HomeManilavol. 7 no. 1 (2011)

Cine > Sine: Spanish Influences on Philippine Cinema

Nick Deocampo

Discipline: History



“CINE>SINE: Spanish Beginnings of Philippine Cinema” is the country’s first full-length 3-D documentary. The hourlong digital animation, with live interviews and film excerpts, recreates the origin of motion pictures in the country and is the first episode in a ten-hour series on the 100-year history of cinema in the Philippines. By tracing the history of cinema, it sheds light on Manila as the birthplace of motion pictures. Based on his award-winning book, Cine: Spanish Influences on Early Cinema in the Philippines, the documentary traces the beginnings of cinema in 1897 when two Spaniards showed the first moving pictures in Escolta. Against the backdrop of war and revolution, film developed to become the emerging Filipinos’ dominant form of public entertainment. Featured in the documentary are elements of Spanish culture found in Filipino films as evidenced through the classic films made by three National Artists – Eddie Romero, Lino Brocka and Ishmael Bernal. This new work commemorates the 90th anniversary of the first showing of Dalagang Bukid (1919-2009), the film that ushered the coming of the Tagalog movie industry made by the pioneering director, Jose Nepomuceno. CINE>SINE is a homage both to Philippine cinema and the Filipino nation that is its twin.