Contemporary World Film Series - 'Thy Womb' (Sinapupunan), Philippines

Foreign Correspondent Club of Thailand (FCCT) -

Contemporary World Film Series - 'Thy Womb' (Sinapupunan), Philippines.

Directed by Brillante Ma Mendoza

Screening Courtesy: Centre Stage Productions
Supported by the Embassy of the Philippines, who will serve Philippine ​snacks, 'Chef Tony's' gourmet popcorn, and San Miguel ​beer​ ​.

This is a moving and memorable film by the Philippines' best known contemporary film maker Brillante Ma Mendoza, whose movies have won awards at the world's top festivals (he has a film in Competition, even at this year's Cannes Festival.)

Thy Womb is a soft, simple domestic tale of a fishing village peopled by the Badajo Muslim community, rich in rituals and traditions, surrounded by the lush scenic beauty of sleepy Tawi Tawi island, located in the southern part of the country. It is not always a perfect haven, and there are moments of gunshots and violence in the film. But the villagers simply dismiss them, and continue with their languid lives.

The story centers on a midwife Shaleya who lovingly delivers many babies in the village and keeps their umbilical cords as mementoes. Unfortunately, Shaleya is infertile herself. She and her husband Bangas deeply love, care, and respect each other, and he even helps her in delivering the babies. But she feels incomplete without a child. That's when she decides to find him a new wife. As per tradition, they have to pay a high dowry, and she works hard to collect money for this. She finds him a young, attractive bride, and even dresses him up for the wedding. Bangas is happy to have the opportunity of having a child through the second wife and so, agrees to her unexpected condition.

The film's graphic child-birth sequences ( Opening and Closing scenes) created a stir when the film premiered at the Berlin Film Festival. But they are important to the story, as they present varying implications to the chief protagonist of the film. The highlight of the film is the superb performance by legendary Filipina actress Nora Aunor, often described as 'the country's national treasure.' 

Thy Womb was screened at nearly 50 films festivals around the world, from Europe to Asia, Russia, the US, Latin America.  It's interesting and ironic that the director chose the title of the movie from a Catholic prayer for a Muslim story. The film is different in tone and style from the director's early films of sex and violence which made him a kind of cult figure. It is more in keeping with his 2007 film Foster Child, also centering on a mother-child relationship, which was screened at the FCCT last year, in the presence of the Director. 

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Foreign Correspondent Club of Thailand (FCCT)

The Foreign Correspondents' Club of Thailand Penthouse, Maneeya Center 518/5 Ploenchit Road (connected to BTS Skytrain Chidlom Station), Bangkok, Thailand 10330

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Foreign Correspondent Club of Thailand (FCCT)
Foreign Correspondent Club of Thailand (FCCT)

The Foreign Correspondents' Club of Thailand Penthouse, Maneeya Center 518/5 Ploenchit Road (connected to BTS Skytrain Chidlom Station), Bangkok, Thailand 10330

View venue profile - Go to venue Website

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