100 Best Filipino Films Directed by Women, 70-61

70     Nanay Mameng (Adjani Arumpac, 2012) 


Nanay Mameng delves deep into the character of a woman (Carmen “Nanay Mameng” Deunida) who has experienced extreme poverty and domestic violence and rose from from it all to become the beloved personality, well-known to the Philippine mass movement.

69     Kung Mahawi Man ang Ulap (Laurice Guillen, 1984)

Kung Mahawi2

Catherine (Hilda Koronel) goes through all the travails of a young woman, who had to deal with a scheming stepfather (Eddie Garcia) out to dupe her of her inheritance.

68     Inang Yaya (Veronica Velasco, 2006)


Norma (Maricel Soriano) straddles between being a mother to Ruby (Tala Santos) and being a nanny to her employer’s daughter, Louise (Erika Oreta). Norma left her daughter in the province to be a nanny to another person’s daughter. An emergency forces Norma to bring Ruby with her to Manila and her employer is kind enough to accept Ruby in the household. However, Louise (Erika Oreta), the daughter of Norma’s employer, competes with Ruby for Norma’s affection. Now, Norma has to balance her love and attention for the two special people in her life: her daughter and her ward.

67     Sensual (Marilou Diaz-Abaya, 1986) 


“The story of a young woman Niña (Barbara Benitez) in a small rural town, exploring her sexual awakening. She lives with her mother Turing (Chanda Romero), a repressed woman always fretting about money; and her effervescent, permissive grandmother Senyang (Charito Solis). Niña’s first sensual partner is fellow schoolmate Elsa (Lara Jacinto). As they make love on a limestone promontory above a limpid sea, they ruefully ponder over their impending separation as Niña’s prepares to pursue college in Manila.

Further avenues for exploration of the senses emerge when Ariel (Lito Gruet), a rich young man who has come back to spend summer in the family’s ancestral mansion, happens to espy them from a distance, and he soon starts courting Niña, arousing the jealousy of Elsa. Niña falls head over heels for the rich and glamorous Ariel which leads to more occasions of lovemaking and frontal nudity. A scene both sad and hilarious shows Niña trying to fit in with Ariel’s pompous cosmopolitan friends slumming in their provincial town, and failing pathetically.

She soon faces heartbreak when Ariel abandons her, disappearing from her life like a summer’s momentary breeze. It is Elsa, whom she had left for Ariel, that comforts her. The one source of constant support for Niña is her warm-hearted grandmother Senyang. At her deathbed, Senyang tells her granddaughter not to mourn for her: “Every day, creatures die. Every day, creatures get born. What matters is that you experience every moment of your life.” (From Asian CineVision)

66     Jazz in Love (Babyruth Villarama, 2013) 


Tells the story of Jazz (Ernesto Tigaldao Jr.), a young man from Davao whose dream wedding is within reach: his boyfriend of 11 months (Theodor Rutkowski) has proposed. Because no law allows him to get married in the Philippines, he must fly to Germany, his boyfriend’s home country, and tie the knot there. One of the things that stand in his way is his inability to speak German, and to address that he must temporarily relocate to Manila for language lessons. Meanwhile, his parents remain completely unaware of the radical changes that his life is about to undergo.

65     Dahil Mahal Kita: The Dolzura Cortez Story (Laurice Guillen, 1993)

Dahil Mahal Kita

Dolzura Cortez (Vilma Santos) has had several men in her lives. One (Christopher de Leon) returns as an AIDS researcher and unwittingly, Dolzura is to be his subject. She is encouraged by him to come out in the public so she can dispel the social stigma that comes with the disease.

64     Brutus, Ang Paglalakbay (Tara Illenberger, 2008) 


A fictionalized retelling of facts about the environmental degradation of Mindoro: two Mangyan teenagers (Timothy Castillo and Rhea Medina) are paid by illegal loggers to smuggle wood to the lowlands. They hide them underneath a bamboo raft and float them for several days through dangerous white water. What follows is a journey that tests their friendship and their values; and opens up their eyes to a world new to them; a world dictated by ideologies and material need. Ultimately they find themselves caught in the conflict between the military and the NPA. Brutus is an adventure film that has a lot to say about a vanishing culture threatened by man’s abuses. It explores the struggle of a people who aspire to live well, with dignity and in harmony with nature.

63     Alyas Baby Tsina (Marilou Diaz-Abaya, 1984) 


About Evelyn “Baby Tsina” Duave Ortega (Vilma Santos), a famous underworld figure during the 1950’s who acquired the nickname because of her ivory skin and slanting eyes. She led the police in a frenetic chase before she was convicted for murder. Ironically it was a crime she did not commit. While in jail she underwent a transformation and led the other inmates in seeking for reforms in the local penal system.

62     Kailangan Kita (Rory Quintos, 2002) 

Kailangan Kita

Celebrity chef Carl (Aga Muhlach) returns from New York to marry his supermodel fiancée, Chrissy. But the bride-to-be is delayed in Europe, and as Carl makes wedding plans with her family, he finds himself falling for Chrissy’s sister Lena (Claudine Barretto). Preparations for the nuptials progress, but will there still be a wedding? And if so, whose wedding will it be?

61     In My Life (Olivia Lamasan, 2009) 

In My Life3

Shirley (Vilma Santos) is a woman who wants to be in control of everything. But in her family, her unwarranted intervention in the lives of her children and their families keeps her emotionally detached from them. Realizing that she has lost the command she once had, she goes to New York to reunite with Mark (Luis Manzano), her estranged gay son who is now suffering from colon cancer.

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