2nd SVCC Film Festival: The value of 15 minutes

NEW BEGINNINGS - Büm D. Tenorio Jr. - The Philippine Star
2nd SVCC Film Festival: The value of 15 minutes
The author with the cast and crew of Idlip, this year’s Best Film at the 2nd SVCC Film Festival.
STAR/ File

If one minute is important, how much more significance can 15 minutes hold?

Fifteen minutes is enough to dare and dream for my 572 students in Philippine Pop Culture and Art Appreciation at St. Vincent College of Cabuyao to execute their 15-minute films.

Twenty-two short films competed last Saturday at the 2nd SVCC Film Festival, and most of my students came to the awards night in their suits and gowns. When I conceptualized and executed last year the school-based film fest, I had a clear vision that it would be a fiesta of talents where the students would be the stars of the night. They walked the red carpet. They cheered and screamed for every award a particular group won. And when the clips of their films were flashed on the huge LED screen on stage, pandemonium broke loose. It was a joyous occasion. A jamboree of emotions. A celebration of dreams.

“In making Idlip, I realized the value of time, that a 15-minute film could change our lives. It also got me excited about every moment of my life,” said Jonel Bello, 22, a Criminology student who directed Idlip that won Best Film at the SVCC Film Festival this year. It also won for the rapper in Jonel the Best Original Song and Best Film Editing.

Idlip, a short movie about the hopes and hardship of a student to juggle school and work done in poetic rendition of every frame, also won the Bum Tenorio Award for Film Excellence and a Best Actor trophy for Rainier Cabatana, a Criminology student. Dyunterd Giron, another Criminology student, forced a tie with Rainier for the former’s enthralling role in Oka.

All golden trophies were carved from a muhon, “the marker of every beginning, symbolic of a firm foundation of every dream,” said trophy designer Rachy Cuna, floral architect of the Philippines.

And to enhance their learning from my class in filmmaking, director Zig Dulay and scriptwriter Anj Atienza, both winners for Firefly at last year’s Metro Manila Film Festival, conducted a master class at SVCC to guide the students in the making of their films.

This year’s members of the jury were Cinema Evaluation Board chairman Christine Dayrit, filmmaker and Palawan International Film Festival (PIFFmax) convenor Dante Nico Garcia and Saskatchewan International Film Festival (Canada) president Liza Baliad.

Best in Editing winners (from left) Arpil Jaspe and Clark Montalban (Ligaya) and Jonell Bello (Idlip) with presenter Daniel Racamora (Danney).

Singer Poppert Bernadas chose the Best Original Song and gave his nod to Jonel Bello’s Idlip and Angelo Cabello’s Bakit Ako’y Nilisan Mo?, the theme song of the short film Pahimakas.

Jose Ardivilla, a political cartoonist and visual arts professor at the UP-Fine Arts, judged the Best in Poster Design and gave the award to Kamit.

“It takes 15 minutes to make me realize that everybody has a chance to prosper in life. Fifteen minutes is enough to believe in God and to believe in Him forever,” said Mar Francis Morcilla, 23, a Criminology student who directed the family drama Kamit, this year’s Second Best Film and the Chito Arceo Memorial Award for Youth Film Excellence. (The late actor Chito Arceo is the father-in-law of SVCC’s Janet Chavez-Arceo.)

Last year’s winner Benedict Mirasol (Padyak) presents the Best Story trophy to Jazer Aquino and Jess Bassig of Balintataw.

“There are a lot of 15 minutes in my life that became the most important part of my day…15 minutes is gold because it can give you the best while overlooking it,” said IT student Jazer Iseiah Aquino, 20, whose film Balintataw, a dreamy film taken from the perspective of a homeless man, won Third Best Film. Balintataw also won the PIFFmax Award and will be exhibited at the Palawan International Film Festival in April 2025.

“Fifteen minutes is enough to make or break a dream. Fifteen minutes is enough to believe… and to believe again,” said Mark Rivera, 24, an Education student who directed the art-depicts-life Pahimakas that won Third Best Film.

“The value of 15 minutes is in knowing that it is not a short time. With 15 minutes, I can be productive. I can be whoever or whatever I can be. Fifteen minutes is always a valuable time,” said Dannah Dixie Enriquez, 20, a Criminology student who won Best Director for the 15-minute film Pagmukat, which also won Third Best Film.  Pagmukat tells of deception, defeat, and the many realities that go with time.

What is the value of your 15 minutes?

The festival Best Supporting Actors: Angelo Morito (Ligaya) and Gerald Jarabe (Balintataw)

Here are the winners of the 2nd SVCC Film Festival:

*Best Film—Idlip

*Second Best Film—Kamit

*Third Best Film—Balintataw, Pahimakas (Cross) and Pagmukat

*Best Director—Dannah Dixie Enriquez (Pagmukat)

*Best Actor—Dyunterd Giron (Oka) and Rainier Cabatana (Idlip)

*Best Actress—Valerie dela Cruz Pahimakas (Cross) and Erica Mendoza (Ligaya)

*Best Supporting Actor—Gerald Jarabe (Balintataw) and Angelo Morito (Ligaya)

*Best Supporting Actress—Maria Fatima Lagaret (Yapak)

*Gender Sensitive Film Award—Love Blooms

*Best Story—Jazer Iseiah Aquino and Jess Jomarie Bassig (Balintataw)

*Best Screenplay—Jean Clarence Rieza (Pagmukat)

*Best Cinematography—Julian Altoveros, Lorence Agojo and Dannah Dixie Enriquez (Pagmukat)

*Best in Editing—Arpil Jaspe and Clark Montalban (Ligaya) and Jonell Bello (Idlip)

*Best Sound—Pagmukat

*Best Original Song—“Bakit Ako’y Nilisan Mo?” by Angelo Cabello (Pahimakas) and “Idlip” by Jonel Bello (Idlip)

*Best Poster—Kamit

*PIFFmax Award—Balintataw

*Chito Arceo Memorial Award for Youth Film Excellence—Kamit

*Büm D. Tenorio Jr. Award for Film Excellence—Idlip

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