The Cinemalaya 2018 films you shouldn't miss

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, June 28) — In a few weeks, we can finally head to cinemas to support the Cinemalaya 2018 entries.

The 14-year-long Filipino independent film festival will showcase their fresh roster of films from August 3 to 12, at the Cultural Center of the Philippines and select Ayala Malls cinemas.

Here are the 10 finalists in the full-length feature category:


Ang mga Bisita ni Mamang

Starring: Elora Españo
Director: Denise O'Hara

The film deals with Mamang, an old woman who hangs on her memory to be with her unmarried middle-aged son.

It is directed by screenwriter Denise O'Hara who presented two entries in the same Cinemalaya category last year.

Cinemalaya 2018 entry: Mamang  


Kung Paano Hinihintay ang Dapithapon

Starring: Perla Bautista, Dante Rivero, Menggie Cobarrubias
Director: Carlo Catu

"Kung Paano Hinihintay ang Dapithapon" revolves around Teresa, a lady at the twilight of her life who lives with her longtime partner Celso. She receives a call from her estranged husband Benedicto who is seeking forgiveness from her and their son Chito.

The 22-year old Kapampangan director has received numerous awards from international film festivals. He was also nominated for best director in the 39th Gawad Urian.

Cinemalaya 2018 entry: Kung paano hinihintay ang dapithapon  


Kuya Wes

Starring: Ogie Alcasid, Ina Raymundo, Moi Bien, Alex Medina, Nestor Abrogena, Karen Gaerlan
Director: James Robin Mayo

Kuya Wes works in a money transfer company and finds himself "in a relationship" with a regular client. She happens to be a married woman who suffers from marital woes.

James Robin Mayo was nominated for best director in this year's Gawad Urian for his work, "The Chanters".



Starring: Dante Rivero, Menggie Cobarrubias
Director: Kip Oebanda

"Liway" is about a notorious NPA rebel in Negros whose beauty is legendary and her tactics, unparalleled.

Writer-director Kip Oebanda's was nominated for best screenplay in this year's Gawad Urian for "Bar Boys."

Cinemalaya 2018 entry: Liway  



Starring: Eddie Garcia, Tony Labrusca, Liane Valentin, Henz Villaraiz
Director: Benedict Mique

Carlo is a college student whose life takes an unexpected turn when he experienced the Martial Law cruelties one night. The old resident in his village, Colonel, was a former soldier during the Marcos regime who happened to torture student activists.

Cinemalaya 2018 entry: ML  


Musmos na Sumibol sa Gubat ng Digma

Starring: Juan Miguel Emmanuel Salvado
Director: Iar Lionel Arondaing

In the middle of chaos in Mindanao, children are being born in harsh conditions due to war and the root of the Muslim culture called "Rido" or the clash between clans.

This is Iar Arondaing second full-length film entry after he submitted "Sa Gabing Nanahimik ang mga Kuliglig" in last year's festival.


Pan De Salawal

Starring: Felix Roco, Anna Luna, Ruby Ruiz
Director: Che Espiritu

Pan de Salawal is about a lonely baker named Sal, who has chronic kidney stones and feels that he wants to die. He hopes for a miracle, along with his neighbors by the railroads, who are battling for dear life as well.

Cinemalaya 2018 entry: Pan de Salawal  



Starring: Iza Calzado, Nonie Buencamino, Max Eigenmann
Director: Perci Intalan

This drama film tells the story a wife who comes home to be reunited with the husband and children that she turned her back on years before.

Cinemalaya 2018 entry: Distance  


School Service

Starring: Ai-Ai Delas Alas, Celine Juan
Director: Louie Ignacio

Through the eyes of Maya, we see the conditions of these kept children, along with the other children living in the streets. All day long, they run after people, cars, buses, and jeeps, just to ask for money. They do things not fit for their age in exchange for a few coins. They do all kinds of tactics just to survive and just to have a better life. And every day, it's like chasing their dreams and freedom--it never happens. It is never enough.

This is the second film of Ai-Ai as lead actress in Cinemalaya after "Ronda" while the second film of Director Louie Ignacio in the festival after "Asintado".


The Lookout

Starring: Yayo Aguila
Director: Afi Africa

George is only seven years old and a victim of child trafficking. He vows to return to his mother (who sold him and his sibling to meet financial demands of her live-in partner) and her boyfriend to make them pay for what they did.

Cinemalaya 2018 entry: The Lookout