There was a new set of winners; there were the same old problems.
The gay-themed film Rainbow’s Sunset emerged from the 2018 Metro Manila Film Festival (MMFF) Awards Night with the lion’s share of the honors, winning the Best Picture prize, along with the Best Actress plum for cinema legend Gloria Romero and Best Director for Joel Lamangan. It also collected the awards for Best Supporting Actress (Aiko Melendez) and Best Supporting Actor (Tony Mabesa), plus Gatpuno Antonio J. Villegas Cultural Award and Special Jury Prizes for Eddie Garcia and Max Collins, among others.
It may have a big night for the film—which tells “the story of Ramon (Eddie Garcia), his wife (Gloria Romero) and their family after he reveals his true sexuality and feelings for his dying cancer-stricken lover (Tony Mabesa)”—but the winning movers and shakers in front and behind Rainbow’s Sunset turned their acceptance speech into a lamentation about the sorry state of the annual filmfest. Said Lamangan, “Sana naman, huwag lang komersyo ang kanilang isipin. Irespeto rin sana ng mga sinehan ang sining at industriya.”
As in last year’s MMFF and other Decembers past, reports were rife that films underperforming at the box office, including Rainbow’s Sunset, were being unceremoniously yanked out of theaters after opening day on December 25 and replaced with the more resolutely commercial-driven fare. Gina Marissa Tagasa, the writer behind Regal Entertainment’s One Great Love, read a joint message from producers Mother Lily Monteverde and Roselle Monteverde which asked for “fair treatment” of all movies, particularly in the appropriation of cinemas to each filmfest entry.
One Great Love, which stars Dennis Trillo, JC De Vera and Kim Chiu in an exploration of the vagaries of love, won the third Best Picture prize, along with Best Actor for Trillo and Best Musical Score for Miguel Mendoza.
The eight official entries in this year’s MMFF, which runs until January 7, 2019, are: Rainbow’s Sunset, One Great Love, Fantastica, Jack Em Popoy: The PulisCredibles, Mary, Marry Me, The Girl in the Orange Dress, Otlum and Aurora, which took home, among other awards, the 2nd Best Picture plum, plus Best Child Performer for Phoebe Villamor and Best Cinematography for Yam Laranas, who is also the film’s director.
The awards night was held at The Theater at Solaire in Solaire Resort and Casino.
Herewith are the winners of the MMFF 2018:
Best Picture: Rainbow’s Sunset
Second Best Picture: Aurora
Third Best Picture: One Great Love
Best Actress: Gloria Romero (Rainbow’s Sunset)
Best Actor: Dennis Trillo (One Great Love)
Best Supporting Actress: Aiko Melendez (Rainbow’s Sunset)
Best Supporting Actor: Tony Mabesa (Rainbow’s Sunset)
FPJ Memorial Award: Jack Em Popoy: The PulisCredibles
Gatpuno Antonio J. Villegas Cultural Award: Rainbow’s Sunset
Special Jury Prize: Eddie Garcia (Rainbow’s Sunset)
Special Jury Prize: Max Collins (Rainbow’s Sunset)
Best Director: Joel Lamangan (Rainbow’s Sunset)
Male and Female Lucky Star of the Night: Jericho Rosales and Anne Curtis
Best Child Performer: Phoebe Villamor (Aurora)
Best Cinematography: Aurora
Best Visual Effects: Aurora
Best Production Design: Rainbow’s Sunset
Best Sound Design: Aurora
Best Musical Score: One Great Love
Best Original Theme Song: “Sa ‘yo Na” (Rainbow’s Sunset)
Best Editing: Jack Em Popoy: The PulisCredibles
Best Screenplay: Rainbow’s Sunset
MMFF Student Best Short Film: Kasilyas (Bulacan State University)
Best Float: Jack Em Popoy: The PulisCredibles