The Dangal ng Bayan Awards has paid tribute to Ang Dating Daan by awarding it as the country’s “Best Longest Running Religious Program”.
The award-giving body organized by the National Consumers Affairs Foundation (NCAF) also bestowed to Bro. Eliseo Soriano the “Best Bible-Based TV/Radio Evangelist” award.
The station where Ang Dating Daan and Bro. Eli’s programs are being aired, UNTV was also awarded the “No. 1 TV Station Committed to Truth an Genuine Public Service” during the awards night held at the AFP Theater in Quezon City on February 27, 2014.
Other big winners from UNTV include Kaagapay for Best Public Service-Oriented TV Program and Rodel Flordeliz as Outstanding TV and Event Host.
To God be the glory!
Year-end coverage by media networks usually focus on news of the revelry and countdown to welcome a new year, as well as reports of deadly aftermath of stray bullet firings, fires, and emergencies.
But it is saving lives through emergency and rescue response that UNTV has long injected in its year-end coverages.
Tonight at 10 p.m. (Manila time), UNTV delivers its #UNTVRepaso2013 in the same beat.
The Philippine Public Service Channel has long shifted gears in bridging public service through rescue delivery and news reporting by way of ‘Tulong Muna Bago Balita’ (Rescue First, News Later) advocacy.
The network’s CEO Daniel Razon is the brain behind this one-of-a-kind journalism brand and possibly the first such practice in global news reporting. Do More Awards has recognized this brainchild by Razon through UNTV.
As in Repaso 2012, Repaso 2013 will be kicked off by UNTV’s special presentation to review the headline-grabbing news of 2013, the good and bad news, and stories of heroism and advocacies, while waiting for the clock to strike 12.
Repaso 2013 will also feature human-interest stories about the outlook of the indigents, homeless and poor people as the new year enters. Last year, Bro. Eliseo F. Soriano of Ang Dating Daan even took advantage of the event to sponsor and dole out grocery packs to the homeless people that UNTV visited.
There will be simulcast of Repaso 2013 at UNTV Radyo La Verdad.
“What’s your all-time favorite film?”
A friend recently asked me this question remotely aware such is not easy answering. Among family and friends known to me, they knew just how I love films. It was a love-hate relationship that dates back during my college years after discovering there’s a secret portal to the lives of others through the celluloid world.
That’s why asking for my best is not easy. Even giving ranks to the ones you love, and putting to drawers the least of your favorites are tough.
What criteria should I use to rate whether a film is good or bad, or to determine which films reverberate or has a striking appeal?
Giving your best film or films of all time, even if they are just three, five or ten are very difficult to say as such would require you to like look back at the past couple of years in your cinematic journey. Even if that film odyssey took me to heavens and nadir of my life, or even if they happened in movie theaters, web streaming, bus rides or laptop, oh, man, it’s really very tough.
So after spending a whole afternoon recalling, playing back the films which lingered most in my mind, I finally thought of blogging my choices of films that I can proudly put in my list. Don’t worry, there are no big spoilers, just some thoughts why these films belong to my list.
Now presenting, my seven best films of all time:
Yi Yi: One and A Two (2000) – This novelistic and cinematic masterpiece from acclaimed Taiwan director Edward Yang is surely one of the most beautifully-written and directed piece of world cinema of all time, which I agree to 100%. The film revolves around the struggles of a dysfunctional middle-class Taiwanese family where the perspective of Yang-Yang, the young son, gives the film its soul.
Paris, Texas (1984) – Directed by Wim Wenders, this wonderful film is the story of a mysterious man (convincingly played by Harry Dean Stanton) who seems to have lost his memory of the past and has returned to revive his relationship with his brother and his son after wandering for long in the deserts. This man’s next mission is to track down his former wife who abandoned him and their son. It is the piercingly beautiful screenplay and the film’s build up of the revelation of the secrets and lies that finally redeemed the characters with fractured souls. Unforgettable.
Running on Empty (1988) – One of the most heart-breaking films that I’ve watched is directed by Sidney Lumet. The deceptively simple tale of a former activist couple who are always on the run from the FBI after figuring in an anti-war protest and bombing of a napalm research facility. The couple, including their children assume different identities to escape possible jail terms. Their past haunt them and their children but now their son seeks freedom.
Au Revoir Les Enfants (1987) – Just how much a French film about children and the Holocaust should be and its theme of friendship, betrayal and difficult choices during times of crises compelled me to pick this film among the most unforgettable I’ve watched. This Venice Film Festival-prize winner was also authobiographical and based on the childhood of its director Louis Malle.
