The QCinema International Film Festival is back on its 10th year with a slew of films from all over the world for cinephiles to look forward to.
The festival, slated from November 17 - 26, 2022, will feature 58 films, including six short film production grantees, with seven sections of full-length films and three shorts programs. The festival this year, dubbed in10City, will employ a hybrid setup with screenings in select cinemas in Quezon City and Makati as well as online.
Bookending the festival, is the much-awaited screening of two acclaimed European films with notable performances by Filipino thespians, which were revealed in a press conference Thursday, Nov. 3.
The Palme d’Or-winning class satire Triangle of Sadness by Ruben Östlund, which stars Dolly de Leon, is the festival’s opener (by invitation).
The satirical black comedy follows an influencer couple Carl (The King’s Man’s Harris Dickinson) and Yaya (the late Charlbi Dean) who are invited to join a luxury cruise for the ultra-rich.
Meanwhile, the closing film is Venice Film Festival entry To The North by Romanian director Mihai Mincan, starring Soliman Cruz.
Based on a true story, the film features Joel, a religious Filipino sailor, who discovers Dumitru, a Romanian stowaway hidden between some containers during a transatlantic ship's voyage. If he is spotted by the Taiwanese officers running the vessel, Dumitru risks being thrown overboard. Joel decides to hide him, as a sign of his gratitude towards God. Soon, a dangerous cat and mouse game begins.
Asian Next Wave
QCinema’s main competition section, Asian Next Wave, which focuses on emerging filmmakers from Southeast Asia and East Asia with less than three features, has returned with seven entries including two competing Filipino titles. The main competition makes its much-awaited return in time for the festival's10th edition, after a two year hiatus.
Elehiya by Loy Arcenas, which showcases the late iconic actress Cherie Gil in her last screen performance, is making its world premiere at QCinema 2022.
Speaking with media on the sidelines of the press conference, the award-winning director who helmed the 2017 Philippine musical film Ang Larawan (The Portrait) said they were not aware that it would be Gil's last film when they finished shooting in 2018. He said he loved working with the late actress on the set, and that the poignant film is certainly "one of Gil’s best performances."
Originally titled as Mirador, Elehiya chronicles the downward spiral of Dr. Celine de Miranda (played by Gil), as she tries to piece together the shattered remains of a childless marriage.
“Death leaves behind many unanswered questions, some beautiful and some painful. I will always treasure the zest that Cherie poured into her life and art. She is stunning in the film and Elehiya will be her exquisite swan song,” said Arcenas.
Another Filipino title to look forward to is 12 Weeks by Anna Isabelle Matutina starring Max Eigenmann, which won the NETPAC Award in the recent Cinemalaya 2022. 12 Weeks is a coming-of-age film about Alice, a humanitarian worker in her 40s who discovers she is pregnant, just right after she has broken up with her much-younger boyfriend. The role bagged a Best Actress award for Eigenmann, who dedicated the win to her aunt Cherie Gil.
Other films under the Asian Wave category include:
- Ajoomma by Shuming He (Singapore)
- Plan 75 by Chie Hayakawa (Japan)
- Return to Seoul by Davy Chou (South Korea)
- Arnold is a Model Student by Sorayos Prapapan (Thailand)
- Autobiography by Makbul Mubarak (Indonesia)
QCinema short films
Six films competing in the QCinema short films section this year received production grants of P350,000 each. These films are:
- Ang Pagliligtas sa Dalagang Bukid by Jaime Morados
- BOLD EAGLE by Whammy Alcazaren
- Luzonensis mula 7 hanggang 9 by Glenn Barit
- Mga Tigre ng Infanta by Rocky De Guzman Morilla
- Ngatta Naddaki y Nuang? (Why did the Carabao cross the Carayan?) by Austin Tan
- sa ilog na hindi nagtatapos by JT Trinidad
The winners for the long and short film competition will be announced on the Awards night on November 23, 2022.
