By FRANCIS N. TOLENTINO
The much anticipated 2018 Metro Manila Film Festival (MMFF) is just days away. Aside from that chance to delightfully watch our screen idols, the MMFF is also an opportunity to showcase and take pride in the superb and world-class talent of Filipino artists, directors, and scriptwriters, among others. Other than being an arena for highlighting acting prowess, the Metro Manila Film Festival celebrates and honors the Filipino creativity, our rich culture, and our genuine passion for the arts.
This year is the 44th edition of the MMFF. The first Manila Film Festival was held way back in 1966, led by then Manila Mayor Antonio Villegas. Years thereafter, the filmfest was staged to highlight Filipino films and emphasize its important role in the development and flourishing of Filipino arts and culture. Despite the not so strong public support in the beginning, the MMFF gained popularity over the years, showcasing high quality movies and building the careers of top-caliber screen talents.
For the 2018 Metro Manila Film Festival, eight entries won the MMFF jurors’ nod. These movies are: (1) Aurora starred by Anne Curtis; (2) The Girl in the Orange Dress starred by Jericho Rosales and Jessy Mendiola; (3) Fantastica: The Princess, the Prince and the Perya, led by TV host-comedian Vice Ganda; (4) Jack en Popoy the Puliscredibles, with all-time MMFF producer Vic Sotto and Coco Martin; (5) Mary, Marry Me, starred by Sam Milby, Toni Gonzaga, and Alex Gonzaga; (6) One Great Love, from Kim Chiu and Dennis Trillo; (7) Otlum, starred by John Estrada, Ricci Rivero, and Jerome Ponce; and (8) the heart-warming Rainbow’s Sunset by veteran and critically acclaimed film icons Gloria Romero, Eddie Garcia, and Tony Mabesa.
The Metro Manila Film Festival is staged every year not only for the entertainment of the public but also to raise the level and quality of Philippine movies. The films that were chosen passed through serious and rigorous scrutiny by film experts to ensure that MMFF will be able to offer moviegoers with motion pictures that are reflective of Filipino values, that arev enriching especially for the youth, and that strengthen the ties that bind us together as one nation.