By Vincent Amodia & Francis Nylle Pagador (OJT-ACLC Senior High)
ORMOC HAS another rea-son to celebrate this week. “Bato Bato Pik,” a short film directed by two young Or-mocanons Adrian Sanque and Lorys Plaza won “Best Short Film” in the Sine Ka-bataan 2018 held at Makati City on August 19, 2018.
Sanque and Plaza, and their two actors Vinuz Finn and Ephraim John Castro, were high school classmates. They are now Senior High students.
The National Youth Com-mission (NYC) celebrates the 2nd year of Pista ng Pelikulang Pili-pino (PPP) and also its leg ‘Sine Kabataan 2018”. Sine Kabataan is open to all film-makers ages 15-30 years old. Entries should depict the youth’s perception on the fol-lowing issues: Health (Teenage pregnancy, HIV/Aids, Mental Health, Adolescent disability), Education (Out of school youth, Bullying, Lack of access), Security and Peace Building (Youth in con-flict with law, Youth in conflicted areas, Youth in peace building, Digital or online safety), and, Family Values (Violence against children, Abandonment, Effects of migration).
A post on Facebook alerted directors Adrian Sanque and Lo-rys Plaza to the contest. The two, who’ve been doing directorial jobs in school plays, decided to join the contest. With the help of two other classmates, Vinuz Finn and Ephraim John Castro, they decided on what issue to take up and the story line.
The short film Bato Bato Pik is about a young teenager faced with an untimely pregnancy. As she and her boyfriend contemplate the consequences and the effects of this problem in their young lives, their conversation suddenly leaves the fate of their unborn child to a game of chance.
The 5-minute video, which the directors also made sure would depict Ormoc as a setting, was a powerful reminder of how the young can deal with serious matters in immature ways.
Lorys said they got the idea from their own practice. When she and Adrian would have a disagreement, they usually settle it with a “bato, bato, pik.”
The Bato Bato Pik directors and cast are still in awe for winning the Best Short Film award.
Ephraim John Castro, the male actor, said that they still can’t believe that the film idea, which started as a joke, would win the top plum. He said he is proud to have worked with Sanque and Plaza, who might not yet be big names in the film industry, but among “the best of the best”.
Lorys Plaza said that as finalist, their film received a P 10,000.00 cash prize. As “Best Short Film,” they were set to receive P 50,000.00 but they had to forgo this, choosing two round trip tickets and accommodations instead to participate in the Busan International Film Festival. She said the experience and the opportunity to learn more about filmmaking was more important for them.
The P10,000.00 cash prize, on the other hand, they gave to the two actors.
The seven other short films proclaimed finalists were Alas Nuebe Ng Tanghali by Enalyn Legaspi, Anonymous Student Vlog by Christian Babista, Bahaybahayan by Brian Spencer Reyes, Isang Tula Para Sa Nawawala by Rod Singh, Koleksyong Pamalo by Jocelyn Frago, Masaya Ako by Daniel Delgado,Runner by Levi Jun Miscala and Bato Bato Pik by Lorys Plaza and Adrian Sanque. ‘Bato Bato Pik’ is the only entry coming from Visayas who made it to the final 8. Lorys Plaza, when asked what she wants to pursue in college, said she’d like to get a degree in f ilm-making. She said their award gives them the opportunity to be admitted to St. Benilde’s, one of two colleges in the country offering a degree in film-making. She also has a message to her fellow young people. “Dream big,” she said, “because your dreams will help bring you to that place. Study hard, and work for it.” She also believes that, “if you really want it, you’ll get it.” Of course, drawing from their own experience in filming the movie where they had to ask help from family, friends and neighbors, she said, “Don’t hesitate to ask for help because people are always ready to help.” More importantly, she said, “ask for God’s guidance.” With a report from Lalaine Marcos