Wednesday, July 25, 2012

hang in there: eiga sai 2012.

What would you do when the misfortunes of life seem to connive with fate to twist your destiny into a distasteful one? Eiga Sai 2012 echoed the answer ,"Hang in there." From the first movie that I watched until the last one, there's a message that was clear in each character, the need to persist, to survive, to "hang in there".As I watched the stories of mountaineers, pilots, doctors, flight attendants, boxers, samurais, ninjas and even criminals, I realized one thing: Life is real. Everyone suffers. And everyone fights to survive. Eiga Sai 2012 reverberated the need to survive amidst the tragedies of life.

Peak: The Rescuers

The Eiga Sai opened with laughter and tears in the Peak: The Rescuers. It showcased the beauty of Japan's cold mountains that highlighted the blue skies. I always see mountains and snow. I said to myself, "Japan, even on ice, is still breathtakingly wonderful."

The story revolved around the characters of Shiina and Shinpo, both mountaineers of different perspectives. Shiina was a neophyte while Shinpo was a mountain compass, an enthusiast. The story circled around Shiina's struggles in the art of mountaineering under the tutelage of her own fear, doubt and courage. Without struggle, she would not discover the will to survive. Shinpo, on the other hand, became her scarf against the coldness of life. He became her redemption.

I love the film. I spent more than two hours trying to subdue the seemingly unappeasable cyclone of emotions inside me. The audience could attest to that. I tried to hold a tear.

Happy Flight

I always admire pilots whenever I see one. I remembered the first time I rode a plane. I spent most of the time listening to my own prayers while the clouds played peek-a-boo with me. But the Captain's voice soothed those worries away. Since then, I was always fascinated by pilots. Was it really that hard to fly and to land a plane safely? Questions. Questions. Questions.

Happy Flight laid the answers on a silver platter. It was never easy. Trying to fly a thing that big and that heavy was not a layman's work. That's why, soon-to-be-Captain Suzuki was both a hero and a survivor in this movie. I was deeply moved by his words, "I want to land a plane wherein the passengers could barely feel that it landed already." Security and comfort. 

The struggle started when a small part of the plane got destroyed and, thus, cascaded into a series of plane exhibitionism, airport drama and unwanted humor. I always like how the Japanese made their movies: there's always humor.A problematic plane is serious. But Japanese humor is more serious. I always pocket out a laugh from time to time.

The movie ended just like its title: Everyone got a happy flight. And so was the audience.

Ninja Kids

Two words for this movie: Eeww and Funny.

Based on a manga, the movie captured the audience through its colorful costumes, handsome casts (the girls' screams were still fresh in my ear canal) and slapstick humor. Stepping on a dog's poo, nose with gooey mucus, weird faces like Madame Auring's and a big head. Just plainly weird.

Rantaro, a ninja kid, was sent to a school to learn the ways of a ninja. Together with his bunch of sleazy, cunning and faithful friends, he managed to overcome obstacles and conquered his own life's tragedies.

My humor is somewhat shallow, so I always find myself laughing at the film.


Colorful was the animation of this year's Eiga Sai. It was a film about a soul that was given a chance to live again but in another person's body. He would forfeit this chance unless he found the reason why he was sent back.

He lived in the life of Makoto Kobayashi whose family issues he deeply resented. He discovered the complicated life that was left behind by Makoto.The first half of the film was a shade of gray: dark, gloomy and dragging. I nearly strangled the person next to me. Kidding. Hehe.

The other half of the movie went into shades of pastel as "Makoto" discovered the joy behind meeting friends, or shall we say a friend. His life became colorful when he discovered what he lost due to his indifference to the world. I was a bit curious about the reason behind his suicide. Through the guidance of another soul, he was prompted to realize what was his mistake.

The whole film dragged me for almost two hours to find out what his mistake was. His mistake was that he killed someone. He killed Makoto. The soul that returned to Makoto was his own soul afterall. Complicated? Watch the movie 'coz I don't want to spend the whole day here reiterating the film.

Tomorrow's Joe

I thought the idea of boxing as an escape route to sudden wealth was a Pinoy mindset. I was wrong. Even Japanese had this, or at least in the movie.

The film would bring us to the slums of boxing dreams where Joe was discovered by, perhaps, a former good boxer. All I could say that Joe definitely lived a hard life having violence as his staple food. He loved brawling. His life changed when he met Rikiishi, a pro boxer, in a fight inside the prison. This opened him to his purpose in life and started his "boxing career". Joe won all his match for one sole purpose: to fight Rikiishi someday on a ring. I don't know why they became smitten with each other's punches.

Among the films, I ranked this as my best. Though not a fan of boxing, I liked the whole flow of the story. It's just that I don't get it why they injected the story of the girl's poverty to the plot. Found it not interesting. So what if she came from the slums? Her issues were not resolved, even at the later part.


Being the featured film of this year's Eiga sai, I expected a lot from this film. I was a bit late so I missed the first few parts. Just like the other films, I noticed the first part before the title was shown could mean a link in the chain. It can make or break the story.

I felt empty and dumbfounded after watching the movie. Though I understood the logic behind the character of Yuichi, I was still stupefied by the depth of the story. I was drowned with my own ignorance. Each character faced their own villains in life. Either they encountered outside forces or they came face to face with their own selves.

Among the films, this belongs to my To-Watch-Again List. Though the film did not disappoint me, my perception and understanding of it puts me in the frontier of frustration. 

Eiga Sai 2012 dismisses the idea of an easy-going life. The basic struggles in life punches their realities through our guts. We either throw a haphazard punch or block it with our own countercross. We either subjugate ourselves to a KO or we emerge a winner, someone who "hangs in there".

I definitely love my Eiga Sai experience this year, though I still miss the company of Elna Furio. I miss seeing her cry and laugh at the same time while watching. I watched 7 films out of 10. Hope to watch it with you next year. Hahaha. 


khantotantra said...

dalawa lang napanood ko dyan. sayang pero pede na din. next time, susubukan ko makadami :p

fiel-kun said...

Wow gusto kong mapanood yan. Teka, meron ba nyan sa Youtube? hehe.. ma search nga :D

Unahin ko muna siguro yung Eiga Sai, looks like a great film.

mjomesa said...

@fiel-kun: Eiga Sai means film festival. The whole event is the Eiga Sai. I think what you're referring is the Villain. The first picture.