Before I lay down a more comprehensive lookback of 2018 and recount the violence of the State against the working class, farmers and the indigenous people, let me just greet you: A Merry Krisis and A Prosperous New Year ahead. Let 2019 blossom into a year of resistance. I call every one to strike against the fascist order and usurper of people’s rights and maintain a line of critique that rejects all forms of reactionary resistance, a line of critique that hinges on the antagonistic opposition between the ruling class and the proletariat.
Resist Crackdown on Teachers’ Union!
Resist Crackdown on the Progressive Youth Sector!
Stop the Attacks! Stop the Killings!
Peace Talks, ituloy! Strive for a Just and Lasting Peace!
This year, our writing collective will be officially launching Strike II, a radical film journal set out to reorient the local practice of film criticism beyond its commercial function as a consumer’s guide to local film viewers. Our statement reads as follows:
Strike II is a radical film publication that focuses on the theoretical and practical issues in the Philippine Film Industry. Stemming from the historical event of Philippine Cinema’s first strike, the massive anti-film studio labor strikes of local film workers that overturned the local studio systems (LVN, Sampaguita, Premiere, Lebran) in the 1960s, Strike II aims to uncover the antagonistic oppositions and contradictions of the capitalist mode of production of the contemporary film industry. Strike II also stems from Hito Steyerl’s video of the same title in a futural sense as it aspires to abolish the means of production of ‘film-as-art’ and ‘film-as-commodity’ and rethink of the ways by which cinema can be re-integrated in a socialist society. Using the revolutionary and scientific framework of Dialectical Materialism, Strike II also aims to provide the baseline data on labor conditions of film workers in the Philippines, as well as to demystify the ruling class’ fetishistic film culture.
Strike II also builds on Eisenstein’s film ‘Strike’ (1925) as its second movement as the publication shall also take part in expanding the discourse on revolutionary forms of cinematic production.
STRIKE II, will, by all means, rally against all forms of exploitation and suppression of the freedom of expression in the film industry, and shall serve as a critical platform that elevates film criticism as a militant practice.
Netflix’s Black Mirror: Bandersnatch and Interactive Cinema
There are a lot of claims that Netflix’s newest season for their Black Mirror series titled Bandersnatch is a game-changer in terms of changing the whole way of watching movie/series (, , ). While the claim bears no essential radical truth that would actually change cinema itself, it only shows the power of commercial hype in generating false claims.
Upon checking cinema history, Netflix’s Black Mirror: Bandersnatch is not the game-changer for interactive Cinema. The first interactive movie was a Czech movie Kinoautomat (1967) that premiered during the Czechoslovakian Expo 1967. Some Netflix users also argued that Bandersnatch’s interactive form does not allow it from being commodified as a bootleg/pirated material. However, contrary to common understanding, interactive films has been distributed in the web for awhile now as uploaded DVD formats.
I also encountered some interesting studies and articles on Interactive Cinema. Here is a list:
- [Book] Hyper-Narrative Interactive Cinema: Problems and Solutions by Nitzan Ben Shaul . Amsterdam and New York: Rodopi. [link]
- [Article] Key Frame: Beyond Interactive Cinema by Birk Weiberg [link]
- [Journal Article] Methodological questions in ‘interactive film studies’ by Bernard Perron in New Review of Film and Television Studies: 6(3):2008 [link]
- [Article] Meaning and the Interactive Narrative: In the context of Object-Oriented Interactive Cinema by Adrian Jones [link]
- [Book] Vosmeer, Mirjam, and Ben Schouten. 2014. Interactive Storytelling. Edited by Alex Mitchell, Clara Fernández-Vara, and David Thue. Vol. 8832. Lecture Notes in Computer Science. Cham: Springer International Publishing. doi:10.1007/978-3-319-12337-0.
- [Academia.Edu] Academia.Edu Links on Interactive Cinema [link]
- [Article] “Interactive Cinema” Is an Oxymoron, but May Not Always Be by Kevin Neal in Game Studies: The International Journal of Computer Game Research 12(1): September 2012 [link]
Jungle Love is Screening…
…this coming first week of January at the UPFI Cine Adarna. Jungle Love (2012) is a rarely screened film of Sherad Anthony Sanchez. If I am not mistaken, the last Philippine public screening of the film was during its premiere in Cinemanila International Film Festival last 2012. It has not been screened in local theaters elsewhere (or I might be wrong?).
When I first watched it in 2012, it was one of the unforgettable cinematic experiences I have had. It is a funny, obscure/absurd film that reminded me of some of the works of Shuji Terayama. I want to see it again on the wide screen this coming 9th day of January.
Khavn dela Cruz’s macabre masterpiece Mondomanila (2010) is now available on Youtube!
Shelfie for 2019
I arranged my shelf for 2019 awhile ago dedicating one layer of the bookshelf for thesis-related books. I placed the most used references on the top of each column and on the side (Hegel-Marx-Derrida).
Some New Year’s Resolution for Omnitudo: Interventions in Cinema and Philosophy
- I will post frequently. Does one post per week qualifies as frequent?
- I will finish my close reading posts of Spectres of Marx this year as promised.
- I will upload some notes, presentations and other materials.
- I will read more books (fiction & non-fiction) this year and post some notes here. My target 25 books.
- I will finish my thesis year.
Parting Words, Parting Image
Badiou on The Communist Hypothesis
Indeed, I do hold on to the communist hypothesis. I refuse to inhabit a world in which the currently hegemonic social and economic organisation is the only hypothesis. I cannot accept this monstrosity, this inequality, the fact that 10% of the planet’s population possesses 86% of the available resources, of capital. Far from being obsolete or ready to be chucked away, the communist idea is, in my view, still too young. It is at the very beginning — lasting a few decades — of its historical journey, while capitalism, born six or seven centuries ago, is reproducing the throwbacks, the inequalities of the ancien régime — indeed, 10% is more or less the percentage of the population that were nobles in that era… I should make clear that I know perfectly well the vices and the crimes of the communist societies. I became a Maoist because I identified in Maoism certain critical elements for surpassing and changing Stalinism. The period that opened up with the Russian Revolution of October 1917 was punctuated with errors and dramatic falsifications, the main one being that although in its very principle communism bore a distrust for the centralised state, it ultimately built a state more centralised and bureaucratic than any that had gone before, a state that gave in to the temptation to regulate every problem through violence. The communist hypothesis ran aground in its earliest successes and the lean sixty years that followed. So should that lead us to abandon the hypothesis itself? I don’t think so. We should not heap a total ideological defeat onto a circumstantial defeat.
– – – ALAIN BADIOU from Corrupting the Youth: A Conversation with Alain Badiou(Sept 2016)
From Burning (2018)