In Alvin Yapan’s Ang Sayaw ng Dalawang Kaliwang Paa, dance and poetry and the stare speaks on behalf of its triumvirate of characters. The film dances around Karen (Jean Garcia) who teaches literature and moonlights as a dance instructor, Marlon (Paolo Avelino) who has a crush on her, and Dennis (Rocco Nacino) whose subtle looks towards Marlon expresses the emotions he can’t quite put into words.
Yapan employs the poems of love and longing and loss from feminist poets to tell the tale of this unconventional love triangle. It largely succeeds but demands from the viewer to concentrate on the words spoken and the moving images. IN the film poems are translated into songs, songs are interpreted into dance. Two classes of art doing what it is supposed to do, cracking open the emotions of each character.
Similar to his earlier films (Ang Panggagahasa Kay Fe, Gayuma), Yapan does not end with a happily ever after which obliterate the gem of scenes that came before. He does not cop out. He ends his film with a shot of a painted face and a tear. Was that the face and the tears of gratitude? of sudden realization? of sadness?
That last image alone warrants a post-viewing discussion. And that’s what I like about Yapan’s film. It invites you to think. It challenges you to think. The reason behind this may stem from the fact that both the director and producer are educators. They have managed to transfer a spirited and academic discussion from the classroom to the big screen. This time around the educators make their movies talk for them. This time around the students are the viewers.
This one is a must-see, most probably one of the best films churned out by seven years of Cinemalaya. The first few sequences of the film that jumps timeframes even before the title appears are a gem. There are more of these as the film progresses but I won’t spoil it for you. Jean Garcia was impressive and the two actors who portray her students does not disappoint. The slow-mo scenes were nifty too, reminiscent of Wong Kar-Wai’s In The Mood for Love.
Go. Watch this film when it competes in the New Breed section of this year’s Cinemalaya. It will be a well-spent P150.
17 July/Sun, 12:45PM at the Tanghalang Nicanor Abelardo (CCP Main Theater)
18 July/Mon, 6:15PM at the Bulwagang Pambansang Alagad Ng Sining (CCP MKP Hall)
19 July/Tue, 12:45PM at the Tanghalang Huseng Batute
20 July/Wed, 6:15PM at the Tanghalang Huseng Batute
21 July/Thu, 10:00AM at the Tanghalang Aurelio Tolentino (CCP Little Theater)
22 July/Fri, 6:15PM at the Tanghalang Nicanor Abelardo (CCP Main Theater)
23 July/Sat, 3:30PM at the Bulwagang Pambansang Alagad Ng Sining (CCP MKP Hall)
16 July/Sat, 4:00PM at the Greenbelt 3 – Cinema 5
18 July/Mon, 9:00PM at the Greenbelt 3 – Cinema 3
24 July/Sun, 4:00PM at the Greenbelt 3 – Cinema 3