‘Norte’ gets local acclaim, finally
MANILA, Philippines–Lav Diaz’s “Norte, Hangganan ng Kasaysayan,” which has received critical acclaim in various film festivals abroad, was finally recognized at home when it bagged the best picture and best screenplay trophies at the 37th Gawad Urian on Tuesday night.
The four-hour film, which Diaz cowrote with Rody Vera, explores themes of crime, class and family. It premiered in the Un Certain Regard section of the 66th Cannes International Film Festival in May. It was included in the list of 2013’s most acclaimed movies in the world by various international critics’ groups and publications.
On Tuesday night, National Artist for Literature Bienvenido Lumbera praised “Norte” by saying: “Through this film, Diaz makes his audience think deeply and reflect… Its actors are effective in conveying the film’s personal and universal message.” Lumbera is founding member of the Manunuri ng Pelikulang Pilipino (MMP), which organizes the annual awards show.
“Norte” lead actress Angeli Bayani brought home the best actress trophy. She beat the more popular choices—Nora Aunor (“Ang Kwento ni Mabuti”) and Vilma Santos (“Ekstra”), as well as Lorna Tolentino (“Burgos”) and Cherie Gil (“Sonata”).
Joel Torre was proclaimed best actor for his performance in the Erik Matti action-thriller “On the Job.”
Angel Aquino received her first Urian trophy that night—a best supporting actress award for her performance in Sigrid Andrea Bernardo’s “Ang Huling Chacha ni Anita.”
Young actor Jun-jun Quintana bagged the best supporting actor trophy for Benjamin Garcia’s “A Philippino Story.”
First-time filmmaker Hannah Espia (“Transit”) snatched the best director award from veterans like Chito Rono (“Badil”), Erik Matti (“OTJ”) and Jeffrey Jeturian (“Ekstra”). She is only the third female to win an Urian best director trophy—the other two were Laurice Guillen and the late Marilou Diaz-Abaya.
Adolf Alix Jr. won the best production design award for “Porno” while Lauro Rene Manda brought home the best cinematography trophy for “Norte.” Emerson Texon copped the best music honor for “Sonata,” a film by Peque Gallaga and Lore Reyes.
The best editing award was given to Chuck Gutierrez for his work on “Riddles of My Homecoming,” which was directed by Arnel Mardoquio. Corinne de San Jose picked up the best sound trophy for “OTJ.”
Zig Dulay’s “Missing,” which tackles, among others, the increasing number of victims of enforced disappearances in the country, was heralded best short film. The best documentary honor was given to Adjani Arumpac for “Nanay Mameng,” which tells of the life struggles of an 85-year-old activist named Mameng.
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