QCinema’s specially-curated section, Screen International, showcases the world’s renowned directors whose distinctive styles make their acclaimed works undeniably their own. Films this year include:
- Crimes Of The Future by David Cronenberg (Canada)
- EO by Jerzy Skolimowski (Poland)
- Walk Up by Hang Sang-soo
- I Have Electric Dreams by Valentina Maurel (Costa Rica)
- Holy Spider by Ali Abbasi (Denmark)
- Corsage by Marie Kreutzer (Austria)
- Close by Lukas Dhont (French-language Belgian drama film)
The New Horizon section heralds new directors and their acclaimed new works is QCinema’s New Horizon section.
- Saint Omer by Alice Diop
- Utama by Alejandro Loayza Grisi
- Next Sohee by July Jung
- The Ordinaries by Sophie Linnenbaum
- Piaffe by Anne Oren
- Joyland by Saim Sadiq
- Angry Son by Kasho Iizuka
- You Can Live Forever by Mark Slutsky and Sarah Watts
- Stranger By The Lake by Alain Guiraudie
- Portrait of a Lady on Fire by Céline Sciamma
- Billie And Emma
- The Divide
- RainbowQC Shorts:
- #QCShorts 2021 Best Picture i get so sad sometimes by Trishtan Perez
- #QCShorts 2019 film Isang Daa't Isang Mariposa by Norvin delos Santos
- 2021 silent film Alingasngas ng mga Kuliglig by Vahn Leinard Pascual
- Dikit by Gabriela Serrano
- QCinema Asian Shorts film entry How to Die Young in Manila by Petersen Vargas
- The Sales Girl by Janchivdorj Sengedorj
- Love Life by Kōji Fukada
- The Damned Don't Cry by Fyzal Boulifa
- When The Waves Are Gone or Kapag Wala Nang Mga Alon by Lav Diaz
As a treat for lovers of genre and fantasy movies, QCinema is relaunching its Midnight Series section, the late-night festival screenings, with three chilling titles, including one which stars Filipina actress Chai Fonacier, with themes of traditional folk healing.
Nocebo revolves around fashion designer (Eva Green), who’s suffering from a mysterious illness. A Filipino caregiver (Fonacier) arrives and soon offers traditional folk healing. The immediate recovery of Green’s character soon leads to a revelation of a horrifying truth.
- Mona Lisa and the Blood Moon (USA)
- Huesera by Michelle Garza Cervera (Peru, Mexico)
- Nocebo by Lorcan Finnegan (Ireland)
Digitally Restored Classics
This section features newly restored versions of unforgettable films by two celebrated directors.
- Mike de Leon’s classic movie Itim (The Rites of May)
- Wong Kar-wai’s romantic drama In The Mood for Love
A new festival section that offers a first-look at exciting coming attractions is also being launched this year in partnership with Amazon Prime and Warner Brothers.
- Nanny, 2022
- Argentina,1985 by Santiago Mitre
- She Said by Maria Schrader
- Bones and All by Luca Guadagnino
Asian Shorts program
The Asian Shorts program, a curated program of must-see shorts in their regional premieres, also return this year to QCinema.
- Dancing Colors by M. Reza Fahriyansyah
- Lili Alone by Zou Jing
- Four Nights by Deepak Rauniyar
- The Headhunter's Daughter by Don Josephus Raphael Eblahan
- The Water Murmurs by Story Chen
- Papaya by Timmy Harn
Venues and ticket prices
Theatrical screenings for all films will be held at Gateway, Trinoma, Cinema 76, and SM North EDSA in Quezon City. Ticket prices for theatrical screenings are P300. For those not based in Quezon City, screenings for the QCinema will also be held in Power Plant Mall in Rockwell, Makati this year.
Where to watch online
The film festival is employing a hybrid set-up this year, with online screening for QCShorts 2022, QCShorts 2021 and RainbowQC Shorts to be done in partnership with VivaMax. The online run will be held from November 22 – 26, 2022. Tickets will be P299 for each bundle of films.
Details about in10City, QCinema's 10th anniversary presentation will be available at qcinema.ph and updates are posted at its social media accounts: www.facebook.com/QCinemaPH, twitter.com/QCinemaPH, and www.instagram.com/qcinemaph.