Foster Child (2007) – Directed by one of cinema’s most brilliant auteurs living today, Brillante Mendoza’s fourth film is arguably his best. Foster Child features a day in the life of a temporary foster parent (played convincingly by Cherry Pie Picache) to an abandoned child and showcased the now-signature Mendoza cameraworks. The last few hours before turning over the child John John to his new, adoptive American parents packs a difficult and bitter punch of reality about what it means to be a mother, even to a child not your own.
Orapronobis: Fight for Us (1989) – The only political thriller in this list, Lino Brocka’s superior, chilling and powerful Fight For Us tells the human rights abuses in the aftermath of the fall of Ferdinand Marcos told through a former priest who turned his back against the resistance movement. Played by Philip Salvador, the former priest will soon find out that counterinsurgency operations still plague the country. Is change possible after the country installed a democratic leadership? These are difficult questions that continue to haunt and resound the present state of politics in the country.
Isang Araw (One Day, 2013) – Even only having watched this small budget film this year (at a Sponsors’ Night in December for the benefit of Typhoon Yolanda victims), the independent film which Daniel Razon stars, writes and directs quickly rose to my all-time best films for so many compelling reasons. Isang Araw tells the simple tale of a man who remains steadfast despite hardships and struggles, keeping his dignity intact and believing that God’s justice will prevail. The film’s profound power lies in the depth of the theme of faith and of being righteous in the sight of God, a rarity in world cinema. In championing the poor in the film as in real life and Razon’s magnetic charisma all make the comparison being made between him and the Man of Steel or the late Fernando Poe Jr. sounds plausible.
Reflecting on my choices
Cinema can be a mirror of the harsh realities in life and a powerful medium in reaching out to the hearts of the people. And beyond serving the artistic purpose of a director, cinema can bring truths not just to expose the weaknesses of a system.
While my choices are very limited in scope and what they can magnify or reflect about the human conditions, I believe they transcend their very finite lifespan in the way they expose some realities and give something to ponder. But the really best ones impart some powerful lessons about choosing the better road to take. As in the lessons shared by Isang Araw, it is being compassionate even towards your enemies. And when you do, it’s like everything else are going to be easy and ‘that’s nothing short of miraculous.’
What’s wrong with GMA Network? Just last week, Bubble Gang hosts Michael V and Ruffa Mae Quinto, and GMA executives were under fire for different violations of the movie-television censor’s ethical broadcasting regulations while Unang Hirit and host Arnold Clavio were issued “a grave and serious admonition” that comes with P20,000 penalty.
Is Bubble Gang Sexist?
Reported by Interaksyon.com, the Movie Television Review and Classification Board (MTRCB) was alarmed and concerned by what it termed as “discriminatory and derogatory portrayal of a woman” in a Bubble Gang segment “D’ Adventures of Susie Luwalhati”. It was the “Puto-Bumbong” gag that figured in the case.
MTRCB tweeted the ruling:
MTRCB summons Bubble Gang for derogatory portrayal of female character. pic.twitter.com/sPckSFymo3
— MTRCB (@MTRCBgov) December 7, 2013
MTRCB to hear Bubble Gang Monday over gender-insensitive segment (cont.). pic.twitter.com/CH2p9o4sDT
— MTRCB (@MTRCBgov) December 7, 2013
MTRCB alarmed over alleged gender-sensitive “Susie” character (cont.). pic.twitter.com/nknZWVDqJ7
— MTRCB (@MTRCBgov) December 7, 2013
The segment was aired during Bubble Gang’s November 29 episode. The summon signed by MTRCB chairman Atty. Eugenio “Toto” Villareal detailed the heavy sexual innuendos, involving Susie (played by Quinto) vigorously shaking her breast and a seeming simulation of “male abuse”.
Villareal stated – citing Republic Act 9710 or the Magna Carta of Women – in the document: “It appears that the segment stereotypically portrayed a woman as an object of rather frivolous, albeit carnal, delight. When women are treated as commodities, they are disrespected and degraded.”
Other exeuctives summoned by the MTRCB to attend a conference on December 9, included the show’s director Uro dela Cruz, head writer Ceasar Cosme, executive producer Junalyn Navarro, program manager Eva Arespacochaga, vice-president for entertainment Marivin Arayata, and vice-president for program management Jose Mari Abacan.
Unang Hirit, Clavio Fined P20,000
Meanwhile, Unang Hirit was also slapped by the censors board with P20,000 fine over the airing of the episode where Clavio interviewed Janet Lim-Napoles’ lawyer.
