Brilliante outshines Tarantino, Ang Lee in CannesPosted on May 25th, 2009 under We are Pinoys!
The Cannes Film Festival has a new star in Filipino director Brillante Mendoza. The Kapampangan filmmaker beat acclaimed directors Ang Lee, Pedro Almodovar, Jane Campion and Quentin Tarantino to capture the best director award in the 2009 edition.
Mendoza won the prestigious citation for his work “Kinatay” (Butchered) which features corrupt cops hacking a prostitute to pieces with blunt kitchen knives.
“I am very happy with the honor,” Brilliante said.
As the first Filipino to win the Best Director prize in Cannes, he joins the list of revered filmmakers who have won the coveted prize, including Martin Scorsese, Ingmar Bergman, Francois Truffaut, Luis Buñuel, Robert Bresson, Costa Gavras, Bernard Tavernier, Werner Herzog, Robert Altman, Joel Coen, Pedro Almodovar and Gus Van Sant.
Mendoza was at Cannes for the second year running. His entry last year was “Serbis,” set in a Manila porn-theatre with long close-ups of festering boils and overflowing toilets, as well as the poverty and distress on the streets.
A scene from “Kinatay”
“I feel humbled and privileged to be in competition for two consecutive years and to be alongside the giants and the biggest names in the film industry,” Mendoza said before the awards night.
Mendoza in “Kinatay” traces 24 hours in the day of a trainee policeman, happily beginning with his wedding in the morning to close with the young man’s first outing at night with a band of corrupt colleagues.
To his surprise, fear and anguish, they pick up a prostitute accused of betrayal and wind up torturing, raping, killing and hacking her before disposing of the body parts across Manila.
“This is not just entertainment, these kinds of stories are real,” Mendoza said at Cannes.
Last year was the first time since 1984 the Philippines had a film competing for the top prize at Cannes, the Palme d’Or.