Attica! Attica! Top Films of 2009! (Introduction) March 3, 2010Posted by Richard Bolisay in RIP, Yearender.
“Get lost!” said 2010 to 2009. It walked away but it didn’t seem to listen.
It was the first film festival that graced the year. The first time I had the chance to see Kidlat Tahimik’s works. Wednesday, Turumba. Thursday, Mababangong Bangungot. Wasn’t able to catch the shorts. Had work. And was heartbroken. Did not bother to say hello to anyone. Just wanted to see the films in the retrospective. As usual, I felt and acted invisible. After the talk I bought a shirt from Kabunyan. A shirt with a yo-yo printed on it. I settled for blue. I saw blue everywhere.
Saturday came. Again, I had work so I only managed to catch Bakit Dilaw ang Gitna ng Bahaghari. Saw you. Was rather surprised that you were not with anyone, considering. . . well, considering. We talked, talked a lot. Talked more than I could remember. Asked me which was my favorite Kidlat so far and I said Turumba. I prefer Turumba to Mababangong Bangungot, I said. Asked me why but forgot what I said. You did not concur. Said you liked Mababangong Bangungot better, and you pronounced Mababangong Bangungot with your usual accent. Told me you were doing interviews with Kidlat. I said, that’s interesting!, in my usual interested spirit that was difficult to feign. Where are they now? Those transcripts? Those memories of trips to Baguio? Whatever happened to them?
Not too many people inside the Film Center. So we talked as the film started. It was long anyway, and the images were random. Told me about Independencia. Shared some local films we saw recently. And I asked when is that Tarkovsky shot coming, will it appear any time soon? No, not yet. Awhile we kept our silence. I saw you dozing off. Must be tired. I looked at you again. You were cute even with your eyes closed. It was a long film. You woke up before it ended. Told you I loved it, loved it, loved it. You concurred.
Then eight months came you were dead.
The past year did not make it easy for us, as there were a lot of painful deaths that happened, that stayed, and that lingered. In Arcade Fire’s words, (c’est) une année sans lumière. A year without light. And that year felt like night all throughout.
It’s the year of funerals, and not just the people we buried but also the innocence we lost, the lessons we learned the hard way.
Good riddance, 2009. Just let us go.
“But 2009, before you go,” 2010 said, “here are the films that can almost make me forgive you. But still, I know I can’t.
“I can only shout ‘Attica! Attica!’ all I want.”
►► Next: Honorable Mention Part 1