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The 16th Piling Obrang Vidyo: Philippine Cinema 2020 celebrates student filmmaking

A one-day interschool video competition hosted by UP Cinema, a film organization based in the University of the Philippines Diliman, Piling Obrang Vidyo (POV), marked its sixteenth year with ‘limitless boundaries’ last February 1, 2020 at UP Cine Adarna. As one of the most anticipated annual film competitions for young and aspiring filmmakers from different universities nationwide, POV XVI featured narrative, documentary, and experimental cinema. For this year, UP Cinema had received almost a hundred film submissions in these categories. However, only a total of 20 short films (10 narrative, 5 documentary, and 5 experimental) got to be the finalists which primarily came from Far Eastern University (FEU), University of the Philippines Diliman (UPD), Mapua University, De La Salle – College of Saint Benilde (DLSU-CSB), University of Santo Tomas (UST), University of San Carlos (USC), Asia Pacific Film Institute (APFI), and University of Makati. 

As the Philippine Cinema celebrated a hundred years of filmmaking in 2019, POV XVI welcomes the New Year with the future – “a fresh set of alternative narratives waiting to be captured and told to a larger audience”. And these colleges and universities have proven the prowess of students in telling a story, breaking the medium, and creating a new cinema.  Alongside the brilliance of student filmmaking, the expertise of people in the industry was put into challenge as they meticulously judged the POV finalists. The event was attended by the likes of Richard Bolisay, JP Habac, Meryll Soriano, Giancarlo Abrahan, Dwein Baltazar, Khavn Dela Cruz, and many more filmmakers of Philippine Cinema. 

After the film exhibition of the program, several awards were given to the entries that demonstrated exceptional merits. The Best Narrative was Eklipse by Jessa Doydora, FEU; the Best Documentary was Tister Gennie by Elijah Prades, University of Makati; and the Best Experimental was decisively awarded to two finalists: Window Shopping by Maryjoy Abrazado and Routinary by Miggy Arnonobal – both from UP Diliman. Window Shopping also earned the Jury Prize and Best Director. Garing by Dan Pablo, UST, had the Best Performance; while the Best Editing was given to When the Sea Turns Red by Brian Caacbay, FEU. Remarkably, Proj. Imakulada by Jan Michael Bernardino, Mapua University, achieved the Best Screenplay, Best Cinematography, Best Production Design, Best Musical Score & Sound, and earned the Cinemaster’s Choice Award (selected by the UP Cinema themselves). Lastly, Proj. Imakulada also shared the Audience Choice Award with Window Shopping

The event did not totally end at recognizing the talents of our future filmmakers and celebrating student short films in UP Cine Adarna. UP Cinema extended the program to an After Party at Skyro Bar & Grill in Kalayaan Ave. Diliman where the finalists, audiences, and Cinemasters (UP Cinema members and alumni) gathered and rejoiced the successful 16th Piling Obrang Vidyo. The film competition and after party have been a tradition which continually serves a fruitful space for the students and schools, for building connections and sharing stories, and of course for the arts and the Philippine cinema! May UP’s Piling Obrang Vidyo always be an essential venue for student filmmaking where alternative narratives are explored and which life’s luminosity is pushed through the medium of cinema.

See you at the next POV! 


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