Suzara’s Sigaw sa Hatinggabi at Sineng Pambansa Horror Plus Film Festival

The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines - Presented by the Film Development Council of the Philippines in partnership with SM Cinema, director Romy Suzara’s newest film Sigaw sa Hatinggabi will premiere on Oct. 29 at this year’s Sineng Pambansa Horror Plus Film Festival. The filmfest will run until Nov. 4 at all SM Cinema branches nationwide at regular admission prices.

The first-ever Horror Plus Filmfest will feature films that are horror — and more. Alongside direk Romy’s Sigaw sa Hatinggabi, the films participating in the festival include T’yanak by co-directors Peque Gallaga and Lore Reyes; Bacao by director Edgardo Vinarao; and Hukluban by director Gil Portes. Crafted by veteran directors, all four films feature a unique mix of various film genres with traditional horror and also touch on the theme of Filipino folklore and the supernatural.

Sigaw sa Hatinggabi is about an investigation into possible murder of a battered wife whose husband is well known. It is not clear whether the woman was murdered or committed suicide. The film is told in a Big Brother style, as a documentary TV production crew records the efforts of a paranormal investigation group to find who killed the woman. With the leadership of a celebrity medium, the group suspects that the murder was committed by the ghost of a serial killer, who died more than two decades ago. As the investigation continues, the celebrity medium keeps a secret that may endanger everyone trying to solve the mystery murder. The cast includes Regine Angeles, Richard Quan, Afi Africa, Vangie Labalan, Chanel Latorre, David Karell, Alvin Anson and Paloma.

The presence of spirits in Sigaw sa Hatinggabi was inspired by the belief of many Filipinos that the spirits of the dead return to visit the living. Direk Romy is one of the believers of spirits from his own personal experiences, sharing “when FPJ (Fernando Poe Jr.) died, I get to dream about him often. Then when Rudy Fernandez died, he returns to me in my dreams. So, there I believe that spirits are among us.” The legendary FPJ was supposed to star in direk Romy’s Tahimik Ngunit Mapanganib before the actor’s untimely death in 2004, and Rudy was a dear friend of the director’s, both having worked in the 1981 action drama Pepeng Shotgun.

The renaissance director’s newest feature is his third venture in horror, following Anak ng Asuang (1973) and Sa Init ng Apoy (1980). What makes Sigaw sa Hatinggabi different is that its horror hinges upon an unknown serial killer. In an interview, direk Romy warned that his film will begin with the disclaimer “Do not watch if you are faint of heart.” The film is sure to be filled with twists as direk Romy emphasized, “I want the audience to scream at least 10 times!”

Direk Romy has been nominated and won numerous awards for directing. His wins include the first Best Director awardee of the Film Academy of the Philippines in 1983 for Mga Uod at Rosas. His nominations include Best Director for his critically-acclaimed films Pag-ibig Na Walang Dangal and Pepeng Shotgun by various award-giving bodies. Last year, direk Romy participated in the Sineng Pambansa All-Masters Film Festival with his comeback film Tinik.

The gala premiere of Sigaw sa Hatinggabi will be announced in the coming weeks. Stay tuned by visiting the FDCP homepage (www.fdcp.ph) and the FDCP Facebook page for announcements and more screening details.












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