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Archive - 12th Five Flavours Film Festival

Nervous Translation

Philippines 2017, 90’
subtitles: Polish and English
director: Shireen Seno
screenplay: Shireen Seno
cinematography: Albert Banzon, Jippy Pascua, Dennese Victoria
editing: John Torres, Shireen Seno
music: Itos Ledesma
cast: Jana Agoncillo, Angge Santos, Sid Lucero
producer: John Torres, Ronald Arguelles
production: Los Ostros Films, Creative Programs
language: Tagalog
colouration: colour

Awards and festivals

Rotterdam IFF 2018 - NETPAC Award for Best Asian Film, Shanghai IFF 2018, Hamburg FF 2018, Taipei FF 2018, Curitiba IFF 2018

Film description

Yael is eight. He has a tiny cooking set and a tape recorder he uses to secretly listen to a cassette with the voice of his father who left to work abroad. It is the end of 1980s in Manila. The busy mother, home assignments, the smell of the sofa warming up in the sun. The TV shows ads for Japanese magic pens which occupy a much more prominent place in a kid's imagination than the news of changing political currents flowing in the background.

Shireen Seno invites the audiences to a microcosm of an introvert girl overly mature for her age, who tries to tame the harsh reality with little rituals, and closely observes the adults. The film shows the Philippines of the transformation era, after the end of Marcos' dictatorship, yet the sociopolitical contexts do not overshadow its intimate atmosphere. It is, above all, a sensual tale, built with color, sound, and texture, saturated with nostalgia for that elusive time in life when the world can still have a fairy-tale flare, but it is already starting to pose serious challenges.

Jagoda Murczyńska

Shireen Seno

Born in Japan, Filipino director and visual artist. She studied architecture and film in Toronto, and worked as a photographer on Lav Diaz's and John Torres' film sets in Manila. Together with the latter, she founded the Los Otros collective – a studio, film lab, library, and a space for artistic events. Both of her films premiered at Rotterdam IFF.


2011 Big Boy

2018 Przerywane tłumaczenie / Nervous Translation

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