Eyes on the Prize
Wednesday January 28th 2009, 9:55 pm
Filed under: News
“I think our purpose as filmmakers or as storytellers or whatever you’re going to call us is to say that at this particular point with this relationship, with this social structure, in this political climate, this is the best film I could do. I think that’s all we can do. Then we’re not exploitative, we’re not the Spielbergs or the whatever. Then it becomes extremely personal, for better or worse. So don’t get confused by digital or non-digital or money or not — just do the best fucking film you can with your abilities at that time. I mean, why else do we make films when we could have gone into real estate? [laughs]” – Chris Doyle
I think of going into real estate all the time
Full Chris Doyle Filmmaker magazine interview here
Saturday January 24th 2009, 5:03 pm
Filed under: News
In Manila for Cinemanila, the jury had the privilege of being invited to Malacanang Palace (Philippine’s White House) to attend the prize giving ceremony for the film festival winners. The prizes were awarded by President Arroyo herself. I was surprised that films was given so much “face”. (It would be like PM Lee, Nathan inviting SIFF & filmmakers to the Istana) The event was accorded two hours of the President’s time at the height of the financial crisis.
But Philippine films are enjoying international festival attention and this was the film industry’s moment in the sun. The event was surreal because it was very casual. President herself wore an ABBAesque pant suit. There was minimal protocol and security. We were allowed to walk around the palace ourselves after the event and we could take pictures freely. (Perhaps all Presidential Palaces should be as informal, why shouldn’t it?). The palace was grand but it wasn’t intimidating. The only time the guards approached us was when they asked Edwin Blindpig and Amir to smoke away from the building.
So here, pictures of our excursion in the Palace
We passed this alcove on the way to the hall. It appears that Catholicism is emeshed into the Constitution as 350 years of Spanish colonisation would do to one.
There was a hall with all the portraits of past presidents. I expected Marcos’ to be absent, but there he was next to the portrait of Aquino
Gloria Arroyo in her ABBA outfit!
Us renegates, myself, Amir, Pimpaka Towira, Rebecca under President Gloria’s portrait, how nice of them to site a bench there.
Group portrait with President Gloria again, I am the blur blob behind in black
Cercado sisters performing. Very Celine Dion. The MC said they were best known for winning in the 2006 World Championship of the Performing Arts in Hollywood, California.
Bienvenido Lumbera and Pete Lacaba in their barongs. The former is the current National Artist (This appointment comes with a state funeral) and the latter, a journalist/poet/scriptwriter. Pete wrote many of Lino Brocka’s finest films. He told me that he was in the same Palace the night the Marcos regime fell as a reporter. He received the Cinemanila Lifetime Achievement Award. He had the benign quality of someone who had seen it all.
At the back of the Palace was a fast moving river, this is the same pontoon from which ex-President Joesph Estrada escaped and there Amir stood that day.
A kindred spirit
Sunday January 11th 2009, 2:41 pm
Filed under: News
In yesterday’s Straits Times, a letter from a kindred spirit who wrote to Straits Times, we should join forces
Jan 10, 2009
Noise limits do not help
I REFER to Thursday’s reply by Mr Tan Quee Hong, director, Pollution Control Department, National Environment Agency (NEA), to Mrs Nancy Tsang’s letter, ‘Noisy every day’ (Dec 27).
According to the agency, the maximum permissible noise limits are more stringent at night, between 10pm and 7am, compared to the limits during the day. But the period between 10pm and 7am is when most residents are trying to sleep.
Should work even be allowed close to residential areas at night?
Are Sundays and public holidays not when people want or need to sleep in?
Singapore is compact in terms of housing, be it HDB or private estates, and construction in and around them is unavoidable.
I am currently sandwiched between two construction sites in a supposedly quiet location. Sleep in on a Sunday or public holiday? It is impossible to enjoy a meaningful rest. This is what is happening on Sunday at 9am: the noise of reinforcement bars thrown onto a metal platform at one-minute intervals, constant movement of tracked cranes or excavators, and hammering of plywood forms.
‘Permissible noise limits’ are permissible because NEA officers carry out checks with instruments.
Instruments do not need to sleep. People do.
What are ‘permissible noise limits’? It depends on whether you are trying to sleep, you have been woken from your sleep or you are hard of hearing.
The agency also replied that it has further tightened the permissible noise limits on Sundays and public holidays for construction sites located close to residential premises.
I am so close to the two construction sites, I can shake salt over my shoulder onto the sites for good luck.
I telephoned the agency to ask about the construction sites near my home.
The reply: ‘No construction work near residential homes at night and Sundays and public holidays.’
It is not unreasonable to stop construction work at night, on Sundays and public holidays.
Older projects unaffected
‘Those that began earlier are still subject to the old noise regulations, which allow higher noise levels.’
MR CLARENCE YING: ‘I refer to Thursday’s letter by Mr Tan Quee Hong of the National Environment Agency (NEA), ‘Stricter noise limits on Sundays and public holidays’. Readers may wish to note that the new rule which tightened noise limits applies only to developments that began construction works from October 2007. Earlier projects need only observe the old noise regulations, which allow higher noise levels at night and on Sundays and public holidays. For more information on control of noise at construction sites, visit the NEA website, app2.nea.gov.sg/index.aspx .’