movie trailer were at 1.2 million.
“MIM,” as it is also called, will be shown across the Gulf from August 19 (Friday). In the UAE and 12 hours after the August 5 (Friday) announcement, tickets for two days had been sold out. A number of organisations and private companies had booked for block or private screenings.
At 11:29 p.m. of August 5, uploaded over the Private Messenger of the Batibot Press Club, the informal organisation of the Filipino journalists in the UAE, was the calculation of the ticket earnings of the scheduled “Meet and Greet” at a theatre in Dubai with movie co-producer Senator Imee Marcos, the eldest among the four children of the late strongman and former First Lady Imelda Romualdez Marcos, lead actress Christine Reyes and Yap. With the 500 theatre seats sold out, the Dhs36,750 tickets sold at Dhs73.50 each is equivalent to Php555,660.
As of 1:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Gulf Today dropped by City Centre Sharjah to check on whether “MIM” had been booked as this was not the case last August 5. The Filipino ticket girl who claimed she would definitely watch it since “I am a BBM (Bongbong Marcos) supporter,” said: “53 per cent of the over 100 seats had been booked online since last Monday. They may add another theatre.”
Among the block screeners is the Alliance of United (Overseas Filipino Workers). Founder/president Warpeace Martinez said: “It would be fun watching with like-minded people. We are the Uniteam (in reference to the coalition of the political parties of Marcos Jr. and his running mate and now Vice President/Education Secretary Sara Duterte-Carpio in the May 9, 2022 presidential elections).”
Swimming coach Karen, senior facilities administrator Norbs Iringan, human resources administrator Chona Roxas, administration assistant Rosette Gonzales-Trono, a 22-year-old graduate, former Philippine Airport Police Mar Alvin Alcuisa, warehouse staff Zyrah Moralida and #CEOonHeels have known about the “MIM” because both the negative and positive comments are 24/7 in the social media.
Karen, Iringan, Roxas and the former 22-year-old graduate are curious of the Marcoses’ side as they were born decades after the clan was shamefully dethroned.
Disinterested #CEOonHeels said: “I stand for integrity of intentions and positively driven purpose. The intent and purpose of the movie do not align with my values. For one, the movie was crafted based on someone’s experience and his/her opinion of the experience he/she derived of the chronological view of the events without an objective validation of the political reasons why things happened. It lacks integrity and sufficient evidence to confirm an unbiased chronology of events.”
Alcuisa will watch “not because of political preference but purely the desire to know what the movie will deliver to the audience. We all have different perceptions and no two people will exactly like the same thing. I want to see it for myself and have my own conviction. But I must say though the critics online against the movie, the personalities involved, add more appeal to me.”
Filipino children must be accompanied by their Filipino citizen parents while it is only unaccompanied minors repatriated by the Philippine diplomatic and consular missions who are going to be allowed to board aircraft.
SIFF’s vast repository of high-quality content spanning series, films, cartoons, songs, stories, and educational videos, will be available free-of-charge on MENA Mobile’s Bustan app.
Sharjah Media City (Shams) will host an awards ceremony to recognize the winners of the UAE Entertainment Experience. The ceremony will be held on Sunday, Dec 8 at the University City Hall in Sharjah.
The UAE Entertainment Experience urges the public to vote through its platform on the 4th phase films, the first of its kind project to produce the first crowdsourced film in the UAE and Arab world. The project achieved remarkable success and attracted a large group of talents from across the UAE.
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