Clavio was the subject of a public and online outrage when he was visibly frustrated with the course of how his interview went with Atty. Alfredo Villaflor, who was not in the position to speak in behalf of the PDAF case of the alleged pork barrel mastermind Napoles.
Atty. Villamor is the handler of the the serious legal detention lawyer case of Napoles.
The MTRCB sanctioned Clavio to attend a seminar on ethical media reporting.
MTRCB rules on Unang Hirit matter involving use of disrespectful language in interview of lawyer pic.twitter.com/bQT3k1Rncc
— MTRCB (@MTRCBgov) December 5, 2013
MTRCB ruling re Unang Hirit (cont.) pic.twitter.com/vknRLyHIVf
— MTRCB (@MTRCBgov) December 5, 2013
MTRCB ruling on Unang Hirit (page 3) pic.twitter.com/eDJOBBAGXy
— MTRCB (@MTRCBgov) December 5, 2013
The video of Clavio’s misdemeanor went viral and stirred public outcry and demands to apologize. But when Clavio spoke again on the show, he merely sought for understanding for his gaffe, not an utter admission of guilt.
Other Controversies Involving Clavio
This was not the first time that Clavio figured in a public controversy with his rude and brash remarks and irresponsible reporting.
Religious group Members Church of God International, more popoularly known for its flagship program Ang Dating Daan, cried foul over a Case Unclosed episode showing a malicious rape charge against Presiding Minister Bro. Eliseo Soriano.
In the episode hosted by Clavio, which GMA Network aired twice using its GMA-7 and GMA News 11 properties, the broadcaser used as resource person a self-confessed rapist who joined the rival sect of Ang Dating Daan, the influential Iglesia ni Cristo.
Since 2009, the Ang Dating Daan group has declared a sustained boycott against the television network.
Moreover, the broadcaster’s “foul” and “racist” comments against some Fil-Am members of Azkals, the Philippine National Football Team in 2012, became the toast of the net universe last year. Actress Angel Locsion slammed Clavio for his insensitive remarks.
The Pulse of Public Opinion
Is the MTRCB action issued against Bubble Gang enough? How about the sanction given to Unang Hirit and Arnold Clavio?
Some netizens didn’ think so with others saying 20,000 peso is too little.
There were also questions why GMA Network never seem to notice anything and didn’t suspend Clavio for the obviously skank remarks on a morning show.
Some reactions were advise for Clavio to learn from his mistakes and be more sincere because there’s still hope for change.
There’s a new kid in town that journalists and broadcasters are testing recently in delivering news in crisis-and-disaster zones – drone technology.
In the Philippines, UNTV appears to be the first and only local media channel to capture the immense damage wrought by Yolanda in Leyte using an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) or drone technology.
The use of drone in disaster zones is justified, where walking or driving are very impossible to mount.
In other countries, drones are used for commercial and non-commercial purposes. The US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has green-lighted the use of drones for police and government services but not its commercial use.
Amazon, a global leader in online retail, has also recently been testing drones for delivering goods to customers.
UNTV posted a video on its Youtube channel where its drone showed the devastation in Leyte weeks after the strongest typhoon made its landfall in the province. The massive garbage problem was also shown.
According to the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), the worse garbage situation could spiral into massive health problems like Hepatitis, Leptospirosis, Amoebiasis and Dengue.
Government officials interviewed by UNTV placed reconstruction will cost P250 billion and will take ten years to rehabilitate the Visayas region.
Meanwhile, Reuters also recently reported that drones were being used to aid in rescue efforts in Tacloban.
Danoffice IT, a Swiss-based technology firm, were said to have deployed two of its drones to scour disaster zones and identify blocked roads. The drones are also said to be helping in recovering dead bodies.
“Doing more is like grabbing every opportunity that you have and not letting it pass. Every opportunity that you have to do good, you grab it.”
Now, these very words reverberate more deeply because the current CEO of UNTV is the officially-declared Ultimate Luminary of Rappler.com and Rexona’s search for modern Filipino heroes who do more with Do More Awards.
Razon is also the people’s favorite for the honor, garnering 94% percent of the public vote.
— Rappler (@rapplerdotcom) November 28, 2013
— Rexona Philippines (@Rexona_PH) November 28, 2013
— Naprey Almario (@NapreyAlmario) November 28, 2013
Razon was not present to receive the award from television and film actor Marvin Agustin as of the awards night ceremonies coincide with the premiere screening of his sophomore film, Isang Araw (One Day) for the benefit of Typhoon Yolanda victims. Razon stars, writes and directs the independent film.