Pinoy Indie Scene: Sexploits and Senior Superstars

by Diem ~ September 17th, 2008. Filed under: SineBuano Articles, SineBuano Reviews.

Disclaimer:The following is the personal opinion of Diem, screenwriter and director-member of SineBuano and in so does not reflect or in no way epitomize the individual opinions of other SineBuano members or the entire group.

Not everything that Sizzles (or Steamy or Sexy) is “BOLD”

Two new Filipino independent films are out and “now showing” on the circuit this September.

One is a film helmed by the legendary Eddie Romero, “Teach me to Love”. This is is the icon’s second digital film which tells of a high school student’s SEXUAL awakening with his Physics teacher.

The other film is “Room 213” is about a marriage on the rocks where the husband and wife will test their limits both physically and SEXUALLY (as if sexual isn’t physical), a drama but with a palpable EROTIC core, according to its director Keith Sicat.

Two new independent Pinoy films on a high school student’s first time and the intimacy issues between a married couple. “Sexually charged film Room 213”, “The steamy love scenes in Teach Me to Love “, well if these are advertised that way, these films don’t seem new at all.
In my humble thinking, you could chalk up these two to the plethora of Pinoy films whose only market value seemingly is highlights on sex, sex and more sex.

It’s not that I have anything against sex or its constant reprisals on-screen. Since art is the imitation of life and sex is the activity that creates life, this is to be expected but COME ON(!) Is variety, diversity of themes and film topics too much to deliver?

In opposition of this… “trend”, I declare this dare that I will not write, direct or produce through my fledgeling, struggling, sideline career of being a filmmaker any sexploitative, softcore porn, “bold” films, because let’s face the big fact here– “bold” is BORING.

But that doesn’t mean that I am not going to write or direct a love scene– when I do or when I would, I would make sure that the love scenes would leave much or depend a lot on my audience’s imaginings.

All I am going to do is plant seeds through their visual cortexes to stimulate their fertile imaginations and instincts then let Nature take its course. My point is if they think about sex, they’re sure going to wonder about sex, want sex, desire sex– in summation, they’re going to be “moved”. All through by just giving the audience “seeds” and not the whole scenic tour of the Garden of Eden!

So I vow as a filmmaker is to steer away from the common thematic backgrounds of “Life + Sex” and bring another aspect of the human condition to audience’s attention, “Life + Death”. On the global view of cinema, it’s nothing new–Kurosawa, Hitchcock, Bergman, and Kubrick explored “Life +Death” in their films and I am not striving new, but I am aiming for something different. That would hopefully be something good in itself.

Death manifests itself in many forms in my latest script “Maria”, I am glad to say. Hopefully I could bring this out with the actors help during production.


On a much more brighter note, it is great to see that our authentic screen gems from the golden age of Philippine cinema is once again shining and smiling on the limelight thanks to Philippine Independent Film.

One obvious example is the incredible Ms. Gina Pareno who’s embarking on her new role as surrogate mother to the BAKAL BOYS.

Another is Madam Anita Linda whose “Adela” allowed her to fly out to her very first international film festival and receive a much-deserved standing ovation and affectionate accolade in Toronto.

And now a tribute to Rosa Rosal by Robinsons Movieworld and the Independent Filmmakers Multipurpose Cooperative (IFC) will be held, introducing the venerable screen legend to a whole new generation of fans and reminding us those who can still remember or have learned to remember how amazing Filipino film was then.

To be independent is to stand apart, be on one’s own but that doesn’t mean we do not respect or revere our parents, our grandparents– I think that’s the same way with us filmmakers.

I think it’s part of the Independent Spirit is to recognize where we come from, of who came before us and thanking them for inspiring us, in moving us to love and learn the craft.

4 Responses to Pinoy Indie Scene: Sexploits and Senior Superstars

  1. Ems

    In opposition of this… “trend”, I declare this dare that I will not write, direct or produce through my fledgeling, struggling, sideline career of being a filmmaker any sexploitative, softcore porn, “bold” films, because let’s face the big fact here– “bold” is BORING.

    This paragraph just eased my mind. Honestly after reading the script I got bothered by the things I need to do to portray Meila…I’m glad I came across this 😀 So excited to work with you guys 😀 Thanks for the opportunity. 😀

  2. Diem

    Happy to alleviate your anxiety, Em. Filmmaking is challenging, ever more so in the Philippines where climate can influence people. Cooler climates generally leads to cooler heads while temperate climates such as ours in Cebu… well you get the idea. So I believe it’s best to provide an atmosphere of cordiality, camaraderie with the cast, crew and group para the best in creative collaboration can come out.

    Besides, I believe an actor can give a confident performance once he or she is no longer conflicted about the character s/he portrays 🙂

  3. Van

    Excuse me, but isn’t “Teach Me to Love” directed by Eddie Romero and not Eddie Guerrero (I think he’s the late wrestler)?

    Yeah, it’s a boring trend, Ems.

    I’m new to this site and stumbled across it because a student of mine said that he’s interested in your work, people.

  4. Diem

    Thanks for noticing the oversight. Article corrected.

Leave a Reply