Mikhail Red started writing, directing and producing short films at age 15. Now 21, he embarks on his first full-length feature, “Rekorder,” in the New Breed category of the Cinemalaya film fest later this month. He cowrote the script with Ian Victoriano.
He shares, “I have a lot of fun transforming imagined stories into moving pictures. Five years and six shorts later (‘Harang’ and ‘Hazard’ competed in past editions of the indie fest), I decided to do a full-length feature.” It stars Ronnie Quizon as Maven, a former cameraman who illegally records films in a cinema. Conflict arises when the footage goes viral, and Quizon has to face his demons.
“Rekorder” utilizes mixed media in several digital formats, as well as shifting perspectives in a post-modern narrative. He explains, “It shows how cinema has evolved into the new formats of the modern age and is bastardized through piracy.”
Mikhail, whom we’ve seen as a kid tagging along his father, Raymond, during production shoots, shares with us the inspiration behind “Rekorder.” He recalls, “In 1997, my father made a film entitled ‘Kamada.’ As a child, I was fascinated by the character played by Ronnie Quizon, so I decided to get him for my first feature film.
“I would present my rough cut to my father. Sometimes, his comments could be pretty harsh—but, at the same time, they were helpful. He helped me view the tough cut from a different perspective, making me see things that I had overlooked.”
The challenge of shifting from short film to full-length feature also taught him some lessons: “I’m forced to deal with the realities of making fiction. I had to adjust to the scale of the production, because there were more people involved and more sequences that needed to be shot. It sometimes got to be overwhelming!”