Tuesday, November 17, 2009

"DUKOT"-A film review

"DUKOT"-A film review
by Paul Smirnoff

Years after Brocka's Orapronobis comes a movie about the plight of the disappeared persons in the Philippines. This social realist movie shows how progressive minded individuals are abducted while some are summarily executed then making a false flag operation blaming the entire tragedy to those whom they opposed with. And as I expect, it all reminds of the movie wherein revenge will be the last resort of the struggle itself, resorting to the use of gun as what Brocka's Oropronobis and Lamangan's Dukot hath made.

And in addition to that, the growing clamor for justice, just like Love, Courage and Hope, becomes a part of Filipino society, in every scene somehow shows those kind of idea-virtue wherein a call for change becomes illegal in the eyes of the system! Making legal entities illegal-simply by calling activist as rebels, and rebels as terrorists-subjecting to imprisonment, torture, death while never to be told again! And in case of love, it shows how the scene of Maricel (Salvacruz (played by Iza Calzado) and Junix Etrata (played by Allen Dizon) remained together until the day they've been abducted, tortured, maltreated by the fascists until their deaths-that gives an emotional element that made that film totally powerful in the hearts and minds of a viewer, different from the Korean and Mexican telenovelas adapated to the Filipino audience and becoming heavily changed and too stereotypical in its appearance.

In fact,
This social realist love story is totally different from what mainstream media usually shown in both movie and in television. And using a politically motivated messages as its thrust, Dukot was even given a rated X courtesy of the conservative board of sensors due to what is being given, and I notice that how come Orapronobis, Bayan ko kapit sa patalim, or Lualhati Bautista's Dekada '70 and other social realist movies back then are being accepted (although in a limited basis)Or Lualhati Bautista's Dekada '70 despite of its message given? Secondly, does the government tried to hid the truth and minimizing transparency regarding human rights and instead blaming it on the enemy combatants but in fact a false flag operation made courtesy of the intelligence?
According to Bulatlat:
"Both Ilagan and Lamangan recognize the possibility of the film not being shown in the country. The reasons are obvious, Ilagan said. The country’s censors had given X ratings — thus effectively banning them from public exhibition — on films that tackle not only sex or violence but such issues as extreme poverty and social injustice."
Somehow these conservatives running the board of censors and the regulatory board are too dogmatic in interpreting ideas in this facade of democracy, how come truth needs to be restrained in social realist type of movies? Remember the long debated Rizal law? The late statesman Claro M. Recto fought for having Unedited versions of Noli and El Fili be read by every student, and somehow it shows similarities to the realities happened at that time; and if Noli and El Fili was adapted despite not being edited, why not Lamangan's Dukot and other social realist movies? Will every Filipino be contented with "for arts sake" type of media again and again-of becoming apathetic to reality?

through Dukot, it shows what a disappeared person is whether he or she will be alive or dead, but never to be seen again-for "big brother" monitors their movements and worse? Of playing them till they end up exhausted or being killed away. Are we waiting for Cannes or Oscar to have this "Orapronobis with a modern twist" be given place just to be watched away? Or waiting for a pirated copy be given to you then the OMB (Optical Media Board) will start to raid anything until they got copies of that movie not being seen in cinemas and instead in the prestigious UP Film Institute? God sees these truths around us, but he waits.

The official soundtrack of the movie